Tutorial: Run applications in Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS)

Kubernetes provides a distributed platform for containerized applications. You build and deploy your own applications and services into a Kubernetes cluster, and let the cluster manage the availability and connectivity. In this tutorial, part four of seven, a sample application is deployed into a Kubernetes cluster. You learn how to:

  • Update a Kubernetes manifest file
  • Run an application in Kubernetes
  • Test the application

In later tutorials, this application is scaled out and updated.

This quickstart assumes a basic understanding of Kubernetes concepts. For more information, see Kubernetes core concepts for Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS).


AKS clusters can use GitOps for configuration management. This enables declarations of your cluster's state, which are pushed to source control, to be applied to the cluster automatically. To learn how to use GitOps to deploy an application with an AKS cluster, see the tutorial Use GitOps with Flux v2 and follow the prerequisites for Azure Kubernetes Service clusters.

Before you begin

In previous tutorials, an application was packaged into a container image, this image was uploaded to Azure Container Registry, and a Kubernetes cluster was created.

To complete this tutorial, you need the pre-created azure-vote-all-in-one-redis.yaml Kubernetes manifest file. This file was downloaded with the application source code in a previous tutorial. Verify that you've cloned the repo, and that you have changed directories into the cloned repo. If you haven't done these steps, and would like to follow along, start with Tutorial 1 – Create container images.

This tutorial requires that you're running the Azure CLI version 2.0.53 or later. Run az --version to find the version. If you need to install or upgrade, see Install Azure CLI.

Update the manifest file

In these tutorials, an Azure Container Registry (ACR) instance stores the container image for the sample application. To deploy the application, you must update the image name in the Kubernetes manifest file to include the ACR login server name.

Get the ACR login server name using the az acr list command as follows:

az acr list --resource-group myResourceGroup --query "[].{acrLoginServer:loginServer}" --output table

The sample manifest file from the git repo cloned in the first tutorial uses the images from Microsoft Container Registry (mcr.microsoft.com). Make sure that you're in the cloned azure-voting-app-redis directory, then open the manifest file with a text editor, such as vi:

vi azure-vote-all-in-one-redis.yaml

Replace mcr.microsoft.com with your ACR login server name. The image name is found on line 60 of the manifest file. The following example shows the default image name:

- name: azure-vote-front
  image: mcr.microsoft.com/azuredocs/azure-vote-front:v1

Provide your own ACR login server name so that your manifest file looks like the following example:

- name: azure-vote-front
  image: <acrName>.azurecr.io/azure-vote-front:v1

Save and close the file. In vi, use :wq.

Deploy the application

To deploy your application, use the kubectl apply command. This command parses the manifest file and creates the defined Kubernetes objects. Specify the sample manifest file, as shown in the following example:

kubectl apply -f azure-vote-all-in-one-redis.yaml

The following example output shows the resources successfully created in the AKS cluster:

$ kubectl apply -f azure-vote-all-in-one-redis.yaml

deployment "azure-vote-back" created
service "azure-vote-back" created
deployment "azure-vote-front" created
service "azure-vote-front" created

Test the application

When the application runs, a Kubernetes service exposes the application front end to the internet. This process can take a few minutes to complete.

To monitor progress, use the kubectl get service command with the --watch argument.

kubectl get service azure-vote-front --watch

Initially the EXTERNAL-IP for the azure-vote-front service is shown as pending:

azure-vote-front   LoadBalancer   <pending>     80:30676/TCP   5s

When the EXTERNAL-IP address changes from pending to an actual public IP address, use CTRL-C to stop the kubectl watch process. The following example output shows a valid public IP address assigned to the service:

azure-vote-front   LoadBalancer   80:30676/TCP   67s

To see the application in action, open a web browser to the external IP address of your service:

Screenshot showing the container image Azure Voting App running in an AKS cluster opened in a local web browser

If the application didn't load, it might be due to an authorization problem with your image registry. To view the status of your containers, use the kubectl get pods command. If the container images can't be pulled, see Authenticate with Azure Container Registry from Azure Kubernetes Service.

Next steps

In this tutorial, a sample Azure vote application was deployed to a Kubernetes cluster in AKS. You learned how to:

  • Update a Kubernetes manifest files
  • Run an application in Kubernetes
  • Test the application

Advance to the next tutorial to learn how to scale a Kubernetes application and the underlying Kubernetes infrastructure.