Kubernetes Cheat Sheet (Updated for 2024)

A comprehensive cheat sheet for Kubernetes commands with the latest updates.

Kubectl Alias

To make kubectl command shorter and faster to type, you can create an alias.


alias k=kubectl

Windows PowerShell

Set-Alias -Name k -Value kubectl

Cluster Info

  • Get clusters
    kubectl config get-clusters
  • Get cluster info
    kubectl cluster-info


Contexts manage the connection parameters for clusters, namespaces, and authentication.

  • List all contexts
    kubectl config get-contexts
  • Get the current context
    kubectl config current-context
  • Switch the current context
    kubectl config use-context <context-name>
  • Set the default namespace for the current context
    kubectl config set-context --current --namespace=<namespace-name>

For switching between contexts quickly, consider using kubectx.

Get Commands

Common get commands to retrieve resources.

kubectl get all
kubectl get namespaces
kubectl get configmaps
kubectl get nodes
kubectl get pods
kubectl get rs
kubectl get svc <service-name>
kubectl get endpoints <endpoint-name>

Additional options:

  • -o wide: Show more information.
  • --watch or -w: Watch for changes in real-time.


  • Specify namespace for a command
    kubectl get pods --namespace=<namespace-name>

To switch namespaces for commands without specifying each time, consider using kubens.

Labels and Selectors

  • Get pods showing labels
    kubectl get pods --show-labels
  • Filter pods by label
    kubectl get pods -l environment=production,tier!=frontend
    kubectl get pods -l 'environment in (production,test),tier notin (frontend,backend)'

Describe and Delete Commands

Detailed information and deletion of resources.

  • Describe resource
    kubectl describe <resource-type> <resource-name>
  • Delete resource
    kubectl delete <resource-type> <resource-name>
  • Force delete a pod immediately
    kubectl delete pod <pod-name> --grace-period=0 --force

Create vs Apply

kubectl apply is recommended for most operations as it applies changes to resources while respecting existing configurations.

  • Create a deployment
    kubectl create deployment <name> --image=<image>
  • Apply a configuration from a file
    kubectl apply -f <filename.yaml>

Export YAML for New and Existing Objects

  • Generate YAML for a new pod (dry run)
    kubectl run <pod-name> --image=<image> --dry-run=client -o yaml > <pod-name>.yaml
  • Export YAML of an existing object
    kubectl get <resource-type> <resource-name> -o yaml > <file-name>.yaml

Logs and Debugging

  • Tail logs from pods
    kubectl logs -f <pod-name>
  • Get logs from a previously terminated container
    kubectl logs <pod-name> --previous

Port Forward

Directly access applications or services from your local machine.

kubectl port-forward <type/name> <local-port>:<pod-port>

Scaling and Autoscaling

  • Manually scale a deployment
    kubectl scale deployment <deployment-name> --replicas=<num-replicas>
  • Autoscale a deployment
    kubectl autoscale deployment <deployment-name> --min=<min-pods> --max=<max-pods> --cpu-percent=<target-CPU-utilization

## Rollouts and Versioning

Manage deployment rollouts.

- **Check rollout status**
kubectl rollout status deployment/<deployment-name>
  • View rollout history
    kubectl rollout history deployment/<deployment-name>
  • Rollback to a previous revision
    kubectl rollout undo deployment/<deployment-name> --to-revision=<revision>