Graphical and Serial Console Access

Once a virtual machine is started you are able to connect to the consoles it exposes. Usually there are two types of consoles:

  • Serial Console

  • Graphical Console (VNC)

Note: You need to have virtctl installed to gain access to the VirtualMachineInstance.

Accessing the serial console

The serial console of a virtual machine can be accessed by using the console command:

$ virtctl console --kubeconfig=$KUBECONFIG testvmi

Accessing the graphical console (VNC)

Accessing the graphical console of a virtual machine is usually done through VNC, which requires remote-viewer. Once the tool is installed you can access the graphical console using:

$ virtctl vnc --kubeconfig=$KUBECONFIG testvmi

Debugging console access

Should the connection fail, you can use the -v flag to get more output from both virtctl and the remote-viewer tool, to troubleshoot the problem.

$ virtctl vnc --kubeconfig=$KUBECONFIG testvmi -v 4

Note: If you are using virtctl via ssh on a remote machine, you need to forward the X session to your machine (Look up the -X and -Y flags of ssh if you are not familiar with that). As an alternative you can proxy the apiserver port with ssh to your machine (either direct or in combination with kubectl proxy)

RBAC Permissions for Console/VNC Access

Using Default RBAC ClusterRoles

Every KubeVirt installation after version v0.5.1 comes a set of default RBAC cluster roles that can be used to grant users access to VirtualMachineInstances.

The and ClusterRoles have console and VNC access permissions built into them. By binding either of these roles to a user, they will have the ability to use virtctl to access console and VNC.

With Custom RBAC ClusterRole

The default KubeVirt ClusterRoles give access to more than just console in VNC. In the event that an Admin would like to craft a custom role that targets only console and VNC, the ClusterRole below demonstrates how that can be done.

kind: ClusterRole
  name: allow-vnc-console-access
  - apiGroups:
      - virtualmachineinstances/console
      - virtualmachineinstances/vnc
      - get

The ClusterRole above provides access to virtual machines across all namespaces.

In order to reduce the scope to a single namespace, bind this ClusterRole using a RoleBinding that targets a single namespace.