Advanced Network Support

CloudBolt offers the ability to create virtual networks on-the-fly and to load balance a server tier as part of a blueprint deployment. This section covers what features are currently available and how to configure CloudBolt to take advantage of them.

Load Balancers

Blueprints can include load balancing to support easy scale up and down of their resulting services.

Currently, CloudBolt ships with load balancer support for Amazon Web Services Elastic Load Balancers for AWS instances, F5BigIP, Netscaler, HA Proxy, and VMWare NSX. Please contact Cloudbolt Support to request addition of other technologies.

Create

To create a scalable blueprint with a load balancer, go to Catalog, add a blueprint, and add at least one Server Tier blueprint item, as well as a Load Balancer blueprint item. The specific steps required may vary depending on the type of Load Balancer added.

AWS Elastic Load Balancer

No additional configuration is required for ELBs. EC2 instances of a server tier can be load balanced and later scaled up by service managers as needed.

  1. Add a Server Tier blueprint item with an environment
  2. Add an ELB Load Balancer blueprint item, configure port settings, and select tier to balance

F5 Networks Load Balancer

This section describes the steps needed to use the F5 Big-IP integration that comes with CloudBolt. If you want to learn more about modyfing load balancing related orchestration actions please contact us.

F5 Prerequisites
  • Connect CloudBolt to your F5 Big-IP appliance(s):
    • Go to AdminLoad Balancers
    • Click Add a load balancer and choose F5 Big-IP
    • Enter the connection information for your F5 Big-IP
  • From the details page for the newly created F5 Big-IP, create a an IP Pool.

Once the prerequisites are completed, you can add an F5 LB to your Blueprints:

  1. Add a Server Tier blueprint item with an environment
  2. Add an F5 Load Balancer blueprint item, configure port setting, and select tier to balance
  3. Select which F5 Big-IP appliance to be used in the API calls to F5 Big-IP

Netscaler Load Balancer

This section describes the steps needed to use the Netscaler integration that comes with CloudBolt. If you want to learn more about modyfing load balancing related orchestration actions please contact us.

Netscaler Prerequisites
  • Connect CloudBolt to your Netscaler appliance(s)
    • Go to AdminLoad Balancers
    • Click Add a load balancer and choose Netscaler
    • Enter the connection information for your Netscaler appliance
  • From the details page for the newly created Netscaler, create a an IP Pool.

Once the prerequisites are completed, you can add a Netscaler LB to your Blueprints:

  1. Add a Server Tier blueprint item with an environment
  2. Add an Netscaler Load Balancer blueprint item, configure port setting, and select tier to balance
  3. Select which Netscaler appliance to be used in the API calls to Netscaler

HA Proxy Load Balancer

  1. Add a Server Tier blueprint item that can build a single linux (Red Hat or CentOS) that will be used to provision the HA Proxy server
  2. Add a Server Tier blueprint item that will provision the server(s) you want load balanced
  3. Add an HA Proxy Load Balancer blueprint item, configure port setting, and select tier to balance
  4. Include HA Proxy Tier (#1 on this list), and whether CloudBolt should use yum to install haproxy

VMWare NSX Load Balancer

If the server tier being balanced is being deployed on a virtual network (NSX vxlan) then the NSX Edge Services Gateway being used to route network traffic to the vxlan will automatically be configured with a Load Balancer service. The only requirement is that the provider network for the edge appliance have an IP pool so an IP can be auto-assigned to the Load Balancer service.

Scaling

Selecting the Scaling action from the details of any deployed service allows you to add or remove additional servers to or from the service. If the target tier is marked as a tier being load balanced, then the servers will be automatically added/removed to/from the load balancer as needed.

Delete

To delete a load balancer, go to your deployed services. Click the service with the load balancer. There you will see an overview tab of that service with a list of options in the left hand corner, one of which will be ‘Delete’. Clicking the button will delete the service and load balancer.

Note: Deleting the load balancer in CloudBolt will also delete the provisioned servers being balanced.

Virtual Networks

Blueprints can include the creation of virtual networks. This enables server tiers to have on-the-fly dedicated networks that are isolated from any other deployment of that blueprint.

Currently, CloudBolt ships with virtual network support for VXLANs on vCenter instances configured with NSX. Note that virtual networks created from CloudBolt will be automatically associated with the vCenter resource handler.

New technologies will be supported in the near future, such as Openstack and IBM SoftLayer. Please contact Cloudbolt Support to request addition of other technologies.

Create

When creating a virtual network definition you only need to give it a CIDR IP block and tell CloudBolt what server tier the network should apply to. It’s important that the network blueprint item is *placed before the target server tier* in the blueprint deployment order.

Servers deployed as part of a targeted server tier will be statically IP configured, with the IPs coming from a CloudBolt managed pool, created at the same time as the network, based on the IP block definition given.

The virtual server will be named based on the deployment name of the service and the named server tiers it targets.

Routing virtual networks

When creating one or more virtual networks as part of a blueprint deployment, CloudBolt will automatically create routing for the network attaching the vxlans to an NSX Edge Services Gateway (ESG) in one of two manners:

1. Attaching the newly created vxlans to an existing NSX Edge Services Gateway appliance

If the environment where the server tier associated with the xvlan has a single ESG option (you can find out checking the VMware Parameters tab for the environment, NSX Edge parameter options), CloudBolt will simply attach the vxlans to internal interfaces on the ESG appliance. Note that the ESG is expected to be configured with any desired routing to/from vxlans outside of CloudBolt.

2. Create an NSX Edge Services Gateway appliance exclusive for the deployed service

Alternatively, CloudBolt can create an ESG automatically, defining a default static route and a basic SNAT rule to enable network routing to/from the vxlans. The creation of ESGs is dependent on the existence of a NSX Edge Configuration object that can be used to determine datastore, provider network, edge CLI credentials and other attributes that should be used when creating the ESG. See NSX for more information on creating the NSX Edge Configuration object

Scale Up

When scaling up a service tier that uses a virtual network, the new servers in the tier will automatically be assigned an IP from the CloudBolt managed pool and placed in the correct network. There is no additional set-up necessary for this functionality.

Delete

When deleting a deployed service that contains virtual networks, CloudBolt will make the appropriate API request to the NSX Manager to delete the vxlans. Deletion of a virtual network is dependent on it being detached from any servers and/or routers and CloudBolt will report any errors it encounters if deleting the network is not possible at the time it was attempted. If you associate servers and/or routers with your VXLAN outside of CloudBolt, please refer to vCenter instructions on how to delete a VXLAN network.