Provision resources (using the web interface)

Unlike virtual resources on a regular on-demand cloud, physical resources on Chameleon must be reserved before using them for an experiment. Once a reservation has been accepted, users are guaranteed that resources will be available at the time they chose (except in extraordinary circumstances such as hardware or platform failures), which helps to plan large scale experiments.

Chameleon resources are reserved via Blazar (previously known as Climate) which provides Reservation as a Service for OpenStack. It is available in the Horizon web interface (OpenStack Dashboard) via the Reservation dashboard.

To access it, first log into the Horizon web interface using the same credentials as the Chameleon user portal.

You should land on the Compute overview page for your default project. The pie charts on the page will show you what the current usage of things like instances and floating IPs is relative to the limit for your project. The usage summary will show historical usage of your project for a time period that can be selected. The usage box will show information about the instances currently running in your project.

You can select the project that you want to use via the list at the right of the logo. This guide uses the Chameleon project, but any project will work the same.

Configure your local timezone by clicking on your username in the top-right corner and choosing Settings. This will open a page where you can select your local timezone. For example, if you are in the North American Central Time Zone, select UTC -06:00: United States (Chicago) Time. Then, click Save.

To access the reservation system, click on Project > Reservations > Leases.

To discover when resources are available, access the lease calendar. This will display a Gantt chart of the reservations which allows you to find when resources are available. The Y axis represents the different physical nodes in the system and the X axis represents time.

Once you have chosen a time period when you want to reserve resources, go back to the Leases screen and click on "Create Lease". It should bring up the window displayed below:

  1. Pick a name for the lease. This name needs to be unique across your project. This example uses the name my-first-lease.
  2. Pick a start time and end time; Note that if you have not selected a timezone earlier, the date must be entered in UTC! You can get the UTC time by running “date -u” in your terminal. If you would like to start your lease as soon as possible, you may leave these fields blank and Chameleon will attempt to reserve your nodes to begin immediately with a default lease time of 1 day.
  3. Choose the number of hosts, it is 1 by default.
  4. Choose a node type in the drop down menu below the "node type" and "=" drop down lists.
  5. Click on the “Create” button

Once created the lease details will be displayed. At the bottom of the page are the details about the reservation. Initially the reservation is in the Pending status, and stays in this state until we reach the start time.

Once the start time of the lease is reached, the lease will be started and its reservation will change to "Active"; you may need to refresh the page to see this.

Note: To ensure fairness to all users, resource reservations (leases) are limited to a duration of 7 days. However, an active lease within 48 hours of its end time can be prolonged by up to 7 days from the moment of request if resources are available. To prolong a lease, click on the “Update Lease” button in the Reservations panel of the CHI OpenStack dashboard, and enter the additional duration requested in the “Prolong for” box including the unit suffix, e.g. “5d” for 5 days or “30m” for 30 minutes. If there is an advance reservation blocking your lease prolongation that could potentially be moved, you can interact through the users mailing list to coordinate with others users. Additionally, if you know from the start that your lease will require longer than a week and can justify it, you can contact Chameleon staff via the ticketing system to request a one-time exception to create a longer lease.

Next Step

Now that you have created a lease, it is time to configure some resources! You will find instructions to the next step by visiting one of the following links: