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Home > Release Notes > RCA-V > v1.2 - 2014-10-10

v1.2 - 2014-10-10

RCA-V Release v1.2


RightScale Cloud Appliance for vSphere (RCA-V), release v1.2 includes several new features and addresses a number of issues raised by customers. Below are the new features and list of resolved issues. The documentation on the RS support site has been updated to reflect new functionality.

How to Upgrade to the Latest Package

For a fresh deployment, you can install the RCA-V 1.2 appliance using the instructions in the Installation Guide. The latest version of the appliance can be downloaded from here.

It is also possible to “field-upgrade” the application packages (vscale-admin and vscale) contained in the appliance. For customers on RCA-V v1.1 who are unable to deploy a fresh appliance, this is the easier path. Use the following steps to perform the upgrade:

  1. Using the RCA-V Admin UI, navigate to RightScale Platform -> Admin Interface and click Upgrade.
  2. Download the latest vscale-admin package (vscale-admin_1.2_20141009_21).
  3. Activate the package that you just downloaded using the Activate button.
  4. Navigate to the vCenter link on the left navigation column.
  5. Click Upgrade in the Cloud Appliance (vScale) card.
  6. Download the latest vscale package (vscale_1.2_20141009_21).
  7. Activate the package that you just downloaded using Activate button.
  8. Before and after each component update, it is recommended to reload the browser (clearing the browser cache is preferred) for the new changes to take effect

New Features

The following sections describe the new features included in RCA-V v1.2.

Instance Discovery and Instance Type Mapping

This feature allows a cloud administrator to quickly map the existing VM-configurations (that were not launched using RightScale) to Instance Types.


In typical cases...

  • A cloud administrator deploys RCA-V in their existing vSphere environment with existing workloads.
  • RCA-V discovers VMs that are visible to it based on tenant permission.
  • These VMs will show up in the RightScale Dashboard as “Unknown” or one of the pre-defined types (small/medium/large).

It is likely that existing VMs come in all kinds of VM configurations that will not match the pre-defined types and the administrator will see a lot of “Unknown” types when viewing his VMs through the RightScale Dashboard.

The next step for the cloud administrator would be to figure out the configuration for each of his VMs and create an equivalent Instance Type in the RCA-V Admin UI. If they have more than a handful of VMs, this becomes a big issue.

The new feature accessible in the RCA-V Admin UI -> Instance Type page, adds a  “Discover Instance Types” button. Upon clicking the button, the cloud administrator is presented with a list of existing VM configurations and the count of VMs associated with each configuration. The administrator has the option of creating new Instance Types based on the configuration of the existing VMs that were just discovered.

Ability to Place a Workload in Specific vSphere Folders

Workloads launched through RightScale can now be placed into a specific vSphere folder hierarchy by passing the folder structure as “user-data” at the time of server launch.


In the previous implementation, workloads launched using the RightScale Dashboard or API are placed in a flat hierarchy under the tenant resource pool in vSphere. There was not an easy way to organize workloads so they made sense in vSphere or followed the methodology that the customer may have had in place.

This new feature allows the user to pass additional data using the user-data field at the time of launching the server. This user-data contains the name of the folder in vSphere and where the server will be placed. If the folder does not exist, it will be created. Note that all folders are relative to the tenant base-folder.

The format of the user-data is:


e.g:  rcav:folder=my/folder/

Ability to Configure Multiple Zones to a Single vSphere Cluster

This feature allows the administrator to “thin-slice” the vSphere cluster into multiple zones. A zone now maps to {datacenter, cluster, datastore} instead of {datacenter, cluster}. This means, by having more than one datastore available to a given vSphere cluster, the administrator can create multiple zones while sharing compute and network resources in a vSphere cluster.

Please refer to the documentation at in the Zones section.

Ability to Configure Tenant / Resource Pool Quota

This feature allows the cloud administrator to assign specific resource limits for a tenant in a given zone (vSphere Cluster). Please refer to the documentation at in the Tenants section.

Volume Types and Volume Snapshot Support

This feature enables creation of storage volumes based on Volume Types and the ability to attach, detach, and snapshot one or more volumes.


A Volume Type is a RightScale construct that captures a variety of low-level concepts that vSphere supports and exposes them as a high-level construct. This helps RightScale users create and attach volumes to their servers without having to know details regarding the vSphere infrastructure.

All volumes created through RightScale are associated with a volume type defined using the Admin UI. This allows RightScale to place the volume based on a storage policy (aka storage profile) on a datastore. Different classes of storage (either with different QoS or SLA) can be placed under different storage profiles.

Support for vSAN

This feature adds the ability to add vSAN as a datastore that can be used to create volumes. Note that vSAN based datastores may not be used as datastores for storing ssh_keys or as datastore for appliance configuration (In the Admin UI, this configuration is under Global Policies  -> Datastores).

Option to Disable Floppy-Drive Based Configuration

This new option was added to circumvent some of the issues related to floppy drive usage that caused server launches to fail from time to time. An option in the Cloud configuration file was introduced. Use this option only if you are using RightImage 14.1 (for Linux), RightImages 14.2 (for Windows) or images that you created using a RightLink 6.1 package. Please refer to the section on ServerTemplates and other assets below for information on compatibility between various assets.

In order to modify the Cloud configuration file, perform the following operation:

  • In the Admin UI, go to Cloud Configuration -> Advanced.
  • Click Edit on the Cloud Configuration card.
  • Look for the ‘tenant_defaults” section in the configuration JSON.
  • Add  "no_fd_support": true, as the first line in the "tenant_defaults” section. Note that the comma at the end of the string is important for maintaining the JSON format.

vSphere Overview Card

This card provides an overview of the underlying vSphere resources. It can be seen under Global Policies -> vSphere Overview.

Issues Resolved

The following issues were resolved in RCA-V v1.2.

  1. Image Inventory or Instance List not getting updated on RightScale Dashboard - This was caused by one of the VM templates configured for Paravirtual scsi controller which wasn’t supported in release v1.1.
  2. Intermittent failures with server launch caused by floppy drive issues.
  3. VM stuck in “booting” due to floppy drive issues - Please refer to the section “Option to Disable Floppy-Drive Based Configuration” above.
  4. Blank Cloud Overview card - This has been addressed with release v1.2.
  5. RuntimeError while serializing datacenter(Datacenter): Folder("group-d1") - This has been fixed in release v1.2. The vSphere folder structure was not recognized in the previous release.
  6. right_api_client times out when provisioning Windows instances on vSphere - This issue was due to a specific problem in the vSphere environment where the datastores and the storage sub-system was operating in degraded performance conditions. In order to make RCA-V more resilient against such environmental issues (that can happen from time to time), certain timeout values were modified in the RCA-V appliance. If you are deploying a fresh RCA-V v1.2 appliance, you are already covered. If you are field-upgrading the vscale and vscale-admin packages without deploying the new appliance, you may want to make the following changes:

a.) In the RCA-V Admin UI:

  • Navigate to RightScale Platform->Admin Interface and click Upgrade button.
  • Download the latest vscale-admin package (vscale-admin_1.2_20141009_21).
  • Activate the package that you just downloaded using Activate button.
  • Navigate to vCenter link on the left navigation column.

  • Click Upgrade button in the Cloud Appliance (vScale) card.

  • Download the latest vscale package (vscale_1.2_20141009_21).

  • Activate the package that you just downloaded using Activate button.

b.) SSH into the RCA-V adapter box and perform the following:

$ sudo su

$ cd /etc/nginx/sites-enabled

$ vi vscale

     Search for proxy_read_timeout and change it to 1200 (it is currently set to 240).

c.) Reboot the RCA-V VM.


Known Limitations

Configuration File Issue with v1.1 Field Upgrades

Field upgrade errors may occur with RCA-V packages leaving the RCA-V configuration file (vscale.conf) in a format that is unusable by the v1.2 code. This can happen when upgrading vscale and vscale-admin package with the "1.1" release label. The upgrade process for RCA-V packages (vscale and vscale-admin)  was intended to be automatic so that the configuration file can be converted from the old format used by v1.1 to the newer format used by v1.2.  In the event you encounter an error during the "Activate" portion of the upgrade process, please perform the following steps:

  1. Login to RCA-V appliance (using 'admin' user) and execute the following commands:

$ sudo su

# cd /home/vscale/current

# bundle exec script/update_availability_zone_ids

# bundle exec script/update_tenant_defaults_with_default_resource_pool_spec

# service vscale restart

# service vscale-admin restart

  1. Verify that the configuration got upgraded properly by either looking at /etc/vscale.conf or using the Admin UI -> Cloud Configuration -> Advanced link. You should see the "id" field in the "availability_zone" section of the configuration in the format similar to "domain-c27::datastore-33".

Server Templates and Other Assets

Below is a matrix showing compatibility between various RightScale assets.

NOTE: Assets marked in Green/Blue are available today

Assets marked in Orange will be available on Oct 18, 2014

Assets marked in Red will be available on Nov 21, 2014


RCA-V ServerTemplate RightImages RightLink
v1.1 Base Linux ST 14.0.x

RightImage14.0.1-Ubuntu 12_04

RightImage14.0.1-CentOS 6.5

Your Own Image with RightLink 6.0 / 6.1

RightLink 6.0 or  RightLink 6.1

Base Windows ST 14.1



Your Own Image with RightLink 6.0 / 6.1

RightLink 6.0 or  RightLink 6.1
v1.2 with “no_fd_support” set to true

Base Linux ST 14.0.x

RightImage14.1-Ubuntu 12_04

RightImage14.1-CentOS 6.5

Your Own Image with RightLink 6.1

RightLink  6.1

Base Linux ST 14.1

RightImage14.1-Ubuntu 12_04

RightImage14.1-Ubuntu 14_04

RightImage14.1-CentOS 6.5

Your Own Image with RightLink 6.1

RightLink 6.1

Base Windows ST 14.1



Your Own Image with RightLink 6.1

RightLink 6.1

Base Windows ST 14.2



Your Own Image with RightLink 6.1

RightLink 6.1
v1.2 with “no_fd_support” set to false Base Linux ST 14.0.x

RightImage14.0.1-Ubuntu 12_04

RightImage14.0.1-CentOS 6.5

RightLink  6.0

Base Windows ST 14.1



Your Own Image with RightLink 6.0
RightLink 6.0
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Last modified
19:16, 6 Nov 2014


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