[openstack-dev] [tripleo] Nodes management in our shiny new TripleO API

Dan Prince dprince at redhat.com
Fri May 20 11:44:00 UTC 2016

On Thu, 2016-05-19 at 15:31 +0200, Dmitry Tantsur wrote:
> Hi all!
> We started some discussions on https://review.openstack.org/#/c/30020
> 0/ 
> about the future of node management (registering, configuring and 
> introspecting) in the new API, but I think it's more fair (and 
> convenient) to move it here. The goal is to fix several long-
> standing 
> design flaws that affect the logic behind tripleoclient. So fasten
> your 
> seatbelts, here it goes.
> If you already understand why we need to change this logic, just
> scroll 
> down to "what do you propose?" section.
> "introspection bulk start" is evil
> ----------------------------------
> As many of you obviously know, TripleO used the following command
> for 
> introspection:
>   openstack baremetal introspection bulk start
> As not everyone knows though, this command does not come from 
> ironic-inspector project, it's part of TripleO itself. And the
> ironic 
> team has some big problems with it.
> The way it works is
> 1. Take all nodes in "available" state and move them to "manageable"
> state
> 2. Execute introspection for all nodes in "manageable" state
> 3. Move all nodes with successful introspection to "available" state.
> Step 3 is pretty controversial, step 1 is just horrible. This not
> how 
> the ironic-inspector team designed introspection to work (hence it 
> refuses to run on nodes in "available" state), and that's now how
> the 
> ironic team expects the ironic state machine to be handled. To
> explain 
> it I'll provide a brief information on the ironic state machine.
> ironic node lifecycle
> ---------------------
> With recent versions of the bare metal API (starting with 1.11),
> nodes 
> begin their life in a state called "enroll". Nodes in this state are
> not 
> available for deployment, nor for most of other actions. Ironic does
> not 
> touch such nodes in any way.
> To make nodes alive an operator uses "manage" provisioning action to 
> move nodes to "manageable" state. During this transition the power
> and 
> management credentials (IPMI, SSH, etc) are validated to ensure that 
> nodes in "manageable" state are, well, manageable. This state is
> still 
> not available for deployment. With nodes in this state an operator
> can 
> execute various pre-deployment actions, such as introspection, RAID 
> configuration, etc. So to sum it up, nodes in "manageable" state are 
> being configured before exposing them into the cloud.
> The last step before the deployment it to make nodes "available"
> using 
> the "provide" provisioning action. Such nodes are exposed to nova,
> and 
> can be deployed to at any moment. No long-running configuration
> actions 
> should be run in this state. The "manage" action can be used to
> bring 
> nodes back to "manageable" state for configuration (e.g.
> reintrospection).
> so what's the problem?
> ----------------------
> The problem is that TripleO essentially bypasses this logic by
> keeping 
> all nodes "available" and walking them through provisioning steps 
> automatically. Just a couple of examples of what gets broken:
> (1) Imagine I have 10 nodes in my overcloud, 10 nodes ready for 
> deployment (including potential autoscaling) and I want to enroll 10 
> more nodes.
> Both introspection and ready-state operations nowadays will touch
> both 
> 10 new nodes AND 10 nodes which are ready for deployment,
> potentially 
> making the latter not ready for deployment any more (and definitely 
> moving them out of pool for some time).
> Particularly, any manual configuration made by an operator before
> making 
> nodes "available" may get destroyed.
> (2) TripleO has to disable automated cleaning. Automated cleaning is
>> set of steps (currently only wiping the hard drive) that happens in 
> ironic 1) before nodes are available, 2) after an instance is
> deleted. 
> As TripleO CLI constantly moves nodes back-and-forth from and to 
> "available" state, cleaning kicks in every time. Unless it's
> disabled.
> Disabling cleaning might sound a sufficient work around, until you
> need 
> it. And you actually do. Here is a real life example of how to get 
> yourself broken by not having cleaning:
> a. Deploy an overcloud instance
> b. Delete it
> c. Deploy an overcloud instance on a different hard drive
> d. Boom.

This sounds like an Ironic bug to me. Cleaning (wiping a disk) and
removing state that would break subsequent installations on a different
drive are different things. In TripleO I think the reason we disable
cleaning is largely because of the extra time it takes and the fact
that our baremetal cloud isn't multi-tenant (currently at least).

> As we didn't pass cleaning, there is still a config drive on the
> disk 
> used in the first deployment. With 2 config drives present cloud-
> init 
> will pick a random one, breaking the deployment.

TripleO isn't using config drive is it? Until Nova supports config
drives via Ironic I think we are blocked on using it.

> To top it all, TripleO users tend to not use root device hints, so 
> switching root disks may happen randomly between deployments. Have
> fun 
> debugging.
> what do you propose?
> --------------------
> I would like the new TripleO mistral workflows to start following
> the 
> ironic state machine closer. Imagine the following workflows:
> 1. register: take JSON, create nodes in "manageable" state. I do
> believe 
> we can automate the enroll->manageable transition, as it serves the 
> purpose of validation (and discovery, but lets put it aside).
> 2. provide: take a list of nodes or all "managable" nodes and move
> them 
> to "available". By using this workflow an operator will make a 
> *conscious* decision to add some nodes to the cloud.
> 3. introspect: take a list of "managable" (!!!) nodes or all 
> "manageable" nodes and move them through introspection. This is an 
> optional step between "register" and "provide".
> 4. set_node_state: a helper workflow to move nodes between states.
> The 
> "provide" workflow is essentially set_node_state with verb=provide,
> but 
> is separate due to its high importance in the node lifecycle.
> 5. configure: given a couple of parameters (deploy image, local boot 
> flag, etc), update given or all "manageable" nodes with them.

I like how you've split things up into the above workflows.
Furthermore, I think we'll actually be able to accomplish most, if not
all of it by using pure Mistral workflows (very little custom actions

One refinement I might suggestion is that for the workflows that take a
list of uuid's *or* search for a type of nodes that we might split them
into two workflows. One which calls the other.

For example a 'provide_managed_nodes' workflow would call into the
'provide' workflow which takes a list of uuids? I think this gives us
the same features we need and exposes the required input parameters
more cleanly to the end user.

So long as we can do the above and still make the existing python-
tripleoclient calls backwards compatible I think we should be in good


> Essentially the only addition here is the "provide" action which I
> hope 
> you already realize should be an explicit step.
> what about tripleoclient
> ------------------------
> Of course we want to keep backward compatibility. The existing
> commands
>   openstack baremetal import
>   openstack baremetal configure boot
>   openstack baremetal introspection bulk start
> will use some combinations of workflows above and will be deprecated.
> The new commands (also avoiding hijacking into the bare metal 
> namespaces) will be provided strictly matching the workflows
> (especially 
> in terms of the state machine):
>   openstack overcloud node import
>   openstack overcloud node configure
>   openstack overcloud node introspect
>   openstack overcloud node provide
> (I have a good reasoning behind each of these names, but if I put it 
> here this mail will be way too long).
> Now to save a user some typing:
> 1. the configure command will be optional, as the import command
> will 
> set the defaults
> 2. the introspect command will get --provide flag
> 3. the import command will get --introspect and --provide flags
> So the simplest flow for people will be:
>   openstack overcloud node import --provide instackenv.json
> this command will use 2 workflows and will result in a bunch of 
> "available" nodes, essentially making it a synonym of the "baremetal 
> import" command.
> With introspection it becomes:
>   openstack overcloud node import --introspect --provide
> instackenv.json
> this command will use 3 workflows and will result in "available" and 
> introspected nodes.
> Thanks for reading such a long email (ping me on IRC if you actually 
> read it through just for statistics). I hope it makes sense for you.
> Dmitry.
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