Node IPAM LoadBalancer is a feature inspired by k3s “ServiceLB” that allows you to “advertise” the node’s IPs directly inside a Service LoadBalancer. This feature is especially useful if you don’t control the network you are running on and can’t use either the L2 or BGP capabilities of Cilium.

It works by getting the Node addresses of the selected Nodes and advertising them. It will respect the .spec.ipFamilies to decide if IPv4 or IPv6 addresses shall be used and will use the ExternalIP addresses if any or the InternalIP addresses otherwise.

If the Service has .spec.externalTrafficPolicy set to Cluster, Node IPAM considers all nodes as candidates for selection. Otherwise, if .spec.externalTrafficPolicy is set to Local, then Node IPAM considers all the Pods selected by the Service (via their EndpointSlices) as candidates.


Node IPAM does not work properly if .spec.externalTrafficPolicy is set to Local but no EndpointSlice (or dummy EndpointSlice) is linked to the corresponding Service.

As a result, you cannot set .spec.externalTrafficPolicy to Local with the Cilium implementations for GatewayAPI or Ingress, because Cilium currently uses a dummy Endpoints for the Service LoadBalancer (see <>`_). Only the Cilium implementation is known to be affected by this limitation. Most other implementations are expected to work with this configuration. If they don’t, check if the matching EndpointSlices look correct and/or try setting .spec.externalTrafficPolicy to Cluster.

To restrict the Nodes that should listen for incoming traffic, add annotation io.cilium.nodeipam/match-node-labels to the Service. The value of the annotation is a Label Selector.

Enable and use Node IPAM

To use this feature your service must be of type LoadBalancer and have the loadBalancerClass set to io.cilium/node.

Cilium’s node IPAM is disabled by default. To install Cilium with the node IPAM, run:

helm install cilium ./cilium \
  --namespace kube-system \
  --set nodeIPAM.enabled=true

To enable node IPAM on an existing installation, run:

helm upgrade cilium ./cilium \
  --namespace kube-system \
  --reuse-values \
  --set nodeIPAM.enabled=true
kubectl -n kube-system rollout restart deployment/cilium-operator