HTTP application routing add-on for Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) (retired)


HTTP application routing add-on (preview) for Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) will be retired on 03 March 2025. We recommend migrating to the Application Routing add-on by that date.

The HTTP application routing add-on makes it easy to access applications that are deployed to your Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) cluster by:

  • Configuring an ingress controller in your AKS cluster.
  • Creating publicly accessible DNS names for application endpoints
  • Creating a DNS zone in your subscription. For more information about DNS cost, see DNS pricing.

Before you begin

  • The HTTP application routing add-on doesn't work with AKS versions 1.22.6+.
  • If you're running commands locally, install kubectl using the az aks install-cli command.

HTTP application routing add-on overview

The add-on deploys two components: a Kubernetes ingress controller and an External-DNS controller.

  • Ingress controller: The ingress controller is exposed to the internet using a Kubernetes LoadBalancer service. The ingress controller watches and implements Kubernetes ingress resources and creates routes to application endpoints.
  • External-DNS controller: The External-DNS controller watches for Kubernetes ingress resources and creates DNS A records in the cluster-specific DNS zone.

Enable HTTP application routing

  1. Create a new AKS cluster and enable the HTTP application routing add-on using the az aks create command with the --enable-addons parameter.

    az aks create \
        --resource-group myResourceGroup \
        --name myAKSCluster \
        --enable-addons http_application_routing \

    You can also enable HTTP routing on an existing AKS cluster using the az aks enable-addons command with the --addons parameter.

    az aks enable-addons --resource-group myResourceGroup --name myAKSCluster --addons http_application_routing
  2. Retrieve the DNS zone name using the az aks show command. You need the DNS zone name to deploy applications to the cluster.

    az aks show --resource-group myResourceGroup --name myAKSCluster --query addonProfiles.httpApplicationRouting.config.HTTPApplicationRoutingZoneName -o table

    Your output should look like the following example output:

Connect to your AKS cluster

  • Configure kubectl to connect to your Kubernetes cluster using the az aks get-credentials command. The following example gets credentials for the AKS cluster named myAKSCluster in the myResourceGroup:

    az aks get-credentials --resource-group myResourceGroup --name myAKSCluster

Use HTTP application routing


The HTTP application routing add-on can only be triggered on ingress resources with the following annotation:

annotations: addon-http-application-routing
  1. Create a file named samples-http-application-routing.yaml and copy in the following YAML. On line 43, update <CLUSTER_SPECIFIC_DNS_ZONE> with the DNS zone name you collected in the previous step.

    apiVersion: apps/v1
    kind: Deployment
      name: aks-helloworld
      replicas: 1
          app: aks-helloworld
            app: aks-helloworld
          - name: aks-helloworld
            - containerPort: 80
            - name: TITLE
              value: "Welcome to Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS)"
    apiVersion: v1
    kind: Service
      name: aks-helloworld
      type: ClusterIP
     - port: 80
        app: aks-helloworld
    kind: Ingress
      name: aks-helloworld
      annotations: addon-http-application-routing
     - host: aks-helloworld.<CLUSTER_SPECIFIC_DNS_ZONE>
          - path: /
            pathType: Prefix
                name: aks-helloworld
                  number: 80
  2. Create the resources using the kubectl apply command.

    kubectl apply -f samples-http-application-routing.yaml

    The following example shows the created resources:

    deployment.apps/aks-helloworld created
    service/aks-helloworld created created
  3. Open a web browser to aks-helloworld.<CLUSTER_SPECIFIC_DNS_ZONE>, for example and verify you see the demo application. The application may take a few minutes to appear.

Remove HTTP application routing

  1. Remove the HTTP application routing add-on using the [az aks disable-addons][az-aks-disable-addons] command with the addons` parameter.

    az aks disable-addons --addons http_application_routing --name myAKSCluster --resource-group myResourceGroup --no-wait
  2. When the HTTP application routing add-on is disabled, some Kubernetes resources may remain in the cluster. These resources include configmaps and secrets and are created in the kube-system namespace. To maintain a clean cluster, you may want to remove these resources. Look for addon-http-application-routing resources using the following kubectl get commands:

    kubectl get deployments --namespace kube-system
    kubectl get services --namespace kube-system
    kubectl get configmaps --namespace kube-system
    kubectl get secrets --namespace kube-system

    The following example output shows configmaps that should be deleted:

    NAMESPACE     NAME                                                       DATA   AGE
    kube-system   addon-http-application-routing-nginx-configuration         0      9m7s
    kube-system   addon-http-application-routing-tcp-services                0      9m7s
    kube-system   addon-http-application-routing-udp-services                0      9m7s
  3. Delete remaining resources using the kubectl delete command. Make sure to specify the resource type, resource name, and namespace. The following example deletes one of the previous configmaps:

    kubectl delete configmaps addon-http-application-routing-nginx-configuration --namespace kube-system
  4. Repeat the previous kubectl delete step for all addon-http-application-routing resources remaining in your cluster.


  1. View the application logs for the External-DNS application using the kubectl logs command.

    kubectl logs -f deploy/addon-http-application-routing-external-dns -n kube-system

    The logs should confirm that an A and TXT DNS record were created successfully, as shown in the following example output:

    time="2018-04-26T20:36:19Z" level=info msg="Updating A record named 'aks-helloworld' to '' for Azure DNS zone ''."
    time="2018-04-26T20:36:21Z" level=info msg="Updating TXT record named 'aks-helloworld' to '"heritage=external-dns,external-dns/owner=default"' for Azure DNS zone ''."
  2. View the application logs for the NGINX ingress controller using the kubectl logs command.

    kubectl logs -f deploy/addon-http-application-routing-nginx-ingress-controller -n kube-system

    The logs should confirm the CREATE of an ingress resource and the reload of the controller, as shown in the following example output:

    NGINX Ingress controller
      Release:    0.13.0
      Build:      git-4bc943a
    I0426 20:30:12.212936       9 flags.go:162] Watching for ingress class: addon-http-application-routing
    W0426 20:30:12.213041       9 flags.go:165] only Ingress with class "addon-http-application-routing" will be processed by this ingress controller
    W0426 20:30:12.213505       9 client_config.go:533] Neither --kubeconfig nor --master was specified.  Using the inClusterConfig.  This might not work.
    I0426 20:30:12.213752       9 main.go:181] Creating API client for
    I0426 20:30:12.287928       9 main.go:225] Running in Kubernetes Cluster version v1.8 (v1.8.11) - git (clean) commit 1df6a8381669a6c753f79cb31ca2e3d57ee7c8a3 - platform linux/amd64
    I0426 20:30:12.290988       9 main.go:84] validated kube-system/addon-http-application-routing-default-http-backend as the default backend
    I0426 20:30:12.294314       9 main.go:105] service kube-system/addon-http-application-routing-nginx-ingress validated as source of Ingress status
    I0426 20:30:12.426443       9 stat_collector.go:77] starting new nginx stats collector for Ingress controller running in namespace  (class addon-http-application-routing)
    I0426 20:30:12.426509       9 stat_collector.go:78] collector extracting information from port 18080
    I0426 20:30:12.448779       9 nginx.go:281] starting Ingress controller
    I0426 20:30:12.463585       9 event.go:218] Event(v1.ObjectReference{Kind:"ConfigMap", Namespace:"kube-system", Name:"addon-http-application-routing-nginx-configuration", UID:"2588536c-4990-11e8-a5e1-0a58ac1f0ef2", APIVersion:"v1", ResourceVersion:"559", FieldPath:""}): type: 'Normal' reason: 'CREATE' ConfigMap kube-system/addon-http-application-routing-nginx-configuration
    I0426 20:30:12.466945       9 event.go:218] Event(v1.ObjectReference{Kind:"ConfigMap", Namespace:"kube-system", Name:"addon-http-application-routing-tcp-services", UID:"258ca065-4990-11e8-a5e1-0a58ac1f0ef2", APIVersion:"v1", ResourceVersion:"561", FieldPath:""}): type: 'Normal' reason: 'CREATE' ConfigMap kube-system/addon-http-application-routing-tcp-services
    I0426 20:30:12.467053       9 event.go:218] Event(v1.ObjectReference{Kind:"ConfigMap", Namespace:"kube-system", Name:"addon-http-application-routing-udp-services", UID:"259023bc-4990-11e8-a5e1-0a58ac1f0ef2", APIVersion:"v1", ResourceVersion:"562", FieldPath:""}): type: 'Normal' reason: 'CREATE' ConfigMap kube-system/addon-http-application-routing-udp-services
    I0426 20:30:13.649195       9 nginx.go:302] starting NGINX process...
    I0426 20:30:13.649347       9 leaderelection.go:175] attempting to acquire leader lease  kube-system/ingress-controller-leader-addon-http-application-routing...
    I0426 20:30:13.649776       9 controller.go:170] backend reload required
    I0426 20:30:13.649800       9 stat_collector.go:34] changing prometheus collector from  to default
    I0426 20:30:13.662191       9 leaderelection.go:184] successfully acquired lease kube-system/ingress-controller-leader-addon-http-application-routing
    I0426 20:30:13.662292       9 status.go:196] new leader elected: addon-http-application-routing-nginx-ingress-controller-5cxntd6
    I0426 20:30:13.763362       9 controller.go:179] ingress backend successfully reloaded...
    I0426 21:51:55.249327       9 event.go:218] Event(v1.ObjectReference{Kind:"Ingress", Namespace:"default", Name:"aks-helloworld", UID:"092c9599-499c-11e8-a5e1-0a58ac1f0ef2", APIVersion:"extensions", ResourceVersion:"7346", FieldPath:""}): type: 'Normal' reason: 'CREATE' Ingress default/aks-helloworld
    W0426 21:51:57.908771       9 controller.go:775] service default/aks-helloworld does not have any active endpoints
    I0426 21:51:57.908951       9 controller.go:170] backend reload required
    I0426 21:51:58.042932       9 controller.go:179] ingress backend successfully reloaded... - [] - - [26/Apr/2018:21:53:20 +0000] "GET / HTTP/1.1" 200 234 "" "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; MSIE 9.0; Windows NT 6.1; Trident/5.0)" 197 0.001 [default-aks-helloworld-80] 234 0.004 200

Clean up resources

  • Remove the associated Kubernetes objects created in this article using the kubectl delete command.

    kubectl delete -f samples-http-application-routing.yaml

    The following example output shows Kubernetes objects have been removed:

    deployment "aks-helloworld" deleted
    service "aks-helloworld" deleted
    ingress "aks-helloworld" deleted

Next steps

For information on how to install an HTTPS-secured ingress controller in AKS, see HTTPS ingress on Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS).