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I am trying to set up a part of our network as a linux cluster. Since its a little educational for me, I choose using MAAS with JuJu. However there are some questions that boggle my mind and I was hoping that someone could clarify that for me.

The linux cluster I'm about to set up consists of 10 machines. Half of it Dell and the other HP. Both types of machines have a lights-out module (HP=>iLO2, Dell=>DRAC) that support IPMI on a seperate 100Mb NIC. They both support PXE on the first onboard gigabit NIC. I configured the lights out module with a static IP matching the physical layout of the racks and position height. Installing MAAS however didn't ask me on what subnet and vlan the IPMI protocol should be configured. How do I do this?

Also I want only the region controller to be able to contact the internet for package management. The other provisioned nodes should only be allowed to connect to the internet via a proxy on the region controller. So the region controller in my case should be configured with 3 subnets; 1 for internet, 1 for client protocol connectivity and 1 for cluster traffic. The region controller itself should also be a node for JuJu.

Then at last there is the node configuration that should have a sort of basic layout that can be used within JuJu. As far as I could see there is no possibility to set up cluster subnet configuration. Each machine has at least 4 NIC's that I like to assign the different subnets to; 1 for the IPMI traffic, 1 for the PXE boot traffic, 1 for the cluster traffic and 1 for the storage/client network. What I like to do is to bond all these interfaces together as one big trunk and then use VLAN's to separate the traffic before provisioning. Then when provisioning a node, MAAS should automagically configure the network interfaces as the layout suggests above.

Maybe what I'm looking for is a advanced configuration tutorial/guide for MAAS and JuJu.

Regards, Joham

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@user229840 This is fascinating and I too will be looking forward to seeing the eventual answer. Is this helpful?… – Elder Geek May 6 '14 at 14:19
@user229840 Could this be related to your problem? – Elder Geek May 6 '14 at 14:40
@user229840 Just a suggestion but your question may be to specific. Maybe try to set up similar functionality with something more traditional (or ask how to do so on this website) and afterwards, when it works, try to ask how to do the same with MASS and JuJu? – Cyprian Guerra May 23 '14 at 8:44
I forgot about this question. I have multiple responsibilities within the company I work for and one is doing the system administration for our servers. The other one is programming, and then I have to help the other employees as well... so... By now, I decided to leave the Ubuntu MAAS track and went for SmartOS. However, I'm still able to use juju on provisioned virtual machines. The document Elder Geek Provided is still great though so thanks :) – Joham Mar 5 at 11:58
@cyprian: I'm not sure what you mean with to specific. PXE boot seems to me a logical solution for uploading a hypervisor image to the bare metal machine. But you need IPMI to start the machine up to begin with. Then ofcourse, one needs to configure the NIC cards within the hypervisor and preferably have a sort of configuration file floating around that you can use when reinstalling the same machine over PXE. – Joham Mar 5 at 12:32

2 Answers 2

Maybe if you let install of Juju GUI to provide adequately more what type of network balancing you need then you could find your answer faster.

Using Juju with GUI

This advanced guides very close to your problem:
MAAS: Cluster Configuration
Additional Manual Configuration

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Its already some time ago, but thanks for your input anyway. I'm not sure why, but I can't recall reading the cluster configuration manual you provided here. Will look into it. – Joham Mar 5 at 12:27

Meanwhile I have a better understanding of how networking is arranged in maas and its pretty cool. So to answer my own question: I recommend against separating IPMI and PXE traffic. Its more efficient to just share the RAC traffic on eth0. All server can boot PXE default on eth0 too.

Besides, you don't need an extra ethernet port/switch for just the RAC, and no extra cables, so that is less energy consumption, thus good! You can use shared nic for iDRAC 5+ & ILO2+, iDRAC 6 and higher have shared nic failover, but iLO2 doesn't.

The nic interface for PXE traffic is normally selectable in the server boot options. From there you assign the maas cluster controllers network interface. This interface is connected to the machines you like to control on that cluster network. Give them a dynamic range to boot into with DHCP and your a go. In the network tab of the maas webgui menu you will find your first network. You can select if you will, the first interface of each machine on that maas network and create a new maas network to route your other traffic to.

Thanks for the input!

Regards, Joham

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