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Install the Kubernetes Command Line Tool

Download and install kubectl - the Kubernetes command line tool which allows access to the SAP BTP, Kyma runtime via the command line.
You will learn
  • How to download kubectl - the Kubernetes command line tool
  • How to install kubectl and connect it to a Kyma runtime
  • How to explore a few basic kubectl commands
jcawley5Jamie CawleyJune 14, 2022
Created by
October 8, 2020


The Kyma runtime is a Kubernetes cluster. To manage resources and configurations from the command line, the tool kubectl can be used. This tutorial provides the steps to configure the tool to access the Kyma runtime. In subsequent tutorials you will learn various commands provided by kubectl.

  • Step 1
    1. Download the latest kubectl command line tool from the Kubernetes website. Use the following URL:

    2. On the Kubernetes website, follow the instructions listed for your operating system, for example: Install kubectl on macOS.

  • Step 2

    The use of the kubectl command line tool requires an authenticated user to perform any tasks on the Kyma runtime. The Kyma runtime is configured to use OpenID Connect (OIDC) authentication and requires the installation of the plugin kubectl oidc-login to perform the authentication.

    1. Install kubectl oidc-login by following the instructions detailed in the project repository. Use the relevant commands for macOS, Linux, or Windows users.

      On Windows, it is recommended to use the release binaries to install the kubectl oidc-login plugin. The installation of the kubectl oidc-login plugin using Chocolatey and Krew could cause issues.

      The kubectl oidc-login runs on port 8000, in case of issues please make sure the port is not occupied.

  • Step 3
    1. Open a command prompt on your computer.

      On Windows, you can search for the cmd or command prompt applications in the Start menu.

      On macOS, use Spotlight to find the “terminal” application.

      On Linux/Unix, you know how this works - just open your favorite command shell.

    2. Test the kubectl command line tool to make sure it is installed correctly by running the following command in your CLI:

    kubectl version --client

    This should return a list of version properties, for example:

    Client Version: version.Info{Major:"1", Minor:"22", GitVersion:"v1.22.2", GitCommit:"8b5a19147530eaac9476b0ab82980b4088bbc1b2", GitTreeState:"clean", BuildDate:"2021-09-15T21:31:32Z", GoVersion:"go1.16.8", Compiler:"gc", Platform:"darwin/amd64"}

    Enter the code to get the kubectl command line tool version.

  • Step 4

    The kubectl tool relies on a configuration file called the kubeconfig, to configure access to the cluster. This step details how this can be obtained from both the BTP Cockpit and the Console UI.

    To obtain the kubeconfig from the SAP BTP Cockpit:

    1. Within your BTP account, navigate to the sub-account which has the Kyma runtime is enabled.

    2. Choose the menu option Overview

    3. Scroll down to the Kyma Environment details

    4. Choose the link next to KubeconfigURL to download the kubeconfig


    To obtain the kubeconfig from the Console UI:

    1. Navigate to the Console UI of your Kyma runtime.

    2. Log onto the Kyma runtime.

    3. At the top-left of the Kyma runtime window you will find a drop down which displays the name of the currently connected runtime.

    4. Select the drop down and choose the option Clusters Overview

    5. Choose the Download Kubeconfig option to download the file.

  • Step 5
    1. Open a command line prompt on your computer. In the command line screen, type in the following:

    Replace the <KUBECONFIG_FILE_PATH> section with the file path, including the file name and extension, of the Kubeconfig you downloaded in the previous step.

    1. Test the configuration by running this command:

      kubectl config get-contexts

      This should return a response similar to:

      * shoot--kyma-stage--c-#######shoot--kyma-stage--c-#######shoot--kyma-stage--c-#######
    2. You are now set up to use the Kyma runtime on SAP BTP Platform.

    For more information on kubectl, visit the Kubernetes overview and kubectl-commands websites.

    What is the kubeconfig file used for?

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