CEP (Cloud Enablement Platform)

CEP leverages docker swarm cluster which allows us to orchestrate docker container workloads. The CEP includes features

  1. Dynamic URL Generation for services deployed in swarm
  2. Set of base docker images which applications can choose to use
  3. Docker Private Registry
  4. Service Health Checks
  5. Service monitoring
  6. Service Logging etc.

CEP Infrastructure Provision

You can follow the below steps to setup a CEP environment either in Public Cloud VMs (AWS, Azure etc), Private Cloud VM’s or locally.


  • Linux based - CentOS 7 or above / RHEL 7 or above, 64 bit. You can chose to use a single machine for the whole setup, However if you are doing a production like setup, the recommendation is 3 or more machines for availability reasons.

  • Make sure that you have access to download softwares from the internet. The ansible script download Docker from the Docker Repository on https://yum.dockerproject.org/repo/main/centos/7 and in addition downloads docker images from https://hub.docker.com

  • Ansible > 2.2.0

    In order to install ansible, please run the below command in the Controller Machine.

    sudo yum install -y epel-release
    sudo yum install -y ansible
  • Git

    In order to install git, please run the below command.

    sudo yum install -y git 

Note: To Setup in RHEL Machines, make sure that enterprise subscription is enabled, otherwise the ansible scripts may fail.

Install CEP

You can follow the below steps to setup a CEP environment either in Public CLoud VMs (AWS, Azure etc), Private Cloud VMs or locally.

To begin with, get the source code

git clone https://github.com/EdgeVerve/cep-provision.git

Navigate to the cloned folder and modify Inventory File(Inventory_CEP for default) to add the details of your machines,

  • [manager] - Add the machine details which needs to be created as manager mode in docker swarm cluster.

  • [worker] - Add the machines details which needs to be created as worker mode in docker swarm cluster. Note, a machine can be both manger and worker.

Machine details has to be in following format: ansible_ssh_user=user ansible_ssh_pass=password ansible_become=true ansible_become_method=sudo ansible_become_pass=password

Machine Ip: IP of the machine

ansible_ssh_user: The default ssh user name to use

ansible_ssh_pass: The ssh password to use [optional if trust setup is done]

ansible_become: This allows to force privilege escalation. [should be “yes”]

ansible_become_method: Allows to set previlege escalation method [should be “sudo”]

ansible_become_pass: Allows to set the previlege escalation password. [optional if trust setup is done]

Now go ahead and set Environment variables http_proxy, https_proxy, no_proxy. This is required if you use a proxy to access internet.

export http_proxy=http://username:urlencodedpassword@proxyIp:port
export https_proxy=http://username:urlencodedpassword@proxyIp:port
export no_proxy=whatever no proxy ip addresses/domain names needed

set the following Environment variable required for Ansible

  • ANSIBLE_SCP_IF_SSH - set to Y if SFTP is not enabled in the remote machines.
  • ANSIBLE_HOST_KEY_CHECKING - set to True if a host is reinstalled and has a different key in �known_hosts�, this will result in an error message until corrected.

Now we will start the play to go ahead and install CEP.

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Install.yml -i Inventory_CEP -c paramiko

It will ask for inputs. Here’s the description of each question it asks

  • Set Domain Name to access application/services(DNS should support *.domainname): This is the subdomain you are going to use to access the services hosted on CEP. e.g. if you give cepapp.qa as input, the applications you deploy on the CEP will be accessible as https://application.cepapp.qa.

  • Docker storage lvm setup required: By default you can use any kind of storage for docker daemon to store it’s files,the recommendation is to have a lvm storage. The Ansible script can create a lvm storage from unmounted space for you.

  • Docker storage setup required: The ansible will convert the unmounted space to lvm storage and configure the docker daemon to use it. Specify unmounted storage path.

  • Do you want setup NFS Server to persist CEP Component data: The ansible will setup NFS server on the machine specified in [NFSServer] group in inventory file and enable access to all the host machines in the cluster.

  • Specify NFS Server share Folder (required if NFS Server setup is yes): The NFS share path will be mounted in all host machines for persisting CEP component datas like registry, grafana, portainer etc.

  • Specify an folder for CEP config files and Docker data (eg: /datadisk): This is the folder on which CEP config files and data will be stored.

  • Install CEP Portal - Portainer - yes/no: This can help in container management like check service logs etc.

  • Install Monitoring Service - Prometheus-Grafana: This will setup monitoring for your environment.

  • Install Gitlab Service - yes/no: This can help you install gitlab as a service.

  • Install Logging Service - Graylog - yes/no: This will setup graylog for your environment as a centralized logging server.

Provide responses for the prompts.

CEP install script stores the given responses and suggests the given input as default value next time you run the script. Alternatively, to set these parameters without the script asking for it, you can add these variables with your inputs in group_vars/all file like this,

domainname: cepapp.qa
cepfolder: /datadisk
installgitlab: False
installcepui: True
directLVMstorage: False
docker_storage_devs: ""
installgraylog: False
installmonitor: True
setupNFS: True
nfsSharePath: /nfsshare
installAutoScale: True

Once these values are stored in this file, the script reads from this and suggests default from this. To skip the prompt part you can run the following command,

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Install.yml -i Inventory_CEP -c paramiko --skip-tags "variable_setup"

The execution takes few minutes to complete and you can trace the execution steps in the command prompt. Post successful completion, CEP infrastructure will be ready for use.

You can check if CEP is up by accessing

curl -k https://registry.cepapp.qa/v2/_catalog

The above command should return a valid json which would prove that CEP is up and a docker registry is running on it.

Add Node

To Add Node into existing CEP infrastructure, please add node details in inventory file either in Manager group or worker group or both and run below command,

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Install.yml -i Inventory_CEP -c paramiko

Uninstall CEP

To Uninstall CEP infrastructure, Please run the below command

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Uninstall.yml -i Inventory_CEP

Provide responses for the prompts to complete uninstallation. To run as a single command instead of interactive prompts, use the below command with preset inputs.

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Uninstall.yml -i Inventory_CEP --extra-vars "CONFIRM=yes DomainName=cepapp.qa cepfolder=/datadisk"

Run feature-specific mode of CEP

It is possible to run CEP with configuration to install only some specific feature or skip some feature. This can be achieved by adding ’tags’ or ‘skip-tags’ flag with install CEP command.

The supported tags are:

variable_setup: Change/create setup configuration.

pre_check: Do pre-check of nodes to find if nodes are supported by CEP

cert_gen: Generate self-signed certificates that can be used for docker daemon and/or router ssl termination.

nfs_server_setup: Setup nfs server for persistence storage.

docker_storage: setup docker storage driver recommended by docker for specific OS

certs: install self-siged certificates

install_docker: Install docker-ce to all nodes.

setup_cleanup_cron: Setup cron to clean-up garbage volume/image/container generated by docker runtime.

cadvisor: Setup cadvisor as a service in all nodes.

swarm_setup: Setup swarm with the nodes specified in inventory file.

router: Setup router which will generate dynamic URL based on deployed application

private_registry: Setup private registry to serve private docker images.

cep_portal: Deploy Container Management Portal.

gitlab: Deploy gitlab in CEP.

graylog: Deploy logging service in CEP

monitoring: Setup and deploy monitoring components.

auto-scaling: Setup and deploy auto-scaling components

To run specific task(s) on CEP

Example: To run swarm_setup with router where it is assumed that you have already have docker setup on nodes then you have to run,

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Install.yml -i Inventory_CEP -c paramiko --tags "swarm_setup,router"

To skip specific task(s) on CEP

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Install.yml -i Inventory_CEP -c paramiko --skip-tags "auto-scaling"

Pre-check of CEP

CEP install script has a feature to test the nodes to see if it has pre-requisite access/packages before installing CEP on nodes.

Depending upon pass/fail status of node, the script will show what is the scan status and continue running on eligible nodes by default. If you only need to run pre_check first time, you can run,

ansible-playbook --flush-cache CEP_Install.yml -i Inventory_CEP -c paramiko --tags "pre_check"

This will show scan result of each node separately if the node is eligible for CEP Installation.



  1. CEP install script stores certificates, configuration in the same folder where the code has been downloaded. If you decide to delete the folder, make sure to backup following files,

    a. SSL Certificates generated in SSLCertificates/.

    b. configuration on group_vars/all.

    c. Inventory on Inventory_CEP.

    Once you need to run the script again, restore these files before running the script.

Access servers without Passwords

It is recommended to have password less access to the servers to prevent password leak from Inventory file. To have this, one need to setup trust and add password less sudo access for the ansible user. Follow the steps mentioned to achieve this (taken from SSH key setup),

  1. Generate public key in host machine
ssh-keygen -t rsa
  1. Copy public key to target machines to setup trust
ssh-copy-id <user>@<target ip>
  1. Add password less sudo access on servers
vi /etc/sudoers
#uncomment the following line

These steps will ensure password less access to servers and only mentioning the target ip and user in Inventory file is enough for ansible script to connect and form CEP infrastructure.

Docker storage setup

By default, Docker puts data and metadata on a loop device backed by a sparse file. This is great from a usability point of view (zero configuration needed) but terrible from a performance point of view. To resolve this, real block devices should be provisioned for docker and docker needs to be configured to use direct-lvm storage driver.

To provision this, docker needs an unmounted storage space. Following commands lists the mounted devices,

df -aTh

The device can be unmounted using the following command where /dev/sdb is the storage required.

umount /dev/sdb

If any process is restricting it from being mounted you can check for other mountpoints and check for blocking processes by following commands

fuser /dev/sdb
lsof /dev/sdb

After unmounting you can give input or append in existing ansible install command as follows. This will format the /dev/sdb storage and provision it to be used with docker. Any data inside the partrition would be destroyed.

DirectLVMstorage=yes Docker_storage_devs=/dev/sdb

Docker daemon would also be configured by ansible script to use the specified volume as image and container storage.


Please check github for FAQ and further information.