Cloud Controller and Storage Proxy Failures and Maintenance

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Cloud Controller and Storage Proxy Failures and Maintenance

The cloud controller and storage proxy are very similar to each other when it comes to expected and unexpected downtime. One of each server type typically runs in the cloud, which makes them very noticeable when they are not running.

For the cloud controller, the good news is if your cloud is using the FlatDHCP multi-host HA network mode, existing instances and volumes continue to operate while the cloud controller is offline. For the storage proxy, however, no storage traffic is possible until it is back up and running.

Planned Maintenance

One way to plan for cloud controller or storage proxy maintenance is to simply do it off-hours, such as at 1 a.m. or 2 a.m. This strategy affects fewer users. If your cloud controller or storage proxy is too important to have unavailable at any point in time, you must look into high-availability options.

Rebooting a Cloud Controller or Storage Proxy

All in all, just issue the reboot command. The operating system cleanly shuts down services and then automatically reboots. If you want to be very thorough, run your backup jobs just before you reboot.

After a cloud controller reboots, ensure that all required services were successfully started. The following commands use ps and grep to determine if nova, glance, and keystone are currently running:

# ps aux | grep nova-
# ps aux | grep glance-
# ps aux | grep keystone
# ps aux | grep cinder

Also check that all services are functioning. The following set of commands sources the openrc file, then runs some basic glance, nova, and openstack commands. If the commands work as expected, you can be confident that those services are in working condition:

# . openrc
# openstack image list
# openstack server list
# openstack project list

For the storage proxy, ensure that the Object Storage service has resumed:

# ps aux | grep swift

Also check that it is functioning:

# swift stat

Total Cloud Controller Failure

The cloud controller could completely fail if, for example, its motherboard goes bad. Users will immediately notice the loss of a cloud controller since it provides core functionality to your cloud environment. If your infrastructure monitoring does not alert you that your cloud controller has failed, your users definitely will. Unfortunately, this is a rough situation. The cloud controller is an integral part of your cloud. If you have only one controller, you will have many missing services if it goes down.

To avoid this situation, create a highly available cloud controller cluster. This is outside the scope of this document, but you can read more in the OpenStack High Availability Guide.

The next best approach is to use a configuration-management tool, such as Puppet, to automatically build a cloud controller. This should not take more than 15 minutes if you have a spare server available. After the controller rebuilds, restore any backups taken (see Backup and Recovery).

Also, in practice, the nova-compute services on the compute nodes do not always reconnect cleanly to rabbitmq hosted on the controller when it comes back up after a long reboot; a restart on the nova services on the compute nodes is required.

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