DistOS 2021F: Using Openstack

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We will be using OpenStack to spin up virtual machine instances for use during the implementation experiences and (optionally) the course project if you choose to include an implementation component. In the first implementation experience, you will be working with a personal VM hosted on OpenStack. To get set up, follow the instructions below.

Getting Started

To get started and connect to the OpenStack dashboard, you will first need to update your SCS account and connect to Carleton’s intranet via a VPN. You can see the official guide provided by SCS technical support for more details.

First, connect to the Carleton VPN by following the remote access VPN instructions. Once you are connected, you will likely need to update your SCS account to be added to our course’s OpenStack project. You can do so by clicking this link and following the instructions. You do not need to change your SCS password, but you can if you like.

Once you are connected to the VPN and your account has been updated, you can access our course’s OpenStack dashboard. After clicking the link, you may need to select the COMP4000A-F21 project from the dropdown menu in the top left.

Setting Up Your Personal VM

To set up your VM, navigate to Compute -> Instances using the menu on the left-hand side of the page. Then click the Launch Instance button near the top right. Then provide the following information:

  • Under Details, set Instance Name to firstname-lastname where you sub in your first and last name respectively. You must follow this naming convention, otherwise your instance may be deleted without notice.
  • Under Source select Instance Snapshot from the Boot Source dropdown. Then scroll down and select COMP4000-studentvm-v1 by clicking the corresponding arrow on the right hand side.
  • Under Flavor click the arrow on the right hand side of comp4000a-f21.4gram.8gdisk.2cpu.
  • Under Security Goups click the arrow on the right hand side of ping-ssh-egress.
  • Finally, click the blue Launch Instance button.

After following these steps, you should see your named instance show up in the list (likely at the top). Once you locate your instance, select Associate Floating IP using the dropdown on the right-hand side. You will be prompted to select an IP address starting in 134. This is the IP address you will use to connect to your VM later.

Connecting to Your Personal VM

You can connect to your personal VM using an ssh client. On Linux, MacOS, and WSL, you can do this using the ssh command like ssh student@my.floating.ip, where you replace my.floating.ip with your floating IP from earlier. You will then be prompted to enter your password, which is just student by default.

On Windows without WSL, you can use an ssh client like PuTTY. After downloading PuTTY, you can configure it to connect to your VM’s floating IP.

NOTE: You must either be connected to the Carleton VPN or perform a ProxyJump in order to ssh into your VM. We recommend avoiding the VPN and using a ProxyJump instead, as this will lighten the load on Carleton’s network.

Performing a ProxyJump Using SSH

This step is only necessary if you wish to connect to the VM without using the Carleton VPN.

You can use your access.scs.carleton.ca account to perform a ProxyJump into Carleton’s internal network. You can do so by modifying the ssh command from before as follows: ssh -J scsname@access.scs.carleton.ca student@my.floating.ip, where you replace scsname with your Carleton username. You will be prompted to enter a password twice. The first time, enter your SCS password. The second time, enter the password you chose for the student user on your VM.

If you are using PuTTY, note that it has no direct equivalent of a ProxyJump. Instead, you can consult this link for help.