OpenStack Block Storage (Cinder)
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Standalone Cinder Containerized using Docker Compose

** This was a proof of concept for running Cinder services in containers and is no longer supported.**

There are several projects that support containerized services now. A good place to start may be the LOCI Project.


Provides Block Storage as a service as part of the OpenStack Project. This project deploys Cinder in containers using docker-compose and also enabled the use of Cinder's noauth option which eliminates the need for keystone. One could also easily add keystone into the compose file along with an init script to set up endpoints.

LOCI (Lightweight Open Compute Initiative)

The block-box uses OpenStack Loci to build a base Cinder image to use for each service. The examples use Debian as the base OS, but you can choose between Debian, CentOS and Ubuntu.

We're currently using Cinder's noauth option, but this pattern provides flexibility to add a Keystone service if desired.

To build

Start by building the required images. This repo includes a Makefile to enable building of openstack/loci images of Cinder. The Makefile includes variables to select between platform (debian, ubuntu or centos) and also allows which branch of each project to build the image from. This includes master, stable/xyz as well as patch versions. Additional variables are provided and can be passed to make using the -e option to control things like naming and image tags. See the Makefile for more info.

If you're going to utilize an external storage device (ie not using LVM), all you need to build is the base Cinder image. Set the variable in the Makefile to choose the Cinder Branch you'd like to use and Platform then simply run:

make base

You can also build an image to run LVM (NOTE: This is dependent on the base cinder image):

make lvm

To build both the base and lvm enabled image make blockbox

All we're doing here is a docker build utilizing the loci Dockerfile and bindeps. Currently loci images are not published regulary (although they will be in the future) so we require you to build images before running docker-compose up.

For more information and options, check out the openstack/loci page on

NOTE The loci project is moving fairly quickly, and it may or may not continue to be a straight forward light weight method of building container Images. The build has been known to now work at times, and if it becomes bloated or burdensome it's easy to swap in another image builder (or write your own even).


Creates a base image with cinder installed via source. This base image is enough to run all of the services including api, scheduler and volume with the exception of cinder-volume with the LVM driver which needs some extra packages installed like LVM2 and iSCSI target driver.

Each Cinder service has an executable entrypoint at /usr/local/bin.

NOTE If you choose to build images from something other than the default Debian base, you'll need to modify the Makefile for this image as well.


This is a special image that is built from the base cinder image and adds the necessary packages for LVM and iSCSI.

Accessing via cinderclient

You can of course build a cinderclient container with a cinder entrypoint and use that for access, but in order to take advantage of things like the local-attach extension, you'll need to install the client tools on the host.

Before using, you must specify these env variables at least, OS_AUTH_TYPE, CINDER_ENDPOINT, OS_PROJECT_ID, OS_USERNAME. You can utilize our sample file cinder.rc, then you can use client to communicate with your containerized cinder deployment with noauth!!

Remember, to perform local-attach/local-detach of volumes you'll need to use sudo. To preserve your env variables don't forget to use sudo -E cinder xxxxx

To run

docker-compose up -d

Don't forget to modify the etc-cinder/cinder.conf file as needed for your specific driver. The current default setup should give you the ability to quickly deploy a fully functional stand-alone cinder deployment with LVM. If you'd like to add your own external driver, it's quite simple, and we've included an example for adding an additional volume service to the base deployment/compose. See the section below for more details.

Note: If you use cinder-lvm image, you must guarantee the required volume group which is specified in the cinder.conf already exists in the host environment before starting the service.

Adding your own driver

We don't do multi-backend in this type of environment; instead we just add another container running the backend we want. We can easily add to the base service we've create using additional compose files.

The file docker-compose-add-vol-service.yml provides an example additional compose file that will create another cinder-volume service configured to run the SolidFire backend.

After launching the main compose file:

docker-compose up -d

Once the services are initialized and the database is synchronized, you can add another backend by running:

docker-compose -f ./docker-compose-add-vol-service.yml up -d

Note that things like network settings and ports are IMPORTANT here!!

Access using the cinderclient container

You can use your own cinderclient and openrc, or use the provided cinderclient container. You'll need to make sure and specify to use the same network that was used by compose.

docker run -it -e OS_AUTH_TYPE=noauth \
  -e CINDERCLIENT_BYPASS_URL=http://cinder-api:8776/v3 \
  -e OS_PROJECT_ID=foo \
  --network blockbox_default cinderclient list

Make sure the environment vars match the startup script for your database host

docker run -d -p 5000:5000
-p 35357:35357
--link mariadb
--name keystone
--hostname keystone
-e OS_PASSWORD=password
-e DEMO_PASSWORD=password
-e DB_HOST=mariadb
-e DB_PASSWORD=password

docker run -d -p 5672:5672 --name rabbitmq --hostname rabbitmq rabbitmq

docker run -d -p 8776:8776
--link mariadb
--link rabbitmq
--name cinder-api
--hostname cinder-api
-v ~/block-box/etc-cinder:/etc/cinder
-v ~/block-box/init-scripts:/init-scripts cinder_debian sh /init-scripts/

docker run -d --name cinder-scheduler
--hostname cinder-scheduler
--link mariadb
--link rabbitmq
-v ~/block-box/etc-cinder:/etc/cinder
cinder_debian cinder-scheduler

docker run -d --name cinder-volume
--hostname cinder-volume
--link mariadb
--link rabbitmq
-v ~/block-box/etc-cinder:/etc/cinder
cinder-debian cinder-volume