Using DO k8s container registry: authentication required

I am trying to use for my k8s images.

I’ve created an image, tagged it, logged into the registry successfully (using doctl registry login) then pushed the image to the registry.

However, when starting the service it’s not creating pods successfully and giving :

Failed to pull image "": rpc error: code = Unknown desc = Error response from daemon
Get unauthorized: authentication required

The pod status is “ImagePullBackOff” and it can’t pull the image.

Does anyone have any idea what might be causing this? My understanding was that if I was logged into the registry OK with doctl, then everything should be authed to pull the image from the registry.

Any help would be gratefully appreciated.


I actually have the same issue.

But I did follow the instructions. In my DO K8S dashboard, I can see listed under “Secrets” - registry-<registry_name>

I can also see that “imagePullSecrets” does exist on my default service account, and validated it as described here -

However, if I try to do a deployment, or scale the pod to 0 and then to 1, I will still get an error state - Failed to pull image “<registry_name>/image-name:latest” unauthorized: authentication required

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Accepted Answer

I had missed out a couple of steps in the guide DigitalOcean Container Registry Quickstart specifically the steps:

Use the kubernetes-manifest command to store an authentication token for your registry as a secret in your cluster:

doctl registry kubernetes-manifest | kubectl apply -f -
Instruct the default service account to use the authentication token as an imagePullSecret. Be sure to replace <my-registry> in the name field in the below command while keeping the registry- prefix:

kubectl patch serviceaccount default -p '{"imagePullSecrets": [{"name": "registry-<my-registry>"}]}'

In my case, the problem was with “Download Docker Credentials” I used in the UI. I created a k8s secret using that downloaded files, and spent a couple of hours to finally dig out that doctl registry kubernetes-manifest gives another credentials. Surprisingly, the credentials downloaded from the UI were valid for pushing/pulling from the local machine, but not for pulling images inside the cluster. Strange!

I have follow all the steps and I am getting the same Authentication error. It is driving me crazy! Is someone else having the same problem?