Launching Instances Using the Dashboard

Instances are virtual machines that run inside the cloud. You can launch an instance from the following sources:

  • Images uploaded to the Image service.
  • Images that you have copied to a persistent volume. The instance launches from the volume, which is provided by the cinder-volume API through iSCSI.
  • Instance snapshot that you created.

Launching an Instance

You must create a private network prior to launching an instance. See Creating and Managing Networks for details on creating a private network, subnet, and router for use with instances. Also, if you do not provide a key pair, security groups, or rules, the only way to access the instance from inside the cloud is through VNC. Even pinging the instance is not possible without an ICMP rule configured.

  1. Log in to the Dashboard.
  2. Click Launch Instance or select Instances in the Project drop-down list and click Launch Instance.
  3. In the Launch Instance dialog box, specify the values on the Details tab:
    • Availability Zone—By default, this value is set to the availability zone provided by Cisco engineers. You may have only one availability zone.
    • Instance Name—Assign a name to the virtual machine. Uniqueness is not required, but recommended to avoid having two instances with the same host name.

    Note

    • The name you assign here becomes the initial host name of the server. If the name is longer than 63 characters, the Compute service truncates it automatically to ensure dnsmasq works correctly.
    • After the server is built, if you change the server name in the API or change the host name directly, the names are not updated in the Dashboard.
    • Flavor—Specify the size of the instance to launch. Choices include:
      • m1.tiny
      • m1.small
      • m1.medium
      • m1.large
      • m1.xlarge

        Note
        Once you select a flavor, the flavor details display on the right. For example, if you select m1.medium, the flavor details show 2 VCPUs, 40 GB root disk, and 4096 MB of RAM.

    • Instance Count—To launch multiple instances, enter a value greater than 1. The default is 1.
    • Instance Boot Source
      • Boot from image—Select the image from the Image Name drop-down list.
      • Boot from snapshot—Select the snapshot from the Instance Snapshot drop-down list.
      • Boot from volume—Select the volume from the Volume drop-down list. You can choose to delete the volume when you terminate the instance.
      • Boot from image (creates a new volume)—Select the image from the Image Name drop-down list and choose the size of the volume. You can choose to delete the volume when you terminate the instance.
      • Boot from volume Snapshot (creates a new volume)—Select the volume snapshot from the Volume Snapshot drop-down list. You can choose to delete the volume when you terminate the instance.
  4. In the Launch Instance dialog box, specify the values on the Access & Security tab:
    • Key Pair—Specify the name of an existing key pair or click the + to import a key pair.
    • Security Groups—Activate the security groups to assign to the instance. Security groups define which incoming network traffic is forwarded to instances. If you have not created any security groups, you can assign the default security group to the instance by checking the Default box.
  5. In the Launch Instance dialog box, specify the values on the Networking tab:
    • Selected Networks—To connect a network to the instance, click the name of a network in the Available Networks field, then drag and drop into the Selected Networks field. NIC order is determined by the order the networks appear and can be changed by dragging and dropping networks to rearrange their order.
  6. In the Launch Instance dialog box, specify the values on the Post-Creation tab:
    • Customization Script Source—Specify a script to customize your instance after it launches. Select one of these script sources:
      • Direct Input—Enter the script directly in the Script Data field.
      • File—Enter the name of the script in the Script File field.
  7. In the Launch Instance dialog box, specify the values on the Advanced Options tab:
    • Disk Partition—Select the disk partition method from the drop-down list:
      • Automatic—Entire disk resizes automatically.
      • Manual—Entire disk requires manual partitioning. This method results in faster build times.
    • Configuration Drive—Write metadata to a special configuration drive that attaches to the instance when it boots.
  8. Click Launch.
    The instance starts on a compute node in the cloud.

Launching an Instance from an Image

You can launch an instance from the Images category by clicking Launch Instance next to the image to use for the instance.

When you launch an instance from an image, OpenStack creates a local copy of the image on the compute node where the instance starts.

For details on creating images, see Creating images manually in the OpenStack Virtual Machine Image Guide.

Connecting to your Instance Using SSH

To use SSH to connect to your instance, use the downloaded key pair file.

Note
You must create a network if you want to connect to your instance through SSH using a floating IP address. See Creating and Managing Networks.

  1. Copy the IP address for your instance.
  2. Use the ssh command to make a secure connection to the instance.

     $ ssh -i MyKey.pem cloud@10.0.0.2
    
  3. At the prompt, type yes.

You can also SSH into an instance without an SSH key pair, if the administrator has enabled root password injection. For more information about root password injection, see the Metacloud Administrator Guide.

Tracking Usage for Instances

You can view usage for instances for each project. You can view meters that show usage of vCPUs, disks, RAM, and uptime for all your instances.

  1. Log in to the Dashboard.
  2. On the Project drop-down list, click Overview.
  3. To query the instance usage for a specific period of time, enter the date range in the From and To fields, and click Submit.
  4. To download a summary in CSV format, click Download CSV Summary.

    Usage Summary

To create an instance snapshot:

  1. Log in to the Dashboard.
  2. On the Project drop-down list, click Instances.
  3. Select the instance from which to create a snapshot.
  4. In the Actions column, click Create Snapshot.
  5. In the Create Snapshot dialog box, enter a name for the snapshot, and click Create Snapshot. The new snapshot appears in the Images list, and the Type column value is Snapshot.

    To launch an instance from the snapshot, select the snapshot and click Launch Instance. Fill out the requested values in the Launch Instance dialog box and click Launch.

To manage an instance:

  1. Log in to the Dashboard.
  2. On the Project drop-down list, click Instances.
  3. Select an instance.
  4. In the Actions column, select the state.

    You can resize or rebuild an instance. You can also choose to view the instance console log and edit the instance or the security groups. Depending on the current state of the instance, you can select pause, resume, suspend, soft or hard reboot, or terminate.