There are a few Infrastructure-as-a-Service offerings that available to download and use. Eucalyptus and OpenNebula are two such offerings. I ended up installing and experimenting with both Eucalyptus and OpenNebula. In this blog post, I’ll detail my experience of installing and setting up Eucalyptus 1.6.2 on CentOS.

For the sake of keeping things simple but still practical enough, we will have:

  • 1 front-end machine. This will house the Cloud Controller (CLC) and Walrus. Since we intend to keep things fairly simple we will limit ourselves to a single cluster and setup the Cluster Controller (CC) and Storage Controller (SC) on this same machine. In my case, this machine has one network interface (NIC) with an IP address of
  • 2 machines (Nodes) that will serve as hosts running Xen hypervisor for the virtual machines i.e. each machine will have a Node Controller (NC) installed. In my case, each machine has a single NIC and the IP addresses are and respectively.

Before we install Eucalyptus we need to first prep these machines.

Note: For the rest of this document, run the commands as root user.

This document is organized as below. Feel free to skip any sections if you have already implemented the steps in that section.

Prepare the machines
Download Eucalyptus
Install Eucalyptus on the Front-end
Install Eucalyptus on the Nodes
Run Eucalyptus
Register Eucalyptus components
First-time Configuration
Test your Eucalyptus install

Prep work

On the front-end machine, we first install Java and Ant. You can download Sun JDK from here and Ant from here . I’m using JDK version 1.6u20 (jdk-6u20-linux-i586-rpm.bin) and Ant version 1.8.0 (apache-ant-1.8.0-bin.tar.gz).

Once you have downloaded Sun JDK to a directory, install it as follows:

chmod +x jdk-6u20-linux-i586-rpm.bin

You can confirm that java is on the PATH by running the following command:

java -version

You should output similar to:

java version “1.6.0_19″
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.6.0_19-b04)
Java HotSpot(TM) Client VM (build 16.2-b04, mixed mode, sharing)

Next, install Ant under /opt directory as follows:

cd /opt 
mkdir ant 
cd ant 
tar zxvf ~/apache-ant-1.8.0-bin.tar.gz 
ln -s apache-ant-1.8.0 latest 

Next, we need to add an environment variable ANT_HOME that points to /opt/ant/latest and append the $ANT_HOME/bin to the PATH environment variable. Add this to the /etc/profile file as follows:

cd /etc 
cp profile profile.ORIG 
echo "export ANT_HOME=/opt/ant/latest" >> profile 
echo "export PATH=\$PATH:\$ANT_HOME/bin" >> profile

Next we need to install a few dependencies (dhcp, bridge-utils, httpd, xen-libs, ntp) and synchronize the system clock on the front-end machine. You can do this as follows:

yum update 
yum install dhcp xen-libs httpd bridge-utils ntp 

I have the following versions installed:

yum list dhcp xen-libs httpd bridge-utils

Loaded plugins: fastestmirror
Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
* addons:
* base:
* extras:
* updates:
Installed Packages
bridge-utils.i386 1.1-2 installed
dhcp.i386 12:3.0.5-21.el5_4.1 installed
httpd.i386 2.2.3-31.el5.centos.4 installed
xen-libs.i386 3.0.3-94.el5_4.3 installed
Available Packages
dhcp.i386 12:3.0.5-23.el5 base
httpd.i386 2.2.3-43.el5.centos base
xen-libs.i386 3.0.3-105.el5 base

We also allow the front-end machine to forward IP packets as follows:

cd /etc 
cp sysctl.conf sysctl.conf.ORIG 
sed -i "s/net.ipv4.ip_forward = 0/net.ipv4.ip_forward = 1/" sysctl.conf

To change this value immediately without rebooting, run the following command:

sysctl -p /etc/sysctl.conf

Next, we need to configure firewall rules to permit the various Eucalyptus communicate with each other. Since we are planning on using security groups in Eucalyptus, let’s start with disabling SELinux on the front-end machine as follows:

cd /etc/selinux
cp config config.ORIG
sed -i "s/SELINUX=permissive/SELINUX=disabled/" config

Let’s reboot the front-end machine at this point.

Next, we need to prep the two Nodes. We start by installing xen hypervisor and also synchronize the system clock on each Node as follows:

yum update
yum install xen ntp

I have the following versions of xen installed:

yum list xen

Loaded plugins: fastestmirror
Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
* addons:
* base:
* extras:
* updates:
Installed Packages
xen.i386 3.0.3-94.el5_4.3 installed
Available Packages
xen.i386 3.0.3-105.el5 base

Once we have Xen installed we need to configure it to allow for the hypervisor to be controlled via HTTP from localhost. We can do this by editing /etc/xen/xend-config.sxp file and then restart xen daemon as follows:

cd /etc/xen
cp xend-config.sxp xend-config.sxp.ORIG
sed -i "s/#(xend-http-server no)/(xend-http-server yes)/" xend-config.sxp
sed -i "s/#(xend-address localhost)/(xend-address localhost)/" xend-config.sxp
/etc/init.d/xend restart

Next we need to make sure the correct kernel with xen enabled is started at boot. We do this by editing the GRUB configuration file (grub.conf) under /boot/grub. If grub.conf is not available, then edit menu.lst which should be a file instead of a symlink to grub.conf.
In my case, /boot/grub/grub.conf is:

# grub.conf generated by anaconda
# Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
# NOTICE: You have a /boot partition. This means that
# all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /boot/, eg.
# root (hd0,0)
# kernel /vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/sda3
# initrd /initrd-version.img
title CentOS (2.6.18-164.15.1.el5xen)
root (hd0,0)
kernel /xen.gz-2.6.18-164.15.1.el5
module /vmlinuz-2.6.18-164.15.1.el5xen ro root=LABEL=/
module /initrd-2.6.18-164.15.1.el5xen.img
title CentOS (2.6.18-164.15.1.el5)
root (hd0,0)
kernel /vmlinuz-2.6.18-164.15.1.el5 ro root=LABEL=/
initrd /initrd-2.6.18-164.15.1.el5.img
title CentOS (2.6.18-164.el5)
root (hd0,0)
kernel /vmlinuz-2.6.18-164.el5 ro root=LABEL=/
initrd /initrd-2.6.18-164.el5.img

The default line is the line we want to change. The first title is 0. Since we want title CentOS (2.6.18-164.15.1.el5xen) to be the default kernel we would set default to 0.
We can do this as follows:

cd /boot/grub
cp grub.conf grub.conf.ORIG
sed -i "default=1/default=0/" grub.conf

Next, we disable SELinux on the Node machines as follows:

cd /etc/selinux
cp config config.ORIG
sed -i "s/SELINUX=permissive/SELINUX=disabled/" config

Let’s reboot both Node machines at this point. We are not ready to proceed with the installation of Eucalyptus.

Download Eucalyptus

You could choose to install Eucalyptus via yum if needed which is easier that
You can downloaded Eucalyptus from here. I picked the 32-bit CentOS 5 rpms that come bundled in a gzip compressed tar file.

Note: Different Eucalyptus components need to be installed on the front-end and each of the Node machines. The aforementioned tar.gz file contains all Eucalyptus components though. Therefore download it once on the front-end and then copy this file over to each of the Node machines.

Install Eucalyptus on the front-end

Once you have downloaded Eucalyptus (in my case, eucalyptus-1.6.2-centos-i386.tar.gz) on the front-end, untar it to root’s home folder /root.

tar zxvf eucalyptus-1.6.2-centos-i386.tar.gz
cd eucalyptus-1.6.2-centos-i386

We are ready to install. Let’s start by installing the 3rd-party dependency RPMs included in the eucalyptus-1.6.2-rpm-deps-i386 directory. Install all the rpms in this directory as follows:

cd eucalyptus-1.6.2-rpm-deps-i386
rpm -Uvh aoetools-21-1.el4.i386.rpm euca-axis2c-1.6.0-1.i386.rpm euca-rampartc-1.3.0-1.i386.rpm vblade-14-1mdv2008.1.i586.rpm groovy-1.6.5-1.noarch.rpm vtun-3.0.2-1.el5.rf.i386.rpm lzo2-2.02-3.el5.rf.i386.rpm
cd ..

Note the above “rpm -Uvh…” command might fail with an error about “Failed dependencies…java-sdk > 1.6.0 is needed….“. To get past this error, run the above rpm -Uvh… with –nodeps. The error is because it is trying to look for Openjdk during installation. But we have installed Sun Java instead. Adding –nodeps will get us past this error message. Don’t worry, the Eucalyptus components will start up fine when the time comes to run them.

Next, let’s install the Cloud Controller, Walrus, Cluster Controller, Storage Controller, and a few other dependencies on the front-end machine as follows:

rpm -Uvh eucalyptus-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-common-java-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-cloud-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-walrus-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-sc-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-cc-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-gl-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm

Now let’s move on the installing Eucalyptus components on the Node.

Install Eucalyptus on the Nodes

First, copy (or download) the Eucalyptus tar.gz file on each Node. Untar it to root’s home folder /root.

Note: The steps in this section need to be performed on each Node (in my case on each of the two Nodes).

Let’s begin by installing a few 3rd-party dependency RPMs.

tar zxvf eucalyptus-1.6.2-centos-i386.tar.gz
cd eucalyptus-1.6.2-centos-i386
cd eucalyptus-1.6.2-rpm-deps-i386
rpm -Uvh aoetools-21-1.el4.i386.rpm euca-axis2c-1.6.0-1.i386.rpm euca-rampartc-1.3.0-1.i386.rpm
cd ..

Next, we install the Node Controller (and a couple of dependencies) on each Node as follows:

rpm -Uvh eucalyptus-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-gl-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm eucalyptus-nc-1.6.2-1.i386.rpm

Next, confirm that the user eucalyptus can connect with the hypervisor through libvirt.

su eucalyptus -c "virsh list"

The output of the above command should look something like:

Id Name State
0 Domain-0 running

Note: If you don’t have libvirt installed/running on the Nodes, you could install it: yum install libvirt

That’s it with the installation!

Running Eucalyptus

You are now ready to start Eucalyptus up.

SSH to the front-end machine and start the Cluster Controller and Cloud Controller as follows:

/etc/init.d/eucalyptus-cc start
/etc/init.d/eucalyptus-cloud start

Run ps command to confirm Eucalyptus is running on the front-end:

ps auxww | grep euca

root 30499 0.0 0.1 9840 1480 ? Ss May13 0:00 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 30500 0.3 4.7 1103496 48552 ? S May13 33:14 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 30501 0.3 4.7 1103496 48704 ? S May13 33:26 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 30502 0.3 7.3 1136720 75808 ? R May13 33:22 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 30503 0.3 3.9 1103484 40232 ? S May13 32:56 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 30504 0.3 5.0 1103568 51416 ? S May13 32:55 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
root 30586 0.0 0.0 1852 224 ? Ss May13 0:00 eucalyptus-cloud –remote-dns –disable-iscsi -h / -u eucalyptus –pidfile //var/run/eucalyptus/ -f -L console-log
500 30587 6.5 39.3 937236 403344 ? Sl May13 569:24 eucalyptus-cloud –remote-dns –disable-iscsi -h / -u eucalyptus –pidfile //var/run/eucalyptus/ -f -L console-log
500 30840 0.1 0.4 1137232 4824 ? S May13 12:53 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 31612 0.3 3.9 1103636 40556 ? S May13 32:50 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 31676 0.3 3.9 1103568 40400 ? S May13 33:09 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf
500 31678 0.3 4.7 1103636 48628 ? S May13 32:54 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-cc.conf

Next, SSH to each Node and start Node Controller as follows:

/etc/init.d/eucalyptus-nc start

Confirm eucalyptus is running on the Nodes:

ps auxww | grep euca

root 20637 0.0 0.3 9856 1488 ? Ss May13 0:00 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-nc.conf
500 20639 0.9 10.2 80688 50904 ? Sl May13 78:15 /usr/sbin/httpd -f //etc/eucalyptus/httpd-nc.conf

Registering Eucalyptus components

Now that you have started all components, you will need to register them so that they can talk to each other.

SSH to the front-end machine (in my case, and run the following commands:

euca_conf --register-walrus
euca_conf --register-cluster rosh-cluster1
euca_conf --register-sc rosh-cluster1

where, – is the IP address of my front-end machine which has CLC, Walrus, CC and SC installed/running. Replace this with the IP address of your front-end machine in all the above commands.
rosh-cluster1 – is the cluster name that I used. Replace it with your own cluster name.

Next, we need to register the 2 Nodes. On the front-end machine, run the following command:

euca_conf --register-nodes ""

where,, – are the 2 Nodes in my case. Replace the above IP addresses with the IP addresses of your Nodes. Add additional Nodes separated with a space.

You can verify that the nodes are registered by verifying that value of the NODES element in the eucalyptus.conf file on the front-end reflects the node IP addresses added via the above euca_conf –register-nodes command. In my case:

grep NODES /etc/eucalyptus/eucalyptus.conf

We are done with registering the Eucalyptus components.

First-time Configuration

We are now ready to perform some quick configuration.

Using a browser, browse to https://<front-end-ip-address>:8443. In my case, You will get a warning page stating that the “site’s security certificate is not trusted“. Since Eucalyptus is using a self-signed certificate which is not verified by a third-party that the browser trusts, shows you this warning. Accept the certificate and you will be prompted for a user_id/password. Enter admin for both.

Once you have logged in for the first time, you will be asked to change the password, set the admin email address, etc. Enter the relevant details and hit “Submit”.

On the “Configuration” web page you will see Cloud Configuration, Walrus Configuration, Clusters, etc. These should all be pre-populated. You could make changes to the configurations if you wish. I left these unchanged for now.

Next, browse to “Credentials” web page and click the “Download Credentials” zip file. Save the “” to a directory. You will need these credentials when you use client tools such as euca2ools to manage virtual machines, images, etc.
Create a .euca folder and unzip the contents of this file in this folder. Run the following command from under .euca folder:


Once you have unzipped the contents, you will find a .eucarc file that exports some variables. The EC2_URL in this case will point to your front-end machine. In my case,

cat .eucarc

EUCA_KEY_DIR=$(dirname $(readlink -f ${BASH_SOURCE}))
export S3_URL=
export EC2_URL=

Before you run any client tools, you will need to source this file.

Testing our Eucalyptus install

To keep things simple and quickly test our Eucalyptus installation, download Amazon EC2 API Tools. Unzip the downloaded to under the .euca folder that you created in the “First-time Configuration” section.


Next source the .eucarc file under and run the ec2-describe-availability-zones command provided by the ec2-api-tools. From under .euca folder run the following commands:

cd .euca
source .eucarc
cd ec2-api-tools-1.3-46266/bin
ec2-describe-availability-zones verbose

You should see output similar to the following:

[Deprecated] Xalan: org.apache.xml.res.XMLErrorResources_en_US
AVAILABILITYZONE |- vm types free / max cpu ram disk
AVAILABILITYZONE |- m1.small 0004 / 0004 1 128 2
AVAILABILITYZONE |- c1.medium 0004 / 0004 1 256 5
AVAILABILITYZONE |- m1.large 0002 / 0002 2 512 10
AVAILABILITYZONE |- m1.xlarge 0000 / 0000 2 1024 20
AVAILABILITYZONE |- c1.xlarge 0000 / 0000 4 2048 20

rosh-cluster1 – is the cluster I registered using euca_conf and in my case, it corresponds to the Cluster Controller running on my front-end machine (

If you see something like the above, give yourself a pat on the back!

You are now ready to bundle images and create instances from those images on your own private infrastructure cloud!

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