MidVision RapidDeploy for WAS ND Edition on Azure

Microsoft Azure Installation and Support guide

1. Overview

This guide will provide step by step instructions how to start using the installed products on your Microsoft Azure instance.

This VM image contains a ready-to-run MidVision RapidDeploy for WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment image at the selected version. In order to use this image, you need to launch it with your selected type, and log in via SSH to create required profile(s) and activate (start) the WebSphere servers.

Visit the MidVision RapidDeploy for WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment Edition page on the Microsoft Azure Marketplace

2. Launching an instance

In order to launch IBM WebSphere Application Server (referred as WAS) + MidVision RapidDeploy, a few settings need to be configured on the Azure console as follows:

  1. Open new Azure Virtual Machine wizard;
  2. Select the IBM WAS Azure image based on your requirements from gallery;
  3. Choose VM name, size, Authentication user and credentials. The Standard DS3V2/General Purpose type or larger is recommended when running IBM WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment with a Deployment Manager and Node Agent profile on the same instance. Basic DS2V2 is the minimal requirement, which will be sufficient to run only one Node Agent or Deployment Manager profile. Larger instances may be required based on the number of IBM WebSphere application servers, clusters etc required and the expected resource use of each;
  4. Define cloud service DNS name, Regions and open endpoint ports.
Port 22 to connect via SSH (enabled by default),
All Ports for WebSphere ND communications between the Dmgr and Nodeagent

 

 3. Initial login and setup

4. Accessing the web and command line consoles

4.1 Access the IBM WebSphere Application Server Admin Console

4.2 Subsequent logins via SSH to the instance

When logging into the instance after the first time, you will be asked if you need to reassign the bound hostnames in the IBM WebSphere configuration. You will need to do this if you have changed the IP address. In this situation, your instance will get the new IP address, whereas the IBM WebSphere configuration still references the old host name of the instance in the deployment manager and node agent profile configurations. In order to fix this issue, you can run the fixhosts.sh script provided in the midvision user home directory, which will search and replace for the old host name occurrences in the configuration files.

4.3 Access the RapidDeploy Web Console

RapidDeploy server and agent will start up automatically when you start your instance. You can access the web console on:

http://[publicip]:9090/MidVision

Note: make sure you have port 9090 open in your Security group when trying to access RapidDeploy web console. For the first time, you can set the password for the default username ” mvadmin “.

5. Maintaining the installation

The following sections cover some of the activities you might want to perform after the instance has been started.
  • azureuser: This is the provisioned Azure user. The username can vary due to can be customised. It is permitted to use all SUDO rights. To switch to the midvision user, type “sudo su - midvision“.
  • midvision: This is the midvision user, You can log in as any other user without using passwords. E.g: “su wasadmin“. To switch to the root user, type “sudo su“. If you want to switch back to root user, type “exit“, this will take you back to the previous user session.
  • root: This is the superuser in linux systems. You can log in as any other user without using passwords. E.g: “su -azureuser“, “su wasadmin“, “su midvision” If you want to switch back to root user, type “exit“, this will take you back to the previous user session.

The IBM WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment Admin Console is initially configured so that you can log in to WebSphere console without any security enabled.

You can further configure WebSphere security in the normal way according to your requirements. 

You can use the managewas.sh in the midvision home directory to stop and start profiles (Deployment Manager and/or Node Agent) on your instance. The script takes the argument ‘stop‘ or ‘start’. It will detect all profiles and perform the action on each profile in turn.

You can open the necessary ports quickly using the setup wizard.  To re-run this section of the wizard, from the midvision home directory run open-wasports.sh. There is an option to open all ports used by IBM WebSphere services, by entering ‘process‘ input. Alternatively, you can choose to open all ports on the instance by entering ‘all‘ input. If you are creating a distributed cell over multiple nodes, we strongly recommend you don’t try to estimate which ports should be opened, but select the ‘process’ option, which will open all the required ports to ensure node agent synchronisation will work correctly. Port opening options:

  • <port number> – Open this port. Multiple ports can be entered, separated by pressing the ‘[return]’ key.
  •  ‘process’           – Open all WebSphere ports for all WebSphere processes detected on the instance.
  • all’                    – Open all ports on the instance (effectively remove the firewall).
  • exit’                  – Exit the port opening script.

If change the server IP address, whereas the IBM WebSphere configuration still references the old host name of the instance in the deployment manager and node agent profile configurations. In order to fix this issue, you can run thefixhosts.sh script provided in the midvision user home directory, which will search and replace for the old host name occurrences in the configuration files. See the section below for detailed instructions running fixhosts.sh

Example changing IP addresses in a distributed system

Please see below for the example steps for the case where a Deployment Manager and remote Node Agent instance are both stopped and restarted after changing the IP address: Take a note of the four IP addresses: the original deployment manager host (referred as oldDmgrHost), the original node agent host (ref oldNodeagentHost), the current deployment manager host (ref newDmgrHost), the current node agent host (ref newNodeAgentHost)

  • Record [oldDmgrHost] and [oldNodeagentHost] addresses
  • Start DMGR instance – get a [newDmgrHost] instance address
  • Login to Dmgr instance – You will be prompted for [oldDmgrHost] and [newDmgrHost] host to replace. Answer and run.
  • Start NodeAgent instance – get a [newNodeAgentHost] instance address
  • Login to NodeAgent instance – You will be prompted for [oldNodeagentHost] and [newNodeAgentHost] host to replace. Answer and run.
  • On Dmgr host , run sudo ./setuphost.sh, entering the [oldNodeagentHost] and [newNodeAgentHost]
  • On NodeAgent host, run ./setuphost.sh, entering the [oldDmgrHost] and [newDmgrHost]
  • Restart the NodeAgent
  • In the AdminConsole, run a full resynchronise from System Administration -> Nodes -> Select the nodes and click “Full resynchronise

Red Hat Enterprise Linux instances are shipped with a firewall by default to protect your machine. For security reasons, the instance is only accessible via SSH (port 22) at first, so further ports can be opened on the firewall as needed. You will need to open all the ports in this internal firewall, which you have open in your Security group. There is a script placed in the user home of the mqm user (/home/midvision), which is also the starting location when logged in. You will need to be the root user to run this script. Example usage:

[midvision@ ] sudo ./open-firewall.sh 9090
Open firewall port 9090 iptables: Saving firewall rules to /etc/sysconfig/iptables:[ OK ]
 

There are a few scripts and other files in midvision and root users home directory, which will need to remain unchanged in order to keep the provided scripts working. Files are placed under /root/WAS_install are required to create the IBM WebSphere profiles. There are a set of scripts in midvision home directory. Those scripts are executed when logging into the instance controlled by .bash_profile, but you can also execute them manually whenever they are needed. There are some hidden files used as well:

.firstrun indicates that the setup wizard has already ran once,

.dontask indicates that the user will not be prompted again for running the setuphost script (if chosen not to ask again),

.host file is needed to determine the previously bound hostname to WebSphere service.

To restart RapidDeploy manually from the filesystem, use the rapiddeploy linux service. The RapidDeploy version is 5.0. RapidDeploy home is located at /var/rd/midvision Example usage:

[midvision@ ] sudo service rapiddeploystart start 
[midvision@ ] sudo service rapiddeploystart stop

The RapidDeploy server uses an in-memory database, so your RapidDeploy framework needs to be shut down properly to save your work. This happens when the instance is stopping or when calling the stop service manually from the command line. Note that on instance restart, unsaved data will be lost.

If you don’t want to use RapidDeploy and free memory on your instance you can stop rapiddeploy service using command:

[midvision@ ] sudo service rapiddeploystart stop

Then in order to make sure it will not start when an instance starts again run this command:

[midvision@ ] sudo systemctl disable rapiddeploystart.service

For security reasons, you will need to change the default password (default value is ‘mvadmin‘) for user mvadmin. This will be requested the first time only when you log in to the RapidDeploy server.

6. Troubleshooting

6.1 Session loss during setup

If you lose your SSH connection to the target instance during the first run setup script execution (e.g. as a result of a network problem), we advise you to delete and recreate the EC2 instance and run the script again.

6.2 Profile startup exceptions

If the profile fails to start with the startmanager.sh or startnode.sh commands, check that you are running as the root user, either by being in a root shell, or by prepending ‘sudo’ to the start command.

6.3 Cannot access the IBM WebSphere admin console (ISC)

Check that  the deployment manager is running, and you have correctly opened all the required ports on the firewall, and that your instance was created using a security group definition that allows TCP access to the instance on the required ports.

6.4 Contacting MidVision support

Please visit our support website.

7. Reference

7.1 Creating a Deployment manager profile

You will be prompted to enter the following values, or accept the defaults:

  • dmgrHostName: the host name binding for the deployment manager profile. This resource has a default value of the current public host name of the instance.
  • cellID: the id of the WebSphere cell containing the profile
  • startingPort: the WebSphere service ports will be incremented from this number, assigning each unused ports to the WebSphere services.
  • profileName: the name of the profile to create

7.2 Creating a Node agent profile

You will be prompted to enter the following values, or accept the defaults:

  • nodeAgentHostName: the host name binding for the Node Agent profile. This resource has a default value of the current public host name of the instance.
  • nodeAgentStartingPort: the WebSphere service ports will be incremented from this number, assigning each unused port to the WebSphere services.
  • nodeAgentCellID: the id of the WebSphere cell containing the profile
  • nodeAgentAdminUserName: the username to authenticate against the deployment manager (if required)
  • nodeAgentAdminPassword: the password to authenticate against the deployment manager (if required)
  • nodeAgentProfileName: the name of the profile
  • dmgrHostName: the host name the deployment manager is running at. This resource has a default value of the current public host name of the instance. If necessary,change this to the hostname, IP or DNS of the remote Deployment Manager instance. Note that if you use a remote deployment manager host, you will need to make sure all the required ports are open on both machines.
  • dmgrPort: the deployment manager SOAP connector port to connect to for the purposes of federation and subsequent synchronisation.