This feature is supported only in 3.0.0-rc1.



Model in Image is an alternative to the operator’s Domain in Image and Domain in PV domain types. See Choose a domain home source type for a comparison of operator domain types.

Unlike Domain in PV and Domain in Image, Model in Image eliminates the need to pre-create your WebLogic domain home prior to deploying your domain resource.

It enables:

  • Defining a WebLogic domain home configuration using WebLogic Deploy Tool (WDT) model files and application archives.
  • Embedding model files and archives in a custom Docker image, and using the WebLogic Image Tool (WIT) to generate this image.
  • Supplying additional model files using a Kubernetes ConfigMap.
  • Supplying Kubernetes Secrets that resolve macro references within the models. For example, a secret can be used to supply a database credential.
  • Updating WDT model files at runtime. For example, you can add a data source to a running domain. Note that all such updates currently cause the domain to ‘roll’ in order to take effect.

This feature is supported for standard WLS domains, Restricted JRF domains, and JRF domains.

WDT models are a convenient and simple alternative to WebLogic WLST configuration scripts and templates. They compactly define a WebLogic domain using YAML files and support including application archives in a ZIP file. The WDT model format is described in the open source, WebLogic Deploy Tool GitHub project.

For JRF domains, Model in Image provides additional support for initializing the infrastructure database for a domain, when a domain is started for the first time, supplying an database password, and obtaining an database wallet for re-use in subsequent restarts of the same domain. See Prerequisites for JRF domain types.

Runtime behavior overview

When you deploy a Model in Image domain resource:

  • The operator will run a Kubernetes Job called the ‘introspector job’ that:
    • Merges your WDT artifacts.
    • Runs WDT tooling to generate a domain home.
    • Packages the domain home and passes it to the operator.
  • After the introspector job completes:
    • The operator creates a ConfigMap named DOMAIN_UID-weblogic-domain-introspect-cm and puts the packaged domain home in it.
    • The operator subsequently boots your domain’s WebLogic Server pods.
    • The pods will obtain their domain home from the ConfigMap.

Runtime updates overview

Model updates can be applied at runtime by changing the image, secrets, or WDT model ConfigMap after initial deployment. If the image name changes, or the domain resource restartVersion changes, then this will cause the introspector job to rerun and generate a new domain home, and subsequently the changed domain home will be propagated to the domain’s WebLogic pods using a rolling upgrade (each pod restarting one at a time). See Runtime updates.

Continuous integration and delivery (CI/CD)

To understand how Model in Image works with CI/CD, see CI/CD considerations.

Always use external state

Regardless of the domain home source type, we recommend that you always keep state outside the Docker image. This includes JDBC stores for leasing tables, JMS and transaction stores, EJB timers, JMS queues, and so on. This ensures that data will not be lost when a container is destroyed.

We recommend that state be kept in a database to take advantage of built-in database server high availability features, and the fact that disaster recovery of sites across all but the shortest distances, almost always requires using a single database server to consolidate and replicate data (DataGuard).