Kubernetes Installations

Overview

Our Installer can handle the installation of Element Enterprise into your production kubernetes (k8s) environment.

Postgresql Database

The installation requires that you have a postgresql database with a locale of C and UTF8 encoding set up. See https://matrix-org.github.io/synapse/latest/postgres.html#set-up-database for further details.

Please make note of the database hostname, database name, user, and password as you will need these to begin the installation.

Migrating from our older installer

If you have previously used installer versions 2023-03.01 and earlier, you will need to run our migration script to convert your previous configuration to the new format that is used with our UI based installer. This script became available in 2023-03.02, so you must have at least that version or higher of the graphical installer for this to work.

NOTE: Before running the migration script, we highly recommend that you take a backup or snapshot of your working environment. While we have tested the migration script against several configurations at this point, we have not tested for all of the combinations of configuration that the previous installer allowed. We expect that migration will be a quick process for most customers, but in the event that something goes wrong, you'll want to be able to get back to a known good state through a backup or snapshot.

NB: If you are using group sync, you cannot presently migrate to the graphical installer. We are working to address the issues with migrating group sync and will remove this note once we have those addressed.

If you have not used our installer before, you may safely ignore this section.

To run the migration script, please do the following:

chmod +x ./element-enterprise-graphical-installer-YYYY-MM.VERSION-gui.bin
./element-enterprise-graphical-installer-YYYY-MM.VERSION-gui.bin --import ~/.element-onpremise-config

Make sure to replace ~/.element-onpremise-config with the path that your actual configuration exists in. Further, replace YYYY-MM.VERSION with the appropriate tag for the installer you downloaded.

Once the import has finished, the GUI will start and you will be able to browse to the installer at one of the provided URLs, much as if you had started the installer without doing a migration as detailed in the following section.

Beginning the Installation

Head to https://ems.element.io/on-premise/download and download the latest installer. The installer will be called element-enterprise-graphical-installer-YYYY-MM.VERSION-gui.bin. You will take this file and copy it to the machine where you will be installing the Element Server Suite. Once you have this file on the machine in a directory accessible to your sudo-enabled user, you will run:

chmod +x ./element-enterprise-graphical-installer-YYYY-MM.VERSION-gui.bin

replacing the YYYY-MM.VERSION with the appropriate tag for the installer you downloaded.

If you have multiple kubernetes clusters configured in your kubeconfig, you will have to export the K8S_AUTH_CONTEXT variable before running the installer :

export K8S_AUTH_CONTEXT=<kube context name>

Once you have done this, you will run:

./element-enterprise-graphical-installer-YYYY-MM.VERSION-gui.bin

replacing the YYYY-MM.VERSION with the appropriate tag for the installer you downloaded, and this will start a web server with the installer loaded.

You will see a message similar to:

[user@element-demo ~]$ ./element-enterprise-graphical-installer-2023-02.02-gui.bin 
Testing network...

Using self-signed certificate with SHA-256 fingerprint:
         F3:76:B3:2E:1B:B3:D2:20:3C:CD:D0:72:A3:5E:EC:4F:BC:3E:F5:71:37:0B:D7:68:36:2E:2C:AA:7A:F2:83:94 

To start configuration open:
        https://192.168.122.47:8443 or https://10.1.185.64:8443 or https://127.0.0.1:8443

At this point, you will need to open a web browser and browse to one of these IPs. You may need to open port 8443 in your firewall to be able to access this address from a different machine.

If you are unable to open port 8443 or you are having difficulty connecting from a different machine, you may want to try ssh port forwarding in which you would run:

ssh <host> -L 8443:127.0.0.1:8443

replacing host with the IP address or hostname of the machine that is running the installer. At this point, with ssh connected in this manner, you should be able to use the https://127.0.0.1:8443 link as this will then forward that request to the installer box via ssh.

Upon loading this address for the first time, you may be greeted with a message informing you that your connection isn't private such as this:

not_private.png

In this case, you'll need to click "Advanced" and then "Continue to (unsafe)" in order to view the installer. As the exact button names and links can vary between browsers, it would be hard for us to document them all, so you may have slightly different wording depending on your browser.

The Hosts Screen

The very first page that you come to is the host screen.

k8s1.png

You will want to make sure that "Kubernetes Application" is selected. You can opt to skip the update setup or the operator setup, but unless you know why you are doing that, you should leave them alone.

The very next prompt that you come to is for an EMS Image Store Username and Token. These are provided to you by element as access tokens for our enterprise container registries. If you have lost your token, you can always generate a new token at https://ems.element.io/on-premise/subscriptions.

k8s2.png

Here, we find the ability to set the namespaces that the application will be deployed into.

The final options on the hostpage are related to connectivity. For this guide, we are assuming "Connected" and you can leave that be. If you are doing "Airgapped", you would pick airgapped at this point and then please see the section on airgapped installations.

You are presented with the option to provide docker hub credentials. These are optional, but if you do not provide them, you may be rate limited by Docker and this could cause issues pulling container images.

The Domains Screen

domains.png

On this page, we get to specify the domains for our installation. In this example, we have a domain name of airgap.local and this would mean our MXIDs would look like @kabbott:airgap.local.

Our domain page has checking to ensure that the host names resolve. Once you get green checks across the board, you can click continue.

The Certificates Screen

On the Certificates screen, you will provide SSL certificate information for well-known delegation, Synapse, Element Web, Synapse Admin, and Integrator.

If you are using Let's Encrypt, then each of the sections should look like:

certificate_letsencyrpt.png

If you are using certificate files, then you will see a screen like:

certificate_file.png

which allows you to upload a .crt and .key file for each host. These files must be in PEM encoding. Our installer does accept wildcard certificates.

Once you have completed the certificate section for each host on the page, you may click continue.

The Database Screen

database.png

As you must use an external PostgreSQL database with our kubernetes install, on this page, we provide the option to specify the database name, the database host name, the port to connect to, the SSL mode to use, and finally, the username and password to connect with. Once you have completed this section, you may click continue.

The Media Screen

On this page, you can specify the size of your synapse media volume. Please leave "Create New Volume" checked and specify the size of the volume that you wish to allocate. You must have this space available in /data/element-deployment or whatever you specified back on the hosts screen. If you wish to create a 50G volume, you would need to specify 50Gi for the Volume size.

The Cluster Screen

Most deployments can ignore this, however, if you want to change any kubernetes cluster parameters, this is where to do it.

If you are in an environment where you have self-signed certificates, you will want to disable TLS verification, by clicking "Advanced" and then scrolling down and unchecking Verify TLS: