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ExoGENI Administrative Frequently Asked Questions

This page shows frequently asked question from administrators that have deployed ExoGENI racks and is part of the GENI Rack Administration pages.

User Administration

Q. I am the administrator. What can I access in my rack?

As an administrator you have access to all rack components, (switches, real and virtual hosts).

Q. How do I request an administrative account?

Simply send a request for an administrator account to the ExoGENI team by sending email to LDAP credentials are used and administrative privileges are granted via sudo based on LDAP group membership.

Q. What are the roles and responsibilities for a site administrator for the addition of new VLANs? Will GPO or RENCI ExoGENI team handle this remotely?

The team responsible will depend on the stage of the rack deployment. During the initial setup process, the RENCI team set up various site VLANs required for rack operation in the GENI environment. If your site needs to set up additional VLANs, the RENCI team is available to provide support.

Q. What are the roles and responsibilities for a site administrator for site configuration changes? Will GPO/RENCI ExoGENI team handle this remotely?

The RENCI team is responsible for making site changes. If you are thinking of making some changes yourself to the rack configuration, please check with the RENCI ExoGENI team. If you want to see the details of a proposed change, contact the ExoGENI team for more information.

Q. What are the roles and responsibilities for a site administrator for a physical change at a site?

If your site is getting new hardware or if your site needs to be power cycled, you may be contacted by ExoGENI or GPO engineers. Both are uncommon scenarios. If your site needs to schedule an outage, move, or other maintenance that will affect the rack, contact the GMOC to open a ticket with the time and reason for the maintenance. If necessary, ExoGENI or GPO engineers will contact you to coordinate.

Q. Assuming my site needs to be powered-off, who will contact the our site?

In the unlikely event that your site needs to be powered-off or shut down, any one of the GMOC, GPO, or RENCI may be contacting you. If you decide to shut down for any reason, you must notify the GMOC. If you have any questions about what to do technically to properly shut down your ExoGENI rack, contact the RENCI ExoGENI team.

Q. Who has the authority to mandate/delegate changes? And when these changes are approved, how are they audited and tracked?

Once your rack is officially opened to experimenters, the ExoGENI team will periodically update the software in the racks. The GMOC may occasionally ask site administrators to investigate some activity (like a runaway experiment in your rack). If you want to make a change to your rack, for example by connecting a new local LAN to the OpenFlow switch, contact the GMOC to coordinate the change. Please provide as much lead time as possible, because your change might affect running experiments, and they need time to adjust their plans. The GPO may also ask for minor changes, but this is uncommon.

Q. What is the ExoGENI hierarchy? Will RENCI/GPO teams provide first line support while local site administrators are second in line?

The hierarchy is somewhat in flux and depends on the situation. But site administrators shouldn't expect too many requests, and should only be asked for quick turnaround time for critical scenarios such as emergency stop scenarios or for a Legal, Law enforcement and Regulatory agency (LLR) requests.

Rack Resources

Q. What types of servers are in the racks?

The ExoGENI rack has two types of hosts, a head node and worker nodes. The head node runs the ExoGENI software and the worker nodes provide the environments used by the experimenters.

Q. What are the CPU, RAM and storage details for the head node and worker nodes?

Current generation of ExoGENI racks built by IBM and are based on the IBM System x3650 M4. Head nodes have the following hardware specifications:

Component Description Quantity Notes
Processor Intel E5-2609 2 2.4Ghz 8 Cores total
Memory 4GB 1600Mhz 6 24GB Memory Total
Disk 146GB 15K RPM SAS 2 RAID1
Network Intel 1GbE Copper 8
Power 750W 2 1+1 Redundant

Worker nodes have the following hardware specifications:

Component Description Quantity Notes
Processor Intel E5-2609 2 2.4Ghz 8 Cores total
Memory 8GB 1600Mhz 6 48GB Memory Total (3GB per core)
Disk 146GB 15K RPM SAS1 OS Drive
Disk 600GB 10K RPM SAS1 Virtual Machine Image Storage
Network Intel 1GbE Copper4 LAN On Mother Board (LOM)
Network Chelsio T420-CR 1 Dual Port 10GbE Data plane connection
Power 750W 1

Network Requirements

Q. What are the network connection options for the ExoGENI rack?

Current ExoGENI racks ship with 10G network interface cards. Each rack has a Layer 2 dataplane switch that can use 10 and 40Gb uplinks, depending on the site (1G is also possible).


Q. Will GMOC monitor my rack? Do I have visibility into GENI monitoring?

Monitoring is currently set up for each ExoGENI rack as part of the deployment process. Each rack reports data to the GMOC, and the GMOC runs a web service for viewing the data collected, at the location To access your site data, you can use OpenID, InCommon, or a GlobalNOC account. As a site administrator you will also have the ability to download data from the GMOC and plug that into any existing monitoring infrastructure that you may have (e.g. Nagios).