Understanding Operator catalogs

An Operator catalog is a repository of metadata that Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM) can query to discover and install Operators and their dependencies on a cluster. OLM always installs Operators from the latest version of a catalog. As of OKD 4.6, Red Hat-provided catalogs are distributed using index images.

An index image, based on the Operator Bundle Format, is a containerized snapshot of a catalog. It is an immutable artifact that contains the database of pointers to a set of Operator manifest content. A catalog can reference an index image to source its content for OLM on the cluster.

Starting in OKD 4.6, index images provided by Red Hat replace the App Registry catalog images, based on the deprecated Package Manifest Format, that are distributed for previous versions of OKD 4. While App Registry catalog images are not distributed by Red Hat for OKD 4.6 and later, custom catalog images based on the Package Manifest Format are still supported.

As catalogs are updated, the latest versions of Operators change, and older versions may be removed or altered. In addition, when OLM runs on an OKD cluster in a restricted network environment, it is unable to access the catalogs directly from the Internet to pull the latest content.

As a cluster administrator, you can create your own custom index image, either based on a Red Hat-provided catalog or from scratch, which can be used to source the catalog content on the cluster. Creating and updating your own index image provides a method for customizing the set of Operators available on the cluster, while also avoiding the aforementioned restricted network environment issues.

When creating custom catalog images, previous versions of OKD 4 required using the oc adm catalog build command, which has been deprecated for several releases. With the availability of Red Hat-provided index images starting in OKD 4.6, catalog builders should start switching to using the opm index command to manage index images before the oc adm catalog build command is removed in a future release.

Custom catalogs using the Bundle Format

Prerequisites

Creating an index image

You can create an index image using the opm CLI.

Prerequisites
  • opm version 1.12.3+

  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • A bundle image built and pushed to a registry that supports Docker v2-2

Procedure
  1. Start a new index:

    $ opm index add \
        --bundles <registry>/<namespace>/<bundle_image_name>:<tag> \(1)
        --tag <registry>/<namespace>/<index_image_name>:<tag> \(2)
        [--binary-image <registry_base_image>] (3)
    1 Comma-separated list of bundle images to add to the index.
    2 The image tag that you want the index image to have.
    3 Optional: An alternative registry base image to use for serving the catalog.
  2. Push the index image to a registry.

    1. If required, authenticate with your target registry:

      $ podman login <registry>
    2. Push the index image:

      $ podman push <registry>/<namespace>/test-catalog:latest

Creating a catalog from an index image

You can create an Operator catalog from an index image and apply it to an OKD cluster for use with Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM).

Prerequisites
  • An index image built and pushed to a registry.

Procedure
  1. Create a CatalogSource object that references your index image.

    1. Modify the following to your specifications and save it as a catalogsource.yaml file:

      apiVersion: operators.coreos.com/v1alpha1
      kind: CatalogSource
      metadata:
        name: my-operator-catalog
        namespace: openshift-marketplace
      spec:
        sourceType: grpc
        image: <mirror_registry>:<port>/<namespace>/upstream-community-operators:latest (1)
        displayName: My Operator Catalog
        publisher: <publisher_name> (2)
        updateStrategy:
          registryPoll: (3)
            interval: 30m
      1 Specify your index image.
      2 Specify your name or an organization name publishing the catalog.
      3 CatalogSources can automatically check for new versions to keep up to date.
    2. Use the file to create the CatalogSource object:

      $ oc create -f catalogsource.yaml
  2. Verify the following resources are created successfully.

    1. Check the Pods:

      $ oc get pods -n openshift-marketplace
      Example output
      NAME                                    READY   STATUS    RESTARTS  AGE
      my-operator-catalog-6njx6               1/1     Running   0         28s
      marketplace-operator-d9f549946-96sgr    1/1     Running   0         26h
    2. Check the CatalogSource:

      $ oc get catalogsource -n openshift-marketplace
      Example output
      NAME                  DISPLAY               TYPE PUBLISHER  AGE
      my-operator-catalog   My Operator Catalog   grpc            5s
    3. Check the PackageManifest:

      $ oc get packagemanifest -n openshift-marketplace
      Example output
      NAME                          CATALOG               AGE
      jaeger-product                My Operator Catalog   93s

You can now install the Operators from the OperatorHub page on your OKD web console.

Updating an index image

After configuring OperatorHub to use a CatalogSource that references a custom index image, cluster administrators can keep the available Operators on their cluster up to date by adding bundle images to the index image.

You can update an existing index image using the opm index add commad.

Prerequisites
  • opm version 1.12.3+

  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • An index image built and pushed to a registry.

  • An existing CatalogSource referencing the index image.

Procedure
  1. Update the existing index by adding bundle images:

    $ opm index add \
        --bundles <registry>/<namespace>/<new_bundle_image>:<tag> \(1)
        --from-index <registry>/<namespace>/<existing_index_image>:<tag> \(2)
        --tag <registry>/<namespace>/<existing_index_image>:<tag> (3)
    1 A comma-separated list of additional bundle images to add to the index.
    2 The existing index that was previously pushed.
    3 The image tag that you want the updated index image to have.
  2. Push the updated index image:

    $ podman push <registry>/<namespace>/<existing_index_image>:<tag>
  3. After Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM) automatically polls the index image referenced in the CatalogSource at its regular interval, verify that the new packages are successfully added:

    $ oc get packagemanifests -n openshift-marketplace

Pruning an index image

An index image, based on the Operator Bundle Format, is a containerized snapshot of an Operator catalog. You can prune an index of all but a specified list of packages, creating a copy of the source index containing only the Operators that you want.

Prerequisites
  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • grpcurl

  • opm version 1.12.3+

  • Access to a registry that supports Docker v2-2

Procedure
  1. Authenticate with your target registry:

    $ podman login <target_registry>
  2. Determine the list of packages you want to include in your pruned index.

    1. Run the source index image that you want to prune in a container. For example:

      $ podman run -p50051:50051 \
          -it quay.io/operator-framework/upstream-community-operators:latest
      Example output
      Trying to pull quay.io/operator-framework/upstream-community-operators:latest...
      Getting image source signatures
      Copying blob ae8a0c23f5b1 done
      ...
      INFO[0000] serving registry                              database=/database/index.db port=50051
    2. In a separate terminal session, use the grpcurl command to get a list of the packages provided by the index:

      $ grpcurl -plaintext localhost:50051 api.Registry/ListPackages > packages.out
    3. Inspect the packages.out file and identify which package names from this list you want to keep in your pruned index. For example:

      Example snippets of packages list
      ...
      {
        "name": "couchdb-operator"
      }
      ...
      {
        "name": "eclipse-che"
      }
      ...
      {
      {
        "name": "etcd"
      }
      ...
    4. In the terminal session where you executed the podman run command, press Ctrl and C to stop the container process.

  3. Run the following command to prune the source index of all but the specified packages:

    $ opm index prune \
        -f quay.io/operator-framework/upstream-community-operators:latest \(1)
        -p couchdb-operator,eclipse-che,etcd \(2)
        -t <target_registry>:<port>/<namespace>/upstream-community-operators:latest (3)
    1 Index to prune.
    2 Comma-separated list of packages to keep.
    3 Custom tag for new index image being built.
  4. Run the following command to push the new index image to your target registry:

    $ podman push <target_registry>:<port>/<namespace>/upstream-community-operators:latest

    where <namespace> is any existing namespace on the registry.

Custom catalogs using the Package Manifest Format

Building a Package Manifest Format catalog image

Cluster administrators can build a custom Operator catalog image based on the Package Manifest Format to be used by Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM). The catalog image can be pushed to a container image registry that supports Docker v2-2. For a cluster on a restricted network, this registry can be a registry that the cluster has network access to, such as a mirror registry created during a restricted network cluster installation.

For this example, the procedure assumes use of a mirror registry that has access to both your network and the Internet.

Prerequisites
  • Workstation with unrestricted network access

  • oc version 4.3.5+

  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • Access to mirror registry that supports Docker v2-2

  • If you are working with private registries, set the REG_CREDS environment variable to the file path of your registry credentials for use in later steps. For example, for the podman CLI:

    $ REG_CREDS=${XDG_RUNTIME_DIR}/containers/auth.json
  • If you are working with private namespaces that your quay.io account has access to, you must set a Quay authentication token. Set the AUTH_TOKEN environment variable for use with the --auth-token flag by making a request against the login API using your quay.io credentials:

    $ AUTH_TOKEN=$(curl -sH "Content-Type: application/json" \
        -XPOST https://quay.io/cnr/api/v1/users/login -d '
        {
            "user": {
                "username": "'"<quay_username>"'",
                "password": "'"<quay_password>"'"
            }
        }' | jq -r '.token')
Procedure
  1. On the workstation with unrestricted network access, authenticate with the target mirror registry:

    $ podman login <registry_host_name>
  2. Build a catalog image based on the redhat-operators catalog from Quay.io, tagging and pushing it to your mirror registry:

    $ oc adm catalog build \
        --appregistry-org redhat-operators \(1)
        --from=quay.io/openshift/origin-operator-registry:4.6.0 \(2)
        --filter-by-os="linux/amd64" \(3)
        --to=<registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v1 \(4)
        [-a ${REG_CREDS}] \(5)
        [--insecure] \(6)
        [--auth-token "${AUTH_TOKEN}"] (7)
    1 Organization (namespace) to pull from an App Registry instance.
    2 Set --from to the Operator Registry base image using the tag that matches the target OKD cluster major and minor version.
    3 Set --filter-by-os to the operating system and architecture to use for the base image, which must match the target OKD cluster. Valid values are linux/amd64, linux/ppc64le, and linux/s390x.
    4 Name your catalog image and include a tag, for example, v1.
    5 Optional: If required, specify the location of your registry credentials file.
    6 Optional: If you do not want to configure trust for the target registry, add the --insecure flag.
    7 Optional: If other application registry catalogs are used that are not public, specify a Quay authentication token.
    Example output
    INFO[0013] loading Bundles                               dir=/var/folders/st/9cskxqs53ll3wdn434vw4cd80000gn/T/300666084/manifests-829192605
    ...
    Pushed sha256:f73d42950021f9240389f99ddc5b0c7f1b533c054ba344654ff1edaf6bf827e3 to example_registry:5000/olm/redhat-operators:v1

    Sometimes invalid manifests are accidentally introduced into Red Hat’s catalogs; when this happens, you might see some errors:

    Example output with errors
    ...
    INFO[0014] directory                                     dir=/var/folders/st/9cskxqs53ll3wdn434vw4cd80000gn/T/300666084/manifests-829192605 file=4.2 load=package
    W1114 19:42:37.876180   34665 builder.go:141] error building database: error loading package into db: fuse-camel-k-operator.v7.5.0 specifies replacement that couldn't be found
    Uploading ... 244.9kB/s

    These errors are usually non-fatal, and if the Operator package mentioned does not contain an Operator you plan to install or a dependency of one, then they can be ignored.

Mirroring a Package Manifest Format catalog image

Cluster administrators can mirror a custom Operator catalog image based on the Package Manifest Format into a registry and use a CatalogSource to load the content onto their cluster. For this example, the procedure uses a custom redhat-operators catalog image previously built and pushed to a supported registry.

Prerequisites
  • Workstation with unrestricted network access

  • A custom Operator catalog image based on the Package Manifest Format pushed to a supported registry

  • oc version 4.3.5+

  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • Access to mirror registry that supports Docker v2-2

  • If you are working with private registries, set the REG_CREDS environment variable to the file path of your registry credentials for use in later steps. For example, for the podman CLI:

    $ REG_CREDS=${XDG_RUNTIME_DIR}/containers/auth.json
Procedure
  1. The oc adm catalog mirror command extracts the contents of your custom Operator catalog image to generate the manifests required for mirroring. You can choose to either:

    • Allow the default behavior of the command to automatically mirror all of the image content to your mirror registry after generating manifests, or

    • Add the --manifests-only flag to only generate the manifests required for mirroring, but do not actually mirror the image content to a registry yet. This can be useful for reviewing what will be mirrored, and it allows you to make any changes to the mapping list if you only require a subset of the content. You can then use that file with the oc image mirror command to mirror the modified list of images in a later step.

    On your workstation with unrestricted network access, run the following command:

    $ oc adm catalog mirror \
        <registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v1 \(1)
        <registry_host_name>:<port> \
        [-a ${REG_CREDS}] \(2)
        [--insecure] \(3)
        [--filter-by-os="<os>/<arch>"] \(4)
        [--manifests-only] (5)
    1 Specify your Operator catalog image.
    2 Optional: If required, specify the location of your registry credentials file.
    3 Optional: If you do not want to configure trust for the target registry, add the --insecure flag.
    4 Optional: Because the catalog might reference images that support multiple architectures and operating systems, you can filter by architecture and operating system to mirror only the images that match. Valid values are linux/amd64, linux/ppc64le, and linux/s390x.
    5 Optional: Only generate the manifests required for mirroring and do not actually mirror the image content to a registry.
    Example output
    using database path mapping: /:/tmp/190214037
    wrote database to /tmp/190214037
    using database at: /tmp/190214037/bundles.db (1)
    ...
    1 Temporary database generated by the command.

    After running the command, a <image_name>-manifests/ directory is created in the current directory and generates the following files:

    • The imageContentSourcePolicy.yaml file defines an ImageContentSourcePolicy object that can configure nodes to translate between the image references stored in Operator manifests and the mirrored registry.

    • The mapping.txt file contains all of the source images and where to map them in the target registry. This file is compatible with the oc image mirror command and can be used to further customize the mirroring configuration.

  2. If you used the --manifests-only flag in the previous step and want to mirror only a subset of the content:

    1. Modify the list of images in your mapping.txt file to your specifications. If you are unsure of the exact names and versions of the subset of images you want to mirror, use the following steps to find them:

      1. Run the sqlite3 tool against the temporary database that was generated by the oc adm catalog mirror command to retrieve a list of images matching a general search query. The output helps inform how you will later edit your mapping.txt file.

        For example, to retrieve a list of images that are similar to the string clusterlogging.4.3:

        $ echo "select * from related_image \
            where operatorbundle_name like 'clusterlogging.4.3%';" \
            | sqlite3 -line /tmp/190214037/bundles.db (1)
        1 Refer to the previous output of the oc adm catalog mirror command to find the path of the database file.
        Example output
        image = registry.redhat.io/openshift4/ose-logging-kibana5@sha256:aa4a8b2a00836d0e28aa6497ad90a3c116f135f382d8211e3c55f34fb36dfe61
        operatorbundle_name = clusterlogging.4.3.33-202008111029.p0
        
        image = registry.redhat.io/openshift4/ose-oauth-proxy@sha256:6b4db07f6e6c962fc96473d86c44532c93b146bbefe311d0c348117bf759c506
        operatorbundle_name = clusterlogging.4.3.33-202008111029.p0
        ...
      2. Use the results from the previous step to edit the mapping.txt file to only include the subset of images you want to mirror.

        For example, you can use the image values from the previous example output to find that the following matching lines exist in your mapping.txt file:

        Matching image mappings in mapping.txt
        registry.redhat.io/openshift4/ose-logging-kibana5@sha256:aa4a8b2a00836d0e28aa6497ad90a3c116f135f382d8211e3c55f34fb36dfe61=<registry_host_name>:<port>/openshift4-ose-logging-kibana5:a767c8f0
        registry.redhat.io/openshift4/ose-oauth-proxy@sha256:6b4db07f6e6c962fc96473d86c44532c93b146bbefe311d0c348117bf759c506=<registry_host_name>:<port>/openshift4-ose-oauth-proxy:3754ea2b

        In this example, if you only want to mirror these images, you would then remove all other entries in the mapping.txt file and leave only the above two lines.

    2. Still on your workstation with unrestricted network access, use your modified mapping.txt file to mirror the images to your registry using the oc image mirror command:

      $ oc image mirror \
          [-a ${REG_CREDS}] \
          -f ./redhat-operators-manifests/mapping.txt
  3. Apply the ImageContentSourcePolicy:

    $ oc apply -f ./redhat-operators-manifests/imageContentSourcePolicy.yaml

You can now create a CatalogSource to reference your mirrored content.

Updating a Package Manifest Format catalog image

After a cluster administrator has configured OperatorHub to use custom Operator catalog images, administrators can keep their OKD cluster up to date with the latest Operators by capturing updates made to Red Hat’s App Registry catalogs. This is done by building and pushing a new Operator catalog image, then replacing the existing CatalogSource’s spec.image parameter with the new image digest.

For this example, the procedure assumes a custom redhat-operators catalog image is already configured for use with OperatorHub.

Prerequisites
  • Workstation with unrestricted network access

  • oc version 4.3.5+

  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • Access to mirror registry that supports Docker v2-2

  • OperatorHub configured to use custom catalog images

  • If you are working with private registries, set the REG_CREDS environment variable to the file path of your registry credentials for use in later steps. For example, for the podman CLI:

    $ REG_CREDS=${XDG_RUNTIME_DIR}/containers/auth.json
  • If you are working with private namespaces that your quay.io account has access to, you must set a Quay authentication token. Set the AUTH_TOKEN environment variable for use with the --auth-token flag by making a request against the login API using your quay.io credentials:

    $ AUTH_TOKEN=$(curl -sH "Content-Type: application/json" \
        -XPOST https://quay.io/cnr/api/v1/users/login -d '
        {
            "user": {
                "username": "'"<quay_username>"'",
                "password": "'"<quay_password>"'"
            }
        }' | jq -r '.token')
Procedure
  1. On the workstation with unrestricted network access, authenticate with the target mirror registry:

    $ podman login <registry_host_name>
  2. Authenticate with registry.redhat.io so that the base image can be pulled during the build:

    $ podman login registry.redhat.io
  3. Build a new catalog image based on the redhat-operators catalog from Quay.io, tagging and pushing it to your mirror registry:

    $ oc adm catalog build \
        --appregistry-org redhat-operators \(1)
        --from=quay.io/openshift/origin-operator-registry:4.6.0 \(2)
        --filter-by-os="linux/amd64" \(3)
        --to=<registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v2 \(4)
        [-a ${REG_CREDS}] \(5)
        [--insecure] \(6)
        [--auth-token "${AUTH_TOKEN}"] (7)
    1 Organization (namespace) to pull from an App Registry instance.
    2 Set --from to the Operator Registry base image using the tag that matches the target OKD cluster major and minor version.
    3 Set --filter-by-os to the operating system and architecture to use for the base image, which must match the target OKD cluster. Valid values are linux/amd64, linux/ppc64le, and linux/s390x.
    4 Name your catalog image and include a tag, for example, v2 because it is the updated catalog.
    5 Optional: If required, specify the location of your registry credentials file.
    6 Optional: If you do not want to configure trust for the target registry, add the --insecure flag.
    7 Optional: If other application registry catalogs are used that are not public, specify a Quay authentication token.
    Example output
    INFO[0013] loading Bundles                               dir=/var/folders/st/9cskxqs53ll3wdn434vw4cd80000gn/T/300666084/manifests-829192605
    ...
    Pushed sha256:f73d42950021f9240389f99ddc5b0c7f1b533c054ba344654ff1edaf6bf827e3 to example_registry:5000/olm/redhat-operators:v2
  4. Mirror the contents of your catalog to your target registry. The following oc adm catalog mirror command extracts the contents of your custom Operator catalog image to generate the manifests required for mirroring and mirrors the images to your registry:

    $ oc adm catalog mirror \
        <registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v2 \(1)
        <registry_host_name>:<port> \
        [-a ${REG_CREDS}] \(2)
        [--insecure] \(3)
        [--filter-by-os="<os>/<arch>"] (4)
    1 Specify your new Operator catalog image.
    2 Optional: If required, specify the location of your registry credentials file.
    3 Optional: If you do not want to configure trust for the target registry, add the --insecure flag.
    4 Optional: Because the catalog might reference images that support multiple architectures and operating systems, you can filter by architecture and operating system to mirror only the images that match. Valid values are linux/amd64, linux/ppc64le, and linux/s390x.
  5. Apply the newly generated manifests:

    $ oc apply -f ./redhat-operators-manifests

    It is possible that you do not need to apply the imageContentSourcePolicy.yaml manifest. Complete a diff of the files to determine if changes are necessary.

  6. Update your CatalogSource object that references your catalog image.

    1. If you have your original catalogsource.yaml file for this CatalogSource:

      1. Edit your catalogsource.yaml file to reference your new catalog image in the spec.image field:

        apiVersion: operators.coreos.com/v1alpha1
        kind: CatalogSource
        metadata:
          name: my-operator-catalog
          namespace: openshift-marketplace
        spec:
          sourceType: grpc
          image: <registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v2 (1)
          displayName: My Operator Catalog
          publisher: grpc
        1 Specify your new Operator catalog image.
      2. Use the updated file to replace the CatalogSource object:

        $ oc replace -f catalogsource.yaml
    2. Alternatively, edit the CatalogSource using the following command and reference your new catalog image in the spec.image parameter:

      $ oc edit catalogsource <catalog_source_name> -n openshift-marketplace

Updated Operators should now be available from the OperatorHub page on your OKD cluster.

Testing a Package Manifeste Format catalog image

You can validate Operator catalog image content by running it as a container and querying its gRPC API. To further test the image, you can then resolve a Subscription in Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM) by referencing the image in a CatalogSource. For this example, the procedure uses a custom redhat-operators catalog image previously built and pushed to a supported registry.

Prerequisites
  • A custom Package Manifest Format catalog image pushed to a supported registry

  • podman version 1.4.4+

  • oc version 4.3.5+

  • Access to mirror registry that supports Docker v2-2

  • grpcurl

Procedure
  1. Pull the Operator catalog image:

    $ podman pull <registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v1
  2. Run the image:

    $ podman run -p 50051:50051 \
        -it <registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v1
  3. Query the running image for available packages using grpcurl:

    $ grpcurl -plaintext localhost:50051 api.Registry/ListPackages
    Example output
    {
      "name": "3scale-operator"
    }
    {
      "name": "amq-broker"
    }
    {
      "name": "amq-online"
    }
  4. Get the latest Operator bundle in a channel:

    $  grpcurl -plaintext -d '{"pkgName":"kiali-ossm","channelName":"stable"}' localhost:50051 api.Registry/GetBundleForChannel
    Example output
    {
      "csvName": "kiali-operator.v1.0.7",
      "packageName": "kiali-ossm",
      "channelName": "stable",
    ...
  5. Get the digest of the image:

    $ podman inspect \
        --format='{{index .RepoDigests 0}}' \
        <registry_host_name>:<port>/olm/redhat-operators:v1
    Example output
    example_registry:5000/olm/redhat-operators@sha256:f73d42950021f9240389f99ddc5b0c7f1b533c054ba344654ff1edaf6bf827e3
  6. Assuming an OperatorGroup exists in namespace my-ns that supports your Operator and its dependencies, create a CatalogSource object using the image digest. For example:

    apiVersion: operators.coreos.com/v1alpha1
    kind: CatalogSource
    metadata:
      name: custom-redhat-operators
      namespace: my-ns
    spec:
      sourceType: grpc
      image: example_registry:5000/olm/redhat-operators@sha256:f73d42950021f9240389f99ddc5b0c7f1b533c054ba344654ff1edaf6bf827e3
      displayName: Red Hat Operators
  7. Create a Subscription that resolves the latest available servicemeshoperator and its dependencies from your catalog image:

    apiVersion: operators.coreos.com/v1alpha1
    kind: Subscription
    metadata:
      name: servicemeshoperator
      namespace: my-ns
    spec:
      source: custom-redhat-operators
      sourceNamespace: my-ns
      name: servicemeshoperator
      channel: "1.0"