Virtual Machine Creation

Creating virtual machines in Stratosphere is straight forward.  Every machine requires the following to be selected:

IMPORTANT: The instructions vary slightly between Stratosphere public offerings and EPN offerings.  Public offerings use security groups.  EPN offerings use private networks and port forwarding for security.  Please follow the instructions appropriate to your needs.

Here is a graphical representation of the process involved in creating a virtual machine:


Vm Creation Process 3


There are several ways to begin the process.  You can start from your portal's "Virtual Machines" view,

Vmviewall


OR from your portal's "Templates" view.

Templateviewall

Once you have begun, here are the steps you need to follow:


Select a zone

When creating a virtual machine you will first be prompted to select the zone in which to create the virtual machine. The zone will determine the placement of the virtual machine and the templates available.


Zoneopts

For more information about zones, go HERE


Select a template

Next select the template operating system (Linux or Windows). 

Note: Different zones may have unique template offerings.

Vmcreate02

Then select the most suitable template.

Vmcreate03

Note:  If you are a first time user, choose a template that most closely satisfies your requirements.  You can then modify your machine to suit your environment.  Once you have the virtual machine configured to your liking, you can then create your own template from it.  That will include all of you customizations.  Subsequent virtual machines can be created from these "private" templates.

For more information about creating private templates, go HERE


Select a service and data disk offering

After selecting the template for the virtual machine you will be asked to select the service offering and an optional data disk offering. The service offering will determine the amount of resources available to the virtual machine, while the data disk offering will attach an additional volume to the virtual machine at creation. 

Serviceofferingoptions

Design your VMs with portability in mind. System (root) volumes can easily be replaced from existing templates; data or application volumes cannot. Where ever possible, put unique, proprietary and irreplaceable data on volumes other than root. That will afford you the luxury of being able to move them to different systems if needed and preserve them in the event of an unintended deletion or catastrophic failure of the host VM.

For more information about service offerings, go HERE

Offerings larger than 4 cores require prior approval. To request this, go to Request Stratosphere High CPU Offerings


Select a security group (Stratosphere public offering only)

Security groups determine the ingress connections that are allowed to the virtual machine. The default security group is always applied. Additional groups can be added to the virtual machine at your discretion.

All of the security groups you have defined will be displayed in the list box.  You can select one or more from that list.  If you do not have any groups defined, you will have a default group associated with your virtual machine at a minimum.

Note: Security groups can only be added to a virtual machine at the time of its creation.

Secgrpchoice

If you do not have any security groups defined, or if you wish to create a new group, click on the "Or, Create A New Security Group" line.  You will be presented with the following:

Createnewsecgrp01

Security groups can be assigned to multiple virtual machines. Rules intended for one virtual machine will be applied to every virtual machine sharing that security group. For example, if you add a rule opening port 22 globally to allow SSH access to a particular virtual machine, every virtual machine sharing that security group will also be allowed that access from everywhere.

There are no limits to the number of security groups than can be assigned to a virtual machine. This feature is useful. It allows for the creation of security groups with very specific access rules which can then be added to any virtual machine needing such access. This is much safer than modifying security groups that have previously been associated with other virtual machines. Changes to existing security groups might result in unintended access being granted to systems other than the ones you desire.

Security groups cannot be added after the fact. They can only be added during the act of creation.If you think you might need a rules that are unique and specific to a particular VM, add a group for that purpose now. You can define or refine the rules later.

For more information about security groups, go HERE


Choose network settings (Stratosphere EPN offering only)

If you are creating an instance in our private(EPN) cloud,  you will be asked to select the network settings for the virtual machine. You need to have at least one default virtual network defined.  If you do not, you will see this:

Epn Network Addressing First Time

You cannot proceed with the creation of your virtual machine until you have completed this task.  

At this point, you can click on the "Create a default network" option which will bring you the Virtual Networks view. 

Epn Virtual Network Start

There is an entire section about creating virtual networks.  For more information, go HERE

After you have created one or more virtual networks, your "Select Network" section will forever more allow you to pick and choose from the various networks you have created. Select the default network you need by clicking on the up/down button.  If you have also created one or more "non-default" virtual networks, you will also be able to pick and choose which of those to associate by clicking on the appropriate check box.  

Your "Select Network" section will look something like this:

Epn Network Addressing

Note:  You have the option of specifying the exact address you wish to assign to your virtual machine.  It must, however, be within the range of addresses you specified for your virtual network.

Select a key pair

Public/private key pairs allow you to securely connect to your instance after it launches. The private key will also be used to securely unencrypt the virtual machine password. Select one from the drop-down list or create a new one.

Selectkeypair

Sharing key pairs between various VMs is convenient but should that private key be lost or stolen, every VM using that pair could be compromised. There are no limits to the number of key pairs you can create.  

If you want to create a new key pair, click on the "Or, Create A New Key Pair" line.  You will be presented with the following:

Createnewkeypair

Give your key pair a meaningful name.  Clicking on "Continue" will create and select this for you.

If you do not store your private keys on the portal, make certain that you download them and put them in a secure location. Without your private keys, you will not be able to do such things as authenticate to your VMs using SSH keys or retrieve your VMs' passwords.

For more information about creating new Key Pairs, go HERE


Add additional options

The last step will allow for an name (mandatory) and group (optional) to be assigned to the virtual machine. Names will allow you to personalize your VMs, to make them more identifiable. Groups will allow you to organize your VMs so that you can display like systems together in your browser. You can also configure the portal to create multiple machines (from 1 to 10) at the same time using the same configuration options you have selected.

Vmwizard Default

Note: You must give your virtual machine a name.  It can be virtually anything you want it to be.  You can use the entire alphabet, all digits, dashes and underscores.  You cannot use special characters such as slashes or dots.   It can be changed later.  The system will not allow you to "Continue" if the name field is left blank or if you use an invalid character.

If you create multiple servers with the same name, the system will automatically increment the name for you to make it easier to differentiate. In the above example, "Your_Web_Server" would become "Your_Web_Server (1)", "Your_Web_Server (2)", etc

Other options include Instance User Data and Instance Tags

Confirm selection

After selecting the name and group for the virtual machine you will be able to review your selections and make changes before launching the virtual machine(s). 

Vm Confirm

To complete the virtual machine setup, click the button labeled 'Start Virtual Machines'. When the virtual machines have finished booting, you will receive an e-mail notification.