How Openstack-as-a-Service works

Openstack-as-a-service is analogous to and technically extremely similar to the OwnTime zone used to offer private cloud services to Intersect members and customers for thousands of research projects. The Local zone is typically interconnected via a “SpaceTransit” dedicated link to the Intersect NSW eResearch Nexus to permit high performance networking and storage interconnect.

The Nexus is a convergence point for the national Nectar Cloud and Intersect services, and is the administrative aggregation point for OwnTime, OwnTime Local, Space interconnect, the NSW instance of the replicated Distributed Nectar Control Plane, the distributed support network and the Central Nectar Control Plane.

A simplified mapping between logical and physical service colocation is depicted in this diagram:

Local Zone
Physical servers are built using an automated network operating system installation. Installation and configuration of all Openstack components is managed through a central Puppet server.

The standard server configuration is Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, KVM hypervisor and two bonded 10GbE ports connected through to the Intersect Nectar VLANs. All server operating systems are managed by Intersect. Openstack configuration is managed through the Puppet service.

Shared data can be implemented in a number of ways, including standard Openstack volume, object, ephemeral and network storage compatibility, detailed later.

Intersect NSW eResearch Nexus
Intersect Australia owns and operates the NSW Nectar node, incorporating Along with co-located petascale data storage and hpc.Time terascale supercomputing this cloud.Time infrastructure forms part of the NSW eResearch Nexus facility.

Intersect OwnTime zone
OwnTime is a logical zone within the Intersect Nectar Node that is used to offer private cloud services to Intersect members and customers. This can be thought of as a cross-organisational version of a Local Zone.

Nectar Distributed Control Plane
Each Nectar node has a local cell controller and related infrastructure. These systems manage and provide the various Openstack services within the cell, such as scheduling of new virtual machines, volume storage, telemetry, logging, monitoring, local configuration and interface to the National Control plane. Most OwnTime Local administration occurs here.

Nectar National Control Plane
The National Control Plane provides core services to the whole Nectar Research Cloud. It receives messages from all Nectar Nodes; collates performance statistics, logs and telemetry; provides central services such as the Dashboard, Keystone authentication, centralised logging and monitoring; project allocation system; Swift object storage; and centralised Puppet server.

The Nectar Cloud Core Services Team is responsible for the core services, planning upgrades, managing the code repositories for the Nectar Openstack packages and coordinating technical communication between all parties. Intersect is intimately connected and shares responsibilities with this team.

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