Docs » Get started with the Splunk Distribution of the OpenTelemetry Collector » Collector components » Kubernetes attributes processor

Kubernetes attributes processor ๐Ÿ”—

The Kubernetes attributes processor is an OpenTelemetry Collector component that manages resource attributes using Kubernetes metadata. The processor automatically discovers resources, extracts metadata from them, and adds the metadata to relevant spans, metrics and logs as resource attributes. The supported pipeline types are traces, metrics, and logs. See Process your data with pipelines for more information.

Caution

Donโ€™t remove the Kubernetes attributes processor from your configuration. Default attributes extracted by the processor, such as k8s.pod.name, are required for Splunk Observability Cloud capabilities, such as Kubernetes navigator, Related Content, and accurate subscription usage.

Get started ๐Ÿ”—

The Helm chart for the Splunk Distribution of OpenTelemetry Collector already includes the Kubernetes attributes processor, which is activated by default for all deployment modes. See Install the Collector with the Helm chart.

To manually configure the Kubernetes attributes processor, follow these steps:

  1. Configure role-based access control

  2. Discovery filters

  3. Extract metadata

  4. Association lists

  5. Kubernetes labels and annotations

Sample configuration ๐Ÿ”—

The Splunk Distribution of OpenTelemetry Collector for Kubernetes adds the k8sattributes processor with the default configuration:

processors:
  k8sattributes:

You can include the processor in all pipelines of the service section of your configuration file:

service:
  pipelines:
    metrics:
      processors: [k8sattributes/demo]
    logs:
      processors: [k8sattributes/demo]
    traces:
      processors: [k8sattributes/demo]

Configuration example ๐Ÿ”—

The following example contains a list of extracted metadata, Kubernetes annotations and labels, and an association list:

k8sattributes/demo:
  auth_type: "serviceAccount"
  passthrough: false
  filter:
    node_from_env_var: <KUBE_NODE_NAME>
  extract:
    metadata:
      - k8s.pod.name
      - k8s.pod.uid
      - k8s.deployment.name
      - k8s.namespace.name
      - k8s.node.name
      - k8s.pod.start_time
  annotations:
    - key_regex: opentel.* # extracts Keys & values of annotations matching regex `opentel.*`
      from: pod
  labels:
    - key_regex: opentel.* # extracts Keys & values of labels matching regex `opentel.*`
      from: pod
  pod_association:
    - sources:
       - from: resource_attribute
         name: k8s.pod.ip
    - sources:
       - from: resource_attribute
         name: k8s.pod.uid
    - sources:
       - from: connection

Advanced use cases ๐Ÿ”—

Configure role-based access control ๐Ÿ”—

The Kubernetes attributes processor requires get, watch and list permissions on both pods and namespaces resources for all namespaces and pods included in the configured filters.

The following example shows how to give a ServiceAccount the necessary permissions for all pods and namespaces in a cluster. Replace <col_namespace> with the namespace where youโ€™ve deployed the Collector:

apiVersion: v1
kind: ServiceAccount
metadata:
   name: collector
   namespace: <col_namespace>

---

apiVersion: rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1
kind: ClusterRole
metadata:
   name: otel-collector
rules:
   - apiGroups: [""]
   resources: ["pods", "namespaces"]
   verbs: ["get", "watch", "list"]

---

apiVersion: rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1
kind: ClusterRoleBinding
metadata:
   name: otel-collector
subjects:
- kind: ServiceAccount
  name: collector
  namespace: <col_namespace>
roleRef:
   kind: ClusterRole
   name: otel-collector
   apiGroup: rbac.authorization.k8s.io

Discovery filters ๐Ÿ”—

You can use the Kubernetes attributes processor in Collectors deployed either as agents or as gateways, using DaemonSets or Deployments respectively. See Collector deployment modes for more information.

Agent configuration ๐Ÿ”—

In host monitoring (agent) mode, the processor detects IP addresses of pods sending spans, metrics, or logs to the agent and uses this information to extract metadata from pods.

When running the Collector in host monitoring (agent) mode, apply a discovery filter so that only pods from the same host the Collector is running on are discovered. Using a discovery filter also optimizes resource consumption on large clusters.

To automatically filter pods by the node the processors is running on, configure the Downward API to inject the node name as an environment variable. For example:

spec:
  containers:
  - env:
    - name: KUBE_NODE_NAME
      valueFrom:
        fieldRef:
          apiVersion: v1
          fieldPath: spec.nodeName

Then, set the filter.node_from_env_var field to the name of the environment variable that containes the name of the node. For example:

k8sattributes:
  filter:
    node_from_env_var: KUBE_NODE_NAME

Gateway configuration ๐Ÿ”—

The processor canโ€™t resolve the IP address of the pods that emit telemetry data when running in data forwarding (gateway) mode. To receive the correct IP addresses in a Collector gateway, configure the agents to forward addresses.

To forward IP addresses to gateways, configure the Collectors in host monitoring (agent) mode to run in passthrough mode. This ensures that agents detect IP addresses and pass them as an attribute attached to all telemetry resources.

k8sattributes:
  passthrough: true

Then, configure the Collector gateways as usual. The processor automatically detects the IP addresses of spans, logs, and metrics sent by the agents or by other sources, and call the Kubernetes API to extract metadata.

Extract metadata ๐Ÿ”—

Use the metadata option to define what resource attributes you want to add. You can only use attribute names from existing metadata defined in pod_association.resource_attribute. The processor ignores empty or nonexisting values.

The following attributes are added by default:

  • k8s.namespace.name

  • k8s.pod.name

  • k8s.pod.uid

  • k8s.pod.start_time

  • k8s.deployment.name

  • k8s.node.name

You can change this list by adding a metadata section. For example:

k8sattributes:
  auth_type: "serviceAccount"
  passthrough: false
  filter:
    node_from_env_var: KUBE_NODE_NAME
  extract:
    metadata:
      - k8s.pod.name
      - k8s.pod.uid
      - k8s.deployment.name
      - k8s.namespace.name
      - k8s.node.name
      - k8s.pod.start_time

Caution

Make sure that default attributes, such as k8s.pod.name, are always extracted, as theyโ€™re required for Splunk Observability Cloud capabilities, such as Kubernetes navigator, Related Content, and accurate subscription usage.

The following container level attributes require additional attributes to identify a container in a pod:

  • Container spec attributes: Set only if k8s.container.name is available as a resource attribute.

    • container.image.name

    • container.image.tag

  • Container attributes: Set only if k8s.container.name is available as a resource attribute.

    • container.id: Must be available in the metadata.

Note

Set the k8s.container.restart_count resource attribute to retrieve the association with a particular container instance. If k8s.container.restart_count is not set, the last container instance is used.

Association lists ๐Ÿ”—

Define rules for associating data passing through the processor with pod metadata using the pod_association field, which represents a list of associations executed in the specified order until the first match.

Each association is a list of sources. Sources contain rules. The processor executes all rules and produce a metadata cache key as a result. For example:

pod_association:
 # List of associations
  - sources:
      # List of sources. Each cointains rules
      - from: resource_attribute
        name: k8s.pod.name
      - from: resource_attribute
        name: k8s.namespace.name

To apply an association, each source has to be successfully retrieved from a log, trace, or metric. If you donโ€™t configure association rules, the processor associates resources using the connectionโ€™s address.

Each source rule consists of a pair of from and name statements, representing the rule type and attribute name respectively. You can define two types of from statements:

  • from: connection: Extracts the IP address attribute from the connection context, if available.

  • from: resource_attribute: Specifies the attribute name to search in the list of attributes.

The following example shows the two type of from source statements in pod association rules:

pod_association:
  - sources:
    - from: resource_attribute
      name: ip
  - sources:
    - from: resource_attribute
      name: k8s.pod.ip
  - sources:
    - from: resource_attribute
      name: host.name
  - sources:
    - from: connection
      name: ip

Kubernetes labels and annotations ๐Ÿ”—

The Kubernetes attributes processor can also set resource attributes from Kubernetes labels and annotations of pods and namespaces. You can configure this through the annotations and labels lists inside extract.

The processor extracts annotations and labels from pods and namespaces and adds them to spans, metrics, and logs. You can specify each item using the following parameters:

  • tag_name: Name used to tag telemetry.

  • key: Key used to extract the value.

  • from: Kubernetes object used to extract the value. The two possible values are pod and namespace. The default value is namespace.

For example:

annotations:
# Extracts value of annotation from pods with key `annotation-one`
# and inserts it as a tag with key `a1`
  - tag_name: a1
    key: annotation-one
    from: pod
# Extracts value of annotation from namespaces with key `annotation-two`
# with regular expressions and inserts it as a tag with key `a2`
  - tag_name: a2
    key: annotation-two
    regex: field=(?P<value>.+)
    from: namespace

labels:
# Extracts value of label from namespaces with key `label1`
# and inserts it as a tag with key `l1`
  - tag_name: l1
    key: label1
    from: namespace
# Extracts value of label from pods with key `label2` with
#  regular expressions and inserts it as a tag with key `l2`
  - tag_name: l2
    key: label2
    regex: field=(?P<value>.+)
    from: pod

Settings ๐Ÿ”—

The following table shows the configuration options for the Kubernetes attributes processor:

Metrics ๐Ÿ”—

The following metrics, resource attributes, and attributes are available.

Activate or deactivate specific metrics ๐Ÿ”—

You can activate or deactivate specific metrics by setting the enabled field in the metrics section for each metric. For example:

receivers:
  samplereceiver:
    metrics:
      metric-one:
        enabled: true
      metric-two:
        enabled: false

The following is an example of host metrics receiver configuration with activated metrics:

receivers:
  hostmetrics:
    scrapers:
      process:
        metrics:
          process.cpu.utilization:
            enabled: true

Note

Deactivated metrics arenโ€™t sent to Splunk Observability Cloud.

Known limitations ๐Ÿ”—

The Kubernetes attributes processor doesnโ€™t work well in the following cases.

Host networking mode ๐Ÿ”—

The processor canโ€™t identify pods running in the host network mode. Enriching telemetry data generated by such pods only works if the association rule isnโ€™t based on the IP address attribute.

Sidecar ๐Ÿ”—

The processor canโ€™t detect containers from the same pods when running as a sidecar. Instead, use the Kubernetes Downward API to inject environment variables into the pods and use their values as tags.

Troubleshooting ๐Ÿ”—

If you are a Splunk Observability Cloud customer and are not able to see your data in Splunk Observability Cloud, you can get help in the following ways.

Available to Splunk Observability Cloud customers

Available to prospective customers and free trial users

  • Ask a question and get answers through community support at Splunk Answers .

  • Join the Splunk #observability user group Slack channel to communicate with customers, partners, and Splunk employees worldwide. To join, see Chat groups in the Get Started with Splunk Community manual.

To learn about even more support options, see Splunk Customer Success .