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Difference between installing openstack on virtual and physical hardware

asked 2015-09-08 06:51:37 -0600

iman.kian gravatar image

Hi i'm new to this product and even IaaS concept. i'm wondering if you can install an openstack instance on a virtual machine? if the answer is yes, how is it different from installing on physical hardware? and isn't a IaaS product suppose to handle hardware directly?!

Thank you

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answered 2015-09-09 02:48:19 -0600

busyboy gravatar image


Virutal install of OpenStack is basically good for POC. You come up with a single machine, install a hypervisor like VMWARE or alike and then build the 1 controller, network and compute nodes as much as your hardware allows you to create. Obviously, Controller and Network nodes need not to be more than 1+1 installation and then 1+ compute nodes.

Everything is virtualized at one additional level like networking of controller, network and compute nodes need to be managed from within the vmware or virtualization layer, and then you need to manage network of instances at 2nd layer. everything has to be considered virutalized right from hardware level because you dont work on hardware, you work on VM at the very beginning.

Again, you get a 5th layer for your instances to sit on your compute node in a virtualized environment.

Hardware --> VMware --> Compute --> QEMU --> Instance

barely capable of making instances able to run a simple application.

With a Virtualized OpenStack Setup and depending upon the level of virtualization you use, you will get a limited performance in terms of performance, availability of resources and then ability to committed resources. Virtualized OpenStack is simply for playing around... no production. you need to keep your logic at an additional layer that everything is virtual.

Whereas, with hardware based OpenStack installation, You put things right in their places and then configure them with a practical approach.

Hardware based Compute nodes provide you with ability to provision instances at a level more closer to the hardware resources. You can use Virtualization specific abilities of your CPU if using compute nodes on hardware. needs more hardware than in virtual. network is again another part that needs to be managed along with the hardware, 2+ separate LANS, and then cabling, patching etc.

Virtualized Openstack is good for learning and doing it as a POC, but a standard services provisioning needs resources distinction right from start.

This is a very basic level of difference that needs to understood before making decisions for OpenStack.

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answered 2015-09-09 04:17:34 -0600

dbaxps gravatar image

updated 2015-09-09 04:29:10 -0600

Another point of view ( still POC ) : -
Avoid using VMWARE virt tools, install Fedora 22 (KVM /Libvirt) on box having at least i7 47XX Haswell CPU and 16 GB of RAM. Enable nested KVM ( see ). Afterwards deployment like described in will be capable to run CentOS 7.X or F22 cloud VMs ( virtualization layer 2 ) with GNOME(MATE) Desktop installed ( Spice dashboard console is preferable). On 8 Core CPU like Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2690 with 32 GB RAM performance ( nested KVM enabled ) of cloud VM running on Compute Node will be quite sufficient for almost any kind of pre-production testing including DVR , using Libvirt networks && Libvirt bridges as simulators of external routers to Internet.

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Asked: 2015-09-08 06:51:37 -0600

Seen: 2,838 times

Last updated: Sep 09 '15