Running on OpenStack

Publicly Available Images (at CERN)

The CERN OpenStack interface provides publicly available CernVM 3 and CernVM 4 images. CernVM 3 images are SLC6 compatible, CernVM 4 images are CC7 compatible. Both image types are for the x86_64 architecture. The image name indicates the "bootloader version". The bootloader contains the Linux kernel and a CernVM-FS client. The actual operating system is loaded from a CernVM-FS repository.

To start a new CernVM instance,

  • Log on to
  • Check the available CernVM images from openstack image list
  • Check the available virtual machine flavors from openstack flavors list
  • Start a new instance like openstack server create --flavor cvm.medium --image "CernVM 4 - Bootloader v2018.10-1 [2018-11-15]" ...
    Add --property cern-services=false to speed up VM creation

CernVM images can be contextualized with cloud-init and amiconfig, general information about the image can be found in the release notes.

Manually Uploading Images (outside CERN)

CernVM images and instances on OpenStack can be managed with nova tools. The following steps can be used from a desktop CernVM.

If you haven’t done so, you need to upload the CernVM image to your project before you can create CernVM 3 instances. To do so, use the CernVM 3 “Raw” image. Then run (commands differ for CernVM 3 and CernVM 4)

On CernVM 3 or anywhere else with 'glance' version below 1.0.0

export OS_CACERT=/etc/pki/tls/cert.pem
glance image-create --name "CernVM 3" --is-public False --disk-format raw --property os=linux \
  --property hypervisor_type=kvm --container-format bare \
  --file <cernvm-image>.hdd
nova boot <Virtual Machine Image Name> --image "CernVM 3" --flavor m2.small \
  --key-name <OpenStack Keypair> --user-data <User Data File>

On CernVM 4 or anywhere else with 'glance' version above 1.0.0

export OS_CACERT=/etc/pki/tls/cert.pem
glance image-create --name "CernVM 4" --visibility private --disk-format raw --property os=linux \
  --property hypervisor_type=kvm --container-format bare \
  --file <cernvm-image>.hdd
nova boot <Virtual Machine Image Name> --image "CernVM 4" --flavor m2.small \
  --key-name <OpenStack Keypair> --user-data <User Data File>

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