Abiquo 2.6

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API Documentation

For the Abiquo API documentation of this feature, see Abiquo API Resources and the page for this resource StorageResources.

This feature is currently not available in public datacenters


Abiquo Virtual Storage

There are two main types of virtual storage available in Abiquo: hard disks and volumes.

Abiquo supports all iSCSI storage for creating:

  • volumes of integrated storage with device management and storage as a service
  • volumes of generic iSCSI storage, where volumes are manually added by administrators
Abiquo also supports storage as hypervisor datastores for creating:
  • hard disks on the hypervisor datastore

In Abiquo, hard disks on the hypervisor datastore are deleted when the virtual machine they are attached to is undeployed. In contrast, volumes on external storage devices remain on the storage device after a virtual machine is undeployed. In Abiquo, external storage is persistent storage that is not part of the hypervisor datastore.  


The following table compares the characteristics of Abiquo virtual storage types.

Abiquo Storage

Hard Disks on Hypervisor Datastore

Volumes of Integrated External Storage

Generic iSCSI Storage

TerminologyHard disksVolumesVolumes
Hypervisor Support(tick) ESXi, Oracle, Hyper-V, XenServer
(error) KVM 
(error) XenServer: no NFS support 


  • Not persistent. Destroyed on undeploy
  • Not included in virtual machine instances




  • Hard disks created on hypervisor datastore
  • Mounted on IDE controller

Abiquo plug-in architecture manages the disk cabinet

Generic interface mounts an existing iSCSI LUN

Storage as a Service

  • Yes, users can manage virtual disks

Yes, users manage virtual disks

Not automatic



Automatic disk configuration discovery

Requires iSCSI information and volume size

Created by

Abiquo user

Abiquo user

  • Storage administrator creates disks on storage device
  • Cloud administrator adds disks to Infrastructure view
Storage levelVirtual machineVirtual datacenter, virtual machineInfrastructure, virtual datacenter, virtual machine

Control of Storage

Abiquo manages hypervisor datastore

Abiquo manages disk cabinet

Storage administrator manages the storage device



User can specify disk size

Cloud administrator can configure all parameters

Cloud administrator cannot control disk size or other parameters

Persistent VM SupportCannot store persistent virtual machine disksCan store persistent virtual machinesCan store persistent virtual machines
if the volume size is larger than the raw template disk size
Disk resizeUser can resize disks where supportedUser can resize disks where supportedUser cannot resize disks

This section describes how to manage persistent external storage devices in Abiquo. Users can then create volumes for their virtual datacenters. See  Manage Virtual Storage  and  Configure Virtual Machines .

Non-persistent hard disks are configured by cloud users directly for their virtual machines. See Configure Virtual Machines

Persistent Storage in Abiquo

There are two main types of persistent storage available to virtual machines in Abiquo: integrated managed storage and generic iSCSI storage.

  • Integrated storage devices are fully managed by Abiquo allowing users access to Storage as a Service. Integrated storage is:
    • Integrated iSCSI, where each volume has a LUN
      • LVM
      • Nexenta
      • NetApp
    • NFS
      • Any NFS device
  • Unmanaged storage can be accessed by Abiquo as a set of manually entered, pre-created volumes. Abiquo cannot communicate with the management interface of these devices to detect or manage the storage. Unmanaged storage is:
    • Generic iSCSI

For further information, see Abiquo Virtual Storage

  • ESXi has a LUN limit of 256 LUNs per cluster. Abiquo offers integrated NFS storage to enable more volumes to be created.
  • A single storage device IP can be used more than once in Abiquo if different storage protocols (iSCSI and NFS) are used.

The Storage Tab

To manage a datacenter's external storage, go to the Infrastructure View by clicking the button at the top of the main screen, select the datacenter in the list, and click the button to view the Datacenter detail. Click the Storage tab to manage the external storage infrastructure.

Managed Storage

Abiquo can directly manage the following storage device types to provide storage as a service to cloud users:

  • iSCSI integrated devices
    • LVM
    • Nexenta
    • NetApp
  • NFS shares
    • Any NFS device

For iSCSI storage devices that are not directly supported, you can

Add, Edit and Delete Persistent Storage Devices

The first step in working with persistent storage is to create a Storage Device. A storage device provides access to the storage technology so you can configure the Management and Service networks that the cloud nodes will use to access it. You can manage storage devices with the buttons located in the lower left corner of the storage screen, beneath the storage devices list.



Add a storage device.

Remove a storage device.

Edit the selected storage device.

Click the button, select Storage Device, and complete this form:

Add NetApp Credentials When Creating the Storage Device

You must add the NetApp credentials when creating or editing a storage device. You cannot add the NetApp credentials in the abiquo.properties file.

After you have created a storage device, you can check its details by selecting it in the list of storage devices.


Generic iSCSI Storage

Abiquo offers support for generic iSCSI storage without storage management capacity.

Create a Generic iSCSI Storage Device

Click  and complete the form to create a storage device, selecting GENERIC_iSCSI storage technology:

Adding and deleting volumes is described in the Managing Generic iSCSI Volumes section below.

Storage Pools



Add storage pools.

Remove storage pools.

Update storage pool information.

Edit the selected storage pool.

Managed Storage Pools

After you create a managed storage device, you can add storage pools. Abiquo automatically detects all the pools in the target storage and allows you to add them to the platform. After the managed storage pools have been added, users will be able to create volumes. The volumes will be automatically allocated to storage pools in the chosen tier, in accordance with the selected storage pool allocation method.

Generic iSCSI Storage Pools

Abiquo creates a single pool for an entire generic iSCSI storage device because it cannot communicate with the device's management interface to detect the pools already created on the storage. For generic iSCSI storage, volumes must be created outside Abiquo in the storage device and then manually entered into Abiquo in the Virtual Datacenters view. For more information please see Manage Virtual Storage.

Add Storage Pools

Storage Pools can be added directly after creating the managed storage device or later.

To add Storage Pools to your infrastructure, click the , and select the option "storage pool" from the drop-down list.

Select the storage device from the popup.

The Add Storage Pool popup will open and you will see the list of available storage pools. Those already selected are disabled, which means that they are already added to your Infrastructure and it is not possible to add them again.

Each Managed Storage Pool must be associated with a tier, according to its service level. When users create a volume and select a Tier (Service level) for the volume, it will be created in a pool belonging to that tier in accordance with the storage pool allocation method.

After you create the storage pool, you can check its details by selecting it in the list of devices.

Modify a Storage Pool

To modify a Storage Pool, select it and click the button to open the Edit form. You cannot modify the name of the Storage Pool because it is already defined. You can change the tier of all types of storage. You can also set the usable percentage of a pool, as well a the maximum number of volumes in the pool.

Remove a Storage Pool

To remove a storage pool, first remove all of the volumes within it. Then select the pool in the list and click the button to remove it.

Manage Storage Service Levels with Tiers

The Tiers tab allows you to configure different service levels for external managed storage. Storage service levels are set with tiers that are configured to enable end users to choose the service level they want for the volumes they create under Storage as a Service. Click on the triangle beside a tier to view its contents listed in the format "pool (storage device)".

The Tiers tab contains the default tiers in Abiquo. You cannot add or remove Tiers, but you can change the tier name and enable/disable the required tiers. Select a Tier and click the button to edit it.

Restrict Enterprise Access to Tiers

After an enterprise has created volumes in a tier, you cannot restrict access to the tier for that enterprise.

Disabling Tiers

You cannot disable a Tier if it contains volumes.

Multiple Pools in Tiers

Abiquo uses all pools assigned to a tier. When you create a volume, Abiquo will automatically allocate it to a pool in the chosen tier in accordance with the Storage Pool Allocation.

Control Access to a Storage Service Level for all Enterprises

When you click on the Enteprise Access tab, you will see a list of all the enterprises with access to the storage tier. Click the buttons to "Allow for all enterprises" or "Restrict for all enterprises". This setting will override the checkbox on the previous page for all existing enterprises. However, newly created enterprises will receive the option specified with the checkbox.

The Allow for all enterprises or Restrict for all enterprises setting can later be changed for individual enterprises. See Controlling Access to Storage Tiers in the Manage Enterprises documentation

The Volume List

The Volume list contains all the volumes created in the pool with detailed information such as the internal volume ID or IQN used to identify the volume in the target storage technology, the volume size, etc.

  • In managed storage, volumes are created by users under Storage as a Service in Virtual Datacenters view. For more information see Manage Virtual Storage
  • In generic iSCSI storage, volumes must be created outside Abiquo in the storage device itself and manually added by an administrator in the Infrastructure view. For more information see Managing Generic iSCSI Storage Volumes.

The details panel of each volume contains a table of the Initiator mappings. Each storage technology will have its own access policies for each volume, so the different clients (hypervisors) may access the volume using different IQNs or LUN numbers. The Initiator mapping table shows, for each Initiator IQN (representing a single client), the IQN and LUN number that will be used to connect to the volume.

Manage Generic iSCSI Volumes

Volumes that have been already created on generic iSCSI storage can be added and deleted from Abiquo. They cannot be modified within Abiquo because there is no communication with the management interface of the generic iSCSI storage device.

Add a Generic iSCSI Volume

To add a pre-existing generic iSCSI volume, open your datacenter and generic iSCSI storage device. Then click the button below the Volume list and complete the form. Note that many storage systems will automatically generate a LUN of 0 by default.

Troubleshooting External Storage on VMware

If a volume has been removed or replaced in the storage device, Abiquo may try to attach a volume that does not exist or is completely different to one previously configured. This situation may occur with: managed storage volumes, generic iSCSI volumes and persistent virtual machines. It can be resolved by manually performing a full HBA rescan of all ESX or ESXi hosts that had raw device mappings for the devices involved. In general, Abiquo avoids performing a full HBA rescan of storage on ESX or ESXi for performance reasons. Instead it checks for a raw device mapping for a given IQN and LUN, which means that changes to volumes can lead to this situation.