How To Download Kubectl

In the Kubernetes documentation for accessing a cluster there is a step to install kubectl, the CLI for working with clusters. This step assumes you've download a pre-compiled release of Kubernetes and then points you at a subdirectory to find kubectl for your operating system and architecture.

But, do you really want to download 1 GB and all of Kubernetes just to get the CLI for accessing a cluster?

There's an easier way.

Kubectl is available for download at:

https://storage.googleapis.com/kubernetes-release/release/<VERSION TAG>/bin/<OS>/<ARCH>/kubectl

Replace the <VERSION TAG>, <OS>, and <ARCH> with the values appropriate for your system. <VERSION TAG> is the tagged release such as v1.4.1. The <OS> can be values such as darwin (for mac), linux, and windows. The <ARCH> possible values are 386 and amd64.

Note, the download is kubectl.exe for windows.

That means you can get kubectl for Mac at version v1.4.1 with curl like:

curl -O https://storage.googleapis.com/kubernetes-release/release/v1.4.1/bin/darwin/amd64/kubectl

This is a much easier and faster way to get kubectl.