The system that I’m working on has an API deployed to Kubernetes and exposed through Kubernetes Ingress and Istio Gateway (for some historical and technical reasons, we need to use Kubernetes Ingress in some environments and Istio Gateway in others). For local development, we have been using Minikube and:

  • Ingress DNS addon, which enables nginx ingress controller and deploys a custom DNS server that maps host names in available ingresses to minikube IP. This means we can access ingress using DNS like http://app.minikube.test
  • MetalLB to assign an accessible IP for Istio ingress gateway load balancer. With this we can access Istio Gateway through port 80 at the assigned IP and don’t need to use NodePort

Also worth noting that we want our local development to match other environments as much as possible so using NodePort is not something we are interested in.

This sorts of work until our team all converted to M1/M3 MacBook, which breaks Minikube custom DNS server

This post covers the approach that we come up with


What we do is to run a local DNS server (CoreDNS) on the host machine (MacBook) which resolves all DNS requests for specific suffix to either minikube IP (for Kubernetes Ingres) or IP assigned to Istio Ingress Gateway. Below is how it looks like:

CoreDNS Setup 

When we deploy our application to minikube, we also run a CoreDNS container on the host with the following Corefile configuration:

. {
   health {
      lameduck 5s

   template IN A {
      match "ingress\.minikube\.test\.$"
      answer "{{ .Name }} 60 IN A {$INGRESS_CONTROLLER_IP}"

   template IN A {
      match "istio\.minikube\.test\.$"
      answer "{{ .Name }} 60 IN A {$ISTIO_GATEWAY_IP}"

this config uses CoreDNS template plugin to:

  • return value of environment variable INGRESS_CONTROLLER_IP (which is set to minikube ip) when DNS request is for domain *.ingress.minikube.test
  • return value of environment variable ISTIO_GATEWAY_IP when DNS request is for domain *.istio.minikube.test
    • this variable is set to the IP assigned by MetalLB and can be retrieved using: kubectl get svc -n istio-system istio-ingressgateway -o json | jq -r '.status.loadBalancer.ingress[0].ip'

the container is run and listens on port 1053 on the host machine using following command:

docker run -d \
    --name coredns \
    -p 1053:53 \
    -p 1053:53/udp \
    -v ./config:/etc/coredns \
    coredns/coredns:1.11.1 \
    -conf /etc/coredns/Corefile

Resolver file 

Next, we create a resolver file on MacBook at /etc/resolver/minikube.test:

domain minikube.test
port 1053
search_order 1
timeout 5

basically this file tells Mac to use DNS server at to resolve DNS for any domain with suffix minikube.test

And that’s it. Now we can use DNS name like foo.ingress.minikube.test or bar.istio.minikube.test to reach applications foo/bar deployed to minikube (provided correct Ingress/Gateway/VirtualService are setup)


  • I use Minikube for demonstration here but nothing here is specific to Minikube (beside the command minikube ip)
  • One minor downside/difference of this compared to Minikube Ingress DNS is that it resolves DNS for all requests matching the suffixes, no matter whether there is any Ingress/Gateway for those domains