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Generating Reference Documentation for the Kubernetes API

This page shows how to update the generated reference docs for the Kubernetes API. The Kubernetes API reference documentation is built from the Kubernetes OpenAPI spec and tools from kubernetes-sigs/reference-docs.

If you find bugs in the generated documentation, you need to fix them upstream.

If you need only to regenerate the reference documentation from the OpenAPI spec, continue reading this page.

Before you begin

You need to have these tools installed:

You need to know how to create a pull request (PR) to a GitHub repository. Typically, this involves creating a fork of the repository. For more information, see Creating a Documentation Pull Request and GitHub Standard Fork & Pull Request Workflow.

Setting up the local repositories

Create a local workspace and set your GOPATH.

mkdir -p $HOME/<workspace>

export GOPATH=$HOME/<workspace>

Get a local clone of the following repositories:

go get -u

go get -u
go get -u

If you don’t already have the kubernetes/website repository, get it now:

git clone<your-username>/website $GOPATH/src/<your-username>/website

Get a clone of the kubernetes/kubernetes repository as

git clone $GOPATH/src/
  • The base directory of your clone of the kubernetes/kubernetes repository is $GOPATH/src/ The remaining steps refer to your base directory as <k8s-base>.

  • The base directory of your clone of the kubernetes/website repository is $GOPATH/src/<your username>/website. The remaining steps refer to your base directory as <web-base>.

  • The base directory of your clone of the kubernetes-sigs/reference-docs repository is $GOPATH/src/ The remaining steps refer to your base directory as <rdocs-base>.

Generating the API reference docs

This section shows how to generate the published Kubernetes API reference documentation.

Modifying the Makefile

Go to <rdocs-base>, and open the Makefile for editing:

  • Set K8SROOT to <k8s-base>.
  • Set WEBROOT to <web-base>.
  • Set MINOR_VERSION to the minor version of the docs you want to build. For example, if you want to build docs for Kubernetes 1.15, set MINOR_VERSION to 15. Save and close the Makefile.

For example, update the following variables:


Copying the OpenAPI spec

Run the following command in <rdocs-base>:

make updateapispec

The output shows that the file was copied:

cp ~/src/ gen-apidocs/generators/openapi-spec/swagger.json

Building the API reference docs

Run the following command in <rdocs-base>:

make api

Verify that these two files have been generated:

[ -e "<rdocs-base>/gen-apidocs/generators/build/index.html" ] && echo "index.html built" || echo "no index.html"
[ -e "<rdocs-base>/gen-apidocs/generators/build/navData.js" ] && echo "navData.js built" || echo "no navData.js"

Creating directories for published docs

Create the directories in <web-base> for the generated API reference files:

mkdir -p <web-base>/static/docs/reference/generated/kubernetes-api/v1.<minor-version>
mkdir -p <web-base>/static/docs/reference/generated/kubernetes-api/v1.<minor-version>/css
mkdir -p <web-base>/static/docs/reference/generated/kubernetes-api/v1.<minor-version>/fonts

Copying the generated docs to the kubernetes/website repository

Run the following command in <rdocs-base> to copy the generated files to your local kubernetes/website repository:

make copyapi

Go to the base of your local kubernetes/website repository, and see which files have been modified:

cd <web-base>
git status

The output shows the modified files:


Updating the API reference index pages

  • Open <web-base>/content/en/docs/reference/kubernetes-api/ for editing, and update the API reference version number. For example:

    title: v1.15
    [Kubernetes API v1.15](/docs/reference/generated/kubernetes-api/v1.15/)
  • Open <web-base>/content/en/docs/reference/ for editing, and add a new link for the latest API reference. Remove the oldest API reference version. There should be five links to the most recent API references.

Locally test the API reference

Publish a local version of the API reference. Verify the local preview.

cd <web-base>
make docker-serve

Commit the changes

In <web-base> run git add and git commit to commit the change.

Submit your changes as a pull request to the kubernetes/website repository. Monitor your pull request, and respond to reviewer comments as needed. Continue to monitor your pull request until it has been merged.

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