Cello Ansible agent how-to
Cello Ansible agent is a set of Ansible playbooks which allows developers and Fabric network operators to stand up a Hyperledger Fabric network very quickly in a set of virtual or physical servers in cloud or lab.
The following is the list of the general steps you can follow to use the Ansible agent to stand up your own fabric network:
- Setup Ansible controller
- Create configuration files
- Provision the servers
- Initialize the servers
- Setup fabric network
- Verify fabric network
This document also provides the following sections to help you use the Cello Ansible agent:
Cloud configuration file details
Fabric configuration file details
Running an Ansible playbook
Use ssh-agent to help Ansible
Convenient configurations and commands
Use the existing servers
Security rule references
You need an Ansible controller to run Ansible playbooks. An Ansible controller can be any machine (VirtualBox VM, your laptop, AWS instance, etc) that has Ansible 126.96.36.199 or greater installed on it.
Please follow the offical Ansible installation instructions from the Ansible web site to install Ansible. If you want to start quickly and already have a clean Ubuntu 16.04 system, here are the commands to install Ansible:
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install python-pip -y sudo pip install 'ansible>=188.8.131.52'
Once it is installed, you should run following command to check its version:
The results should show something at or above 184.108.40.206. It is entirely possible that you may have to install additional software that Ansible depends on in some older versions of operating systems.
Ansible relies heavily on
ssh to work with virtual or physical servers. To
establish an ssh connection to the servers, you will need an ssh key pair.
You may choose to use your own preexisting pair, but it is highly
recommended to create a new one for test purposes. Here are the steps to generate
a key pair:
mkdir -p ~/.ssh && cd ~/.ssh && ssh-keygen -t rsa -f fd -P ""
This will create a ssh key pair without a passphrase in your ~/.ssh
directory. The name of the private and public key files will be
fd.pub, respectively. In the default Ansible agent playbook
configuration files, the ssh key is assumed to exist at that location with those
names. If you use different names, then you will need to change the
configuration to match your own ssh key pair filenames.
When you run the playbook against a cloud such as OpenStack or AWS, the ssh public key you generated above will be automatically injected into the servers during the Provision the servers step. If your servers were not provisioned by the Cello Ansible agent, you will have to manually inject/copy the public key onto each machine. For each machine, you will also need to place the ssh public key in the file named ~/.ssh/authorized_keys in the user account which you will use to log into the server.
Once you have the ssh keys, start up the ssh agent on the Ansible controller, using the following command:
eval $(ssh-agent -s) && ssh-add ~/.ssh/fd
The Ansible agent is part of the Hyperledger Cello project. To run its playbooks, you will need to clone the Cello repo.
cd ~ git clone --depth=1 https://gerrit.hyperledger.org/r/cello
This command will clone the repo into a folder named
cello. The Ansible agent
is at the following directory:
from this point on, you should stay in that directory for all command executions. This directory is also referred to root agent directory. For convenience, you can execute the following command to help you get back to this directory easily:
export AAROOT=~/cello/src/agent/ansible cd $AAROOT
When you run the playbook against a cloud such as OpenStack or AWS, Ansible requires that specific libraries be installed on the controller to access these clouds. These libraries are normally called Ansible cloud modules. When you work with a specific cloud, you will need only to install the cloud modules for that cloud. Here are the steps to install Ansible modules for AWS, Azure and OpenStack respectively:
AWS: sudo pip install boto boto3 Azure: sudo pip install azure OpenStack: sudo pip install shade
These modules are used during the Provision the servers step. If you are not running the Ansible agent against a cloud provider, you do not need any of these modules.
The Ansible agent relies on two configuration files to work and stand up your fabric network. One is the cloud configuration file, the other is the fabric configuration file.
The cloud configuration file is used when running against a cloud such as AWS, Azure or OpenStack to create virtual machines, create security rules for networking, inject ssh keys, and eventually delete the virtual machines when you decide to destroy everything you created. Ansible agent provides the following sample cloud configuration files:
$AAROOT/vars/aws.yml $AAROOT/vars/azure.yml $AAROOT/vars/os.yml
You should create a copy of one of the above cloud configuration example files and modify it as needed with your cloud credentials, etc.
The fabric configuration file is used to define how the Hyperledger Fabric network will be created. This file will let you specify what release of Fabric you want to use, what organizations to create, how many peers or orderers will be in an organization, how many kafka and zookeeper nodes you'd like to have and how you want to lay out your Fabric network on the servers you have. Ansible agent provides the following sample fabric configuration files:
$AAROOT/vars/bc1st.yml $AAROOT/vars/bc2nd.yml $AAROOT/vars/vb1st.yml
You should create a copy of one of the above fabric configuration example files and modify it as needed with your desired Fabric topology, if needed.
Together, the fabric and cloud configuration files ultimately control what your Fabric network will look like. You should make your own copies, then make changes to those copies based on your own needs and credentials to run the Ansible playbook to produce your Fabric network. Your copies of these configuration files should be in the same directory as the example files, or Ansible will be unable to find them.
The following examples will assume you have created your own cloud configuration
file copy named
mycloud.yml and your own fabric configuration file copy named
myfabric.yml from their respective sample files. Since both types of sample
files are relatively large, have a good understanding of what each field means
in both files is absolutely critical. Please refer to the following two sections
for details on each field in the two types of files.
This initial step provisions a set of virtual servers from cloud in a cloud provider.
ansible-playbook -e "mode=apply env=mycloud cloud_type=os" provcluster.yml
The above command will provision (prov is short for provision) a cluster of
virtual machines using an OpenStack cloud, with the environment and
configuration defined in the
vars/mycloud.yml file. The value
mode tells the playbook to create the resources. The value
for the parameter
cloud_type indicates that we are running this playbook
against an OpenStack cloud. The value
mycloud for the parameter
the cloud config file
vars/mycloud.yml should be used. The possible values for
destroy, the possible values for cloud_type are
azure at present.
This step produces a set of servers in your cloud and an Ansible host file named runhosts in this directory on your Ansible controller:
If you are working with servers already exist, you will need to follow the section Use the existing servers to continue setting up your fabric network.
To remove everything this step created, run the following command:
ansible-playbook -e "mode=destroy env=mycloud cloud_type=os" provcluster.yml
This step will install all necessary software packages, setup an overlay network, and configure DNS services and registrator services on the machines created in previous step:
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=apply env=mycloud env_type=flanneld" initcluster.yml
env is same as in previous step. The parameter
indicates what communication environment you would like to setup. The possible
values for this parameter are
flanneld is used to
setup a docker swarm like environment. Value
k8s is to set up a Kubernetes
To remove everything this step created, run the following command:
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=destroy env=mycloud env_type=flanneld" initcluster.yml
This step will build (or download from a Docker repository) the various required Fabric binaries and docker images, create certificates, and eventually run various fabric components such as peer, orderer, kafka, zookeeper, fabric ca, etc on the environment produced by the previous steps:
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=apply env=myfabric deploy_type=compose" setupfabric.yml
env value in the command indicates which Fabric network configuration to
use. The meaning of this parameter is a bit different compared to the
previous commands. The parameter deploy_type determines if docker
compose will be used to deploy, or Kubernetes will be used to deploy.
This should corrlate to the
env_type parameter given in the
Initialize the servers step.
To remove everything this step created, run the following command:
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=destroy env=myfabric deploy_type=compose" setupfabric.yml
If all previous steps run without any errors, you can run the following playbook to verify the running status of each container:
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=verify env=bc1st" verify.yml
env value in the command should match the value used in Setup the fabric network
The command should access all the servers and display the container
status for each container in your fabric network. If these containers do not
exit/crash, then you know you have successfully deployed your own fabric network.
Useful tips for running the Ansible agent
The cloud configuration file is used by Ansible agent to work with a specific cloud. It is very important to make every field in the file accurate according to your own cloud. Most of the information in this file should be provided by your cloud provider. If you are not 100% sure what value a field should have, it would be a good idea to use the corresponding value in the sample cloud configuration file. The following section describes what each field means. Please use vars/os.yml as a reference and see example values for these fields:
auth: Authorization fields for a cloud auth_url: url for cloud Authorization username: User name to log in to the cloud account password: Password for the user of the cloud account project_name: Name of the project of your cloud, specific to OpenStack domain: The domain of the project, specific to OpenStack cluster: This section defines how virtual machines should be created target_os: The operating system we are targeting, it has to be `ubuntu` at present image_name: Cloud image name to be used to create virtual machines region_name: Region name for VMs to reside in, leave blank if unsure ssh_user: The user id to be used to access the virtual machines via ssh availability_zone: The availability zone, leave blank to use default validate_certs: When access cloud, should the certs to be validated? Set to false if your cloud use self signed certificate private_net_name: The private network name from your cloud account on which your VMs should be created flavor_name: Flavor name to create your virtual machine public_key_file: The public ssh key file used to connect to servers, use absolute path private_key_file: The private ssh key file, use absolute path, public_key_file and this key file should make a pair node_ip: Use public ip or private ip to access each server, only possible value are `public_ip` and `private_ip` assign_public_ip: Should each VM be allocated public IP address or not, true or false, default is true container_network: This section defines overlay network, you should not change this unless you absolutely know what you are doing Network: Overlay network address space, should be always in cidr notion, such as 172.16.0.0/16 SubnetLen: The bit length for subnets, it should be 24 normally, do not change it unless you absolutely know what you are doing SubnetMin: minimum subnet SubnetMax: maximum subnet Backend: backend for flanneld setup Type: the type for flanneld setup Port: the port to use service_ip_range: when use k8s, this defines service ip range dns_service_ip: dns service ip address for k8s node_ips: a list of public IP addresses if you like the VMs to be accessible and using preallocated IP addresses name_prefix: VM name prefix when create new VMs, this combines with stack_size to make VM names. These names will be used in fabric configuration For example,if your prefix is fabric, and stack size is 3, then you will have 3 VMs named fabric001, fabric002, fabric003, these names will be referred as server logic names domain: domain name to use when create fabric network nodes. stack_size: how many VMs to be created etcdnodes: which nodes you like the etcd to be set up on. only needed for k8s, should be a list of logic name like fabric001, fabric002, fabric003 builders: which VM to be used to build fabric binaries. should be only one machine, use logic name like fabric001, fabric002, etc. flannel_repo: The url point to the flanneld tar gz file etcd_repo: The url point to the etcd tar gz file k8s_repo: The url point to the k8s binary root directory go_repo: The url point to the go lang tar gz file volume_size: when create VMs the size of the volume block_device_name: block device name when create volume on OpenStack cloud fabric network, to verify that, you can run the following command to see
The Fabric configuration file defines how your Fabric network will look, how many servers you will use, how many organizations you would like to create, how many peers and orderers each organization has, and how many kafka and zookeeper containers will be set up. Additionally, it defines what names will be given to organizations, peers, orderers etc. This file defines the topology of your Fabric network, and a good understanding of this file is essential in order to create the Fabric network you need. Please use vars/bc1st.yml as a reference and see example values for these fields:
GIT_URL: hyperledger fabric git project url. should be always "http://gerrit.hyperledger.org/r/fabric" GERRIT_REFSPEC: ref spec when build a specifc patch set. for example, it can be "refs/tags/v1.0.5" fabric: This section define hyperledger fabric network layout ssh_user: The user name to be used to log in to the remote servers peer_db: The peer database type, possible values are CouchDB and leveldb tls: Should this deployment use tls, default is false, network: This section defines the layout of the fabric network fabric001: This defines fabric containers running on the node named fabric001, each virtual or physical machine should have a section like this. cas: list of the fabric certificate authority for an organization, the name of each ca should be in the format of <name>.<orgname>, for example, ["ca1st.orga", "ca1st.orgb"] peers: list of the peers run on this node, the format of the names shuold be <role>@<name>.<orgname>, for example, ["firstname.lastname@example.org","email@example.com"], this means that there will be two peers running on this node, they are both from organization named orga, one is acting as anchor node, the other is the worker node. orderers: list of the orderers run on this node, the format of the names should be <name>.<orgname>, for example, ["orderer1st.orgc", "orderer2nd.orgc"], this means that there will be two orderers running on this node, they are both from organization named orc, one is named orderer1st, and the other named orderer2nd. zookeepers: list of the zookeeper containers run on this node. The format for zookeeper containers are <name>, since zookeeper containers do not belong to any organization, their names should be simply a string. For example: ["zookeeper1st", "zookeeper2nd"], this means that there will be two zookeeper containers running on this node, their names are zookeeper1st and zookeeper2nd respectively. kafkas: list of the kafka containers run on this node The format for kafka containers are <name>, since kafka containers do not belong to any organization, their name should be simply a string. For example, ["kafka1", "kafka2"], this means that there will be two kafka containers running on this node, their names are kafka1 and kafka2. baseimage_tag: docker image tag for fabric-peer, fabric-orderer, fabric-ccenv,fabric-tools. for example, it can be "x86_64-1.1.0-alpha", The value of this field is very important, if this value is empty, that means you like to build the fabric binaries and possibly docker container images. This field and the repo section determins where to download binaries or should binaries be downloaded. helper_tag: docker image tag for container fabric-ca, fabric-kafka, fabric-zookeeper, for example, it be "x86_64-1.1.0-preview" ca: This section defines how the fabric-ca admin user id and password admin: ca user admin name adminpw: ca admin user password repo: This section defines where to get the fabric docker image and binary tar gz file. This allows you to use a local docker repository url: Docker image repository for fabric, for example if you are using docker hub, the value will be "hyperledger/", if you are using nexus3, the value will be "nexus3.hyperledger.org:10001/hyperledger/" bin: The url point to the fabric binary tar gz file which contains configtxgen, configtxlator, cryptogen etc.
Starting with Cello 0.8.0, Ansible agent has been upgraded to securely enable
a k8s dashboard when you choose to deploy fabric network over k8s. The Ansible
agent comes with a set of self-signed certificates in a directory named
secrets/certs, if you do not want to use the default certificates, you
should replace these certificates with your own. The Agent also creates a pair
of users named
fabric. These are defined in the
secrets/users/token.csv file. You can change and set your own passwords for
these users here. Once you have everything set up, you should be able to access
the k8s dashboard at the following url:
When you are asked for the token, you can use either
fabrictoken to login.
Ansible allows you to run tasks in a playbook with particular tags or skip particular tags. For example, you can run the follow command
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=apply env=bc1st \ deploy_type=compose" setupfabric.yml --tags "certsetup"
The above command will use the runhosts inventory file and only run tasks
or plays tagged
certsetup, all other plays in the playbooks will be
ansible-playbook -i vars/runhosts -e "mode=apply env=bc1st \ deploy_type=compose" setupfabric.yml --skip-tags "certsetup"
The above command will run all tasks except for the tasks/plays tagged
Since Ansible's only means of communicating with the servers it configures is
ssh, setting up
ssh-agent on the Ansible controller is very important. If
you do not do this, Ansible will likely fail to connect to your machines.
Follow the steps below to set up ssh-agent on the Ansible controller
(the machine you run the Ansible script on).
Create a ssh key pair (only do this once):
ssh-keygen -t rsa -f ~/.ssh/fd
Run this command once in the active shell session you will run the Ansible script from :
eval $(ssh-agent -s) ssh-add ~/.ssh/fd
For the servers created via cloud providers, this step is already done for you. For existing servers, you will need to make sure that the fd.pub key is in the file ~/.ssh/authorized_keys. Otherwise, the servers will reject the ssh connection from Ansible controller.
At the root directory of the Ansible agent there are set of preconfigured playbooks, they were developed as a convenient sample playbooks for you if you mainly work with a particular cloud. Here's a list of these playbooks.
aws.yml awsk8s.yml os.yml osk8s.yml vb.yml vbk8s.yml
These files use their corresponding cloud and fabric configuration
files. For example,
vars/bc1st.yml to set up
a multi-node Fabric network on AWS.
vars/bc1st.yml to set up a multi-node Fabric network on AWS within a k8s cluster.
To use these playbooks, you simply need to make small changes in the coresponding
configuration files in the
vars directory, then issue the following command:
To stand up a Fabric network on AWS:
ansible-playbook -e "mode=apply" aws.yml
To destroy a Fabric network on AWS:
ansible-playbook -e "mode=destroy" aws.yml
If your target environment is OpenStack, then you will be using a slightly different command:
ansible-playbook -e "mode=apply" os.yml or osk8s.yml ansible-playbook -e "mode=destroy" os.yml or osk8s.yml
When you have a set of physical servers or virtual machines already available, you can still use the Ansible agent to stand up your Fabric network. To do that, you will need to manually configure some provisioning steps.
There are two things you need to do, one is to ensure that
your servers can be accessed via ssh, the second is to produce a runhosts
file like the one below. The hostnames of these servers have to form a patten
using a prefix with three digits, for example, fabric001, fabric002, fabric003.
fabric serves as a default prefix which can be changed to any string in
the cloud configuration file. After the prefix, the three digit postfix should start at
001, and increment up to the defined stack size. In the below example, the prefix is
fabric, but you can use any string you prefer as long as it is the same as
the cloud configuration file's
cloud ansible_host=127.0.0.1 220.127.116.11 private_ip=10.0.10.246 public_ip=18.104.22.168 inter_name=fabric001 22.214.171.124 private_ip=10.0.10.247 public_ip=126.96.36.199 inter_name=fabric002 188.8.131.52 private_ip=10.0.10.248 public_ip=184.108.40.206 inter_name=fabric003 [allnodes] 220.127.116.11 18.104.22.168 22.214.171.124 [etcdnodes] 126.96.36.199 188.8.131.52 184.108.40.206 [builders] 220.127.116.11
The above file is a typical Ansible host file. The
cloud ansible_host should be your Ansible
controller server, you should not change that line. All other lines in the file represent
public_ip are a concept that only applies to cloud
providers. If your servers are not in a cloud, then you can use the server's IP
address for both private_ip and public_ip field, but you cannot remove these two
inter_name field is also important, you should name
the server sequentially and these names will be used in later configuration to allocate
Hyperledger Fabric components. Group
allnodes should list all the servers other than the
Ansible controller node. Group
etcdnodes should list all the servers that you wish to install
etcd services on. Group
builders should contain just one server that you wish to use to build
Hyperledger Fabric artifacts such as executables and docker images.
Ansible agent allows you to deploy fabric network onto an existing k8s cluster. To do that, you only need to place your k8s configuration file and possibly certificates in the ansible agent vars directory, the kube configuration file must be named kubeconfig. Then you can use exactly same fabric network configuration file such as bc1st.yml, vb1st.yml file to stand up your own fabric network. You can use the sample configuration file like bc1st.yml or you can use these sample configuration as a starting point to create new ones. Then you simply run the following command to stand up your own fabric network.
ansible-playbook -e "mode=apply env=bc1st deploy_type=k8s" setupfabric.yml
The above command will use the vars/kubeconfig file to deploy fabric network defined in vars/bc1st.yml file.
To destroy what you just created, run the following command::
ansible-playbook -e "mode=destroy env=bc1st deploy_type=k8s" setupfabric.yml
You can also choose to use the ansible agent container to run the above command.
When you work with the public cloud, it is important to open or close certain ports for security and communication reasons. The following ports are used by the flanneld overlay network and other services of the Fabric network. You will need to make sure that the ports are open. The following example assumes that the overlay network is 10.17.0.0/16 and the docker host network is 172.31.16.0/20:
Custom UDP Rule UDP 8285 10.17.0.0/16 Custom UDP Rule UDP 8285 172.31.16.0/20 SSH TCP 22 0.0.0.0/0 Custom TCP Rule TCP 2000 - 60000 10.17.0.0/16 Custom TCP Rule TCP 2000 - 60000 172.31.16.0/20 DNS (UDP) UDP 53 172.31.16.0/20 DNS (UDP) UDP 53 10.17.0.0/16 All ICMP - IPv4 All N/A 0.0.0.0/0
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