Deploying images from a private container registry

Learn how to configure your Knative cluster to deploy images from a private container registry.

To share access to your private container images across multiple services and revisions, you create a list of Kubernetes secrets (imagePullSecrets) using your registry credentials, add that imagePullSecrets to your default service account, and then deploy those configurations to your Knative cluster.

Before you begin

You need:

  • A Kubernetes cluster with Knative Serving installed.
  • The credentials to the private container registry where your container images are stored.

Configuring your credentials in Knative

  1. Create a imagePullSecrets that contains your credentials as a list of secrets:

    kubectl create secret [REGISTRY-CRED-SECRETS] \
      --docker-server=[PRIVATE_REGISTRY_SERVER_URL] \
      --docker-email=[PRIVATE_REGISTRY_EMAIL] \
      --docker-username=[PRIVATE_REGISTRY_USER] \


    • [REGISTRY-CRED-SECRETS] is the name that you want for your secrets (imagePullSecrets object). For example, container-registry.

    • [PRIVATE_REGISTRY_SERVER_URL] is the URL to the private registry where your container images are stored.


    • [PRIVATE_REGISTRY_EMAIL] is your email address that is associated with the private registry.

    • [PRIVATE_REGISTRY_USER] is the username that you use to access the private container registry.

    • [PRIVATE_REGISTRY_PASSWORD] is the password that you use to access the private container registry.


    kubectl create secret `container-registry` \
      --docker-server= \ \
      --docker-username=my-grc-username \

    Tip: After creating the imagePullSecrets, you can view those secret's by running:

    kubectl get secret [REGISTRY-CRED-SECRETS] --output=yaml
  2. Add the imagePullSecrets to your default service account in the default namespace.

    Note: By default, the default service account in each of the namespaces of your Knative cluster are use by your revisions unless serviceAccountName is specified.

    1. Run the following command to edit your default service account:

      kubectl edit serviceaccount default --namespace default
    2. Add the imagePullSecrets element in your default service account :

      For example, if you named your secrets container-registry, then you add the following lines to your service account configuration:

      - name: container-registry

      Example service account with imagePullSecrets:

      apiVersion: v1
      kind: ServiceAccount
        name: default
        namespace: default
      - name: default-token-zd84v
      - name: container-registry
  3. Deploy the updated service account to your Knative cluster:

    kubectl apply --filename service-account.yaml

Now, all the new pods that are created in the default namespace will include your credentials and have access to your container images in the private registry.

What's next

You can now create a service that uses your container images from the private registry. Learn how to create a Knative service.