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 Windows iSCSI volume driver

Windows Server 2012 and Windows Storage Server 2012 offer an integrated iSCSI Target service that can be used with OpenStack Block Storage in your stack. Being entirely a software solution, consider it in particular for mid-sized networks where the costs of a SAN might be excessive.

The Windows cinder-volume driver works with OpenStack Compute on any hypervisor. It includes snapshotting support and the “boot from volume” feature.

This driver creates volumes backed by fixed-type VHD images on Windows Server 2012 and dynamic-type VHDX on Windows Server 2012 R2, stored locally on a user-specified path. The system uses those images as iSCSI disks and exports them through iSCSI targets. Each volume has its own iSCSI target.

This driver has been tested with Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server R2 using the Server and Storage Server distributions.

Install the cinder-volume service as well as the required Python components directly onto the Windows node.

You may install and configure cinder-volume and its dependencies manually using the following guide or you may use the Cinder Volume Installer, presented below.

 Installing using the OpenStack cinder volume installer

In case you want to avoid all the manual setup, you can use Cloudbase Solutions’ installer. You can find it at It installs an independent Python environment, in order to avoid conflicts with existing applications, dynamically generates a cinder.conf file based on the parameters provided by you.

cinder-volume will be configured to run as a Windows Service, which can be restarted using:

PS C:\> net stop cinder-volume ; net start cinder-volume

The installer can also be used in unattended mode. More details about how to use the installer and its features can be found at

 Windows Server configuration

The required service in order to run cinder-volume on Windows is wintarget. This will require the iSCSI Target Server Windows feature to be installed. You can install it by running the following command:

PS C:\> Add-WindowsFeature

The Windows Server installation requires at least 16 GB of disk space. The volumes hosted by this node need the extra space.

For cinder-volume to work properly, you must configure NTP as explained in the section called “Configure NTP”.

Next, install the requirements as described in the section called “Requirements”.

 Getting the code

Git can be used to download the necessary source code. The installer to run Git on Windows can be downloaded here:

Once installed, run the following to clone the OpenStack Block Storage code.

PS C:\> git.exe clone

 Configure cinder-volume

The cinder.conf file may be placed in C:\etc\cinder. Below is a config sample for using the Windows iSCSI Driver:

auth_strategy = keystone
volume_name_template = volume-%s
volume_driver =
glance_api_servers = IP_ADDRESS:9292
rabbit_host = IP_ADDRESS
rabbit_port = 5672
sql_connection = mysql://root:Passw0rd@IP_ADDRESS/cinder
windows_iscsi_lun_path = C:\iSCSIVirtualDisks
verbose = True
rabbit_password = Passw0rd
logdir = C:\OpenStack\Log\
image_conversion_dir = C:\ImageConversionDir
debug = True

The following table contains a reference to the only driver specific option that will be used by the Block Storage Windows driver:

Table 1.31. Description of Windows configuration options
Configuration option = Default value Description
windows_iscsi_lun_path = C:\iSCSIVirtualDisks (StrOpt) Path to store VHD backed volumes

 Running cinder-volume

After configuring cinder-volume using the cinder.conf file, you may use the following commands to install and run the service (note that you must replace the variables with the proper paths):

PS C:\> python $CinderClonePath\ install
PS C:\> cmd /c C:\python27\python.exe c:\python27\Scripts\cinder-volume" –-config-file $CinderConfPath
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