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Disabling Istio

This section describes how to uninstall Istio in a cluster or disable a namespace, or workload.

Uninstall Istio in a Cluster

To uninstall Istio,

  1. Click ☰ > Cluster Management.
  2. Go to the cluster that you created and click Explore.
  3. In the left navigation bar, click Apps > Installed Apps.
  4. In the istio-system namespace, go to rancher-istio and click ⋮ > Delete.
  5. After rancher-istio is deleted, you can then select all the remaining apps in the istio-system namespace and click Delete.

Result: The rancher-istio app in the cluster gets removed. The Istio sidecar cannot be deployed on any workloads in the cluster.


You can no longer disable and re-enable your Istio installation. If you would like to save your settings for a future install, view and save individual YAMLs to refer back to / reuse for future installations.

Troubleshooting Uninstall: If you didn't follow the uninstall steps, you may encounter a warning during uninstall:

Error: uninstallation completed with 1 error(s): unable to build kubernetes objects for delete: unable to recognize "": no matches for kind "MonitoringDashboard" in version ""

This could mean a few things. You either selected all the apps in the istio-system namespace and deleted them at the same time, or you deleted rancher-istio chart dependencies prior to deleting the rancher-istio chart. Since the uninstall did not complete properly, you will have resources remaining in the istio-system namespace that you will need to manually clean up. Another option to avoid manual clean up is to install rancher-istio again, then uninstall it in the correct order.

Disable Istio in a Namespace

  1. Click ☰ > Cluster Management.
  2. Go to the cluster that you created and click Explore.
  3. Click Cluster > Projects/Namespaces.
  4. Go to the namespace where you want to enable Istio and click ⋮ > Enable Istio Auto Injection. Alternately, click the namespace, and then on the namespace detail page, click ⋮ > Enable Istio Auto Injection.

Result: When workloads are deployed in this namespace, they will not have the Istio sidecar.

Remove the Istio Sidecar from a Workload

Disable Istio in the namespace, then redeploy the workloads with in it. They will be deployed without the Istio sidecar.