Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform Introduction - Part 3 of 3

Originally published 7/3/14.

 

This is part 3 of 3 in the Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform introduction series. In this post we will go into further detail about the NetApp Virtual Storage Console (VSC) for Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform.

 

The full series can be found here:

Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform Introduction - Part 1 of 3 - Introduction

Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform Introduction - Part 2 of 3 - Apache CloudStack 101

Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform Introduction - Part 3 of 3 - NetApp Integration

 

Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform Plugin Framework

 

Apache CloudStack offers a rich plugin framework which allows vendors to integrate. The NetApp VSC plugin for Apache CloudStack has leveraged these capabilities and are two main areas where VSC has integrated with Apache CloudStack: UI and storage subsystem.

 

UI Framework

The UI framework for Apache CloudStack is JavaScript based. It allows vendors such as NetApp to build UI components directly into the Apache CloudStack UI. It also allows plugin access to the cloud engine API and various backend subsystem APIs. All APIs in Apache CloudStack are RESTful and as such use HTTP/HTTPS as the protocol for communications.

 

Storage subsystem

The storage subsystem in Apache CloudStack provides APIs for handling all operations regarding primary and secondary storage. Just as a refresher primary storage is where VMs in an Apache CloudStack environment live, while secondary storage is for image templates and ISOs. The storage subsystem is responsible for such things as creation of primary or secondary volumes, snapshot management on primary volumes, backing up snapshots to secondary storage, and deploying VM templates from secondary to primary storage.

 

Below is a high level block architecture of the storage subsystem architecture in Apache CloudStack:

 

 

NetApp VSC for Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform Architecture

NetApp VSC for Apache CloudStack as mentioned is a fully integrated plugin within the Apache CloudStack environment. Everything is completely integrated into Apache CloudStack UI and storage subsystem, so there is no need for a separate UI or CLI. NetApp has created a vendor driver for both primary and secondary storage which leverages NetApp technologies such as snapshot copies, thin provisioning, data de-duplication, and more!

 

NetApp VSC for CloudStack highlights:

  • Backup and Recovery
    • Apache CloudStack snapshots use NetApp SIS (single instance storage) clone technology in order to copy VM files. Per default, Apache CloudStack creates a thick copy when creating snapshots. With the NetApp VSC plugin, snapshots of VMs within Apache CloudStack are automatically created through a sis clone operation through the NetApp primary storage driver. Therefore, the Apache CloudStack snapshot, which now uses underlying NetApp technology, is instant, takes zero space upon creation, and restores are also instant.
    • Snapshot scheduling, management, and restore are all managed through the Apache CloudStack UI instead of separately
    • NetApp snapshot backup and recovery of the Apache CloudStack internal database
  • Storage Provisioning
    • Create, destroy, and resize Apache CloudStack primary or secondary volumes that are backed by NetApp storage
    • Enable de-duplication and thin provisioning on both Apache CloudStack primary and secondary volumes
  • Storage Analytics
    • NetApp controller management and analytics from within Apache CloudStack
    • NetApp volume analytics from within Apache CloudStack

 

Below is a high level architecture diagram of NetApp VSC for Apache CloudStack:

 

cloudstack_storage_api_architecture.png 

NetApp VSC for Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform resources

Demo

Below is a short demo (8 minutes) showing how the VSC for Apache CloudStack plugin works and its capabilities:

Annotated Recorded Demo - VSC

 

NetApp VSC for Apache CloudStack community

Find out more about VSC for Apache CloudStack, get help, and discuss Apache CloudStack in the NetApp community:

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Citrix Synergy award winner for cloud

NetApp VSC for Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform award winner at the Citrix Synergy conference in May 2014

 

We hope you have enjoyed and found the blog series on Apache CloudStack / Citrix CloudPlatform useful. Please leave comments or reach out to us for more information. We will continue to post blogs on topics that concern cloud enablement and look forward to seeing you again!