KVM Hypervisor - Management

  • 3 February 2014
  • 16 replies

Userlevel 2
Badge +10
Hello all,

I'm wondering if there is anyone out there using Nutanix with KVM as a hypervisor, and if so,
what kind of management do you use for daily VM related admin jobs?

- virsh/virt-manager ?
- RHEV/virto ?

- OpenStack on top?
- other "cloud solution"?
- custom tools/scripts ?

Please share :)
I'm quite curious about official / eventual cross-vendor support and/or "show-stoppers" you might have experienced or enlightenments you might have had..

P.S..: *psssst*...rumours have it, that Nutanix themselves are developing some "management tool" for KVM..anyone knows more?

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16 replies

Userlevel 1
Badge +7

KVM performance looks correct, But ESX performance is unexpected. Can you check your network setting etc? If you still see poor performance let us know.

For example, make sure that you have removed the 1G interfaces from the vSwitch and only use 10G (This is the default on KVM).

Userlevel 2
Badge +10
thanks for your answer, but i believe you answered the wrong thread 😉
Userlevel 2
Badge +11
+1 :P

Actually our largest deployment is running with KVM and leveraging some of our custom scripts for VM CRUD. Not 100% sure what they're using for management as I know a lot of this is built into their application.

We do have support for OpenStack and some of the storage interfaces, however I'm not sure what all is being used there.

Also, the recent shift from Redhat for supporting KVM is another key thing that now comes into play on the support side. But as you do know, with Nutanix, we're a single point of support and take care of the solution.

And, yes, as you mentioned there is something revolutionary in the works :)
Badge +2
I am testing KVM on NOS 4.1.x on two NX-3050s exactly because of what's coming in next release of NOS. My expectation is that NOS with KVM will soon meet ESX capabilities (in live VMotion, DRS, HA, and Failover).

Only concern I have today is with daily operation of Virtual machines. For example, anyone has come up with an elegant way to export VMs created in one Nutanix cluster, to import on another Nutanix cluster?

I've tried the usual virt-XYZ and virsh utilities, as well as qemu-img conversions to only find that once you import a VM into a nutanix cluster, its declared as not managed by acropolis :(

I'm also interested to see what others are doing with KVM on nutanix.
Userlevel 3
Badge +14
@vinnielima,You are correct, the KVM with Acropolis will have more features in the future releases. As of now, we have live migration, clones, snapshots.Also, at this time, we do not have Acropolis running across 2 clusters to work with each other. This will be implemented later with the use of Prism Central.As you rightly said, only VMs created from Acropolis can be managed by Acropolis and not the ones created by virsh or qemu-img packages.
Badge +2
Thanks for the feedback, eagerly awaiting those capabilities 🙂
Userlevel 2
Badge +16

I just received my Nutanix toy with KVM and Acropolis and ... to be honnest, I'm not sure I will use other tools than tha one provided with the Nutanix Prism software. This is a real charm compared to virt-manager and even virsh !


Userlevel 7
Badge +34
Thanks for sharing @flhoest - look forward to your post in the community and hope to see you at the Nutanix .NEXT Conference.

Let build a great community 🙂
Userlevel 3
Badge +14
If you dont know already, you can migrate VMs from existing KVM (managed with virsh) to Acropolis without turning them off:

Userlevel 2
Badge +16
Really ?
It would be great if you can drive me thru the process. I really need to shut down my last ESX once for all.
How can I migrate from ESX to Nutanix KVM ?
Badge +1
Thanks for sharing @flhoest

Would love to learn more about your experience and also identify areas where we can improve.
Userlevel 2
Badge +13
Here is my checklist for migrating VM. Any issues please let me know. I have done this 3 times following this and have had good luck.1. Mount KVM container up to ESXi.a. Whitelist the ESXi host on the KVM PRISM UIb. ESXi can now mount the NFS datastorei. nfs://x.x.x.x/2. Use Storage vmotion if you wish to move the VM or copy command via the datastore browser.i. The only file that matters are the _flat.vmdkii. When doing Storage vMotion be sure to change disk type to thick provision lazy zero3. Create a new VM on KVM with vCPU and memory requirements.i. When assigning a Hard Disk choose clone from imageii. Choose the Template/ISO and _Flat.vmdk file via / keyiii. Choose IDE for the disk bus type4. Mount the virtIO drivers on the CDROM drive of the new VM5. Power On the VM and open Console6. VM should boot up, and you will need to go to device manager to give the VM the KVM drivers. a. Choose update driver and point the VM to the VIRTIO CDROM drive to choose the driver.b. Reboot the VM after driver installation to finalize all drivers are complete7. Shutdown the VM8. SSH to any Nutanix Controller VM to enter the aclia. Type acli at the command prompt9. Use the vm.disk_ get to get the uuid of the hard disk drive typcially it would be ide110. Use the VM disk create command to create a new SCSI drive based on the UUID from step 9.a. vm.disk_create clone_from_vmdisk=< UUID> bus=scsi11. Back at the KVM PRISM console delete the IDE Hard Disk.12. Power on VM with SCSI Hard Drive and make sure it boots up.
Userlevel 4
Badge +9
We did this for a client and it worked well, but we found that the use case did not work well with AHV because of internal policies, etc., and now they want to switch back to ESXi.

What process can be used to do that?

What I have scoped out so far is this:

  • Take VMs offline in Prism
  • Mount external NFS datastore to CVM
  • Copy VMs to a secondary NFS datastore off the Nutanix cluster
  • Reconfigure the 6 Nutanix nodes for ESXi 6.0U1
  • Deploy vCenter server appliance and create datacenter and HA cluster
  • Add ESXi hosts to HA cluster
  • Add external NFS mount to ESXi hosts
This is where I get stuck. Using vCenter converter 6 standalone or Starwinds V2V converter, I should be able to import the 3rd part disk format, but I would need to create an NFS mount from within the Windows guest OS or workstation running the converter program.

Am I on the right track? or is there a better way?
Badge +2
Link broken?
Userlevel 7
Badge +34
Which link is broken ?
Badge +2
I don't see the link or II posted on the wrong article, my apologies.