Service Discovery

The Lighthouse project provides DNS discovery for Kubernetes clusters connected by Submariner in multi-cluster environments. Lighthouse implements the Kubernetes Multi-Cluster Service APIs.


The below diagram shows the basic Lighthouse architecture:

Lighthouse Architecture

Lighthouse Agent

The Lighthouse Agent runs in every cluster and accesses the Kubernetes API server running in the Broker cluster to exchange service metadata information with other clusters. Local Service information is exported to the Broker and Service information from other clusters is imported.

Agent Workflow

The workflow is as follows:

  • Lighthouse Agent connects to the Broker’s Kubernetes API server.
  • For every Service in the local cluster for which a ServiceExport has been created, the Agent creates ServiceImport and EndpointSlice resources and exports them to the Broker to be consumed by other clusters.
  • For every resource in the Broker exported from another cluster, it creates a copy of it in the local cluster.

Lighthouse Agent WorkFlow

Lighthouse DNS Server

The Lighthouse DNS server runs as an external DNS server which owns the domain clusterset.local. CoreDNS is configured to forward any request sent to clusterset.local to the Lighthouse DNS server, which uses the ServiceImport and EndpointSlice resources that are distributed by the controller to build an address cache for DNS resolution. The Lighthouse DNS server supports queries using an A record and an SRV record.

When a single Service is deployed to multiple clusters, Lighthouse DNS server prefers the local cluster first before routing the traffic to other remote clusters in a round-robin fashion.

Server Workflow

The workflow is as follows:

  • A Pod tries to resolve a Service name using the domain name clusterset.local.
  • CoreDNS forwards the request to the Lighthouse DNS server.
  • The Lighthouse DNS server will use its address cache to try to resolve the request.
  • If a record exists it will be returned, else an NXDomain error will be returned.

Lighthouse CoreDNS WorkFlow