NGINX Ingress Controller with NGINX Plus

This document explains the key characteristics that NGINX Plus brings on top of NGINX into the NGINX Ingress Controller.

NGINX Ingress Controller works with both NGINX and NGINX Plus – a commercial closed source version of NGINX that comes with additional features and support.

Below are the key characteristics that NGINX Plus brings on top of NGINX into the NGINX Ingress Controller.

Additional features

  • Real-time metrics A number metrics about how NGINX Plus and applications are performing are available through the API or a built-in dashboard. Optionally, the metrics can be exported to Prometheus.
  • Additional load balancing methods. The following additional methods are available: least_time and random two least_time and their derivatives. See the documentation for the complete list of load balancing methods.
  • Session persistence The sticky cookie method is available. See the Session Persistence example.
  • Active health checks. See the Support for Active Health Checks example.
  • JWT validation. See the Support for JSON Web Tokens (JWTs) example.

See ConfigMap and Annotations doc for the complete list of available NGINX Plus features. Note that such features are configured through annotations that start with, for example,

Dynamic reconfiguration

Every time the number of pods of services you expose via an Ingress resource changes, the Ingress Controller updates the configuration of the load balancer to reflect those changes. For NGINX, the configuration file must be changed and the configuration subsequently reloaded. For NGINX Plus, the dynamic reconfiguration is utilized, which allows NGINX Plus to be updated on-the-fly without reloading the configuration. This prevents increase of memory usage during reloads, especially with a high volume of client requests, as well as increased memory usage when load balancing applications with long-lived connections (WebSocket, applications with file uploading/downloading or streaming).

Commercial support

Support from NGINX Inc is available for NGINX Plus Ingress Controller.