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Including Optional Charts

This topic applies to both native Helm and Replicated Helm installations.

Charts can be optionally included in an application. By default, an instance of a Helm chart is created for every apiVersion: and kind: HelmChart that's found in the upstream application manifests.

To make a chart optional, add a template-parsable exclude attribute to the kind: HelmChart document. When downloading, the Replicated app manager will render this field and exclude the entire chart if the output of this field can be parsed as a boolean evaluating to true.

If this value is not provided, the chart will be included.


For an example, let's use an example application that has a Postgres database. The current community supported Postgres Helm chart is available at For this example, we want to let the user provide their own Postgres instance (outside of the application), or use an embedded, simple Postgres service for demos and simple installations.


To start, let's define the config screen that will give the user a choice of "Embedded Postgres" or "External Postgres", where external is user supplied. The YAML below does this, by creating a select_one (radio button) option, and two fields. We don't want every installation to have the same default password for the embedded postgres instance, so this will be generated at installation time. But if the user selects the External Postgres option, we should show an edit box for them to supply a valid Postgres connection string.

kind: Config
name: example-application
- name: database
title: Database
description: Database Options
- name: postgres_type
type: select_one
title: Postgres
default: embedded_postgres
- name: embedded_postgres
title: Embedded Postgres
- name: external_postgres
title: External Postgres
- name: embedded_postgres_password
type: password
value: "{{repl RandomString 32}}"
hidden: true
- name: external_postgres_uri
type: text
title: External Postgres Connection String
help_text: Connection string for a Postgres 10.x server
when: '{{repl ConfigOptionEquals "postgres_type" "external_postgres"}}'

The config screen will look like this:

Postgres Config Screen


Our application has a few components that use Postgres, and they all mount the Postgres connection string from a single secret. This secret is defined as:

apiVersion: v1
kind: Secret
name: postgresql-secret
uri: postgres://username:[email protected]:5432/database?sslmode=disable

You can edit this to add a conditional statement, rendering either a connection string to the embedded postgres chart, or the user supplied instance, as needed.

You must use a single line for the conditional statement, shown in the following example with the stringData field of the Kubernetes Secret object. Optionally, you can use the Replicated Base64Encode function to pipe a string through.

apiVersion: v1
kind: Secret
name: postgresql-secret
uri: repl{{ if ConfigOptionEquals "postgres_type" "embedded_postgres" }}postgres://myapplication:repl{{ ConfigOption "embedded_postgres_password" }}@postgres:5432/mydatabase?sslmode=disablerepl{{ else }}repl{{ ConfigOption "external_postgres_uri" }}repl{{ end }}


Next, we can take the Helm chart and upload it to our application.

helm repo update
helm fetch stable/postgresl

After dropping this file into the file tree in the vendor portal, a new file named postgresql.yaml is created. This will be already set to to reference the .tgz file you uploaded. Let's add a mapping to the values key so that it uses the password we've created and also we should add an exclude attribute to the chart to specify that it should only be included when the user has selected embedded postgres.

kind: HelmChart
name: postgresql
exclude: 'repl{{ ConfigOptionEquals `postgres_type` `external_postgres` }}'
# chart identifies a matching chart from a .tgz
name: postgresql
chartVersion: 8.1.2

# values are used in the customer environment, as a pre-render step
# these values will be supplied to helm template
postgresqlUsername: username
postgreslPassword: "repl{{ ConfigOption `embedded_postgres_password` }}"
postgresqlDatabase: mydatabase

# builder values provide a way to render the chart with all images
# and manifests. this is used in replicated to create airgap packages
builder: {}