Consul is a tool for discovering and configuring services in your infrastructure. Consul's key features include service discovery, health checking, a KV store, and robust support for multi-datacenter deployments. Nomad's integration with Consul enables automatic clustering, built-in service registration, and dynamic rendering of configuration files and environment variables. The sections below describe the integration in more detail.
In order to use Consul with Nomad, you will need to configure and install Consul on your nodes alongside Nomad, or schedule it as a system job. Nomad does not currently run Consul for you.
To enable Consul integration, please see the Nomad agent Consul integration configuration.
Nomad servers and clients will be automatically informed of each other's existence when a running Consul cluster already exists and the Consul agent is installed and configured on each host. Please see the Automatic Clustering with Consul guide for more information.
Nomad schedules workloads of various types across a cluster of generic hosts. Because of this, placement is not known in advance and you will need to use service discovery to connect tasks to other services deployed across your cluster. Nomad integrates with Consul to provide service discovery and monitoring.
To configure a job to register with service discovery, please see the
service job specification documentation.
Nomad's job specification includes a
that utilizes a Consul ecosystem tool called Consul Template. This mechanism creates a convenient way to ship configuration files
that are populated from environment variables, Consul data, Vault secrets, or just
general configurations within a Nomad task.
For more information on Nomad's template stanza and how it leverages Consul Template,
please see the
template job specification documentation.
Consul 0.7.2 or later is needed for
tls_skip_verifyin HTTP checks.
Consul 0.6.4 or later is needed for using the Script checks.
Consul 0.6.0 or later is needed for using the TCP checks.
The service discovery feature in Nomad depends on operators making sure that the Nomad client can reach the Consul agent.
Tasks running inside Nomad also need to reach out to the Consul agent if they want to use any of the Consul APIs. Ex: A task running inside a docker container in the bridge mode won't be able to talk to a Consul Agent running on the loopback interface of the host since the container in the bridge mode has its own network interface and doesn't see interfaces on the global network namespace of the host. There are a couple of ways to solve this, one way is to run the container in the host networking mode, or make the Consul agent listen on an interface in the network namespace of the container.