Installing a Lightweight Kubernetes Distribution: A Practical Guide

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Traditional Kubernetes setups can be resource-intensive. For development environments, edge deployments, or resource-constrained scenarios, lightweight Kubernetes distributions shine. This article will explain how to install a lightweight distribution, discuss system requirements, and guide you through running a pod with the AWX operator.

Choosing a Lightweight Distribution

Several popular lightweight Kubernetes distributions exist:

  • K3s: Designed by Rancher Labs for simplicity and low resource usage. Excellent for edge and IoT devices.

  • MicroK8s: Developed by Canonical (the creators of Ubuntu). Focused on ease of use and fast installation.

  • MiniKube: Meant primarily for local development and testing, not production workloads.

RAM Considerations

The minimum RAM requirements will vary slightly depending on your chosen distribution. Here's a general idea:

  • Master Node: At least 7GB is recommended. More RAM might be needed for complex workloads.

  • Worker Nodes: At least 4GB should suffice for basic setups, but more may be needed for heavier tasks.


Installation procedures are specific to each distribution. Here's a simplified overview using K3s as an example:

  1. Prerequisites: A Linux system (most distros are supported)

  2. Install K3s:Bash

     curl -sfL | sh -
  3. Verify Installation:Bash

     kubectl get nodes

Setting Up an AWX Pod

Before launching the AWX pod, you'll need the AWX Operator itself:

  1. Install the AWX Operator: Follow instructions from the official AWX documentation ( The process might involve the Kubernetes package manager, Helm.

  2. Create a Custom Resource (CR): Describe the desired AWX instance. Here's a basic example:


     kind: AWX
       name: my-awx
        # Your AWX configuration details
  3. Apply the CR:

     kubectl apply -f my-awx-deployment.yaml

Important Considerations

  • Storage: Lightweight distributions may default to in-memory storage. For persistence, configure volume mounts or set up a persistent storage provider.

  • Networking: If you need external access to AWX, consider using a LoadBalancer service or Ingress controller.

  • Monitoring: Lightweight distros may have limited built-in monitoring. Implement necessary tools to keep track of your cluster.


Lightweight Kubernetes distributions provide a streamlined, efficient path for Kubernetes environments. With some careful planning, you can leverage them to run essential workloads like the AWX operator, even in resource-limited settings.

NOte: Always refer to the official documentation of your chosen Kubernetes distribution and the AWX project for the most up-to-date and accurate instructions.

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