How to set up wordpress on OpenShift in 10 minutes

What this is about?

A lot of customers would like to give the brave new container world (based on Docker technology) a try with real life workload. The WordPress content management system (yes, it has become more than a simple blog) seems to be an application that many customers know and use (and that I’ve been asked for numerous times). From a technical point of view the WordPress use case is rather simple, since we only need a PHP runtime and a database such as MySQL. Therefore it is a perfect candidate to pilot container aspects on OpenShift Container Platform.


Install Container Development Kit

I highly recommend to install the freely available Red Hat Container Development Kit (shortly CDK). It will give you a ready to use installation of OpenShift Container Platform based on a Vagrant image. So you’re up to speed in absolutely no time:

Please follow the installation instructions here:

Setup resources on OpenShift

Spin up your CDK environment and ssh into the system:

vagrant up
vagrant ssh

Create a new project and import the template for an ephemeral MySQL (since this is not included in the CDK V2.3 distribution by default). If you prefer to use another database or even one with persistent storage, then you can find additional templates here.

oc new-project wordpress
oc create -f

Now we create one pod for our MySQL database and create our WordPress application based on the source code. OpenShift will automatically determine that it is based on PHP and will therefore choose the PHP builder image to create a Docker image from our WordPress source code.

oc new-app mysql-ephemeral
oc new-app
oc expose service wordpress

Now let’s login to the OpenShift management console and see what has happened:

We now have a pod that runs our WordPress application (web server, PHP, source code) and one pod running our ready to use ephemeral (= non-persistent) MySQL database.

Install wordpress

Before we need to note down the connection settings for our MySQL database. Firstly we look up the cluster IP of our mysql service; secondly we look up the database name, username & password. Have a look at the following screenshots:

Now it is time to setup and configure wordpress. Simply click on the route that has been created for your wordpress pod (in my case the hostname is “”).

Congratulations for installing WordPress on OpenShift!

What’s next

For now we’ve created all the resources manually in a not yet reusable fashion. Therefore one of the next steps could be to create a template from our resources, import it into the OpenShift namespace and make it available for our users as a service catalog item. So our users could provision a fully installed WordPress with the click of a button.

OpenShift Quicktip: Testdriving persistent storage with NFS

Creating a persistent volume for NFS storage plugin

The administrator is responsible for creating volumes (PV). The administrator assigns some external thing (partition, entire device, NFS volume, whatever) to a PV.

  1. Login to OpenShift with an admin user
  2. Create persistent volume:
oc create -f persistent-volume-nfs.yaml
  1. Check status of persistent volume:
oc get pv

Creating a persistent volume claim

The end-user/developer/user/whatever is responsible for making a request for a volume (PVC). They get assigned some volume, and they don’t really know what it is. Keep in mind that there is a 1:1 mapping between PV and PVCs.

  1. Login to OpenShift
  2. Create persistent volume claim:
oc create -f persistent-volume-claim.yaml

The source code can be found on my Github page:

OpenShift Quicktip: Limiting resource consumption for users

A. Resource limits

Resource limits allow you to set boundaries (max/min & default) for the compute resources a developer can define on pod/container level (see

  1. Login to OpenShift with an admin user
  2. Change to target project with
oc project <my-project>
  1. Import limit range (see on what options are available)
oc create -f limit-range.json
  1. Browse to OpenShift admin console, select the project and then “Settings”.

B. Quotas

A quota allows you to set hard limits on the overall resource consumption on project level. This is in particular useful to create a t-shirt size based accounting model (small, medium, large) for OpenShift. See also

  1. Login to OpenShift with an admin user
  2. Change to target project with
oc project <my-project>
  1. Create quota for project:
oc create -f resource-quota.json
  1. Browse to OpenShift admin console, select the project and then “Settings”.

The source code can be found on my Github page: