Linux-HA (heartbeat) release 2 tutorial

A Tutorial by Alan Robertson


System Administrators and IT architects who architect, evaluate, install, or manage critical computing systems. It is suggested that participants have basic familiarity with LSB style startup scripts, shell scripting and XML. Familiarity with high availability concepts is not assumed. This tutorial provides participants with both basic theory of high-availability systems and practical knowledge of how to plan for and install and configure highly-available systems using Linux-HA..


The Linux-HA project [] is the oldest and most powerful open source high-availability (HA) package available - comparing favorably to well-known commercial HA packages. Although the project is called Linux-HA (or "heartbeat"), it runs on a variety of POSIX-like systems including FreeBSD Solaris, and OS/X.

Linux-HA provides highly available services on clusters from one to more than 16 nodes with no single point of failure. These services and the servers they run on are monitored. If a service should fail to operate correctly, or a server should fail, the affected services will be quickly restarted or migrated to another server, dramatically improving service availability.

Linux-HA supports for rules for expressing dependencies between services, and powerful rules for locating services in the cluster. Because these services are derived from init service scripts, they are
familiar to system administrators and easy to configure and manage. This tutorial will cover planning, installing, and configuring Linux-HA clusters. Topics covered will include:

- General HA principles
- Installation of the software
- Overview of Linux-HA configuration
- Overview of commonly used resource agents
- Managing services supplied with init(8) scripts
- Sample Linux-HA configurations for Apache, NFS, DHCP, DNS and Samba
- Writing and testing resource agents conforming to the OCF specification
- Creating detailed resource dependencies
- Creating co-location constraints
- Writing resource location constraints
- Causing failovers on user-defined conditions


Topics with estimated times (minutes)

45 - General HA principles
15 - Architectural overview of Linux-HA
15 - Installation of the Linux-HA ("heartbeat") software

60 - Overview of configuration
20 - Overview of commonly used resource agents
15 - Managing services supplied with init(8) scripts

30 - Sample configurations for Apache, NFS, DHCP, DNS and Samba
15 - Testing HA configurations
15 - command line tools: crm_resource, cib_admin, crm_standby
20 - Using the GUI for configuration
20 - Creating detailed resource dependencies

10 - Writing co-location constraints
30 - Writing resource location constraints
30 - Writing and testing OCF resource agents
15 - Causing failovers on arbitrary conditions
15 - Time-based configuration rules

The above is a full-day tutorial. I can also give a half-day tutorial on the subject, if this is more appropriate.
The slides for this talk can be found on the [ Linux-HA web site].

Direct link to video