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Azure Container Registry

Storing container images in Azure.
The Azure container registry is a container registry flavor that comes built-in with ZenML and uses the Azure Container Registry to store container images.

When to use it

You should use the Azure container registry if:
  • one or more components of your stack need to pull or push container images.
  • you have access to Azure. If you're not using Azure, take a look at the other container registry flavors.

How to deploy it

Go here and choose a subscription, resource group, location, and registry name. Then click on Review + Create and to create your container registry.

How to find the registry URI

The Azure container registry URI should have the following format:
# Examples:
To figure out the URI for your registry:
  • Go to the Azure portal.
  • In the search bar, enter container registries and select the container registry you want to use. If you don't have any container registries yet, check out the deployment section on how to create one.
  • Use the name of your registry to fill the template <REGISTRY_NAME>.azurecr.io and get your URI.

How to use it

To use the Azure container registry, we need:
  • Docker installed and running.
  • The registry URI. Check out the previous section on the URI format and how to get the URI for your registry.
We can then register the container registry and use it in our active stack:
zenml container-registry register <NAME> \
--flavor=azure \
# Add the container registry to the active stack
zenml stack update -c <NAME>
You also need to set up authentication required to log in to the container registry.

Authentication Methods

Integrating and using an Azure Container Registry in your pipelines is not possible without employing some form of authentication. If you're looking for a quick way to get started locally, you can use the Local Authentication method. However, the recommended way to authenticate to the Azure cloud platform is through an Azure Service Connector. This is particularly useful if you are configuring ZenML stacks that combine the Azure Container Registry with other remote stack components also running in Azure.
Local Authentication
Azure Service Connector (recommended)
This method uses the Docker client authentication available in the environment where the ZenML code is running. On your local machine, this is the quickest way to configure an Azure Container Registry. You don't need to supply credentials explicitly when you register the Azure Container Registry, as it leverages the local credentials and configuration that the Azure CLI and Docker client store on your local machine. However, you will need to install and set up the Azure CLI on your machine as a prerequisite, as covered in the Azure CLI documentation, before you register the Azure Container Registry.
With the Azure CLI installed and set up with credentials, you need to login to the container registry so Docker can pull and push images:
# Fill your REGISTRY_NAME in the placeholder in the following command.
# You can find the REGISTRY_NAME as part of your registry URI: `<REGISTRY_NAME>.azurecr.io`
az acr login --name=<REGISTRY_NAME>
Stacks using the Azure Container Registry set up with local authentication are not portable across environments. To make ZenML pipelines fully portable, it is recommended to use an Azure Service Connector to link your Azure Container Registry to the remote ACR registry.
To set up the Azure Container Registry to authenticate to Azure and access an ACR registry, it is recommended to leverage the many features provided by the Azure Service Connector such as auto-configuration, local login, best security practices regarding long-lived credentials and reusing the same credentials across multiple stack components.
If you don't already have an Azure Service Connector configured in your ZenML deployment, you can register one using the interactive CLI command. You have the option to configure an Azure Service Connector that can be used to access a ACR registry or even more than one type of Azure resource:
zenml service-connector register --type azure -i
A non-interactive CLI example that uses Azure Service Principal credentials to configure an Azure Service Connector targeting a single ACR registry is:
zenml service-connector register <CONNECTOR_NAME> --type azure --auth-method service-principal --tenant_id=<AZURE_TENANT_ID> --client_id=<AZURE_CLIENT_ID> --client_secret=<AZURE_CLIENT_SECRET> --resource-type docker-registry --resource-id <REGISTRY_URI>
Example Command Output
$ zenml service-connector register azure-demo --type azure --auth-method service-principal --tenant_id=a79f3633-8f45-4a74-a42e-68871c17b7fb --client_id=8926254a-8c3f-430a-a2fd-bdab234d491e --client_secret=AzureSuperSecret --resource-type docker-registry --resource-id demozenmlcontainerregistry.azurecr.io
⠸ Registering service connector 'azure-demo'...
Successfully registered service connector `azure-demo` with access to the following resources:
┃ 🐳 docker-registry │ demozenmlcontainerregistry.azurecr.io ┃
Alternatively, you can configure an Azure Service Connector through the ZenML dashboard:
Azure Service Connector Type
Azure ACR Service Connector Configuration
Note: Please remember to grant the entity associated with your Azure credentials permissions to read and write to your ACR registry as well as to list accessible ACR registries. For a full list of permissions required to use an Azure Service Connector to access a ACR registry, please refer to the Azure Service Connector ACR registry resource type documentation or read the documentation available in the interactive CLI commands and dashboard. The Azure Service Connector supports many different authentication methods with different levels of security and convenience. You should pick the one that best fits your use case.
If you already have one or more Azure Service Connectors configured in your ZenML deployment, you can check which of them can be used to access the ACR registry you want to use for your Azure Container Registry by running e.g.:
zenml service-connector list-resources --connector-type azure --resource-type docker-registry
Example Command Output
The following 'docker-registry' resources can be accessed by 'azure' service connectors configured in your workspace:
┃ db5821d0-a658-4504-ae96-04c3302d8f85 │ azure-demo │ 🇦 azure │ 🐳 docker-registry │ demozenmlcontainerregistry.azurecr.io ┃
After having set up or decided on an Azure Service Connector to use to connect to the target ACR registry, you can register the Azure Container Registry as follows:
# Register the Azure container registry and reference the target ACR registry URI
zenml container-registry register <CONTAINER_REGISTRY_NAME> -f azure \
# Connect the Azure container registry to the target ACR registry via an Azure Service Connector
zenml container-registry connect <CONTAINER_REGISTRY_NAME> -i
A non-interactive version that connects the Azure Container Registry to a target ACR registry through an Azure Service Connector:
zenml container-registry connect <CONTAINER_REGISTRY_NAME> --connector <CONNECTOR_ID>
Example Command Output
$ zenml container-registry connect azure-demo --connector azure-demo
Successfully connected container registry `azure-demo` to the following resources:
┃ db5821d0-a658-4504-ae96-04c3302d8f85 │ azure-demo │ 🇦 azure │ 🐳 docker-registry │ demozenmlcontainerregistry.azurecr.io ┃
A similar experience is available when you configure the Azure Container Registry through the ZenML dashboard:
Azure Container Registry Configuration
As a final step, you can use the Azure Container Registry in a ZenML Stack:
# Register and set a stack with the new container registry
zenml stack register <STACK_NAME> -c <CONTAINER_REGISTRY_NAME> ... --set
Linking the Azure Container Registry to a Service Connector means that your local Docker client is no longer authenticated to access the remote registry. If you need to manually interact with the remote registry via the Docker CLI, you can use the local login Service Connector feature to temporarily authenticate your local Docker client to the remote registry:
zenml service-connector login <CONNECTOR_NAME> --resource-type docker-registry --resource-id <CONTAINER_REGISTRY_URI>
Example Command Output
$ zenml service-connector login azure-demo --resource-type docker-registry --resource-id demozenmlcontainerregistry.azurecr.io
⠹ Attempting to configure local client using service connector 'azure-demo'...
WARNING! Your password will be stored unencrypted in /home/stefan/.docker/config.json.
Configure a credential helper to remove this warning. See
The 'azure-demo' Docker Service Connector connector was used to successfully configure the local Docker/OCI container registry client/SDK.
For more information and a full list of configurable attributes of the Azure container registry, check out the API Docs .
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