A CFME appl by datacenter : how do they talk?



We have 3 oVirt datacenters, and following http://manageiq.org/documentation/top-tasks/#run-smartstate-analysis-on-rhev-m-virtual-machines, I read that we had to install one appliance by datacenter.
That is what I did, and on each of them, I added a NIC to allow them to reach the iSCSI LUNs of their datacenters. After the correct settings, a iscsiadm -m discovery, a pvscan and a reboot, that SmartState analysis began to work well from the appliances to their respective VMs (their neighbours, in the same datacenter).

What I don’t understand is : from one appliance web GUI, I can see the content of the other datacenters, but I can not see nor run the SmartState analysis of another datacenter. I guess that when asking that, the order is sent to the appliance selected as the CFME dedicated to this datacenter (the configuration dropdown lists me only one CFME entry, is it correct?).

If I did everything right, does that mean I will have to maintain as many CMFE as datacenters, C&U data collection, reports, schedules, and so on… ?

I thought it would be possible, from a single CFME, to detect which remote CFME was managing which remote datacenter, and to delegate the smartstate analysis.


If I did everything right, does that mean I will have to maintain as
many CMFE as datacenters, C&U data collection, reports, schedules,
and so on… ?

You will need at a minimum 1 CFME appliance per datacenter for smartstate to work (recommended to do N+1 per ~300-400 VM’s). Depending on your scalability needs you may even break up the C&U reporting appliances outside of smartproxy/smartstate analysis appliances. It really all depends on how large your environment is and how many VM’s you have to perform the analysis on.

Does that answer your question?


Yes, that’s the way it should work. If you’re not seeing the menu item for smart state analysis, you should ensure the following for each datacenter appliance in question:

Hope that helps.


Thanks to @rpo and @jsimonelli for answering.
What you wrote confirmed that I did well.

But my main point now is to clearly understand that :
AFAIK, a CFME appliance has two roles : serving an httpd service and presenting a web GUI to do everything a manageiq is capable of, and also to retrieve data from many sources (datacenters, hosts, VMs, datastores) and store that into a postgres DB. Right?

When I installed my first appliance, I spend some hours configuring all that, then configure the ACLs, the reports, the dashboard, and so on.
When I installed my second appliance, I began to start again configuring the exact same things. And again for the third.
Obviously, we won’t have thousands of datacenters to add, but 6 may be possible. I stopped configuring the third one when wondering if I was following the best path.

The good point in that way is that in case of one CFME failure, I still can get my info from another one. But the configure hassle and the workload of data retrieval are not optimal.

Another point I don’t understand : in my present setup, one CFME can only retrieve data from the VMs of their own datacenter. Trying to smartstate analysis the VMs from another one is failing. That means that from one CFME web GUI to another, I don’t see the same things.
I thought there was a way to see every VM data retrieved from a single CFME, or maybe I’m doing smthg wrong?


Sounds like you may have deployed multiple standalone instances of MIQ. We have multiple data centers and are leveraging Zones for each data center with one Database Operations role across the environment as well as one group of load balanced Web UI appliances that handle all of the UI requests. We also have DR processes designed if we were to lose the data center/environment where we have our DB and primary UI appliances. Each of the data center zones then have automation appliances as well as C&U, Inventory, Operations etc roles deployed.

Take a look at the Docs specifically around Regions, Zones and Roles. I think that will help you better understand the architecture http://manageiq.org/pdf/ManageIQ-0-Settings_And_Operations-en-US.pdf to accomplish your design.


Yes, after re-reading the mentionned doc, I thought it was the correct behaviour.
Isn’t it?

I read and read again, and there must be concepts I’m missing :

  • we have 3 datacenters
  • in each, I deployed a standalone instance of MIQ
  • we have a single region, and a single zone
  • I made what was necessary for each MIQ instance to be able to manage the iSCSI storage domains
  • I configured each of them to have the role of smart proxy

But, at present, when web-gui-surfing amongst the configuration of one MIQ instance I can see any evidence of the existence of the other MIQ instance acting as a MIQ instance (I can see it as a usual VM, but doing nothing related to ManageIQ).

That’s why my thread is titled “How do they talk?”

At present, each MIQ instance is able to


OK, back to this old thread because I eventually found some time to work on it.
After re-reading, it sounds I misunderstood or forgot to mention some basic things.
Amongst them, two basci points :

1- When reading the doc again, it reads :

On each CloudForms Management Engine Appliance that will be performing Smart State Analysis a “sharable”, “non-bootable” Direct LUN disk must be attached for each iSCSI/FCP storage domain.

In my first datacenter, I have two iSCSI storage domains LUNs.
Do I have to direct attach my manageIQ appliance to these two LUNs?
Is it harmless?

2- In the same doc (with the youtube demo) about the basic first task about smartstate analysis, I read :

  • Select the ManageIQ Appliance.
  • Click Configuration → Edit Server Relationship.
  • Select the ManageIQ Appliance from the drop down."

When I follow these steps in my setup, the ManageIQ VM appliance used when configuring and the dropdown entry are the same and only VM.
Is it OK?


I supposed that you have to configure all the appliances with the same database. In cloudforms you can do this in the appliance menu in the VM but in MIQ the option isn’t avaiable.

You can try in MIQ going to Configure > Configuration > Database and select “External Database on another CFME Appliance” option and complete all the fields.