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Securely Storing SSH Keys for Tekton PipelineRun

When working with Tekton Pipelines and storing your pipeline definition in a .tekton folder within your source code repository, it's important to keep sensitive authentication information, such as SSH keys, secure and separate from the public codebase. In this tutorial, you will learn how to securely store SSH keys using Secrets to access your code repository within your Tekton PipelineRun.


  • Generate SSH keys to securely access your code repository.
  • Add your public key as a deploy key in your GitHub repository.
  • Store the private SSH key in Secret to be used by your Tekton PipelineRun.

Key Results

  • Successfully generate a pair of SSH keys for repository access.
  • Set up the public SSH key as a deploy key in your GitHub repository.
  • Create a Secret containing the private SSH key for Tekton PipelineRun.


  1. Let's create SSH keys to access the repository.

    For SSH Access:

  2. Add your public-key into the Deploy key section of your repository:

    Note: A deploy key is specific to a single repository and cannot be used for multiple repositories.*

    After adding the Deploy keys in your repository, now is the time to add the secret.

  3. Copy the below secret yaml.

    apiVersion: v1
    kind: Secret
      name: nordmart-ssh-creds # Name of Secret
      namespace: <your-namespace> # Place your namespace where you want to run the pipeline
      type: git
      sshPrivateKey: | # Paste your private key here as it is, the sshPrivateKey value will be base64 encoded in the secret. You do not need to manually encode the value before creating the secret.
        -----END OPENSSH PRIVATE KEY-----
  4. Log in to SAAP, go to Administrator > Workloads > Secrets. Create a secret with yaml.

    secret with yaml

  5. Paste the secret yaml, add your private key, and your namespace then hit Create.

    create ssh secret

    Now look at the nordmart-ssh-creds secret yaml, the private key will be encoded to base64.

    ssh secret

    Note: We will be using this secret in our pipelineRun.

Cool! Let's move on to the next tutorial and create a pipeline.

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