Can't initialize iptables table filter and nat: Permission denied

Submitted by alvaro.soto on Thu, 04/22/2021 - 19:03

The best solution will be to change the container image to have an updated iptables version, but in case you can't do that, follow the next steps.

Environment

  • Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 4.6+

Issue

Executing iptables command in an application container fails with the following error.

 

[root@pod]# iptables -L iptables v1.8.4 (legacy): can't initialize iptables table `filter': Permission denied Perhaps iptables or your kernel needs to be upgraded.

[root@pod]# iptables -L -t nat iptables v1.8.4 (legacy): can't initialize iptables table `nat': Permission denied Perhaps iptables or your kernel needs to be upgraded.

Resolution

Add the needed capabilities and match the seLinux denied context on audit logs on pod.spec.containers[0].securityContext.

spec: containers: securityContext: privileged: false capabilities: drop: ["all"] add: ["NET_ADMIN", "NET_RAW", "NET_BIND_SERVICE"] seLinuxOptions: user: "system_u" role: "system_r" type: "container_t" level: "s0:c981,c991"

Diagnostic Steps

  1. Find the worker node from where the pod is running.
  2. Connect to worker node.
  3. Tail audit log.
  4. Initialize a bash session on the pod.
  5. Execute iptables command.
  6. Wait for iptables denial error on audit log.

    [root@worker] # tail -f /var/logs/audit/audit.log ...[ SNIP ]... type=AVC msg=audit(1618591176.860:2303): avc: denied { module_request } for pid=912615 comm="iptables" kmod="iptable_filter" scontext=system_u:system_r:container_t:s0:c981,c991 tcontext=system_u:system_r:kernel_t:s0 tclass=system permissive=0 type=AVC msg=audit(1618591176.860:2304): avc: denied { module_request } for pid=912615 comm="iptables" kmod="iptable_filter" scontext=system_u:system_r:container_t:s0:c981,c991 tcontext=system_u:system_r:kernel_t:s0 tclass=system permissive=0 ...[ SNIP ]...

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