Abiquo 5.1

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1. Configure your user account

1.1. Edit your user account details

After you log in, you may need to edit your user account to update your details:
  1. Click the User icon in the lower left-hand corner of the screen
  2. From the menu, select Edit user
  3. Change your Password
  4. To receive VM passwords, login authentication codes, and email notifications, enter your E-mail address and Phone number

  5. Go to Advanced and add your Public key for remote access to VMs

If you are using a single sign on, you may need to ask your system administrator to update your details

1.2. Enable two-factor authentication

Your platform may offer or require two-factor authentication (2fa) to improve user login security with an additional authentication code. For platform configuration instructions, see Configure two factor authentication.

Before you begin:

  • To use Google Authenticator to obtain the codes, install the Google Authenticator app on your cell phone. 
  • To use email authentication to obtain the codes, check that you have a valid email address in your user account on the platform.

To enable two-factor authentication for your user account, do these steps:

  1. Click on the user initials or user icon in the lower left corner of the screen, and from the menu, select Two-factor authentication.
  2. Select the authentication method and click Enable
  3. Copy the Backup codes from the configuration window to a secure place. You can use these codes to log in to the platform if the authentication cycle fails

    The platform will display Backup codes ONCE only

  4. Authenticate according to your selected method
    • For Google Authenticator, use the Google Authenticator app on your cell phone to scan the QR code. Google will supply a verification code in the app. During login, the platform will request the Authentication code from the app. 
    • For email, during login, every time you enter your user name and password to log in, a code will be sent to the E-mail address registered in your user account. Enter the Authentication code in the Login dialog
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Enabling two factor authentication

Two factor authentication with Google Authenticator with backup codes and QR code

Login with two-factor authentication

2. Create and manage VMs

2.1. Create a virtual machine

To create a virtual machine (VM) do the following steps:
  1. Open the Virtual datacenters view by clicking its icon
  2. If there are no virtual appliances to hold groups of VMs, click Create a virtual appliance
    Enter a Name and select a Virtual datacenter, and enter optional values and click Save
  3. Open a virtual appliance to hold a group of VMs by clicking the Open button on its card
  4. To create a VM, click Create virtual machine and select a VM template. You can also double-click the VM template
    If there is more than one version of the VM template, you can select another version.
    For the Label, enter a user-friendly name for the VM.
  5. If required, select a hardware profile

  6. If required, accept the terms of use
  7. If required, select a datastore tier, which is the datastore service level, for your VM disk/s

     Click here to show/hide the screenshots

    Select a hardware profile

    Select a datastore tier

    Accept VM template terms

The platform will create your VM. The status bar on the VM icon displays the NOT_ALLOCATED state, which means that the VM has not been launched into the cloud.

2.2. Filter templates for creating VMs


The Template tab contains compatible templates only. If you cannot see an expected template, contact your system administrator.

To filter templates:

  • Click the filter funnel button and select a Category from the pull-down list
    • To display only ISOs, select the checkbox
  • Enter text (including * wildcards) in the Search box and press Enter

To clear the search:

  • Click the Clear link on the Category filter popup, which will clear both category and text search box
  • Click the grey x button in the Search box

2.3. Configure a VM before you deploy

To configure your VM before you launch it, do the following steps:
  1. On the VM icon, click on the options menu button
  2. From the menu, select Edit 
  3. Configure your VM as described below 

2.3.1. General configuration

To configure the VM with a basic general configuration, optionally change the following:

  1. The Label is a friendly name for the VM. Power-on is in alphanumeric order
  2. Guest setup in private cloud. If your template supports it, you can request a Guest initial password that will be sent to your user Phone number by SMS or your Email address
  3. Fully qualified domain name that the platform will set at deploy time
  4. Hardware profile and/or CPU, RAM and Cores per socket
  5. Description

To enable remote access to the VM in private cloud:

  1. select the Enable remote access check-box
  2. Optionally display and change the password for the remote access connection. Note down the password. 
  3. Before you deploy, remember that for SSH access, your user account must have a Public key. And you will need the SSH private key to log in to your VM
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VM General configuration

You can now continue with further configuration or Save and deploy your VM.

If you don't add any IP addresses, the platform will automatically add one on the default network.

To configure IP addresses on your VM, do these steps:

  1. Select the Private, External, or Public tab
  2. For private or external networks, select the network
  3. Create NICs as required:
    • To use an existing IP address, drag it into the NICs list
    • To request an automatically created NIC and IP, drag the Automatically generated IP tag into the NICs list
    • For private networks, to create a new IP address and NIC, click the + add button
    • For public networks, to obtain a new IP address, click Purchase public IPs, select the network, and select the IP address
  4. Select the Default gateway address
  5. Continue configuring your VM or click Save to finish

2.3.2. Storage

In private cloud (and some public cloud providers), you may be able to create additional hard disks that are not persistent. This means that when you undeploy the VM or remove the hard disks, the platform will delete your hard disks and destroy all data on them. To save the contents of a hard disk, create an instance template, which is a copy of the VM hard disk/s in the template library.

To select a storage service level for the system disk:

  1. Go to Storage
  2. Select the first disk in the VM and click the pencil edit button
  3. Select an appropriate datastore tier and click Save


To add a hard disk:

  1. At the bottom of the Storage tab, click the + add button

  2. Select Assign virtual disk

  3. The disk options will depend on the platform configuration

    1. You must enter the Size and the Controller type

    2. Advanced options: to force the creation of a new SCSI Controller, assign a new Bus value. The platform will return the bus value assigned by the provider
    3. Select the Datastore tier with the appropriate storage service level
    4. Click Save

Storage volumes are persistent, which means they will still be available in your virtual datacenter after you undeploy the VM. 

To add a storage volume:

  1. Drag the volume from the Volumes list to the Storage list. 
  2. To save all your changes to the VM, click Save

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Troubleshooting

  • You cannot change the size of the primary disk before you deploy a VM.

2.3.3. Firewall policies

Select the Firewall policies to add. You can add as many firewall policies as necessary, up to the cloud provider's limit. If you can't see the expected policies, you may need to synchronize with your provider or wait for the platform to update provider data

2.3.4. Load balancers

Select the Load balancers to use for the VM.

2.3.5. Monitoring

To enable monitoring and metrics do these steps:

  1. Select the Fetch metrics checkbox, which will retrieve all metrics from the provider
  2. Select from the available options for your provider, for example, for AWS, you can select Basic or Advanced monitoring
  3. Select the metrics you would like to display for your VM





2.4. Deploy to launch into the cloud

To launch your VMs, click Deploy virtual appliance above the Virtual machines pane on the right-hand side of the screen.

The platform will launch the VMs and power them on. The status bar below each VM icon will be coloured green. And the Deploy virtual appliance button changes to become the Undeploy virtual appliance button, which you can click to destroy the VMs.




2.5. Display VM details

To display VM details, select a VM icon. The platform will display the control panel below the VMs with details on different tabs, such as General and NICs.


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Here are some examples of VM details tabs

  • The General tab contains the CPU and RAM and other information such as the remote access password for connecting to the VM.

  • The NICs tab contains the details of the IP addresses of the VM.

  • The Storage tab contains the details of the hard disks and volumes attached to the VM



2.6. Display VM metrics

To display metrics of a deployed VM with metrics enabled, click the Metrics symbol on the VM icon.

To refresh metrics data, click the circular arrows refresh button on the right.

To toggle the display of metrics, click Available metrics on the right, and select the desired metrics.

To filter metrics, click the funnel symbol. Enter the Granularity, Statistics, Period, and/or Dimensions.


Privilege: Access virtual machine metrics

To configure the display of metrics at the virtual appliance level, do these steps.

  1. Select a Virtual appliance and go to Monitoring
  2. Optionally configure the refresh interval. To do this, select the Refresh data every checkbox and enter a number of minutes
  3. Choose the metrics you wish to display and filter by metric statistics.

To refresh the display with the latest data from the API, click the round arrow refresh button.

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Screenshot: filtering metric statistics



2.7. VM power actions


The multicloud platform supports power actions to easily stop, start, pause, and reset VMs.

To stop a VM that is deployed and powered on:

  1. Select the VM icon
  2. Click the Power off button, which has three horizontal lines.
  3. Select from the following options:
    1. Shut down: The platform will try to gracefully shut down the VM. This option may require hypervisor and guest VM configuration

    2. Power off: The platform will perform a hard power off on the virtualization technology. Warning: Using this option may cause loss of data

      Microsoft Azure (ARM)

      The VM power menu in Azure has the following options:

        • Deallocate to stop the VM and remove resources
        • Power off to shut down the VM

      Screenshot: Shutdown and Power Off options

Remember that stopping a VM does not destroy it in the cloud provider and the VM is still consuming resources.

To power on a VM, click the Start button, which is a "play" button with a right facing triangle

Depending on the cloud provider, you may also be able to perform the following actions:

  • Pause a VM to suspend it using the double vertical bar button, then power on to restart
  • Reset a VM to restart it using the circular arrow around a play button

The platform displays the appropriate buttons for the provider and the current state of the VM.




2.8. Connect to a VM

The platform enables you to connect to a console of a deployed and powered on VM for remote access. 
  • The following configuration is required before you deploy the VM in public cloud.
    • Your user account must have an SSH Public key
    • The VM must have a firewall to allow SSH, or RDP for Windows
    • In AWS the VM must have a private IP on a public subnet and a public IP. The firewall must allow SSH for Linux and Windows VMs
    • In Azure the VM must have a public IP
  • Remember that it may take up to 15 minutes after deploy for the initial guest password to propagate to a VM, especially for Windows systems

To connect to your VM from 

  1. To obtain the default username and password, go to the VM details on the General tab and click Default credentials
  2. To open the connection, on the VM control panel, click the console icon

  3. A console should open to allow you to log in to your VM. The platform will automatically complete the Username
    • For Windows VMs on Azure, enter the Password
    • For all Linux VMs, and for Windows VMs on AWS, enter the SSH private key (also called the Decryption key)

The remote access connection to the VM will open and you can log in and work with the VM. 

  • Remember to change your administrator password as soon as possible.

Troubleshooting:

  • On ESXi, you cannot change the remote access password using hot reconfigure. You must restart the VM for the password change to take effect



2.9. Add more VMs to a deployed virtual appliance

When you add another VM to a deployed virtual appliance, the platform does not launch it directly into the cloud.

You can deploy new VMs individually or click the Deploy all VMs button in the top right-hand corner of the screen.




2.10. Change the configuration of a deployed VM

After you deploy a VM, the changes you can make will depend on your cloud provider. To change the configuration of a deployed VM do these steps:
  1. Select the VM
  2. If your provider or operating system does not support using hot add and hot reconfigure, power off the VM, using the Stop button on the control panel
  3. Mouse over the VM and from the options menu, select Edit.
  4. In the Edit VM dialog, go to General, and make changes as required to:
    1. Name, which is the VM friendly name
    2. CPU and RAM (if your VM is not using hardware profiles)
    3. Remote access in private cloud
      1. If you disable remote access, hypervisor configuration will remain but you cannot access it through the console icon
      2. If you change the password, the change will be applied when you save the VM. Remember that it can be a maximum of 8 alphanumeric characters, i.e.. a to z, A to Z, 0 to 9. If you delete the password, the screen requesting the password will not appear. On ESXi hypervisors, if you set a password and later delete it, the password will be blank, not null. The screen requesting the password will appear, and you should press <Enter> to continue. 
    4. Description of the VM
    5. Hardware profiles
  5. Make changes to Networks and Storage, Firewalls, and Load balancers as required
  6. Click Save

The changes will be applied in the cloud provider directly.

  • To change a VM's Fully qualified domain name (FQDN), make the change in the VM's operating system and the platform will detect the new value
  • For ESXi hypervisors, you cannot change the Remote access password using hot reconfigure

Do NOT change the Abiquo tag in public cloud

Do not change the Abiquo platform's tag on a VM in a public cloud provider (e.g. on an AWS instance) because you could break the link between Abiquo and the VM. If the link is broken, you will not be able to manage the VM with Abiquo.



2.11. Save VM disks to create an instance template


An Abiquo instance is a new template that you create from VM disks.

Privilege: Create instance

Note:

  • In Azure the Abiquo instance functionality has been disabled in Abiquo 4.7.0 pending further development.

To create an Abiquo instance, do these steps:

  1. Select and shut down each VM that you want to copy, then click Create instance
  2. Select a VM from the dialog
  3. Enter a Name that will enable you to identify the new template
  4. Optionally select the VM disks to save to a new template in the template library. If no disks are selected, the instance will copy all disks
  5. To create more instances, select Keep window open
  6. Click Create instance. The platform will lock the VM to create the instance
  7. If you kept the dialog open, click Back to list and create more instances as required, then close the dialog

The platform will store your new templates in the Apps library.

  • In vCloud Director, when you create an instance template from a multi-disk VM, the template will be correctly created in vCloud with all of the disks. The platform will display only one disk with the sum of the sizes of all the disks. It will also display only one disk when you create a VM from the template. When you deploy the VM, the Broker will correctly detect the disks and display them on the VM details Storage panel.
  • In Amazon, when you create a VM from an instance template, the platform will display one disk only, with the total size of all disks. After you deploy the VM, the platform will update the additional disks.

2.11.1. Use a saved template in private cloud

To use an instance template in a VM, select the original template, which will be marked with an M symbol.

An instance menu will open. Select the instance template.

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2.12. Display all VMs

To display all VMs of your enterprise, go to Virtual datacentersAll virtual datacentersVirtual machines tab.

To display all the VMs in a specific virtual datacenter, select the Virtual datacenter.

To move between icon and grid view, click the icon symbol or the grid symbol in the top right hand corner.

Icon view

Grid view

To filter VMs by text in the VM name, enter text in the Search box, with wildcards as required. See Search for VMs and filter the search

Remember that the VM usually has the format ABQ_xxx.

To filter the VMs by other values, such as the VM labels, click the filter button and enter text from the VM details . 





2.13. Delete a VM

To delete a VM, move the mouse over the VM and from the VM options menu, select Delete.

If the virtual appliance or VM is deployed, you do not need to undeploy it. You can directly delete a VM that is deployed, even if it is powered on.





3. Configure VM high availability

3.1. Introduction to VM high availability with layers

In private cloud, to create VMs that will always deploy on separate hypervisor hosts, use anti-affinity layers. Each VM in a layer will deploy on a different hypervisor host. 

Privilege: Manage virtual appliances, Manage layers

Abiquo does not support layers that intersect with other layers. For example, this means that if you have two layers, a VM in the second layer may deploy on the same physical machine as a VM in the first layer.

Ideally you should design and implement your layers before you deploy your VMs.

This feature is not available in public cloud regions. Instead you should use the high availability solution offered by the public cloud, for example, Amazon Availability Zones, which can be accessed by deploying with NICs attached to subnets created in different zones, or Azure Availability Sets.



3.2. Create VMs in antiaffinity layers for high availability 

Before you begin: 
  • Design your layers:
    • You cannot rename a layer when there are deployed VMs in the layer
    • You cannot move a deployed machine into a layer with a VM deployed on the same hypervisor

To create a layer:

  1. Click the Add a layer button 
  2. Enter the layer name.
  3. Add VMs to the layer 


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Layers ensure that VMs deploy on separate hypervisors, so the following rules apply:

Layer TypeRules
New layer
  • You can add any VM to a new layer
Layer with deployed VMs
  • You can add a VM that is not deployed
  • You can add a powered-off VM if it deployed on a different hypervisor from the other VMs in the layer
Different layer
  • You cannot move a deployed VM directly to a different layer. First, power off the machine and remove the machine from the old layer, then delete the old layer. Now you will be able to add the machine to a different layer.
 Click here to expand...

Web stack use case for layers

The following diagram shows a possible anti-affinity layers use case of a simple web stack.

In Abiquo, you could deploy this configuration as follows:

  • ApplicationServers layer: Tomcat1, Tomcat2
  • DatabaseServers layer: Database1, Database2

VMs not in layers: Apache server(s), firewall, load balancer

If the deploy of a virtual appliances with layers fails, it may be because there are not enough physical machines available in your virtual datacenter. Or some physical machines may be reserved for specific enterprises, for example. Check with your system administrator.




3.3. Modify a virtual appliance with antiaffinity layers

You can only make changes to layers that will not compromise anti-affinity while your VMs are deployed or running.

To change the name of a layer:

  1. Check that all the VMs in the layer are not deployed, which means they are in the NOT_ALLOCATED state. For example, they are new in a virtual appliance that is deployed or they are in a virtual appliance that has been undeployed.
  2. Next to the layer name, click the pencil Edit button. 
  3. Enter the new layer name

To remove a VM that is not deployed from an anti-affinity layer, drag the machine outside the layer and into the general VM area


To remove one or more deployed VMs from a layer:

  1. Shut down the VMs 
    • You do not have to wait for each one to finish shutting down before moving to the next one
  2. One by one, drag each VM out of the layer into the general VM area

To delete a layer:

  1. Power off all the VMs
  2. Remove all the VMs except one from the layer
  3. Delete the layer

The layer will be deleted and the VM will be moved to the general VM area. 

Delete a Layer Before it is Empty

You can delete a layer if only one VM remains, even if the VM is deployed and powered on. The VM will remain powered on and it will be moved to the general VM area.



To move deployed VMs between layers, you must move the VM out of one layer before you move it into another.  You cannot move a deployed VM directly from one layer to another.

To move a deployed VM to a different layer:

  1. Power off the VM
  2. Move the VM to the general VM area
  3. If the new layer does not already exist, create the new layer
  4. Add the VM to the new layer




4. View your resources and statistics

4.1. Dashboard metrics

On the Home view dashboard, the Metrics tab provides a general view of the resources currently being used by your virtual datacenters, as well as events.

Enterprise resources - virtual datacenters shows statistics of the resources used by your virtual datacenters. Select the virtual datacenter name from the pull-down list


StatisticsDescription
Virtual CPUs

Virtual CPUs used by VMs that are currently deployed

Storage

VM disks that are created on the hypervisor datastore. This includes non-persistent VM system disks and hard disks.
These disks will be deleted when the VM is undeployed. Gigabytes of disks created on datastores.

MemoryGigabytes of RAM used by VMs that are currently deployed
Ext. StorageVolumes of storage created on integrated/managed iSCSI or NFS, or generic iSCSI storage devices.
This includes volumes of persistent external storage and persistent VM system disks. Gigabytes of volumes created in VDCs.
VLANsPrivate VLANs defined in Abiquo. A default private VLAN is always created when you create a virtual datacenter. Number of VLANS created in VDCs
Public IPsNumber of IP addresses purchased or reserved in public VLANs
RepositoryNFS Repository space used by the enterprise in the Apps library including templates and instances but not conversions (GB). Available for enterprises only, not individual virtual datacenters
Virtual machinesNumber of VMs deployed by the enterprise

Key to the graph:

  • Green: Used resources
  • Orange: Soft limits
  • Red: Hard limits

4.2. Dashboard metrics tables

The Metrics tables give you an overview of your virtual resources in the cloud platform. 

TableDescription
Virtual appliancesAll the virtual appliances of the current enterprise in the platform, with totals in the table header
Virtual datacentersAll the virtual datacenters of the current enterprise in the platform, with totals in the table header
Last deployed VMsThe last VMs deployed by the tenant on the platform. You can filter by user, including deleted users
Last triggered alertsThe last alerts triggered for the tenant on the platform
EventsAll events that you can access; to display full details of an event, click on the event row
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Virtual appliances and Virtual datacenters

Last deployed VMs, Last triggered alerts, and Events

5. View your actions and events on the cloud platform

5.1. Display events

The Events view allows users to find out what is happening on the platform.

To open the Events view, click on the events icon on the main menu bar. To add new events as they arrive, select the Update automatically checkbox. Otherwise, you must refresh the list manually. 

To display the event details in the panel below the Event list, double-click on an Event. 

Some users may not be allowed to view events. If the events you expected to display do not appear in Events view, check with your system administrator.


5.2. Event attributes

An event in the platform has the following attributes:

Attribute

Description

Entity

The system object that is the source of the event or error. For example, it could be a VIRTUAL_APPLIANCE for a group of virtual machines.

Entity name

The name of the system object that is the source of the event or error, for example, myVirtualAppliance.

ActionThe action that generated the event, for example, DELETE. See Events Table

Performed by

The user who performed the Action, for example, admin.

SeverityThe severity of the event. Can be INFO, WARN or ERROR

Date/time

The date and time when the event was generated.

Message

Additional information about the event. See Events Table for more details.
Note for administrator: The traces displayed in Events view are also found in the Logs, such as catalina.out, which are documented in the Troubleshooting section of the Abiquo Administrator's Guide.

ContextThe identifier of a group of related events. This attribute is in the event detail but not in the event list.

5.3. Filter events

To make it easier to find a specific event, use the filter tool.
  1. Click the filter button  at the top right of Events view. 
  2. Enter your filter criteria as described in the table below and click Accept

To remove the filter, click Clear at the bottom of the popup.

When events are filtered, the text  (events filtered)  will be displayed next to the filter button.

Event fieldDescription
EntityPull-down list of Entities
ActionPull-down list of Actions
Entity name

The name of the entity. The Name field may contain the UUID or the friendly name of the entity.

For alarms, the Entity name field contains the UUID of the alarm. To filter alarm events by name, enter the friendly name of the alarm in the Message field of the filter.

SeverityPull-down list of event severity. See Events severity table
UserThe name of the user who performed the action
EnterpriseThe tenant that the event occurred in
Date fromCalendar selection for start date in format YYYY/MM/DD
Date toCalendar selection for end date in format YYYY/MM/DD
ContextThe platform assigns the same context ID to a group of related entities
MessageThe message field will contain the details of the event, including the friendly name. See Events Table

5.4. Examples of events filter

This example shows events from deallocating a hard disk.


Event context

When you view the event detail, the platform will display the  Context  of the event. The context is an ID that the platform assigns to each event in a group of related events. For example, if you undeploy a virtual appliance, the platform will create events for the undeploy of each VM, the destruction of the related hard disks, and the release of the NICs. And the platform will assign the context ID to each of these events.

To display all the events related to an event, select the Event from the list, from the details view, copy the Context ID and filter by Context.

5.5. Severity table

Events on the cloud platform are classified into three severity categories: info, warning and error. 

Severity

Description

INFO

General information events for the user as part of the normal use of the platform

WARNING

Warning about an abnormal situation that does not block normal use of the platform

ERROR

Error that blocks the normal use of the platform


5.6. Events table

The Events Table describes all the actions that can be performed on each entity and the event that they can generate on the platform. For example, for the Action plan entity, you can perform the Create, Modify and Delete actions, and events will also be generated when you run an action plan.

5.7. Event Streaming

The platform streams events using the Abiquo Outbound API. The format of the streamed events is described at Trace entity.