A virtual machine instance is a copy of the selected disks of a virtual machine at a given time that is registered in Abiquo as a virtual machine template. The instance functionality varies slightly depending on the type of datacenter or public cloud region in which an instance is created.
An instance is a copy of the selected disks of a virtual machine at a given time. It is stored in the Appliance Library with a copy of the virtual machine template definition that you created the virtual machine from. When you drag a template into a virtual appliance, you can select an instance to create a virtual machine with the snapshot of the disks and the template definition based on a copy of the original template definition.
When you deploy a standard virtual machine, the Abiquo platform uses virtual machine templates from the Appliance Library for the enterprise and datacenter. The deploy process copies the template disk from the Appliance Library to the target hypervisor and configures the virtual machine based on the template definition and your configuration. This means that when you undeploy a virtual appliance, all changes that you made to the standard disks will be lost because the next time you deploy, the empty disks will be recreated and the template files will be copied again from the Appliance Library to the target hypervisor.
Creating an instance does not save the configuration of the virtual machine. The instance will always use the instance's copy of the original VM template definition to create a new VM. You can edit the instance template definition and it will not affect the original VM template.
The following diagram shows the differences between an Abiquo instance in a regular Abiquo datacenter (left) and in an Abiquo public datacenter with Amazon (right). The regular Abiquo instance copies the VM definition from the original template and is linked to the master template. This is a simple example of a VM template with only one disk.
You must deploy virtual machines before you can create instances. The machines must be deployed and stopped (powered off).
In Abiquo 3.4 and above, you can select the virtual machine disks to include in the instance
To create instances of virtual machines, open the virtual appliance where the virtual machines are located, then select each virtual machine and power it off.
Then click the Create instance button at the top left of the Virtual machines pane.
A popup will appear with a list of all the virtual machines that can be selected to create an instance.
On this popup, you can:
When you rename an instance, you should keep a note of the name of the original template that the virtual machine was deployed from. This will help you to find your instance in the future. You should also note the Creation date and Creation user.
Click the edit link. Enter a new name, then click Accept.
Then click Select disks. A dialog will open with a list of the Virtual machine disks.
When you have selected all the virtual machines you wish to instance, and selected their disks, click Create instance to start the instance process.
The progress of your instances will be shown in the Virtual machines pane.
When you capture an external virtual machine into Abiquo, the captured virtual machine does not have a virtual machine template. This means that if you undeploy the virtual machine, you will not be able to recreate it again from a template. To store a copy of the virtual machine disk as a template in the Apps library, create an Abiquo instance of the virtual machine.
When you add virtual machine templates to a virtual appliance, if the template to add has instances, the following dialog is shown so you can select an instance and/or the master template. Abiquo shows the name you gave the instance, the creation user and the creation date and time.
Remember that the virtual machine created from an instance will have a copy of the original virtual machine definition from the master template (not from the virtual machine). You can edit the Instance template to change the VM definition.
After you create an instance, the master template will be marked in the Appliance library with an "M" in the top right-hand corner. Click the master template to view its instances.
After you create an instance, it will be stored in the Apps library, with the original virtual machine template, which is a master template. A master template is marked with an "M" in the top right-hand corner. Click on a master template to view its instances.
By default, an instance has the same name as your virtual machine. By default, your virtual machine has the same name as the virtual machine template it is created from. Abiquo recommends that if you rename the virtual machine or the instance, you should keep a record of your changes to assist you in locating the virtual machine instances in the Apps Library.
You can manage instance templates in the same way as other appliance library templates. Templates that are in use cannot be deleted. Click on a different template to close the instances view.
If you have permission to modify virtual machine templates in the Apps Library, you can Promote an Instance to a Master Template. This creates a new master template that includes a copy of the instance disk image the template definition. You can modify the definition in order to change the base configuration when you deploy a virtual machine with the copy of the instance disk image. After you promote an instance, you can delete the original instance and template if there are no virtual machines deployed with it. In the following screenshot, the m0n0wall_03 instance has been promoted to a master template.
When you copy a virtual machine system disk to create a virtual machine template, the new template is called an Abiquo instance. An Abiquo instance in public cloud is independent of the original virtual machine template.
To create an Abiquo instance in public cloud, the process is the same as for an Abiquo instance in a datacenter.
First, power off the virtual machines.
Power off virtual machines to create EBS images
In AWS, it is possible to create an EBS image from an Amazon virtual machine that is powered on, but Amazon recommends that you power off the virtual machine first. This is because a running instance is not captured at a specific point in time, so changes on the hard disk during image creation could lead to loss of data or corruption of the image. For this reason, with Abiquo you can only create an EBS image from a powered off virtual machine.
Click Create instance
From the popup list, choose the virtual machines you wish to instance.
Click the edit link and rename the machines, then click Accept and Create Instance.
For each machine:
Click Create Instance at the bottom of the popup
When the instance is complete, remember to power on the virtual machine again (especially if you are using Elastic IPs!).
To find your template in the Apps library, move the mouse over the templates to check their names.
The instance will be displayed in your enterprise's Apps library view, in the Instances panel beneath the master template.
A remote search of the Docker registry does not show the instances, because Abiquo filters these snapshots in the remote search to avoid exposing tenant-specific instances to other tenants.
A docker instance cannot be promoted.