Abiquo 5.1

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Display VM templates

You can use VM templates to create VMs.

To display VM templates

  1. Select Private or Public
  2. Select a Datacenter or Public cloud region from the list
    • If you do not see the expected templates, you may need to click the double round-arrow Refresh button or contact your system administrator
  3. Optionally select a template Category
  4. Optionally select icon or list view

On the right, the platform will display all the templates available for the selected datacenter or public cloud region

Privilege: Manage VM templates from Apps library

Icon view

In Icon view, to activate the VM template operations menu, select a VM template. This menu will vary, depending on the context.

Screenshot: Options menu of VM template

Screenshot: VM instance template, created from VM disks

In list view, to display the VM Template operations buttons, select a VM template

Organize VM templates into categories

In the Apps library, the VM templates can be classified into categories:
  • Local categories belong to a single enterprise and cannot be seen or used by other enterprise
  • Global categories are visible to all users and are marked with the text "(global)", and you will require the "Manage VM template global categories" privilege to manage them.

The predefined categories are "Applications servers", "Database servers", "Others", and "Web servers".  If you download a VM template from a remote repository and its category does not exist yet, the platform will create the new global category with this name.

The default global category is "Others" and you cannot delete this category. 

Administrators who can manage global categories can promote a local category to global. You cannot demote a global category to local or move local categories from one tenant to another. 

Privilege: Manage VM template categories, Manage VM template global categories

To create a VM template category:

  1. Go to Apps library → Private or Public → select datacenter or public cloud region → Virtual machine templates
  2. Check that there is no other category with the name you wish to use
  3. Open the Categories menu
  4. At the bottom of menu, click the + add button
  5. Enter the category name
  6. Optional: to create a global category, mark the checkbox to Make the category global
  7. Click Save to continue

The new category will be added to the Categories list.

To add a VM template to a category:

  1. Edit the template
  2. Go to General
  3. Select the category.

When you delete a category, all the templates belonging to this category will be changed to the category ''Others''.


Copy a VM template

To copy a VM template, move the mouse over the VM template in the Apps library, and from the options button menu, select Duplicate.

Enter the name for the new template.

Select the disks you wish to copy and click Save.

Abiquo will create the duplicate as a new independent template in the Apps library.

Template mobility

The mobility feature enables users to export or move a template to private or public cloud. The original template must always be in the private cloud.

Privilege: Manage VM templates from Apps library, Export template to public cloud, Export template to private cloud

You can export:

  • multi-disk templates to other datacenters managed by Abiquo
  • single boot disks to public cloud regions in
    • AWS: Regions must have a subnet created, which can be the default subnet and EC2-tools is used for export to AWS
    • Azure: You cannot upload more than one file with the same name in the same account and region. The file name is the unique part of the container name which is combined with the account name and region
    • Rackspace: You cannot export ISO files to this provider
    • OpenStack: You cannot export ISO files to this provider

To export to public cloud, you must first prepare the templates according to the cloud provider instructions.

Abiquo uses the BPM - V2V conversion service to perform any required conversions and to upload the template to public cloud.

During an export, the platform will queue the BPM and V2V processes for conversions, instances and persistent templates.

To use this feature you must have the base privilege of Manage VM templates from Apps library AND the privilege appropriate to the template destination of Export template to public cloud or Export template to private cloud. Before you export to public cloud, prepare your templates as described in Preparing Templates for Export to Public Cloud

Export VM templates in the user interface

Before you begin:

  • Prepare templates for export to public cloud according to the cloud provider's instructions

To export a template

  1. Go to Apps library → select the private cloud datacenter where the VM template is stored.
  2. Select the VM template and from the options menu, select Export
  3. From the following dialog, select Private or Public cloud.
    1. For public cloud
      1. select the public cloud provider and region
      2. select one bootable system disk.
    2. For private cloud
      1. select the datacenter
      2. select disks from the template to export.  
  4. Click Export

 Click here to show/hide the walkthrough with screenshots

For private cloud, select the datacenter

For public cloud, select the public cloud region

For public cloud, select one bootable system disk. For private cloud, select disks

Export templates with Abiquo API

In the Abiquo API you can perform the export using the VirtualMachineTemplates Resource with the same method as is used for promoting an instance template. The datacenter repository should be the destination of the export and the request payload should contain a link to the VM template to export. See https://wiki.abiquo.com/api/latest/VirtualMachineTemplatesResource.html#create-a-virtual-machine-template-in-a-datacenter-repository-by-download-promote-or-export

Delete a VM template

In a private cloud datacenter, to prevent users from working with a VM template, you can do the following
  • Replace template disk(s) with new disk(s), so future VMs use the new disk(s). To replace a disk, use the Abiquo API. See Appliance Manager Template API Upload and Download
  • Delete a template, which requires that no deployed VMs are using the template and it has no instances. Note that you can promote instances to master templates and then delete the instances
  • Make a template unavailable to users, when it is in use

To delete a shared template or make it unavailable, you must be logged in to the owner enterprise. If you make it unavailabe, it will only be marked as unavailable for all users when the template owner performs a refresh of the Apps Library.

To remove a template that is not in use

  1. click the template edit menu button and select Delete from the menu. 

Abiquo will remove the template from the Apps Library and the NFS repository file system.

Make a template unavailable to users

If you want to prevent users from creating new VMs from a template, but it is in use (in VMs or for instances) so you cannot delete it, then you can make it unavailable. This means that the platform will remove the template disk files and you cannot recover them within the platform. A template wiill also become unavailable if one or more of its disk files is deleted from the NFS repository file system outside of the platform. 

To make a template unavailable in the UI:

  1. Select the edit menu button of a template that is in use and select Delete from the menu. A confirmation popup will open with details of the template use.
  2. Confirm that you would like to force the delete. Abiquo will delete the disk files but not the template definition. The platform will mark this template as unavailable.

In the Apps library, the platform will not display the unavailable template in the default view. To display the template again, click the filter button and mark the checkbox to display Deleted templates, which are unavailable templates with no disk files. The platform will mark the template icon with a red X symbol.

Make a template available again

If one or more template disk files are deleted from the NFS repository, the template will become unavailable. However, if you restore the disk file(s) to the filesystem, then the template will become available again. If the template was downloaded from a remote repository, you can download it again to restore it. After you restore a template, when users redeploy VMs, they will work with the new template and its conversions. 

Delete Template Example

Here is a simple example of the process of deleting a template. An enterprise downloads a VM template from remote repository. A user deploys a VM from the template and modifies the VM. Then a user creates an instance from the deployed VM and deploys a new VM from the instance.

 Click here to show/hide the example

Screenshot: Deploy an instance of the Core in a new VM. There are now two VMs - one with the core template and one with an instance of the core template VM

Screenshot: The core template has two instances: Core_Instance_1 and Core_Instance_1_Instance_1

Now the administrator would like to delete the template, but there are VMs and instances. So the administrator will make the template unavailable. The platform will delete the disk files and users cannot create new VMs from the template.

Screenshot: The administrator clicks the template edit menu and selects Delete


Screenshot: The platform displays the details of deployed VMs and instances on the "Virtual machine template in use" popup. The administrator clicks Yes to continue.

The template disk files and the disk conversions will be deleted from the Apps Library. You cannot recover them within the platform

Screenshot: To view the unavailable template, click the template filter and select the Deleted checkbox. Click on the unavailable template to view the instances and they will display in the Instances panel below the master templates.

Manage instance templates in datacenters

An Abiquo instance is a template that uses copies of one or more disks from a VM.  For information about how to create instances, see  Manage Virtual Machines#SaveVMdiskstocreateaninstancetemplate

In a datacenter, the platform stores an instance with the original master template. This means that you cannot delete a master template if it has instances. However, you can promote an instance to a master template.

The platform identifies master templates with the "M" symbol on the template icon and instances with the "S" symbol on the template icon.

To display the instances under a master template:

  1. Click on the master template and the Instances panel will open with the instance templates.

 Click here to show/hide the screenshot

You can modify the instance template, to change the CPU, RAM, icon, and so on, and these changes will not affect the master template. 

Promote an Instance to a Master Template

When you promote an instance, Abiquo first makes a copy of the instance and then promotes it to create a new master template. This is useful when you want to delete a master template but keep its instance template(s). 

To promote an instance:

  1. Select the original master template to display its instances
  2. Select the instance, and from its options menu, select Promote to master
  3. Enter a Name for the new master template. Select the disks to promote 
    • Remember that there must always be at least one disk and that the disk at position 0 must be a boot disk. 
    • The name should help users to identify this template among the other templates 

The platform will display the completed template in the Apps library view and you can edit it as required

 Click here to show/hide screenshots

From the instance template's options menu, select Promote to master

Enter a Name to identify the template

The platform displays the promoted instance in the main section of the Apps library

Manage Instances of Deleted Templates

You cannot delete a master template if it has VMs deployed or instances with VMs deployed, but you can make it unavailable, which deletes the template disk file. If a master template is unavailable, to display it and access the instances panel, select the checkbox to display Deleted VM templates. If you wish to create a VM from an instance of a deleted master template, first promote the instance to a master template. 

Make an Instance Template Unavailable

When you try to delete an instance that is in use in a VM (deployed or undeployed), the platform will only allow you to make it unavailable, which means that the platform will delete the disk file. Users cannot create or deploy VMs with an instance that is unavailable. After you confirm the delete, the platform will display a list of VMs using the template. Click Yes to force the delete of the instance disk file. 

 Click here to show/hide the screenshots

Confirm that you would like to delete the instance template

To display the unavailable instance:

  1. Select the filter to display Deleted VM templates
  2. Select the master template

  • You cannot force the delete of an instance if it is in use in a VM. 
  • If you try to delete an unavailable instance, an error popup will appear because the template is already unavailable. 
  • To make the instance available again, replace the unavailable template files on the file system. When it detects the template files, the platform will mark the instance as available.

Delete Failed Instances

Failed instances may occur if there is a connection error between the platform and the VM disks. Failed instances are marked with the failed template icon.

To remove a failed instance template:

  1. Select the template 
  2. From the options menu, select Delete 

Manage Instances in Public Cloud Regions

When you create an instance template to save VM disks, the platform adds its details to the Apps Library, which is a cache of template details.

In a public cloud region, an instance is a new template that is independent of the original master template. The platform saves the VM configuration. To ensure that you can identify relationships between templates, name your instances carefully. 

The platform will identify the public cloud image by the cloud provider's identifier. For example in AWS, an EBS image is identified by its AMI identifier. The name you assign to an instance may be stored in another format such as a label. 

The platform does not update templates in the public cloud provider so any changes that you make to templates in the platform will apply in the Apps Library only. For example, if you rename an instance template, this name will not apply in public cloud. 

To delete an instance template in public cloud:

  1. Move the mouse over the template and click the delete button that appears. Confirm the delete. 

The platform will delete the template from the Apps library only. If required, delete the template in the cloud provider too.

To find an Abiquo instance that was deleted from the public cloud Apps library:

  1. In the Apps Library view, click on Import template
  2. Select Private
  3. To search for the template by the Name field, enter the name you gave your Abiquo Instance when you created it
  4. Click Search


If a template is still in the Abiquo Apps library, it will not display in the results of the remote search.

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