Steps for Kubernetes (Vanilla)


Kernel Headers

The Sysdig agent requires kernel header files to install successfully on a host.

This setup step is required for some environments and not others, as noted.

If the hosts in your environment match the pre-compiled kernel modules available from Sysdig, no special action is required.

In some cases, the host(s) in your environment may use Unix versions that do not match the provided headers, and the agent may fail to install correctly. In those cases, you must install the kernel headers manually.

To do so:

For Debian-style distributions, run the command:

apt-get -y install linux-headers-$(uname -r)

For RHEL-style distributions, run the command:

yum -y install kernel-devel-$(uname -r)

Background info: see also About Kernel Headers and the Kernel Module.


You can review Agent Install: Kubernetes | GKE | OpenShift |IBM and the Agent Installation Requirements for additional context, if desired.

Installation Steps

Deploy Using Helm Charts

To deploy agent using Helm charts, run the following:

  1. Export the access token and the name of the OKE cluster:

    export SDC_ACCESS_TOKEN=xxxx # Get it from the UI (User > Settings > Sysdig Secure API Token).
    export # us-west by default. Please check the right region.
    export # us-east by default. Please check the right region.
    export CLUSTER_NAME=my-cluster # Kubernetes cluster name
  2. Create a namespace to use for the Sysdig agent:

     kubectl create ns sysdig-agent
  3. Set up the helm repo:

     helm repo add sysdig
     helm repo update
  4. Install the agent:

     helm install sysdig-agent --namespace sysdig-agent --set sysdig.accessKey=$SDC_ACCESS_TOKEN --set sysdig.settings.collector=$SDC_COLLECTOR_URL --set sysdig.settings.collector_port=6443 --set clusterName=$CLUSTER_NAME sysdig/sysdig --set nodeAnalyzer.apiEndpoint=$SDC_NODEANALYZER_URL

For more information, see charts.

Deploy Using Daemonsets

To deploy agents using Kubernetes daemonsets, you will download the following configuration files, edit them as required, and deploy them.

  • sysdig-agent-clusterrole.yaml

  • sysdig-agent-service.yaml

  • sysdig-agent-daemonset-v2.yaml

  • sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml

Deploy the Agents

  1. Download the sample files:

    • sysdig-agent-clusterrole.yaml

    • sysdig-agent-daemonset-v2.yaml

    • sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml

    • sysdig-agent-service.yaml

  2. Create a namespace to use for the Sysdig agent.

    You can use whatever naming you prefer. In this document, we used sysdig-agent for both the namespace and the service account.

    The default service account name was automatically defined in sysdig-agent-daemonset-v2.yaml, at the line: serviceAccount: sysdig-agent.

    kubectl create ns sysdig-agent
  3. Create a secret key:

    kubectl create secret generic sysdig-agent --from-literal=access-key=<your sysdig access key> -n sysdig-agent
  4. Create a cluster role and service account, and define the cluster role bindingthat grants the Sysdig agent rules in the cluster role, using the commands:

    kubectl apply -f sysdig-agent-clusterrole.yaml -n sysdig-agent
    kubectl create serviceaccount sysdig-agent -n sysdig-agent
    kubectl create clusterrolebinding sysdig-agent --clusterrole=sysdig-agent --serviceaccount=sysdig-agent:sysdig-agent
  5. Edit sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml to add the collector address , port , and the SSL/TLS information:

    ssl: #true or false
    check_certificate: #true or false
  6. (All installs) Apply the sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml file:

    kubectl apply -f sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml -n sysdig-agent
  7. (All installs) Apply the sysdig-agent-service.yaml file:

    kubectl apply -f sysdig-agent-service.yaml -n sysdig-agent

    This allows the agent to receive Kubernetes audit events from the Kubernetes API server. See Kubernetes Audit Logging for information on enabling Kubernetes audit logging.

  8. (All installs) Apply the daemonset-v2.yaml file :

    kubectl apply -f sysdig-agent-daemonset-v2.yaml -n sysdig-agent

The agents will be deployed. See Getting Started with Sysdig Monitor to view some metrics in the Sysdig Monitor UI. You can make further edits to the configmap as described below.Getting Started with Sysdig Monitor

Enable Kube State Metrics and Cluster Name

These steps are optional but recommended.

  1. Edit sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml to uncomment the line: new_k8s: true

    This allows kube state metrics to be automatically detected, monitored, and displayed in Sysdig Monitor.

    For more information, see the Kube State Metrics entry in the Sysdig blog.

    As of agent 9.6.0, new_k8s is enabled by default.

  2. Edit sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml to uncomment the line: **k8s_cluster_name: **and add your cluster name.

    Setting cluster name here allows you to view, scope, and segment metrics in the Sysdig Monitor UI by the Kubernetes cluster.

    Note: Alternatively, if you assign a tag with “cluster” in the tag name, Sysdig Monitor will display that as the Kubernetes cluster name.

  3. Apply the configmap changes using the command:

    kubectl apply -f sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml -n sysdig-agent
  4. Proceed to verify the metrics in the Sysdig Monitor UI.

There are two ways to update the agent configuration

Option 1: Edit the files locally and apply the changes with kubectl apply -f:

kubectl apply -f sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml -n sysdig-agent

Option 2: Use kubectl edit to edit files on the fly:

kubectl edit configmap sysdig-agent -n sysdig-agent

Running agents will automatically pick the new configuration after Kubernetes pushes the changes across all the nodes in the cluster.

Additional Options

Connect to the Sysdig Backend via Static IPs (SaaS only)

Sysdig provides a list of static IP addresses that can be whitelisted in a Sysdig environment, allowing users to establish a network connection to the Sysdig backend without opening complete network connectivity. This is done by setting the Collector IP to

The sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml file can be edited either locally or using the edit command in Kubernetes. refer to the section above for more information.

To configure the collector IP in a Kubernetes SaaS instance:

  1. Open sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml in a text editor.

  2. Uncomment the following lines:

    • collector:

    • collector_port

  3. Set the collector: value to

    See SaaS Regions and IP Ranges and identify the correct URL associated with your Sysdig collector and region.

  4. Set the collector_port: value to 6443

  5. Save the file.

The example file below shows how the sysdig-agent-configmap.yaml file should look after configuration:

apiVersion: v1
kind: ConfigMap
  name: sysdig-agent
  dragent.yaml: |
    ### Agent tags
    # tags: linux:ubuntu,dept:dev,local:nyc

    #### Sysdig Software related config ####

    # Sysdig collector address

    # Collector TCP port
    collector_port: 6443

    # Whether collector accepts ssl/TLS
    ssl: true

    # collector certificate validation
    ssl_verify_certificate: true

    # Sysdig Secure
                enabled: true

    # new_k8s: true
    # k8s_cluster_name: production

Verify Metrics in Sysdig Monitor UI

Log in to Sysdig Monitor to verify that the agent deployed and the metrics are detected and collected appropriately.

The steps below give one way to do the check.

  1. Access Sysdig Monitor:

    SaaS: See SaaS Regions and IP Ranges and identify the correct domain URL associated with your Sysdig application and region. For example, for US East, the URL is

    For other regions, the format is https://<region> Replace <region> with the region where your Sysidig application is hosted. For example, for Sysdig Monitor in the EU, you use

    Log in with your Sysdig user name and password.

  2. Select the Explore tab to see if metrics are displayed.

  3. (Once you have enabled new_k8s:true): To verify that kube state metrics and cluster name are working correctly: Select the Explore tab and create a grouping by and

    As of agent 9.6.0, new_k8s is enabled by default.

  4. Select an individual container or pod to see details.

Kubernetes metadata (pods, deployments etc.) appear a minute or two later than the nodes/containers themselves; if pod names do not appear immediately, wait and retry the Explore view.

If agents are disconnecting, there could be an issue with your MAC addresses. See Troubleshooting Agent Installation for tips.

Last modified June 23, 2022