Due to the nature of firewall settings and customizations, bifrost does not change any local firewalling on the node. Users must ensure that their firewalling for the node running bifrost is such that the nodes that are being booted can connect to the following ports:

67/UDP for DHCP requests to be serviced
69/UDP for TFTP file transfers (Initial iPXE binary)
6385/TCP for the ironic API
8080/TCP for HTTP File Downloads (iPXE, Ironic-Python-Agent)

If you encounter any additional issues, use of tcpdump is highly recommended while attempting to deploy a single node in order to capture and review the traffic exchange between the two nodes.

NodeLocked Errors

This is due to node status checking thread in ironic, which is a locking action as it utilizes IPMI. The best course of action is to retry the operation. If this is occurring with a high frequency, tuning might be required.

Example error:

NodeLocked: Node 00000000-0000-0000-0000-046ebb96ec21 is locked by
host $HOSTNAME, please retry after the current operation is completed.

Building an IPA image

Troubleshooting issues involving IPA can be time consuming. The IPA developers HIGHLY recommend that users build their own custom IPA images in order to inject things such as SSH keys, and turn on agent debugging which must be done in a custom image as there is no mechanism to enable debugging via the kernel command line at present.

Custom IPA images can be built a number of ways, the most generally useful mechanism is with diskimage-builder as the distributions typically have better hardware support than Tiny Core Linux.

DIB images:


For documentation on diskimage-builder, See::

It should be noted that the steps for diskimage-builder installation and use to create an IPA image for Bifrost are the same as for ironic. See:

Once your build is completed, you will need to copy the images files into the /var/lib/ironic/httpboot folder.

Unexpected/Unknown failure with the IPA Agent

Many failures due to the IPA agent can be addressed by building a custom IPA Image. See Building an IPA image for information on building your own IPA image.

Obtaining IPA logs via the console

  1. By default, bifrost sets the agent journal to be logged to the system console. Due to the variation in hardware, you may need to tune the parameters passed to the deployment ramdisk. This can be done, as shown below in ironic.conf:

    agent_pxe_append_params=nofb nomodeset vga=normal console=ttyS0 systemd.journald.forward_to_console=yes

    Parameters will vary by your hardware type and configuration, however the systemd.journald.forward_to_console=yes setting is a default, and will only work for systemd based IPA images.

    The example above, effectively disables all attempts by the kernel to set the video mode, defines the console as ttyS0 or the first serial port, and instructs systemd to direct logs to the console.

  2. Once set, restart the ironic service, e.g. systemctl restart ironic and attempt to redeploy the node. You will want to view the system console occurring. If possible, you may wish to use ipmitool and write the output to a log file.

Gaining access via SSH to the node running IPA for custom images

Custom built images will require a user to be burned into the image. Typically a user would use the diskimage-builder devuser element to achieve this. More detail on this can be located at


export DIB_DEV_USER_USERNAME=customuser
ironic-python-agent-builder -o /path/to/custom-ipa -e devuser debian

ssh_public_key_path is not valid

Bifrost requires that the user who executes bifrost have an SSH key in their user home, or that the user defines a variable to tell bifrost where to identify this file. Once this variable is defined to a valid file, the deployment playbook can be re-run.

Generating a new ssh key

See the manual page for the ssh-keygen command.

Defining a specific public key file

A user can define a specific public key file by utilizing the ssh_public_key_path variable. This can be set in the group_vars/inventory/all file, or on the ansible-playbook command line utilizing the -e command line parameter.


ansible-playbook -i inventory/ deploy-dynamic.yaml -e ssh_public_key_path=~/path/to/public/key/

NOTE: The matching private key will need to be utilized to login to the machine deployed.

Changing from TinyIPA to another IPA Image

With-in the Newton cycle, the default IPA image for Bifrost was changed to TinyIPA, which is based on Tiny Core Linux. This has a greatly reduced boot time for testing, however should be expected to have less hardware support. In the Yoga cycle, the default image was changed to one based on CentOS.

If on a fresh install, or a re-install, you wish to change to DIB-based or any other IPA image, you will need to take the following steps:

  1. Remove the existing IPA image ipa.kernel and ipa.initramfs.

  2. Edit the playbooks/roles/bifrost-ironic-install/defaults/main.yml file and update the ipa_kernel_upstream_url and ipa_kernel_upstream_url settings to a new URL. For DIB-based images, these urls would be, and respectively.

  3. Execute the installation playbook, and the set files will be automatically downloaded again. If the files are not removed prior to (re)installation, then they will not be replaced. Alternatively, the files can just be directly replaced on disk. The default where the kernel and ramdisk are located is in /httboot/.