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  1. Blog
  2. Article

on 28 January 2019

Taking Octavia for a ride with Kubernetes on OpenStack

Want to enable your developers to deploy highly available web applications, web services or microservices?

Do you also need to cater for existing and legacy workloads?

Sounds like your requirements are in the sweet spot between what OpenStack and Kubernetes has to offer.

OpenStack is as you may already know a mature, stable and flexible cloud platform which can help you make the resources (CPUs, RAM, disks, networks, load balancers) in your datacenter available on a self-service and fully automated basis to your consumers.

Kubernetes is simply put an excellent engine for automatically keeping your application workload up to date and highly available, and it is quite happy doing that by consuming resources from a underlying OpenStack cloud.

Why Octavia?

Historically the OpenStack Neutron project has carried a built-in load balancer implementation. This implementation never gained support for high availability nor TLS termination. Its design put limitations on the scalability of the service as it was deployed directly in namespaces on the Neutron gateway nodes. This pattern also made it harder to replace the core load balancing software itself should you want to do that.

The Octavia project is a redesign and re-implementation of a load balancer service for OpenStack and it has become the de-facto reference implementation of the LBaaS v2 API. Among other things it addresses both the scalability- and core software exchangeability issue by managing a fleet of virtual, containerized or metal load balancers.

Great, how do I get started?

1. Get MAAS and Juju

2. Deploy Ubuntu OpenStack with a Octavia overlay

    snap install --classic charm
    charm pull cs:openstack-base
    cd openstack-base
    curl -o loadbalancer-octavia.yaml
    juju deploy ./bundle.yaml --overlay loadbalancer-octavia.yaml

3. Configure Octavia-internal client/server certificates

Octavia uses mandatory bi-directional certificate based authentication between the controller components and the load balancer instances. Note that these certificates will not be used for actual payload data, only internal management traffic. You should nevertheless procure/issue certificates that meets the security requirements and guidelines of your organization before putting the service into production.

    mkdir -p demoCA/newcerts
    touch demoCA/index.txt
    touch demoCA/index.txt.attr
    openssl genrsa -passout pass:foobar -des3 -out issuing_ca_key.pem 2048
    openssl req -x509 -passin pass:foobar -new -nodes -key issuing_ca_key.pem \
        -config /etc/ssl/openssl.cnf \
        -subj "/C=US/ST=Somestate/O=Org/" \
        -days 365 \
        -out issuing_ca.pem
    openssl genrsa -passout pass:foobar -des3 -out controller_ca_key.pem 2048
    openssl req -x509 -passin pass:foobar -new -nodes \
            -key controller_ca_key.pem \
        -config /etc/ssl/openssl.cnf \
        -subj "/C=US/ST=Somestate/O=Org/" \
        -days 365 \
        -out controller_ca.pem
    openssl req \
        -newkey rsa:2048 -nodes -keyout controller_key.pem \
        -subj "/C=US/ST=Somestate/O=Org/" \
        -out controller.csr
    openssl ca -passin pass:foobar -config /etc/ssl/openssl.cnf \
        -cert controller_ca.pem -keyfile controller_ca_key.pem \
        -create_serial -batch \
        -in controller.csr -days 365 -out controller_cert.pem
    cat controller_cert.pem controller_key.pem > controller_cert_bundle.pem

    juju config octavia lb-mgmt-issuing-cacert="$(base64 controller_ca.pem)" \
    	lb-mgmt-issuing-ca-private-key="$(base64 controller_ca_key.pem)" \
    	lb-mgmt-issuing-ca-key-passphrase=foobar \
    	lb-mgmt-controller-cacert="$(base64 controller_ca.pem)" \
    	lb-mgmt-controller-cert="$(base64 controller_cert_bundle.pem)"

4. Deploy glance-simplestreams-sync charm

To deploy workloads ontop of OpenStack with Juju your Glance image database needs to contain some cloud images and Juju needs a index to locate them. The Glance SimpleStreams Sync charm takes care of this for you.

    juju deploy cs:glance-simplestreams-sync --to lxd:0 --config source=ppa:simplestreams-dev/trunk
    juju add-relation glance-simplestreams-sync keystone

5. Adjust Octavia configuration for HA

Note that there are many more steps required for a fully Highly Available controlplane and dataplane across the stack, but this demonstrates Octavia HA features for the load balancer dataplane component itself.

    juju config octavia loadbalancer-topology=ACTIVE_STANDBY spare-pool-size=4

6. Wait for deployment to complete and settle

    watch -c juju status --color

7. Run post-deployment Octavia configuration

Octavia relies on resources within your OpenStack cloud to operate, these will be created for you by executing a charm action. At the time of this writing you will have to take care of the Octavia Amphora image yourself.

    juju run-action --wait octavia/0 configure-resources
    openstack image create --tag octavia-amphora \
         --container-format bare --disk-format qcow2 \
         --file images/amphora-x64-haproxy.qcow2 \

You will find a script to build your Octavia Amphora images in Octavias GitHub repository. There is also daily pre-built test images available on

8. Prepare your OpenStack project for deployment of Kubernetes

Note that for simplicity this example will update your default security group to allow all traffic to your instances, it also makes use of the default admin project. You will probably want to create a separate project and use more fine grained security groups before putting this into production.

    . ./openrcv3_project
    PROJECT_ID=$(openstack project show --domain admin_domain admin -f value -c id)
    SECGRP_ID=$(openstack security group list --project ${PROJECT_ID} | awk '/default/ {print $2}')
    openstack security group rule create ${SECGRP_ID} \
    	--protocol any --ethertype IPv6 --ingress
    openstack security group rule create ${SECGRP_ID} \
    	--protocol any --ethertype IPv4 --ingress
    openstack flavor create --ram 512 --disk 8 tiny
    openstack flavor create --ram 1024 --disk 10 small
    openstack flavor create --vcpus 2 --ram 2048 --disk 20 medium
    openstack flavor create --vcpus 2 --ram 3584 --disk 20 juju
    openstack flavor create --vcpus 4 --ram 4096 --disk 20 large
    openstack flavor create --vcpus 12 --ram 16384 --disk 40 xlarge
    openstack network create --external --provider-network-type flat \
    	--provider-physical-network physnet1 ext_net
    openstack subnet create --network ext_net --no-dhcp \
    	--subnet-range --gateway \
    	--allocation-pool start=,end= Internet
    NETWORK_ID=$(openstack network create network -f value -c id)
    openstack subnet create subnet --network network \
    openstack router create router
    openstack router set --external-gateway ext_net router
    GATEWAY_IP=$(openstack router show router -f value -c external_gateway_info \
    	| awk '/ip_address/ { for (i=1;i<NF;i++) if ($i~"ip_address") print $(i+1)}' \
    	| cut -f2 -d\")
    openstack router add subnet router subnet
    openstack quota set --cores 100 ${PROJECT_ID}
    openstack quota set --instances 100 ${PROJECT_ID}
    sudo ip route add via ${GATEWAY_IP}
    cat < cloud-inception.yaml
        type: openstack
        auth-types: [ userpass ]
            endpoint: $OS_AUTH_URL
    juju add-cloud inception cloud-inception.yaml
    juju bootstrap inception \
    	--config network=${NETWORK_ID} \
    	--model-default network=${NETWORK_ID} \
    	--model-default use-default-secgroup=true

9. Deploy Kubernetes on OpenStack

There is a openstack-integrator charm available, that after you have sanctioned it with your trust, gets the keys from your OpenStack and sets up your Kubernetes with them.

It can also give information required for Kubernetes to use OpenStack LBaaS if you configure the appropriate options.

Get the UUID of the subnet and the UUID from the external network created above and configure the openstack-integrator charm.

    juju deploy cs:~containers/kubernetes-core
    juju deploy cs:~containers/openstack-integrator
    juju add-relation openstack-integrator kubernetes-master
    juju add-relation openstack-integrator kubernetes-worker
    juju config openstack-integrator subnet-id=<UUID of subnet>
    juju config openstack-integrator floating-network-id=<UUID of ext_net>
    juju trust openstack-integrator

10. Wait for deployment to complete and settle

    watch -c juju status --color

11. Get Kubernetes credentials, launch and watch sample app

    mkdir ~/.kube
    juju scp kubernetes-master/0:config ~/.kube/config
    sudo snap install kubectl --classic
    kubectl run hello-world --replicas=5 --labels="run=load-balancer-example"  --port=8080
    kubectl expose deployment hello-world --type=LoadBalancer --name=hello
    watch kubectl get svc -o wide --selector=run=load-balancer-example

Behind the scenes Kubernetes will now request and configure a load balancer from your OpenStack. It will also request and configure a floating IP for it and expose it to the world.

To meet the request Octavia will boot up or commission two of its idle load balancer instances, plug them into your network, create a VIP port and configure VRRP between the two load balancer instances.

Author: Frode Nordahl, Software Engineer (OpenStack)

The original article can be found here.

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