Release Notes V-Cube & V-Cube+ 6.1.0

Collax V-Cube / Collax V-Cube+
01.10.2012

Installation Notes

Cluster Update from V-Cube 6.0.6 oder lower

An update from V-Cube 6.0.6 requires the installation of V-Cube 6.0.8. It is necessary to perform this intermediate step to assure the operation of the virtual machines during the update. The intermediate step is automatically enforced by the Collax update server.

If cluster nodes are being updated it is necessary to update all nodes to V-Cube 6.0.8 first. Only after all nodes are updated to Version 6.0.8 the Version 6.0.10 can be installed.

Install Update within Cluster

Please read the following release notes carefully, before continuing. When installing this update on a Collax V-Cube+ cluster the following steps have to be performed:

Note: If starting the update from 6.1.8 to 6.1.10 no down time of the running virtual machines or applications is required.

Procedure

  1. If the nodes have the version 6.1.8 or prior: Please read the appropriate notes for that release including the documented procedure first.
  2. The software packages can be downloaded whithin a running Cluster to prepare the update and minimize the planned downtime. Go to the local administration of each node and access the form System Operation → Software → Systemupdate. Then click Get Package List. This will download the list of available update packages. The successful update of the package list is indicated by the message Done!. Click Get Packages. If the packages are downloaded successfully then the message Done! will be displayed.
  3. Put one node into standby mode. Go to Status/Maintenance → Cluster Nodes and execute the action Standby. Please wait until the cluster resources are stopped or the VMs are migrated.
  4. Now, put this node into maintenance mode. Go to the dialog Status/Maintenance → Cluster Services and stop the service HA Cluster for this node.
  5. Click Install within the dialog Systembetrieb → Software → Systemupdate to install all update packages. The end of this process is indicated by the message Done!.
  6. If a new kernel is going to be installed the system will be rebooted automatically after installing the update. An appropriate note will be shown. Please wait for the reboot in that case.
  7. Start the service HA Cluster on the node that has been updated. Please wait until the service ist started and information about Cluster Resources are available before you proceed with the next step.
  8. Once the service HA Cluster has been started resume the node by using the action Set active within the dialog Status/maintenance → Cluster Nodes .
  9. Afterwards check the status of the eSAN-disk synchronization in the form Cluster Administration → Virtual Hard Disks. Do not continue with the next step until the column Status shows 100% or OK for all eSAN disks.
  10. Please repeat this procedure from step 2 on the next node that needs to be updated.

Install Update from Version 6.0.10 within Cluster

Please read the following release notes carefully, before continuing. Note that when installing this update on a Collax Inter-V cluster the following steps have to be performed:

Procedure

  1. This step has to be done on each cluster node before step 2 is performed. This steps prevents that virtual machines from stopping while updating the cluster nodes. Login to each node via SSH, execute the command #~ wget http://update.collax.com/pub/Run_before_update_6.1.4.sh. Start the script with the command #~ sh Run_before_update_6.1.4.sh
  2. Please shut down all virtual machines within the cluster management gui before continuing with the following steps. Please consider to disable the shutdown event tracker for Windows operating systems before shutting down the virtual machine.
  3. Put all nodes into standby mode. Go to Status/Maintenance → Cluster Nodes and execute the action Standby. Please wait until the cluster resources are stopped.
  4. Put one node into maintenance mode. Go to the dialog Status/Maintenance → Cluster Services and stop the service HA Cluster for this node.
  5. Go to the local administration of this node and access the form System Operation → Software → Systemupdate. Then click Get Package List. This will download the list of available update packages. The successful update of the package list is indicated by the message Done!.
  6. Click Get Packages. If the packages are downloaded successfully then the message Done! will be displayed.
  7. Click Install. This action installs all update packages. The end of this process is indicated by the message Done!.
  8. A new kernel is going to be installed. The system will be rebooted automatically after installing the update. An appropriate note will be shown if the update process is completed.
  9. After the reboot start the service HA Cluster of the node again: Go to the cluster administration form Status/Maintenance → Cluster services. Please wait until information about Cluster Resources are available.
  10. Repeat the steps 3 to 8 for the next cluster node.
  11. Once all cluster nodes are updated resume them one by one by using the action Set active within the dialog Status/maintenance → Cluster Nodes .
  12. Next check the status of the eSAN disk synchronization in the form Cluster Administration → Virtual Hard Disks. Do not continue with the next step until the column Status shows 100% or OK for all eSAN disks.
  13. If all nodes within the cluster are updated and active the virtual machines can be started again.

Install Update on a Collax V-Cube

To install this update on a Collax V-Cube without a Cluster interconnection please follow these steps:

Procedure

  1. Please read this document before proceeding to the next step.
  2. In the administration interface go to System → System Operation → Software → System Update and then click Get Package List. This will then download the listed update packages. The successful update of the package list is indicated by the message “Done!”.
  3. Click Get Packages to download the software packages.
  4. Click Install. This action installs the update. The end of this process is indicated by the message Done!.
  5. A new kernel is going to be installed. The system will be rebooted automatically after installing the update. An appropriate note will be shown once the update process is completed.
  6. If the server is updated and booted the virtual machines can be started again.

New Functions - New Name: Collax V-SAN

The functionality of Collax V-Cube could be extended with the modules Inter-V and V-Store so far. The latter managed the embedded SAN Storage. Due to the extension of the functionality of the highly available, embedded SAN with this update, the module Collax V-Store is getting replaced by the new Collax module V-SAN.

New in this Version

Virtualization: Storage Migration in the V-Cube

By performing a Storage Migration, all data on a harddisk will be moved to another harddisk or to another type of hard disk. The combination of Hardware- and Data-Migration, can be described as Storage-Migration. From this version on virtual machines can be moved from V-Cube to the Cluster including virtual hard disks and network interfaces. This simplifies the extension of a single Collax virtualization host to a n-Node Collax Cluster.

Virtualization: Virtual CPU Sockets and Cores

Operating systems are able to utilizee, depending on the variant, a different number of CPU sockets and CPU cores. To equip these operating systems with the optimal number of virtual CPUs the CPU cores and the CPU sockets can be set separately for each virtual machine from this update.

Virtualization: Number of virtual CPUs, Cores and Sockets

Up to now each virtual machine could be provided with 16 virtual CPUs. With this update upto 64 CPUs can be assigned to each virtual machine. The virtual CPUs can be split into cores and sockets if the operating system of the virtual guest requires specific configuration.

Virtualization: Enlarging of Diskimage Files

Virtual Disks for virtual machines are based on different storage types. Diskimage files are virtual disks which are based on files instead on block devices. From this update on the size of diskimage files can easily be extended. More disk space is available for the guest operating system after a reboot, whithout re-installing the OS on the enlarged disk. It is sufficent to shutdown and boot again the virtual machine.

Virtualization: HDD Caching for All Types of Virtual Disks

For the file systems of the virtual guest, like NTFS, ext4 and XFS that support barrier by default the mode “Performance” has to be set. The guest file systems FAT/VFAT and ext3, which do not support barrier by default, the value “Data security” needs to be set. The setting HDD-Caching can be found within the dialog for configuring a virtual machine.

V-Cube+: Storage Migration in the Cluster

By performing a Storage Migration, all data on a harddisk will be moved to another harddisk or to another type of hard disk. The combination of Hardware- and Data-Migration, can be described as Storage-Migration. From this version on virtual disks can be moved to other virtual disks or other type of virtual hard disks within the Collax Cluster. It is possible to change the type between iSCSI, eSAN or diskimage. With this new function a rapid change of a storage backend is easy possible.

V-Cube+: Optimized configuration dialogues

In this version, new Forms have been added. Once the configuration of a cluster has been initiated, the overview form will be available as a menu item. The overview form shows the most important basic settings in the cluster. Here you can refer informations about high availability, the fencing device, eSAN, and to the cluster-share, among other things. Also, for quick and easy configuration, links to the respective dialogues exist.

Also new in the Cluster-GUI is the “Storage” form, in which the settings for eSAN, iSCSI, and the Cluster-Share can be made. It shows which nodes used for the eSAN, wether the iSCSI-Initiator is activated or deactivated, and which permissions are defined to access the Cluster-Share.

Furthermore some existing dialogues have been consolidated so that the “User Interface” is more simple and the administration becomes more efficient. For example, the functions of the form “machine control” are now implemented in the dialog “Virtual Machine”. This means that for example boot and shutdown and the “Edit” function can be found in one form Virtual Machines”. All functions of “embedded SAN (DRBD)”, “Orphan Logical Volumes”, “iSCSI initiator: General”, “iSCSI initiator: Node” and “Disk Image Files” are now implemented in the two dialogues “Virtual Disks” and “Storage”.

V-Cube+: High available iSCSI-Target

With this update a virtual hard disk of type eSAN (embedded SAN) can be exported as an highly available iSCSI-Target. This iSCSI-Target can be included on additional Collax Cluster-Nodes. By using the highly available iSCSI targets a two node Collax Cluster can easily be extended to three or more nodes. To enforce network security, authentification for any iSCSI-Target can be enabled. In addition, these highly available iSCSI-Targets can be integrated into other operating systems, using an iSCSI-Initiator.

V-Cube+: Export Cluster Share as Windows or Apple Share

From this version it`s possible to export the cluster share also as Windows or Apple share to ease the administrator access within the network. The cluster share is used to store snapshots of virtual machines and ISO images. Read and write access is managed via group access. The share name within the network is defined to clusterVmData.

Note: If the cluster share is exported via SMB/CIFS (Windows share) the passwords of all users in the cluster system need to be set again after activating the configuration.

GUI: User interface in the wizard

In this update the user guidance is enhanced by modal dialogs within the wizards. In addition wizard are marked as done as soon the administrator finished the last wizard step. Subsequently the action Next automatically leads to the following unprocessed wizard. After the login, the Administrator will also be automatically led to an unprocessed Wizard.

GUI: Email Relay Server with Authentication

A Email relay server with authentication credentials can now be set within the Cluster init/join wizard and in the Infrastructure settings in the Cluster GUI from this update on.

System Management: Monitoring BBU Charge State

The charging state of a battery backup unit of LSI RAID controllers is going to be monitored with this update. If an error occurs the system administrator is notified.

System Management: Lock Mechanism

With this update a locking mechanism is implemented which prevents user activities colliding with cluster activities. For example, when a automated backup is initiated the execution of an additional manual backup or the activation of settings is going to be locked. The locking mechanism also prevents the system from starting or stopping cluster resources if a snapshots of virtual machines is created or a live migration of virtual machines is running.

Hardware: Support of UPS (USB) with nut 2.6.2

This update installs the Network UPS Tool (nut) 2.6.2. This extends the support for UPS with USB-Connection. A list of supported devices can be found in the Collax HWCL or on the site www.networkupstools.org .

Misc: Important System Components

The following important system components will be installed with this update.

  • kernel 3.0.41
  • lio-utils 4.1
  • drbd 8.3.13
  • ctdb 1.12
  • kvm-guest-driver
  • lvm 2.02.88
  • MySQL 5.5.20

Issues Fixed in this Version

V-Cube+: Expanding Cluster Share Stops VM

If virtual machines use contents such as ISO images, snapshots, or disk image files on the cluster share and the cluster share is being resized, these VMs will be stopped automatically and subsequently rebooted.

V-Cube+: Migrate Paused VM

If a paused VM is migrated, it will be in the running state after the migration, even though the VM control continues to display it as paused. The display of the operating state can be corrected by executing the action Resume.

V-Cube+: Behavior of VMs when both Cluster-Nodes are set to standby

It is not possible to start Cluster-VMs if all Nodes of a Cluster are set to standby. If it has been tried anyways there was no feedback and the VMs got started after setting a Node active again. This behavior is changed in the new version. The administrator is noted that VMs could not be started because the Cluster-Nodes status is set to “standby”. And the administrator can prevent that VMs are started when setting a node to active, by setting the target-role for the VM resource in the resource form,

V-Cube+: Deletion of Cluster VMs

When deleting a VM in the cluster, which already had been started and stopped, the “Cluster Service” constantly trying to start the VNC Proxy, which led to a timeout error. In this version, the VNC-Proxy will be explicitly deleted before the actual deletion of the VM. This has the advantage that the deletion of a Cluster-VM proceeds faster.

V-Cube+: Reference Handling Improved

When converting some domain objects, attributes from referenced domain objects will be written to the converted local object (often the IP address from a domain host, for example). When the referenced object was changed however, nothing caused the referring object to be chanded, which resulted in incorrect local data.

V-Cube+: Netmask of Interconnect Network

The setting of the netmask of the Cluster interconnect network is going to be restricted to 8-, 16- or 24-bit. The setting is checked within the Cluster Network wizard and within the network dialog.

V-Cube+: Check for MTU Size within Cluster Init/Join Wizard

It is mandatory for the connection between cluster nodes that network interfaces use the same MTU size. With this update this size is double checked and the administrator is notified if one connected network interface does not match the criteria.

V-Cube+: Delete eSAN Disk while Sychronisation

Up to now a syncing eSAN disk could not be deleted via web gui because of technical constraints. This is corrected with this update. If a eSAN disk is not in use in a virtual machine or exported as iSCSI target it canbe deleted.

GUI: Set password feedback

Until now the administrator got no feedback when setting a password for a user in the Cluster. This has been improved with this update, the administrator gets a short information when the password was set.

GUI: Network wizard - DNS entry

If the DNS server was not set correctly different errors could occur during GUI administration. The validation of the DNS server setting within the network wizard has been improved with this update. The accessibility and functionality of the DNS server is now checked in the wizard.

GUI: Size Unit for Virtual Disks

The size unit of virtual disks is going to be standardized. An size unit can defined as MB (MegaByte), GB (GigaByte), TB (TeraByte) as well as M (MegaByte), G (GigaByte) or T (TeraByte).

GUI: Wrong DNS Server Setting Changing in Network Wizard led to Time Out

If a wrong DNS server was set in the network wizard the next steps could not executed because of gui time out. With this update it is going to be checked if the DNS server works.

GUI: Umlauts in Comment for Snapshots

Special characters in comments of snapshots hadn’t been encoded correctly to UTF-8. This is corrected with this update.

System Management: Monitoring of Cluster Resources Produces Wrong State Partial

The cluster management is based on the administration of resources. Because of a wrong analysis of the Cluster Information Base the states of resources were partly reported wrong to the system administrator. With this update the analyses of the Cluster Information Base is improved and the states of cluster resources are shown correctly.

Hardware: Jumbo frames and Intel e1000e-based network cards

The combination of jumbo frames and the Intel e1000e driver caused some problems in the Cluster-Interconnect before. As of this release a patch for the use of jumbo frames, and the Intel e1000e driver is installed.

Notes

Virtualization: Default BIOS-Version for Virtual Machines

The default of the BIOS for new virtual Machines is set to SeaBIOS 0.6.2 from this update on.

V-Cube+: GUI-Sidebar in the Clusteradministration

In this version the sidebar has been removed. The administration gui must be a reloaded manually to completely get rid of the sidebar, due to it still being in the browser Cache. To load the local GUI of a Cluster-Node, there is a direct link in the “Cluster-Nodes” dialogue.

V-Cube+: Deleting a Cluster Nodes results in automatic Activation of Settings

When a Cluster Node needs to be removed for some reason the changed settings are going to be activated automatically afterwards. Prior, this had to be done manually.

Misc: Windows Setup notes Error Message 0x80300001

If Windows Server 2008 R2 and above is to be installed on Virtio hard disks using the Virtio driver CD for Windows, Windows reports the error code 0x80300001. The error message occurs if the partitions are recognized and the user clicks the button Next. The message means, that the installation CD of Windows needs to be inserted again.

Misc: Unique Name for the Data Partition

On each Collax system there are two basic partitions. The system partition and the data partition. Because the data partition was named “Data Volume” before, complications could occur while importing an iSCSI-Target with the same name. In this version the name for the data partition is composed of a UUID.

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