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Ceilometer Support in a Contrail Cloud

Ceilometer is an OpenStack feature that provides an infrastructure for collecting SDN metrics from OpenStack projects. The metrics can be used by various rating engines to transform events into billable items. The Ceilometer collection process is sometimes referred to as “metering”. The Ceilometer service provides data that can be used by platforms that provide metering, tracking, billing, and similar services. This topic describes how to configure the Ceilometer service for Contrail.


Contrail Release 2.20 and later supports the OpenStack Ceilometer service, on the OpenStack Juno release on Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS.

The prerequisites for installing Ceilometer are:

  • Contrail Cloud installation

  • Provisioned using enable_ceilometer = True in the provisioning file.


Ceilometer services are only installed on the first OpenStack controller node and do not support high availability in Contrail Release 2.20.

Ceilometer Details

Ceilometer is used to reliably collect measurements of the utilization of the physical and virtual resources comprising deployed clouds, persist these data for subsequent retrieval and analysis, and trigger actions when defined criteria are met.

The Ceilometer architecture consists of:

Polling agent

Agent designed to poll OpenStack services and build meters. The polling agents are also run on the compute nodes in addition to the OpenStack controller.

Notification agent

Agent designed to listen to notifications on message queue and convert them to events and samples.


Gathers and records event and metering data created by the notification and polling agents.

API server

Provides a REST API to query and view data recorded by the collector service.


Daemons to evaluate and notify based on defined alarming rules.


Stores the metering data, notifications, and alarms. The supported databases are MongoDB, SQL-based databases compatible with SQLAlchemy, and HBase. The recommended database is MongoDB, which has been thoroughly tested with Contrail and deployed on a production scale.

Verification of Ceilometer Operation

The Ceilometer services are named slightly differently on the Ubuntu and RHEL Server 7.0.

On Ubuntu, the service names are:

Polling agent

ceilometer-agent-central and ceilometer-agent-compute

Notification agent




API Server



ceilometer-alarm-evaluator and ceilometer-alarm-notifier

On RHEL Server 7.0, the service names are:

Polling agent

openstack-ceilometer-central and openstack-ceilometer-compute

Notification agent




API server



openstack-ceilometer-alarm-evaluator and openstack-ceilometer-alarm-notifier

To verify the Ceilometer installation, users can verify that the Ceilometer services are up and running by using the openstack-status command.

For example, using the openstack-status command on an all-in-one node running Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS with release 2.2 of Contrail installed shows the following Ceilometer services as active:

You can issue the ceilometer meter-list command on the OpenStack controller node to verify that meters are being collected, stored, and reported via the REST API. The following is an example of the output:


The ceilometer meter-list command lists the meters only if images have been created, or instances have been launched, or if subnet, port, floating IP addresses have been created, otherwise the meter list is empty. You also need to source the /etc/contrail/openstackrc file when executing the command.

Contrail Ceilometer Plugin

The Contrail Ceilometer plugin adds the capability to meter the traffic statistics of floating IP addresses in Ceilometer. The following meters for each floating IP resource are added by the plugin in Ceilometer.

The Contrail Ceilometer plugin configuration is done in the /etc/ceilometer/pipeline.yaml file when Contrail is installed by the Fabric provisioning scripts.

The following example shows the configuration that is added to the file:

The following example shows the Ceilometer meter list output for the floating IP meters:

In the meter -list output, the Resource ID refers to the floating IP.

The following example shows the output from the ceilometer resource-show -r 451c93eb-e728-4ba1-8665-6e7c7a8b49e2 command:

The following example shows the output from the ceilometer statistics command and the ceilometer sample-list command for the ip.floating.receive.packets meter:

Ceilometer Installation and Provisioning

There are two scenarios possible for Contrail Ceilometer plugin installation.

  1. If you install your own OpenStack distribution, you can install the Contrail Ceilometer plugin on the OpenStack controller node.

  2. When using Contrail Cloud services, the Ceilometer controller services are installed and provisioned as part of the OpenStack controller node and the compute agent service is installed as part of the compute node when enable_ceilometer is set as True in the cluster config or testbed files.