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Version: v23.0

Install DxE + SQL Server Helm Chart Using Rancher

This quick start guide describes how to deploy the DxEMSSQL Helm Chart using Rancher by SUSE. Using this guide, you will create a DxEnterprise cluster and SQL Server availability group in Kubernetes using the Rancher web UI, then connect to the DxEnterprise cluster using DxAdmin.


  • A machine running Rancher v2 and access to Rancher's web UI. Rancher can be run on a Windows or Linux machine as long as you have access to the web UI.

  • DxAdmin and SSMS installed on a Windows machine. For more information about installing DxAdmin, view the DxAdmin Installation Guide. See Microsoft documentation for information about installing SSMS.

  • A Kubernetes cluster managed by Rancher with at least two nodes. The Kubernetes cluster must have the ability to provision dynamic persistent volume claims.

    • At least three external IPs available to the Kubernetes cluster for provisioning load balancer resource types. How these IPs are assigned will depend on your load balancer implementation (i.e., Azure, AWS, MetalLB, etc.).
  • A valid DxEnterprise license with availability group management features and tunnels enabled. A fully featured Developer Edition is available free for non-production use. To purchase DxEnterprise software for production workloads, visit the DH2i Store.

Install the Helm Chart

  1. Log into Rancher via the web UI.

  2. Select the top-left hamburger menu, then select the managed cluster you want to install the Helm chart to.

  3. Add the DH2i Helm chart repository.

    1. In the left-hand menu, select Apps > Repositories

    2. Select Create in the top-right corner.

    3. Enter any name for the repository.

    4. Under Target select the "Git repository..." option.

    5. Paste the URL below into the Git Repo URL box.
    6. In the Git Branch box enter "main".

    7. Near the bottom-right corner, select Create.

  4. Add Kubernetes secrets for SQL Server and the DxEnterprise cluster passkey.

    1. In the left-hand menu, select Storage > Secrets.

    2. Select Create in the top-right corner.

    3. Select the Opaque option.

    4. Name the secret dxe.

    5. Enter a key name as DX_PASSKEY with the value of your DxEnterprise cluster passkey.

    6. Select Add.

    7. Enter a key name as MSSQL_SA_PASSWORD with the value of a strong SA password.


      Your password must meet SQL Server password requirements, or the container deployment will fail. See the SQL Server Password Policy for more details.

    8. Select Create in the bottom-right corner.

  5. In the left-hand menu, select Apps > Charts.

  6. In the list of available charts, select DxEnterprise for Microsoft SQL AG.

  7. Install the chart.

    1. Select Install in the top-right corner.

    2. Enter a name for the StatefulSet deployment, then select Next.

    3. Under the General tab enter the dxe Kubernetes secret.

    4. Under the DxEnterprise tab, enter your DxEnterprise license key and accept the EULA by inputting a Y.

    5. Under the SQL Server tab, select the edition of SQL Server and accept the EULA by inputting a Y.

    6. Select Install.

    7. Wait for the installation to complete before proceeding.

  8. Find the load balancer IP address for the primary.

    1. In the top-right corner, select Kubectl Shell to open a new shell.

    2. Run the command kubectl get service, then note the EXTERNAL-IP for the load balancer ending in *-lb-0 (the primary replica).

Connect Via SSMS and DxAdmin

After the installation is complete, you can connect to your availability group and the DxEnterprise cluster using SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) and DxAdmin.

View the Availability Group Using SSMS

  1. Launch SSMS.

  2. Connect to the SQL Server instance using the external IP address of the primary pod (the load balancer IP) and your SQL Server SA password.

  3. In the SSMS Object Explorer, expand Always On High Availability > Availability Groups.

  4. Right-click on AG1 and select Show Dashboard.

  5. You can now browse the AG details pane.

View the DxEnterprise Cluster and AG Using DxAdmin

  1. Launch DxAdmin.

  2. In the login dialog, enter the external IP address of the primary pod (the load balancer IP) for the Server.

  3. In the Passkey field, enter your DxEnterprise cluster passkey.

  4. Select Connect Server.

  5. After logging in, you will have an overview of the entire DxEnterprise cluster including the availability group. You can show more details by selecting them in the tree view on the left-hand side of the window.


    You can use DxAdmin to manage the availability group databases. Simply right-click on the availability group in the tree view and select Manage availability databases.

Additional Information