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Install: How to Install the Fairwinds Insights In-Cluster Agent

The Insights Agent runs inside your Cluster, and sends back data to Fairwinds Insights.


Hey, everyone. I want to give you a quick intro in how to install Insights in your cluster. Assuming you've already created an organization within the UI, the first thing you're going to want to do is click on clusters and then find a button that says Add Cluster. From here, we can create a new cluster. What this is going to do is create an endpoint for us to send data to the platform.

Now that we've created the cluster within the Insights' UI, it's going to give us a bunch of options. Insights is a platform that allows a lot of different plugins to share data with it. These plugins are going to cover things like cost, security, policy and governance, upgrades, or configuration. Depending on what you're interested in, you're probably going to want to pick one or two of those plugins or more, and just get them installed. That way they can start to scan your cluster and upload data to the platform, so you can see it all centralized in one place and do all the various things that create Jira tickets, Slack alerts, set up policies for governance, whatever it might be.

At this point, we've got the cluster created in the UI. Let's say we want to install Polaris and we want to install Nova. Now, what this is going to do is it's not actually going to install it. It's just going to generate a Helm chart for us. If we look here, it's generated the values for the Helm chart rather. We're going to start by taking this values.yaml file, which has our token to allow us to authenticate to the platform. It's also going to show us that Nova and Polaris are the two things that we want to enable. So if we come over here into our command line, we can go ahead and paste this in our values.yaml file. Then we can grab the command to go ahead and install Insights.

While we are doing that, one thing to point out is that the Install Hub, there's a lot of things that are going to need configuration. Some of them are simple like Nova and Polaris. You can just switch it to enabled equals true, and it's going to install it, and you probably won't run into any issues. Some of these are going to require a little more installation.

If we think about Trivy, for example. Trivy is going to scan for vulnerabilities in our containers. Now, if we have containers that reside in a private repo, say an AWS or GCP, Trivy's going to need permissions to access those. So what we're going to need to do is we're going to need to give it permissions. This is something where we can build out the values.yaml file. There's a lot of different flags and settings that we can do, but we probably should expect a little bit of work for these plugins to get them going once they're tailored to our custom needs.

At this point, let's get the pods in the Insight agent name space. We can see that everything is installed. If we look a little bit closer, it has set up a bunch of cronjobs for Nova and Polaris. So now every hour, on the third minute and on the hour, it's going to do a scan of the cluster. It's going to send that information back to the platform, and we'll start to see that show up as Action Items over here. Hope that was helpful.