OpenStack Cinder configure replication API with Ceph


I just figured out that there hasn’t been much coverage on that functionality, even though we presented it last year at the OpenStack Summit.

I . Rationale

What will follow is useful in the context of disaster recovery. This functionality was implemented during the Ocata cycle for the v2.1 replication in the RBD driver. In the context of disaster recovery, you typically have one primary site with your OpenStack and Ceph environment and on a secondary site, you have another Ceph cluster. The secondary cluster is basically receiving copies of some of the Cinder block devices from the primary site.

This replication mechanism is possible with the help of the rbd-mirror daemon, responsible for replicated block devices from one cluster to another. So from an OpenStack perspective, we will have different Cinder backend/types with different capabilities. In the disaster recovery scenario, we will have a replicated type. Under the hood, the RBD driver will apply two RBD features on the images created on that type: journaling and exclusive-lock. If you want to read more around RBD mirroring, I encourage you to read my article about it.

In an event of a failure, a failover is operated, this means each replicated volume is promoted to primary on the secondary cluster. In the meantime, you might have to force-detach and re-attach your volume to your virtual machine. Additionally, you might have to reboot the virtual machine completely if this guest was booted from a volume. Later new connection requests will receive connection information for the volume on the secondary cluster.

II. Setup

The following implies that you already have two Ceph clusters up and running and that the RBD mirror daemon is configured. If you don’t know how to deploy such setup I encourage you to read this article.

So let’s get into it, first create a new Cinder type:

$ cinder type-create replicated

| ID | Name | Description | Is_Public |

| 1f08657f-4486-4270-a4c7-c1822872c88e | replicated | - | True |

Then set the backend name and apply an extra argument to enabling replication on that type:

$ cinder type-key replicated set volume_backend_name=ceph

$ cinder type-key replicated set replication_enabled='<is> True'

$ cinder extra-specs-list

| ID | Name | extra_specs |

| 16146866-3f4f-4c6e-918c-36cd0ebf1dc2 | replicated | {'replication_enabled': '<is> True', 'volume_backend_name': 'ceph'} |

Finally, define a secondary backend in cinder.conf:

replication_device = backend_id:secondary,

You can now create a volume like this:

$ cinder create --volume-type REPL --name fingers-crossed 1

To operate a failover run (assuming your backend name is ‘ceph’):

$ cinder failover-host client@ceph

You can get the list of available host for failover using cinder service-list --withreplication.

You now have a fully working disaster recovery configuration that can failover to another location. Simply note that at the moment, there is no failback support. This would require efforts from an operator.