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Provisioning the IDR

Overview of the architecture

The IDR contains two main groups of servers:

The production (public-facing) IDR (3 servers):

  • Database
  • OMERO.servers
  • Nginx gateway

Ansible prerequisites

Almost all of the provisioning and deployment in the IDR is done using Ansible 2.1. All ansible commands should be run from a shell in the ansible directory.

cd ../ansible

You must first install the required galaxy roles:

ansible-galaxy install -r requirements.yml

The ansible.cfg configuration file will install the roles into the vendor directory.


The IDR is currently hosted on OpenStack, see below for an example Ansible playbook for provisioning compute, storage and networking. The Ansible openstack modules require the shade python module.

Production IDR

Network: idr


  • idr-database: PostgreSQL database server
  • idr-omeroreadwrite: Read-write OMERO.server including OMERO.web
  • idr-omeroreadonly*: Read-only OMERO.servers including OMERO.web
  • idr-proxy: Nginx gateway with custom caching configuration


  • idr-database-db: PostgreSQL data directory
  • idr-omeroreadwrite-data: OMERO data directory
  • idr-proxy-nginxcache: Nginx cache directory

Additional resources

  • idr-management: An instance running Munin for monitoring the production IDR platform
  • Security rules to restrict external access.
  • Ansible hostgroup metadata is set on each instance to ensure the playbooks automatically run against the correct hosts.
  • One floating IP attached to idr-proxy. All other instances will only be accessible by using this node as a proxy.

Ansible provisioning example

You will need to customize the variables at the top of openstack-create-infrastructure.yml to fit with your OpenStack cloud. In particular, you must define a list of SSH public key(s), for example:

- idr_keypair_keys: ["ssh-rsa SSH_PUBLIC_KEY"]

You must have a CentOS 7 cloud image (or equivalent) available.

Ensure you can login to OpenStack from the command line using an OpenStack RC file or equivalent, and run:

ansible-playbook -i localhost, --diff openstack-create-infrastructure.yml

This playbook will create a set of VMs on the OpenStack cloud. You must associate the proxy host to a floating IP either using the OpenStack UI or via the openstack command-line interface:

$ openstack floating ip list
$ openstack server add floating ip <proxy_server_name> <ip>

Ensure this playbook successfully runs to completion before deploying the IDR.

Warning: At present the nova command may be used to attach additional network interfaces to instances. nova does not support clouds.yaml. This will be fixed when the openstack command-line client supports this feature.

Other platforms

You should be able to install the IDR on other clouds or physical hardware by provisioning the resources yourself. All servers must be running CentOS 7. An example static inventory is included in inventories/ansible-hosts.

For a minimal install you must have one host in each of:

  • idr-database-hosts
  • idr-omero-hosts
  • idr-proxy-hosts

The other groups can be empty.

Once you have set up your servers you can deploy the IDR.