File:  [NetBSD Developer Wiki] / wikisrc / ports / xen / howto.mdwn
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    1: Introduction
    2: ============
    3: 
    4: [![[Xen
    5: screenshot]](http://www.netbsd.org/gallery/in-Action/hubertf-xens.png)](http://www.netbsd.org/gallery/in-Action/hubertf-xen.png)
    6: 
    7: Xen is a hypervisor (or virtual machine monitor) for x86 hardware
    8: (i686-class or higher), which supports running multiple guest
    9: operating systems on a single physical machine.  Xen is a Type 1 or
   10: bare-metal hypervisor; one uses the Xen kernel to control the CPU,
   11: memory and console, a dom0 operating system which mediates access to
   12: other hardware (e.g., disks, network, USB), and one or more domU
   13: operating systems which operate in an unprivileged virtualized
   14: environment.  IO requests from the domU systems are forwarded by the
   15: hypervisor (Xen) to the dom0 to be fulfilled.
   16: 
   17: Xen supports two styles of guests.  The original is Para-Virtualized
   18: (PV) which means that the guest OS does not attempt to access hardware
   19: directly, but instead makes hypercalls to the hypervisor.  This is
   20: analogous to a user-space program making system calls.  (The dom0
   21: operating system uses PV calls for some functions, such as updating
   22: memory mapping page tables, but has direct hardware access for disk
   23: and network.)   PV guests must be specifically coded for Xen.
   24: 
   25: The more recent style is HVM, which means that the guest does not have
   26: code for Xen and need not be aware that it is running under Xen.
   27: Attempts to access hardware registers are trapped and emulated.  This
   28: style is less efficient but can run unmodified guests.
   29: 
   30: Generally any amd64 machine will work with Xen and PV guests.  In
   31: theory i386 computers without amd64 support can be used for Xen <=
   32: 4.2, but we have no recent reports of this working (this is a hint).
   33: For HVM guests, hardware support is needed, but it is common on recent
   34: machines.  For Intel CPUs, one needs the VT-x extension, shown in
   35: "cpuctl identify 0" as VMX.  For AMD CPus, one needs the AMD-V
   36: extensions, shown in "cpuctl identify 0" as SVM.  There are further
   37: features for IOMMU virtualization, Intel's VT-d and AMD's AMD-Vi.
   38: TODO: Explain whether Xen on NetBSD makes use of these features.
   39: TODO: Review by someone who really understands this.
   40: 
   41: Note a FreeBSD dom0 requires VT-x and VT-d (or equivalent); this is
   42: because the FreeBSD dom0 does not run in PV mode.
   43: 
   44: At boot, the dom0 kernel is loaded as a module with Xen as the kernel.
   45: The dom0 can start one or more domUs.  (Booting is explained in detail
   46: in the dom0 section.)
   47: 
   48: NetBSD supports Xen in that it can serve as dom0, be used as a domU,
   49: and that Xen kernels and tools are available in pkgsrc.  This HOWTO
   50: attempts to address both the case of running a NetBSD dom0 on hardware
   51: and running domUs under it (NetBSD and other), and also running NetBSD
   52: as a domU in a VPS.
   53: 
   54: Some versions of Xen support "PCI passthrough", which means that
   55: specific PCI devices can be made available to a specific domU instead
   56: of the dom0.  This can be useful to let a domU run X11, or access some
   57: network interface or other peripheral.
   58: 
   59: NetBSD 6 and earlier supported Xen 2; support was removed from NetBSD
   60: 7.  Xen 2 has been removed from pkgsrc.
   61: 
   62: Prerequisites
   63: -------------
   64: 
   65: Installing NetBSD/Xen is not extremely difficult, but it is more
   66: complex than a normal installation of NetBSD.
   67: In general, this HOWTO is occasionally overly restrictive about how
   68: things must be done, guiding the reader to stay on the established
   69: path when there are no known good reasons to stray.
   70: 
   71: This HOWTO presumes a basic familiarity with the Xen system
   72: architecture.  This HOWTO presumes familiarity with installing NetBSD
   73: on i386/amd64 hardware and installing software from pkgsrc.
   74: See also the [Xen website](http://www.xenproject.org/).
   75: 
   76: Versions of Xen and NetBSD
   77: ==========================
   78: 
   79: Most of the installation concepts and instructions are independent
   80: of Xen version and NetBSD version.  This section gives advice on
   81: which version to choose.  Versions not in pkgsrc and older unsupported
   82: versions of NetBSD are intentionally ignored.
   83: 
   84: Xen
   85: ---
   86: 
   87: In NetBSD, Xen is provided in pkgsrc, via matching pairs of packages
   88: xenkernel and xentools.  We will refer only to the kernel versions,
   89: but note that both packages must be installed together and must have
   90: matching versions.
   91: 
   92: xenkernel3 provides Xen 3.1.  It is no longer maintained by Xen, and the last applied security patch was in
   93: 2011. Thus, it should not be used.  It supports PCI passthrough,
   94: which is why people use it anyway. Xen 3.1 supports i386, both PAE and
   95: non-PAE.
   96: 
   97: xenkernel33 provides Xen 3.3.  It is no longer maintained by Xen, and
   98: the last applied security patch was in 2012.  Thus, it should not be
   99: used.  Xen 3.3 supports i386, but only in PAE mode.  There are no good
  100: reasons to run this version.
  101: 
  102: xenkernel41 provides Xen 4.1.  It is no longer maintained by Xen, but
  103: as of 2016-12 received backported security patches.  Xen 4.1 supports
  104: i386, but only in PAE mode.  There are no good reasons to run this
  105: version.
  106: 
  107: xenkernel42 provides Xen 4.2.  It is no longer maintained by Xen, but
  108: as of 2016-12 received backported security patches.  Xen 4.2 supports
  109: i386, but only in PAE mode.  The only reason to run this is if you
  110: need to use xm instead of xl, or if you need to run an i386 dom0
  111: (because your hardware is i386 only).
  112: 
  113: xenkernel45 provides Xen 4.5.  As of 2016-12, security patches were
  114: released by Xen and applied to pkgsrc.  Xen 4.5 requires using a dom0
  115: running NetBSD's amd64 port (Intel or AMD hardware is fine), but domUs
  116: can be amd64 or i386 PAE.  TODO: It is either a conservative choice or
  117: somewhat old.
  118: 
  119: xenkernel46 provides Xen 4.6.  It is new to pkgsrc as of 2016-05.  As
  120: of 2016-12, security patches were released by Xen and applied to
  121: pkgsrc.  Xen 4.6 similarly requires a NetBSD/amd64 dom0, but domUs can
  122: be amd64 or i386 PAE.  TODO: It is either a somewhat aggressive choice
  123: or the standard choice.
  124: 
  125: Xen 4.7 (released 2016-06) and 4.8 (released 2016-12) are not yet in
  126: pkgsrc.
  127: 
  128: See also the [Xen Security Advisory page](http://xenbits.xen.org/xsa/).
  129: 
  130: Note that NetBSD support is called XEN3.  It works with Xen 3 and Xen
  131: 4 because the hypercall interface has been stable.
  132: 
  133: Xen command program
  134: -------------------
  135: 
  136: Early Xen used a program called xm to manipulate the system from the
  137: dom0.  Starting in 4.1, a replacement program with similar behavior
  138: called xl is provided, but it does not work well in 4.1.  In 4.2, both
  139: xm and xl work fine.  4.4 is the last version that has xm.  You must
  140: choose one or the other, because it affects which daemons you run.
  141: However, the rc.d scripts provided by xentools packages expect a
  142: particular version, and you should use the version used by the
  143: scripts.
  144: 
  145: NetBSD
  146: ------
  147: 
  148: The netbsd-6, netbsd-7, and -current branches are all reasonable
  149: choices, with more or less the same considerations for non-Xen use.
  150: Therefore, netbsd-7 is recommended as the stable version of the most
  151: recent release for production use.  In addition, netbsd-7 and -current
  152: have a important scheduler fix (in November of 2015) affecting
  153: contention between dom0 and domUs; see
  154: https://releng.netbsd.org/cgi-bin/req-7.cgi?show=1040 for a
  155: description.  For those wanting to learn Xen or without production
  156: stability concerns, netbsd-7 is still likely most appropriate, but
  157: -current is also a reasonable choice.  (Xen runs ok on netbsd-5, but
  158: the xentools packages are likely difficult to build, and netbsd-5 is
  159: not supported.)
  160: 
  161: As of NetBSD 6, a NetBSD domU will support multiple vcpus.  There is
  162: no SMP support for NetBSD as dom0.  (The dom0 itself doesn't really
  163: need SMP for dom0 functions; the lack of support is really a problem
  164: when using a dom0 as a normal computer.)
  165: 
  166: Architecture
  167: ------------
  168: 
  169: Xen itself can run on i386 (Xen < 3.1) or amd64 machines (all Xen
  170: versions).  (Practically, almost any computer where one would want to
  171: run Xen today supports amd64.)
  172: 
  173: Xen, the dom0 kernel, and each domU kernel can be either i386 or
  174: amd64.  When building a xenkernel package, one obtains i386 on an i386
  175: host, and amd64 on an amd64 host.  If the Xen kernel is i386, then the
  176: dom0 kernel and all domU kernels must be i386.  With an amd64 Xen
  177: kernel, an amd64 dom0 kernel is known to work, and an i386PAE dom0
  178: kernel should in theory work.  An amd64 Xen/dom0 is known to support
  179: both i386PAE and amd64 domUs.
  180: 
  181: i386 dom0 and domU kernels must be PAE (except for Xen 3.1); these are
  182: built by default.  (Note that emacs (at least) fails if run on i386
  183: with PAE when built without, and vice versa, presumably due to bugs in
  184: the undump code.)
  185: 
  186: Because of the above, the standard approach is to use amd64 for the
  187: dom0.
  188: 
  189: Xen 4.2 is the last version to support i386 as a host.  TODO: Clarify
  190: if this is about the CPU, the Xen kernel, or the dom0 kernel having to
  191: be amd64.
  192: 
  193: 
  194: Stability
  195: ---------
  196: 
  197: Mostly, NetBSD as a dom0 or domU is quite stable.
  198: However, there are some open PRs indicating problems.
  199: 
  200:  - [PR 48125](http://gnats.netbsd.org/48125)
  201:  - [PR 47720](http://gnats.netbsd.org/47720)
  202: 
  203: Note also that there are issues with sparse vnd(4) instances, but
  204: these are not about Xen -- they just are noticed with sparse vnd(4)
  205: instances in support of virtual disks in a dom0.
  206: 
  207: Recommendation
  208: --------------
  209: 
  210: Therefore, this HOWTO recommends running xenkernel45 or xenkernel46,
  211: xl, the NetBSD 7 stable branch, and to use an amd64 kernel as the
  212: dom0.  Either the i386PAE or amd64 version of NetBSD may be used as
  213: domUs.
  214: 
  215: Build problems
  216: --------------
  217: 
  218: Ideally, all versions of Xen in pkgsrc would build on all supported
  219: versions of NetBSD/amd64, to the point where this section would be
  220: silly.  However, that has not always been the case.  Besides aging
  221: code and aging compilers, qemu (included in xentools for HVM support)
  222: is difficult to build.  The following are known to be ok or FAIL, with
  223: the date last checked:
  224: 
  225: 	xenkernel3 netbsd-6 i386 FAIL 201412
  226: 	xenkernel33 netbsd-6 i386 ok 201412
  227: 	xenkernel41 netbsd-6 i386 ok 201412
  228: 	xenkernel42 netbsd-6 i386 ok 201412
  229: 	xentools3 netbsd-6 i386 ok 201412
  230: 	xentools3-hvm netbsd-6 i386 FAIL 201412
  231: 	xentools33 netbsd-6 i386 ok 201412
  232: 	xentools41 netbsd-6 i386 ok 201412
  233: 	xentools42 netbsd-6 i386 mixed 201412
  234: 
  235: 	(all 3 and 33 seem to FAIL)
  236: 	xenkernel41 netbsd-7 i386 ok 201412
  237: 	xenkernel42 netbsd-7 i386 ok 201412
  238: 	xentools41 netbsd-7 i386 ok 201412
  239: 	xentools42 netbsd-7 i386 ??FAIL 201412
  240: 
  241: 	xenkernel33 netbsd-6 amd64 ok 201612
  242: 	xenkernel42 netbsd-6 amd64 ok 201612
  243: 	xenkernel45 netbsd-6 amd64 ok 201612
  244: 	xenkernel46 netbsd-6 amd64 ok 201612
  245: 	xentools42 netbsd-6 amd64 ok 201612
  246: 	xentools45 netbsd-6 amd64 ok 201612
  247: 
  248: 	xenkernel3 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  249: 	xenkernel33 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  250: 	xenkernel41 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  251: 	xenkernel42 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  252: 	xenkernel45 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  253: 	xenkernel46 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  254: 	xentools3 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  255: 	xentools3-hvm netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  256: 	xentools33 netbsd-7 amd64 FAIL 201612
  257: 	xentools41 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  258: 	xentools42 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  259: 	xentools45 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  260: 	xentools46 netbsd-7 amd64 ok 201612
  261: 
  262: NetBSD as a dom0
  263: ================
  264: 
  265: NetBSD can be used as a dom0 and works very well.  The following
  266: sections address installation, updating NetBSD, and updating Xen.
  267: Note that it doesn't make sense to talk about installing a dom0 OS
  268: without also installing Xen itself.  We first address installing
  269: NetBSD, which is not yet a dom0, and then adding Xen, pivoting the
  270: NetBSD install to a dom0 install by just changing the kernel and boot
  271: configuration.
  272: 
  273: For experimenting with Xen, a machine with as little as 1G of RAM and
  274: 100G of disk can work.  For running many domUs in productions, far
  275: more will be needed.
  276: 
  277: Styles of dom0 operation
  278: ------------------------
  279: 
  280: There are two basic ways to use Xen.  The traditional method is for
  281: the dom0 to do absolutely nothing other than providing support to some
  282: number of domUs.  Such a system was probably installed for the sole
  283: purpose of hosting domUs, and sits in a server room on a UPS.
  284: 
  285: The other way is to put Xen under a normal-usage computer, so that the
  286: dom0 is what the computer would have been without Xen, perhaps a
  287: desktop or laptop.  Then, one can run domUs at will.  Purists will
  288: deride this as less secure than the previous approach, and for a
  289: computer whose purpose is to run domUs, they are right.  But Xen and a
  290: dom0 (without domUs) is not meaningfully less secure than the same
  291: things running without Xen.  One can boot Xen or boot regular NetBSD
  292: alternately with little problems, simply refraining from starting the
  293: Xen daemons when not running Xen.
  294: 
  295: Note that NetBSD as dom0 does not support multiple CPUs.  This will
  296: limit the performance of the Xen/dom0 workstation approach.  In theory
  297: the only issue is that the "backend drivers" are not yet MPSAFE:
  298:   http://mail-index.netbsd.org/netbsd-users/2014/08/29/msg015195.html
  299: 
  300: Installation of NetBSD
  301: ----------------------
  302: 
  303: First,
  304: [install NetBSD/amd64](/guide/inst/)
  305: just as you would if you were not using Xen.
  306: However, the partitioning approach is very important.
  307: 
  308: If you want to use RAIDframe for the dom0, there are no special issues
  309: for Xen.  Typically one provides RAID storage for the dom0, and the
  310: domU systems are unaware of RAID.  The 2nd-stage loader bootxx_* skips
  311: over a RAID1 header to find /boot from a file system within a RAID
  312: partition; this is no different when booting Xen.
  313: 
  314: There are 4 styles of providing backing storage for the virtual disks
  315: used by domUs: raw partitions, LVM, file-backed vnd(4), and SAN.
  316: 
  317: With raw partitions, one has a disklabel (or gpt) partition sized for
  318: each virtual disk to be used by the domU.  (If you are able to predict
  319: how domU usage will evolve, please add an explanation to the HOWTO.
  320: Seriously, needs tend to change over time.)
  321: 
  322: One can use [lvm(8)](/guide/lvm/) to create logical devices to use
  323: for domU disks.  This is almost as efficient as raw disk partitions
  324: and more flexible.  Hence raw disk partitions should typically not
  325: be used.
  326: 
  327: One can use files in the dom0 file system, typically created by dd'ing
  328: /dev/zero to create a specific size.  This is somewhat less efficient,
  329: but very convenient, as one can cp the files for backup, or move them
  330: between dom0 hosts.
  331: 
  332: Finally, in theory one can place the files backing the domU disks in a
  333: SAN.  (This is an invitation for someone who has done this to add a
  334: HOWTO page.)
  335: 
  336: Installation of Xen
  337: -------------------
  338: 
  339: In the dom0, install sysutils/xenkernel42 and sysutils/xentools42 from
  340: pkgsrc (or another matching pair).
  341: See [the pkgsrc
  342: documentation](http://www.NetBSD.org/docs/pkgsrc/) for help with pkgsrc.
  343: 
  344: For Xen 3.1, support for HVM guests is in sysutils/xentool3-hvm.  More
  345: recent versions have HVM support integrated in the main xentools
  346: package.  It is entirely reasonable to run only PV guests.
  347: 
  348: Next you need to install the selected Xen kernel itself, which is
  349: installed by pkgsrc as "/usr/pkg/xen*-kernel/xen.gz".  Copy it to /.
  350: For debugging, one may copy xen-debug.gz; this is conceptually similar
  351: to DIAGNOSTIC and DEBUG in NetBSD.  xen-debug.gz is basically only
  352: useful with a serial console.  Then, place a NetBSD XEN3_DOM0 kernel
  353: in /, copied from releasedir/amd64/binary/kernel/netbsd-XEN3_DOM0.gz
  354: of a NetBSD build.  If using i386, use
  355: releasedir/i386/binary/kernel/netbsd-XEN3PAE_DOM0.gz.  (If using Xen
  356: 3.1 and i386, you may use XEN3_DOM0 with the non-PAE Xen.  But you
  357: should not use Xen 3.1.)  Both xen and the NetBSD kernel may be (and
  358: typically are) left compressed.
  359: 
  360: In a dom0 kernel, kernfs is mandatory for xend to communicate with the
  361: kernel, so ensure that /kern is in fstab.  TODO: Say this is default,
  362: or file a PR and give a reference.
  363: 
  364: Because you already installed NetBSD, you have a working boot setup
  365: with an MBR bootblock, either bootxx_ffsv1 or bootxx_ffsv2 at the
  366: beginning of your root file system, /boot present, and likely
  367: /boot.cfg.  (If not, fix before continuing!)
  368: 
  369: Add a line to to /boot.cfg to boot Xen.  See boot.cfg(5) for an
  370: example.  The basic line is
  371: 
  372:         menu=Xen:load /netbsd-XEN3_DOM0.gz console=pc;multiboot /xen.gz dom0_mem=256M
  373: 
  374: which specifies that the dom0 should have 256M, leaving the rest to be
  375: allocated for domUs.  To use a serial console, use
  376: 
  377:         menu=Xen:load /netbsd-XEN3_DOM0.gz console=com0;multiboot /xen.gz dom0_mem=256M console=com1 com1=9600,8n1
  378: 
  379: which will use the first serial port for Xen (which counts starting
  380: from 1), forcing speed/parity, and also for NetBSD (which counts
  381: starting at 0).  In an attempt to add performance, one can also add
  382: 
  383:         dom0_max_vcpus=1 dom0_vcpus_pin
  384: 
  385: to force only one vcpu to be provided (since NetBSD dom0 can't use
  386: more) and to pin that vcpu to a physical CPU.  TODO: benchmark this.
  387: 
  388: Xen has [many boot
  389: options](http://xenbits.xenproject.org/docs/4.5-testing/misc/xen-command-line.html),
  390: and other than dom0 memory and max_vcpus, they are generally not
  391: necessary.
  392: 
  393: As with non-Xen systems, you should have a line to boot /netbsd (a
  394: kernel that works without Xen) and fallback versions of the non-Xen
  395: kernel, Xen, and the dom0 kernel.
  396: 
  397: Now, reboot so that you are running a DOM0 kernel under Xen, rather
  398: than GENERIC without Xen.
  399: 
  400: Using grub (historic)
  401: ---------------------
  402: 
  403: Before NetBSD's native bootloader could support Xen, the use of
  404: grub was recommended.  If necessary, see the
  405: [old grub information](/ports/xen/howto-grub/).
  406: 
  407: The [HowTo on Installing into
  408: RAID-1](http://mail-index.NetBSD.org/port-xen/2006/03/01/0010.html)
  409: explains how to set up booting a dom0 with Xen using grub with
  410: NetBSD's RAIDframe.  (This is obsolete with the use of NetBSD's native
  411: boot.)
  412: 
  413: Configuring Xen
  414: ---------------
  415: 
  416: Xen logs will be in /var/log/xen.
  417: 
  418: Now, you have a system that will boot Xen and the dom0 kernel, but not
  419: do anything else special.  Make sure that you have rebooted into Xen.
  420: There will be no domUs, and none can be started because you still have
  421: to configure the dom0 daemons.
  422: 
  423: The daemons which should be run vary with Xen version and with whether
  424: one is using xm or xl.  The Xen 3.1 and 3.3 packages use xm.  Xen 4.1
  425: and higher packages use xl.  While is is possible to use xm with some
  426: 4.x versions (TODO: 4.1 and 4.2?), the pkgsrc-provided rc.d scripts do
  427: not support this as of 2014-12-26, and thus the HOWTO does not support
  428: it either.  (Make sure your packages are reasonably recent.)
  429: 
  430: For "xm" (3.1 and 3.3), you should enable xend and xenbackendd (but
  431: note that you should be using 4.x):
  432: 
  433:         xend=YES
  434:         xenbackendd=YES
  435: 
  436: For "xl" (4.x), you should enabled xend and xencommons (xenstored).
  437: Trying to boot 4.x without xencommons=YES will result in a hang; it is
  438: necessary to hit ^C on the console to let the machine finish booting.
  439: TODO: explain why xend is installed by the package.
  440: 
  441:         xencommons=YES
  442: 
  443: The installation of NetBSD should already have created devices for xen
  444: (xencons, xenevt), but if they are not present, create them:
  445: 
  446:         cd /dev && sh MAKEDEV xen
  447: 
  448: TODO: Recommend for/against xen-watchdog.
  449: 
  450: After you have configured the daemons and either started them (in the
  451: order given) or rebooted, use xm or xl to inspect Xen's boot messages,
  452: available resources, and running domains.  An example with xl follows:
  453: 
  454:         # xl dmesg
  455: 	[xen's boot info]
  456:         # xl info
  457: 	[available memory, etc.]
  458:         # xl list
  459:         Name              Id  Mem(MB)  CPU  State  Time(s)  Console
  460:         Domain-0           0       64    0  r----     58.1
  461: 
  462: ### Issues with xencommons
  463: 
  464: xencommons starts xenstored, which stores data on behalf of dom0 and
  465: domUs.  It does not currently work to stop and start xenstored.
  466: Certainly all domUs should be shutdown first, following the sort order
  467: of the rc.d scripts.  However, the dom0 sets up state with xenstored,
  468: and is not notified when xenstored exits, leading to not recreating
  469: the state when the new xenstored starts.  Until there's a mechanism to
  470: make this work, one should not expect to be able to restart xenstored
  471: (and thus xencommons).  There is currently no reason to expect that
  472: this will get fixed any time soon.
  473: 
  474: anita (for testing NetBSD)
  475: --------------------------
  476: 
  477: With the setup so far (assuming 4.2/xl), one should be able to run
  478: anita (see pkgsrc/misc/py-anita) to test NetBSD releases, by doing (as
  479: root, because anita must create a domU):
  480: 
  481:         anita --vmm=xl test file:///usr/obj/i386/
  482: 
  483: Alternatively, one can use --vmm=xm to use xm-based domU creation
  484: instead (and must, on Xen <= 4.1).   TODO: confirm that anita xl really works.
  485:     
  486: Xen-specific NetBSD issues
  487: --------------------------
  488: 
  489: There are (at least) two additional things different about NetBSD as a
  490: dom0 kernel compared to hardware.
  491: 
  492: One is that the module ABI is different because some of the #defines
  493: change, so one must build modules for Xen.  As of netbsd-7, the build
  494: system does this automatically.  TODO: check this.  (Before building
  495: Xen modules was added, it was awkward to use modules to the point
  496: where it was considered that it did not work.)
  497: 
  498: The other difference is that XEN3_DOM0 does not have exactly the same
  499: options as GENERIC.  While it is debatable whether or not this is a
  500: bug, users should be aware of this and can simply add missing config
  501: items if desired.
  502: 
  503: Updating NetBSD in a dom0
  504: -------------------------
  505: 
  506: This is just like updating NetBSD on bare hardware, assuming the new
  507: version supports the version of Xen you are running.  Generally, one
  508: replaces the kernel and reboots, and then overlays userland binaries
  509: and adjusts /etc.
  510: 
  511: Note that one must update both the non-Xen kernel typically used for
  512: rescue purposes and the DOM0 kernel used with Xen.
  513: 
  514: Converting from grub to /boot
  515: -----------------------------
  516: 
  517: These instructions were [TODO: will be] used to convert a system from
  518: grub to /boot.  The system was originally installed in February of
  519: 2006 with a RAID1 setup and grub to boot Xen 2, and has been updated
  520: over time.  Before these commands, it was running NetBSD 6 i386, Xen
  521: 4.1 and grub, much like the message linked earlier in the grub
  522: section.
  523: 
  524:         # Install MBR bootblocks on both disks. 
  525:         fdisk -i /dev/rwd0d
  526:         fdisk -i /dev/rwd1d
  527:         # Install NetBSD primary boot loader (/ is FFSv1) into RAID1 components.
  528:         installboot -v /dev/rwd0d /usr/mdec/bootxx_ffsv1
  529:         installboot -v /dev/rwd1d /usr/mdec/bootxx_ffsv1
  530:         # Install secondary boot loader
  531:         cp -p /usr/mdec/boot /
  532:         # Create boot.cfg following earlier guidance:
  533:         menu=Xen:load /netbsd-XEN3PAE_DOM0.gz console=pc;multiboot /xen.gz dom0_mem=256M
  534:         menu=Xen.ok:load /netbsd-XEN3PAE_DOM0.ok.gz console=pc;multiboot /xen.ok.gz dom0_mem=256M
  535:         menu=GENERIC:boot
  536:         menu=GENERIC single-user:boot -s
  537:         menu=GENERIC.ok:boot netbsd.ok
  538:         menu=GENERIC.ok single-user:boot netbsd.ok -s
  539:         menu=Drop to boot prompt:prompt
  540:         default=1
  541:         timeout=30
  542: 
  543: TODO: actually do this and fix it if necessary.
  544: 
  545: Upgrading Xen versions
  546: ---------------------
  547: 
  548: Minor version upgrades are trivial.  Just rebuild/replace the
  549: xenkernel version and copy the new xen.gz to / (where /boot.cfg
  550: references it), and reboot.
  551: 
  552: Major version upgrades are conceptually not difficult, but can run
  553: into all the issues found when installing Xen.  Assuming migration
  554: from 4.1 to 4.2, remove the xenkernel41 and xentools41 packages and
  555: install the xenkernel42 and xentools42 packages.  Copy the 4.2 xen.gz
  556: to /.
  557: 
  558: Ensure that the contents of /etc/rc.d/xen* are correct.  Specifically,
  559: they must match the package you just installed and not be left over
  560: from some previous installation.
  561: 
  562: Enable the correct set of daemons; see the configuring section above.
  563: (Upgrading from 3.x to 4.x without doing this will result in a hang.)
  564: 
  565: Ensure that the domU config files are valid for the new version.
  566: Specifically, for 4.x remove autorestart=True, and ensure that disks
  567: are specified with numbers as the second argument, as the examples
  568: above show, and not NetBSD device names.
  569: 
  570: Hardware known to work
  571: ----------------------
  572: 
  573: Arguably, this section is misplaced, and there should be a page of
  574: hardware that runs NetBSD/amd64 well, with the mostly-well-founded
  575: assumption that NetBSD/xen runs fine on any modern hardware that
  576: NetBSD/amd64 runs well on.  Until then, we give motherboard/CPU/RAM
  577: triples to aid those choosing a motherboard.  Note that Xen systems
  578: usually do not run X, so a listing here does not imply that X works at
  579: all.
  580: 
  581:         Supermicro X9SRL-F, Xeon E5-1650 v2, 96 GiB ECC
  582:         Supermicro ??, Atom C2758 (8 core), 32 GiB ECC
  583:         ASUS M5A78L-M/USB3 AM3+ microATX, AMD Piledriver X8 4000MHz, 16 GiB ECC
  584: 
  585: Older hardware:
  586: 
  587:         Intel D915GEV, Pentium4 CPU 3.40GHz, 4GB 533MHz Synchronous DDR2
  588: 
  589: Running Xen under qemu
  590: ----------------------
  591: 
  592: The astute reader will note that this section is somewhat twisted.
  593: However, it can be useful to run Xen under qemu either because the
  594: version of NetBSD as a dom0 does not run on the hardware in use, or to
  595: generate automated test cases involving Xen.
  596: 
  597: In 2015-01, the following combination was reported to mostly work:
  598: 
  599:         host OS: NetBSD/amd64 6.1.4
  600:         qemu: 2.2.0 from pkgsrc
  601:         Xen kernel: xenkernel42-4.2.5nb1 from pkgsrc
  602:         dom0 kernel: NetBSD/amd64 6.1.5
  603:         Xen tools: xentools42-4.2.5 from pkgsrc
  604: 
  605: See [PR 47720](http://gnats.netbsd.org/47720) for a problem with dom0
  606: shutdown.
  607: 
  608: Unprivileged domains (domU)
  609: ===========================
  610: 
  611: This section describes general concepts about domUs.  It does not
  612: address specific domU operating systems or how to install them.  The
  613: config files for domUs are typically in /usr/pkg/etc/xen, and are
  614: typically named so that the file name, domU name and the domU's host
  615: name match.
  616: 
  617: The domU is provided with CPU and memory by Xen, configured by the
  618: dom0.  The domU is provided with disk and network by the dom0,
  619: mediated by Xen, and configured in the dom0.
  620: 
  621: Entropy in domUs can be an issue; physical disks and network are on
  622: the dom0.  NetBSD's /dev/random system works, but is often challenged.
  623: 
  624: Config files
  625: ------------
  626: 
  627: There is no good order to present config files and the concepts
  628: surrounding what is being configured.  We first show an example config
  629: file, and then in the various sections give details.
  630: 
  631: See (at least in xentools41) /usr/pkg/share/examples/xen/xmexample*,
  632: for a large number of well-commented examples, mostly for running
  633: GNU/Linux.
  634: 
  635: The following is an example minimal domain configuration file
  636: "/usr/pkg/etc/xen/foo".  It is (with only a name change) an actual
  637: known working config file on Xen 4.1 (NetBSD 5 amd64 dom0 and NetBSD 5
  638: i386 domU).  The domU serves as a network file server.
  639: 
  640:         # -*- mode: python; -*-
  641: 
  642:         kernel = "/netbsd-XEN3PAE_DOMU-i386-foo.gz"
  643:         memory = 1024
  644:         vif = [ 'mac=aa:00:00:d1:00:09,bridge=bridge0' ]
  645:         disk = [ 'file:/n0/xen/foo-wd0,0x0,w',
  646:                  'file:/n0/xen/foo-wd1,0x1,w' ]
  647: 
  648: The domain will have the same name as the file.  The kernel has the
  649: host/domU name in it, so that on the dom0 one can update the various
  650: domUs independently.  The vif line causes an interface to be provided,
  651: with a specific mac address (do not reuse MAC addresses!), in bridge
  652: mode.  Two disks are provided, and they are both writable; the bits
  653: are stored in files and Xen attaches them to a vnd(4) device in the
  654: dom0 on domain creation.  The system treats xbd0 as the boot device
  655: without needing explicit configuration.
  656: 
  657: By default xm looks for domain config files in /usr/pkg/etc/xen.  Note
  658: that "xm create" takes the name of a config file, while other commands
  659: take the name of a domain.  To create the domain, connect to the
  660: console, create the domain while attaching the console, shutdown the
  661: domain, and see if it has finished stopping, do (or xl with Xen >=
  662: 4.2):
  663: 
  664:         xm create foo
  665:         xm console foo
  666:         xm create -c foo
  667:         xm shutdown foo
  668:         xm list
  669: 
  670: Typing ^] will exit the console session.  Shutting down a domain is
  671: equivalent to pushing the power button; a NetBSD domU will receive a
  672: power-press event and do a clean shutdown.  Shutting down the dom0
  673: will trigger controlled shutdowns of all configured domUs.
  674: 
  675: domU kernels
  676: ------------
  677: 
  678: On a physical computer, the BIOS reads sector 0, and a chain of boot
  679: loaders finds and loads a kernel.  Normally this comes from the root
  680: file system.  With Xen domUs, the process is totally different.  The
  681: normal path is for the domU kernel to be a file in the dom0's
  682: file system.  At the request of the dom0, Xen loads that kernel into a
  683: new domU instance and starts execution.  While domU kernels can be
  684: anyplace, reasonable places to store domU kernels on the dom0 are in /
  685: (so they are near the dom0 kernel), in /usr/pkg/etc/xen (near the
  686: config files), or in /u0/xen (where the vdisks are).
  687: 
  688: Note that loading the domU kernel from the dom0 implies that boot
  689: blocks, /boot, /boot.cfg, and so on are all ignored in the domU.
  690: See the VPS section near the end for discussion of alternate ways to
  691: obtain domU kernels.
  692: 
  693: CPU and memory
  694: --------------
  695: 
  696: A domain is provided with some number of vcpus, less than the number
  697: of CPUs seen by the hypervisor.  (For a dom0, this is controlled by
  698: the boot argument "dom0_max_vcpus=1".)  For a domU, it is controlled
  699: from the config file by the "vcpus = N" directive.
  700: 
  701: A domain is provided with memory; this is controlled in the config
  702: file by "memory = N" (in megabytes).  In the straightforward case, the
  703: sum of the the memory allocated to the dom0 and all domUs must be less
  704: than the available memory.
  705: 
  706: Xen also provides a "balloon" driver, which can be used to let domains
  707: use more memory temporarily.  TODO: Explain better, and explain how
  708: well it works with NetBSD.
  709: 
  710: Virtual disks
  711: -------------
  712: 
  713: With the file/vnd style, typically one creates a directory,
  714: e.g. /u0/xen, on a disk large enough to hold virtual disks for all
  715: domUs.  Then, for each domU disk, one writes zeros to a file that then
  716: serves to hold the virtual disk's bits; a suggested name is foo-xbd0
  717: for the first virtual disk for the domU called foo.  Writing zeros to
  718: the file serves two purposes.  One is that preallocating the contents
  719: improves performance.  The other is that vnd on sparse files has
  720: failed to work.  TODO: give working/notworking NetBSD versions for
  721: sparse vnd.  Note that the use of file/vnd for Xen is not really
  722: different than creating a file-backed virtual disk for some other
  723: purpose, except that xentools handles the vnconfig commands.  To
  724: create an empty 4G virtual disk, simply do
  725: 
  726:         dd if=/dev/zero of=foo-xbd0 bs=1m count=4096
  727: 
  728: Do not use qemu-img-xen, because this will create sparse file.  There
  729: have been recent (2015) reports of sparse vnd(4) devices causing
  730: lockups, but there is apparently no PR.
  731: 
  732: With the lvm style, one creates logical devices.  They are then used
  733: similarly to vnds.  TODO: Add an example with lvm.
  734: 
  735: In domU config files, the disks are defined as a sequence of 3-tuples.
  736: The first element is "method:/path/to/disk".  Common methods are
  737: "file:" for file-backed vnd. and "phy:" for something that is already
  738: a (TODO: character or block) device.
  739: 
  740: The second element is an artifact of how virtual disks are passed to
  741: Linux, and a source of confusion with NetBSD Xen usage.  Linux domUs
  742: are given a device name to associate with the disk, and values like
  743: "hda1" or "sda1" are common.  In a NetBSD domU, the first disk appears
  744: as xbd0, the second as xbd1, and so on.  However, xm/xl demand a
  745: second argument.  The name given is converted to a major/minor by
  746: calling stat(2) on the name in /dev and this is passed to the domU.
  747: In the general case, the dom0 and domU can be different operating
  748: systems, and it is an unwarranted assumption that they have consistent
  749: numbering in /dev, or even that the dom0 OS has a /dev.  With NetBSD
  750: as both dom0 and domU, using values of 0x0 for the first disk and 0x1
  751: for the second works fine and avoids this issue.  For a GNU/Linux
  752: guest, one can create /dev/hda1 in /dev, or to pass 0x301 for
  753: /dev/hda1.
  754: 
  755: The third element is "w" for writable disks, and "r" for read-only
  756: disks.
  757: 
  758: Virtual Networking
  759: ------------------
  760: 
  761: Xen provides virtual Ethernets, each of which connects the dom0 and a
  762: domU.  For each virtual network, there is an interface "xvifN.M" in
  763: the dom0, and in domU index N, a matching interface xennetM (NetBSD
  764: name).  The interfaces behave as if there is an Ethernet with two
  765: adapters connected.  From this primitive, one can construct various
  766: configurations.  We focus on two common and useful cases for which
  767: there are existing scripts: bridging and NAT.
  768: 
  769: With bridging (in the example above), the domU perceives itself to be
  770: on the same network as the dom0.  For server virtualization, this is
  771: usually best.  Bridging is accomplished by creating a bridge(4) device
  772: and adding the dom0's physical interface and the various xvifN.0
  773: interfaces to the bridge.  One specifies "bridge=bridge0" in the domU
  774: config file.  The bridge must be set up already in the dom0; an
  775: example /etc/ifconfig.bridge0 is:
  776: 
  777:         create
  778:         up
  779:         !brconfig bridge0 add wm0
  780: 
  781: With NAT, the domU perceives itself to be behind a NAT running on the
  782: dom0.  This is often appropriate when running Xen on a workstation.
  783: TODO: NAT appears to be configured by "vif = [ '' ]".
  784: 
  785: The MAC address specified is the one used for the interface in the new
  786: domain.  The interface in dom0 will use this address XOR'd with
  787: 00:00:00:01:00:00.  Random MAC addresses are assigned if not given.
  788: 
  789: Sizing domains
  790: --------------
  791: 
  792: Modern x86 hardware has vast amounts of resources.  However, many
  793: virtual servers can function just fine on far less.  A system with
  794: 256M of RAM and a 4G disk can be a reasonable choice.  Note that it is
  795: far easier to adjust virtual resources than physical ones.  For
  796: memory, it's just a config file edit and a reboot.  For disk, one can
  797: create a new file and vnconfig it (or lvm), and then dump/restore,
  798: just like updating physical disks, but without having to be there and
  799: without those pesky connectors.
  800: 
  801: Starting domains automatically
  802: ------------------------------
  803: 
  804: To start domains foo at bar at boot and shut them down cleanly on dom0
  805: shutdown, in rc.conf add:
  806: 
  807:         xendomains="foo bar"
  808: 
  809: Note that earlier versions of the xentools41 xendomains rc.d script
  810: used xl, when one should use xm with 4.1.
  811: 
  812: Creating specific unprivileged domains (domU)
  813: =============================================
  814: 
  815: Creating domUs is almost entirely independent of operating system.  We
  816: have already presented the basics of config files.  Note that you must
  817: have already completed the dom0 setup so that "xl list" (or "xm list")
  818: works.
  819: 
  820: Creating an unprivileged NetBSD domain (domU)
  821: ---------------------------------------------
  822: 
  823: See the earlier config file, and adjust memory.  Decide on how much
  824: storage you will provide, and prepare it (file or lvm).
  825: 
  826: While the kernel will be obtained from the dom0 file system, the same
  827: file should be present in the domU as /netbsd so that tools like
  828: savecore(8) can work.   (This is helpful but not necessary.)
  829: 
  830: The kernel must be specifically for Xen and for use as a domU.  The
  831: i386 and amd64 provide the following kernels:
  832: 
  833:         i386 XEN3_DOMU
  834:         i386 XEN3PAE_DOMU
  835:         amd64 XEN3_DOMU
  836: 
  837: Unless using Xen 3.1 (and you shouldn't) with i386-mode Xen, you must
  838: use the PAE version of the i386 kernel.
  839: 
  840: This will boot NetBSD, but this is not that useful if the disk is
  841: empty.  One approach is to unpack sets onto the disk outside of xen
  842: (by mounting it, just as you would prepare a physical disk for a
  843: system you can't run the installer on).
  844: 
  845: A second approach is to run an INSTALL kernel, which has a miniroot
  846: and can load sets from the network.  To do this, copy the INSTALL
  847: kernel to / and change the kernel line in the config file to:
  848: 
  849:         kernel = "/home/bouyer/netbsd-INSTALL_XEN3_DOMU"
  850: 
  851: Then, start the domain as "xl create -c configname".
  852: 
  853: Alternatively, if you want to install NetBSD/Xen with a CDROM image, the following
  854: line should be used in the config file.
  855: 
  856:     disk = [ 'phy:/dev/wd0e,0x1,w', 'phy:/dev/cd0a,0x2,r' ]
  857: 
  858: After booting the domain, the option to install via CDROM may be
  859: selected.  The CDROM device should be changed to `xbd1d`.
  860: 
  861: Once done installing, "halt -p" the new domain (don't reboot or halt,
  862: it would reload the INSTALL_XEN3_DOMU kernel even if you changed the
  863: config file), switch the config file back to the XEN3_DOMU kernel,
  864: and start the new domain again. Now it should be able to use "root on
  865: xbd0a" and you should have a, functional NetBSD domU.
  866: 
  867: TODO: check if this is still accurate.
  868: When the new domain is booting you'll see some warnings about *wscons*
  869: and the pseudo-terminals. These can be fixed by editing the files
  870: `/etc/ttys` and `/etc/wscons.conf`. You must disable all terminals in
  871: `/etc/ttys`, except *console*, like this:
  872: 
  873:     console "/usr/libexec/getty Pc"         vt100   on secure
  874:     ttyE0   "/usr/libexec/getty Pc"         vt220   off secure
  875:     ttyE1   "/usr/libexec/getty Pc"         vt220   off secure
  876:     ttyE2   "/usr/libexec/getty Pc"         vt220   off secure
  877:     ttyE3   "/usr/libexec/getty Pc"         vt220   off secure
  878: 
  879: Finally, all screens must be commented out from `/etc/wscons.conf`.
  880: 
  881: It is also desirable to add
  882: 
  883:         powerd=YES
  884: 
  885: in rc.conf. This way, the domain will be properly shut down if
  886: `xm shutdown -R` or `xm shutdown -H` is used on the dom0.
  887: 
  888: It is not strictly necessary to have a kernel (as /netbsd) in the domU
  889: file system.  However, various programs (e.g. netstat) will use that
  890: kernel to look up symbols to read from kernel virtual memory.  If
  891: /netbsd is not the running kernel, those lookups will fail.  (This is
  892: not really a Xen-specific issue, but because the domU kernel is
  893: obtained from the dom0, it is far more likely to be out of sync or
  894: missing with Xen.)
  895: 
  896: Creating an unprivileged Linux domain (domU)
  897: --------------------------------------------
  898: 
  899: Creating unprivileged Linux domains isn't much different from
  900: unprivileged NetBSD domains, but there are some details to know.
  901: 
  902: First, the second parameter passed to the disk declaration (the '0x1' in
  903: the example below)
  904: 
  905:     disk = [ 'phy:/dev/wd0e,0x1,w' ]
  906: 
  907: does matter to Linux. It wants a Linux device number here (e.g. 0x300
  908: for hda).  Linux builds device numbers as: (major \<\< 8 + minor).
  909: So, hda1 which has major 3 and minor 1 on a Linux system will have
  910: device number 0x301.  Alternatively, devices names can be used (hda,
  911: hdb, ...)  as xentools has a table to map these names to devices
  912: numbers.  To export a partition to a Linux guest we can use:
  913: 
  914:         disk = [ 'phy:/dev/wd0e,0x300,w' ]
  915:         root = "/dev/hda1 ro"
  916: 
  917: and it will appear as /dev/hda on the Linux system, and be used as root
  918: partition.
  919: 
  920: To install the Linux system on the partition to be exported to the
  921: guest domain, the following method can be used: install
  922: sysutils/e2fsprogs from pkgsrc.  Use mke2fs to format the partition
  923: that will be the root partition of your Linux domain, and mount it.
  924: Then copy the files from a working Linux system, make adjustments in
  925: `/etc` (fstab, network config).  It should also be possible to extract
  926: binary packages such as .rpm or .deb directly to the mounted partition
  927: using the appropriate tool, possibly running under NetBSD's Linux
  928: emulation.  Once the file system has been populated, umount it.  If
  929: desirable, the file system can be converted to ext3 using tune2fs -j.
  930: It should now be possible to boot the Linux guest domain, using one of
  931: the vmlinuz-\*-xenU kernels available in the Xen binary distribution.
  932: 
  933: To get the Linux console right, you need to add:
  934: 
  935:     extra = "xencons=tty1"
  936: 
  937: to your configuration since not all Linux distributions auto-attach a
  938: tty to the xen console.
  939: 
  940: Creating an unprivileged Solaris domain (domU)
  941: ----------------------------------------------
  942: 
  943: See possibly outdated
  944: [Solaris domU instructions](/ports/xen/howto-solaris/).
  945: 
  946: 
  947: PCI passthrough: Using PCI devices in guest domains
  948: ---------------------------------------------------
  949: 
  950: The dom0 can give other domains access to selected PCI
  951: devices. This can allow, for example, a non-privileged domain to have
  952: access to a physical network interface or disk controller.  However,
  953: keep in mind that giving a domain access to a PCI device most likely
  954: will give the domain read/write access to the whole physical memory,
  955: as PCs don't have an IOMMU to restrict memory access to DMA-capable
  956: device.  Also, it's not possible to export ISA devices to non-dom0
  957: domains, which means that the primary VGA adapter can't be exported.
  958: A guest domain trying to access the VGA registers will panic.
  959: 
  960: If the dom0 is NetBSD, it has to be running Xen 3.1, as support has
  961: not been ported to later versions at this time.
  962: 
  963: For a PCI device to be exported to a domU, is has to be attached to
  964: the "pciback" driver in dom0.  Devices passed to the dom0 via the
  965: pciback.hide boot parameter will attach to "pciback" instead of the
  966: usual driver.  The list of devices is specified as "(bus:dev.func)",
  967: where bus and dev are 2-digit hexadecimal numbers, and func a
  968: single-digit number:
  969: 
  970:         pciback.hide=(00:0a.0)(00:06.0)
  971: 
  972: pciback devices should show up in the dom0's boot messages, and the
  973: devices should be listed in the `/kern/xen/pci` directory.
  974: 
  975: PCI devices to be exported to a domU are listed in the "pci" array of
  976: the domU's config file, with the format "0000:bus:dev.func".
  977: 
  978:         pci = [ '0000:00:06.0', '0000:00:0a.0' ]
  979: 
  980: In the domU an "xpci" device will show up, to which one or more pci
  981: buses will attach.  Then the PCI drivers will attach to PCI buses as
  982: usual.  Note that the default NetBSD DOMU kernels do not have "xpci"
  983: or any PCI drivers built in by default; you have to build your own
  984: kernel to use PCI devices in a domU.  Here's a kernel config example;
  985: note that only the "xpci" lines are unusual.
  986: 
  987:         include         "arch/i386/conf/XEN3_DOMU"
  988: 
  989:         # Add support for PCI buses to the XEN3_DOMU kernel
  990:         xpci* at xenbus ?
  991:         pci* at xpci ?
  992: 
  993:         # PCI USB controllers
  994:         uhci*   at pci? dev ? function ?        # Universal Host Controller (Intel)
  995: 
  996:         # USB bus support
  997:         usb*    at uhci?
  998: 
  999:         # USB Hubs
 1000:         uhub*   at usb?
 1001:         uhub*   at uhub? port ? configuration ? interface ?
 1002: 
 1003:         # USB Mass Storage
 1004:         umass*  at uhub? port ? configuration ? interface ?
 1005:         wd*     at umass?
 1006:         # SCSI controllers
 1007:         ahc*    at pci? dev ? function ?        # Adaptec [23]94x, aic78x0 SCSI
 1008: 
 1009:         # SCSI bus support (for both ahc and umass)
 1010:         scsibus* at scsi?
 1011: 
 1012:         # SCSI devices
 1013:         sd*     at scsibus? target ? lun ?      # SCSI disk drives
 1014:         cd*     at scsibus? target ? lun ?      # SCSI CD-ROM drives
 1015: 
 1016: 
 1017: NetBSD as a domU in a VPS
 1018: =========================
 1019: 
 1020: The bulk of the HOWTO is about using NetBSD as a dom0 on your own
 1021: hardware.  This section explains how to deal with Xen in a domU as a
 1022: virtual private server where you do not control or have access to the
 1023: dom0.  This is not intended to be an exhaustive list of VPS providers;
 1024: only a few are mentioned that specifically support NetBSD.
 1025: 
 1026: VPS operators provide varying degrees of access and mechanisms for
 1027: configuration.  The big issue is usually how one controls which kernel
 1028: is booted, because the kernel is nominally in the dom0 file system (to
 1029: which VPS users do not normally have access).  A second issue is how
 1030: to install NetBSD.
 1031: A VPS user may want to compile a kernel for security updates, to run
 1032: npf, run IPsec, or any other reason why someone would want to change
 1033: their kernel.
 1034: 
 1035: One approach is to have an administrative interface to upload a kernel,
 1036: or to select from a prepopulated list.  Other approaches are pygrub
 1037: (deprecated) and pvgrub, which are ways to have a bootloader obtain a
 1038: kernel from the domU file system.  This is closer to a regular physical
 1039: computer, where someone who controls a machine can replace the kernel.
 1040: 
 1041: A second issue is multiple CPUs.  With NetBSD 6, domUs support
 1042: multiple vcpus, and it is typical for VPS providers to enable multiple
 1043: CPUs for NetBSD domUs.
 1044: 
 1045: pygrub
 1046: -------
 1047: 
 1048: pygrub runs in the dom0 and looks into the domU file system.  This
 1049: implies that the domU must have a kernel in a file system in a format
 1050: known to pygrub.  As of 2014, pygrub seems to be of mostly historical
 1051: interest.
 1052: 
 1053: pvgrub
 1054: ------
 1055: 
 1056: pvgrub is a version of grub that uses PV operations instead of BIOS
 1057: calls.  It is booted from the dom0 as the domU kernel, and then reads
 1058: /grub/menu.lst and loads a kernel from the domU file system.
 1059: 
 1060: [Panix](http://www.panix.com/) lets users use pvgrub.  Panix reports
 1061: that pvgrub works with FFsv2 with 16K/2K and 32K/4K block/frag sizes
 1062: (and hence with defaults from "newfs -O 2").  See [Panix's pvgrub
 1063: page](http://www.panix.com/v-colo/grub.html), which describes only
 1064: Linux but should be updated to cover NetBSD :-).
 1065: 
 1066: [prgmr.com](http://prgmr.com/) also lets users with pvgrub to boot
 1067: their own kernel.  See then [prgmr.com NetBSD
 1068: HOWTO](http://wiki.prgmr.com/mediawiki/index.php/NetBSD_as_a_DomU)
 1069: (which is in need of updating).
 1070: 
 1071: It appears that [grub's FFS
 1072: code](http://xenbits.xensource.com/hg/xen-unstable.hg/file/bca284f67702/tools/libfsimage/ufs/fsys_ufs.c)
 1073: does not support all aspects of modern FFS, but there are also reports
 1074: that FFSv2 works fine.  At prgmr, typically one has an ext2 or FAT
 1075: partition for the kernel with the intent that grub can understand it,
 1076: which leads to /netbsd not being the actual kernel.  One must remember
 1077: to update the special boot partition.
 1078: 
 1079: Amazon
 1080: ------
 1081: 
 1082: See the [Amazon EC2 page](../amazon_ec2/).
 1083: 
 1084: Using npf
 1085: ---------
 1086: 
 1087: In standard kernels, npf is a module, and thus cannot be loaded in a
 1088: DOMU kernel.
 1089: 
 1090: TODO: Explain how to compile npf into a custom kernel, answering (but
 1091: note that the problem was caused by not booting the right kernel)
 1092: [this email to
 1093: netbsd-users](http://mail-index.netbsd.org/netbsd-users/2014/12/26/msg015576.html).
 1094: 
 1095: TODO items for improving NetBSD/xen
 1096: ===================================
 1097: 
 1098: * Make the NetBSD dom0 kernel work with SMP.
 1099: * Test the Xen 4.5 packages adequately to be able to recommend them as
 1100:   the standard approach.
 1101: * Get PCI passthrough working on Xen 4.5
 1102: * Get pvgrub into pkgsrc, either via xentools or separately.
 1103: * grub
 1104:   * Check/add support to pkgsrc grub2 for UFS2 and arbitrary
 1105:     fragsize/blocksize (UFS2 support may be present; the point is to
 1106:     make it so that with any UFS1/UFS2 file system setup that works
 1107:     with NetBSD grub will also work).
 1108:     See [pkg/40258](http://gnats.netbsd.org/40258).
 1109:   * Push patches upstream.
 1110:   * Get UFS2 patches into pvgrub.
 1111: * Add support for PV ops to a version of /boot, and make it usable as
 1112:   a kernel in Xen, similar to pvgrub.
 1113: * Solve somehow the issue with modules for GENERIC not being loadable
 1114:   in a Xen dom0 or domU kernel.
 1115: 
 1116: Random pointers
 1117: ===============
 1118: 
 1119: This section contains links from elsewhere not yet integrated into the
 1120: HOWTO, and other guides.
 1121: 
 1122: * http://www.lumbercartel.ca/library/xen/
 1123: * http://pbraun.nethence.com/doc/sysutils/xen_netbsd_dom0.html
 1124: * https://gmplib.org/~tege/xen.html

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