Migrate instances


This documentation is about cold-migration. For live-migration usage, see Live-migrate instances.

When you want to move an instance from one compute host to another, you can use the openstack server migrate command. The scheduler chooses the destination compute host based on its settings. This process does not assume that the instance has shared storage available on the target host. If you are using SSH tunneling, you must ensure that each node is configured with SSH key authentication so that the Compute service can use SSH to move disks to other nodes. For more information, see Configure SSH between compute nodes.

  1. To list the VMs you want to migrate, run:

    $ openstack server list
  2. Use the openstack server migrate command.

    $ openstack server migrate VM_INSTANCE
  3. To migrate an instance and watch the status, use this example script:

    # Provide usage
    usage() {
        echo "Usage: $0 VM_ID"
        exit 1
    [[ $# -eq 0 ]] && usage
    # Show the details for the VM
    echo "Instance details:"
    openstack server show ${VM_ID}
    # Migrate the VM to an alternate hypervisor
    echo -n "Migrating instance to alternate host "
    openstack server migrate ${VM_ID}
    while [[ "$(openstack server show ${VM_ID} -f value -c status)" != "VERIFY_RESIZE" ]]; do
        echo -n "."
        sleep 2
    openstack server resize --confirm ${VM_ID}
    echo " instance migrated and resized."
    # Show the details for the migrated VM
    echo "Migrated instance details:"
    openstack server show ${VM_ID}
    # Pause to allow users to examine VM details
    read -p "Pausing, press <enter> to exit."


If you see the following error, it means you are either running the command with the wrong credentials, such as a non-admin user, or the policy.json file prevents migration for your user:

Policy doesn't allow os_compute_api:os-migrate-server:migrate to be performed. (HTTP 403)


If you see the following error, similar to this message, SSH tunneling was not set up between the compute nodes:

ProcessExecutionError: Unexpected error while running command.
Stderr: u Host key verification failed.\r\n

The instance is booted from a new host, but preserves its configuration including instance ID, name, IP address, any metadata, and other properties.