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Abiquo 4.7

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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

This feature does not enable the high availability of the host, which is a separate feature in platform infrastructure. Abiquo does not support layers that are intersections of 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.

Create VMs in anti-affinity layers for high availability

Before you begin:

  1. 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 VM templates or VMs to the layer using drag and drop. 

 Click here to show/hide the screenshots

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 Diagram

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

Web Stack Use Case Screenshot

In Abiquo, the web stack would look as in the following screenshot.

Deploy a virtual appliance with anti-affinity layers

After you create your layers, deploy the virtual appliance. If the deploy 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.

If you have the View datacenter details privilege, you can see the remote access address on the VM details panel. A quick way of checking that the VMs are deployed on separate physical machines is to check the remote access address of the VM, which should be different for each physical machine. If you are an administrator you can also check that the VMs are deployed on separate physical machines in the Infrastructure view.

Modify a virtual appliance with anti-affinity layers

You cannot make changes to layers that may compromise anti-affinity while your VMs are deployed or running.

Rename an Anti-affinity layer

Before you begin:

  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.

To change the name of a layer:

  1. Next to the layer name, click the pencil Edit button. 
  2. Enter the new layer name
 Click here to expand...

Remove an undeployed VM from a layer

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

Remove Deployed VMs from an Anti-affinity Layer

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

Delete an Anti-affinity Layer

The layer will be deleted and the VM will be moved to 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


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.

Move VMs Between Layers

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