This documentation is for Release 2.0.0. For previous versions of Avalon look in the page history at version v.71.
|These instructions will walk you through the process of downloading, booting, and configuring a virtual machine image containing CentOS, Avalon 2.0, Fedora, and Opencast Matterhorn, along with preloaded sample audio and video content. The image is configured to use 'bridged networking,' and thus it will have its own virtual network interface with its own MAC address and IP address (obtained via DHCP).|
The Avalon VM is distributed as an Open Virtualization Appliance which should be compatible with these Virtual machine products:
Other virtualization products may be used but they will require manually converting the OVA file into something useful.
The Avalon VM file is located at http://www.avalonmediasystem.org/downloads/avalon-vm.ova and is roughly 5GB. Due to the size, it may take some time to download.
Each virtualization product has different methods for using a VM appliance. The tested methods are below. If you use a product which is not listed, please contact us with usage instructions and we will add them here.
Virtual Machine Manager is an open source GUI front end to QEMU, KVM and other Linux-based virtualization products. It comes with Fedora Linux and other distributions. It doesn't directly support OVA files so manual conversion is required.
Unpack the OVA file. $DIST is where the VM files are going to be; $DOWNLOAD is where the OVA file was downloaded.
mkdir $DIST cd $DIST tar xvf $DOWNLOAD/avalon-vm.ova
The .vmdk file is the virtual disk image. The other files are settings for the VM (ovf) and checksum files (mf).
Convert disk image to qcow2
qemu-img convert -f vmdk -O qcow2 *.vmdk avalon-vm.qcow2
The VMDK file shipped is compressed so the new qcow2 file will be roughly twice as large. After the conversion the vmdk file is no longer needed and can be deleted.
Create a new VM
A generic VM product may be set up using these settings:
The disk image in the OVA package is dynamically-allocated with a maximum size of 500G. While the disk image may only use a few gigabytes when it is first used, it will grow as more data is placed into the VM. Most VMs behave unpredictably when the host system doesn't have enough disk space to satisfy guest OS requests. Monitor the disk usage closely.
If there is a firewall on the network, these ports must be accessible to the clients:
|tcp/22||SSH and SFTP Access|
|tcp/1935||Streaming Media Access for Red5 (RTMP)|
The VM will take while to boot. This is normal since some of the system services are slow to start.
When the VM is booted for the first time you will be taken through a series of steps to configure the virtual machine for use. Many of the screens are the same as a standard CentOS or RedHat Enterprise Linux post-installation first boot. For reference, the RedHat documentation for this process is at https://access.redhat.com/site/documentation/en-US/Red_Hat_Enterprise_Linux/6/html/Installation_Guide/ch-firstboot.html. Only pages which are specific to Avalon or differ from their RHEL counterparts are detailed below.
The Avalon and CentOS End User License Agreements are displayed. Agree to the licensing terms and press Forward to continue.
The default networking configuration uses DHCP. To change the networking configuration, press the Network Settings button to start the standard NetworkManager connection editor. When the network configuration is correct, press Forward to continue.
FFMPEG is an open source tool used to convert multimedia formats into other formats. While it is open source, there are some configurations that cannot be distributed as a binary package. Avalon uses such a configuration, so to adhere to the licensing restrictions, the end-user (you) have to build FFMPEG. To make the process easy, this screen offers a push button which will begin the process of building and installing a FFMPEG binary which will be used by avalon. The installation will not continue until FFMPEG is built.
The build can take 15 minutes or more to finish. Wait until the terminal screen shows a completion message before pressing Forward.
Once FFMPEG is built, the terminal window will display a message informing you to press the Forward button to continue the installation.
If the build fails or otherwise has trouble, the installation will allow you to continue, but Avalon will not be fully functional. Contact the developers for assistance. The build log can be found in /root/ffmpeg-build.log.
Avalon will send email in response to different events or at the request of the users:
|User Comments||This is the destination email address for comments sent in by users|
|Avalon Notifications||If there are issues with processing or other outstanding requests, they are sent to this address|
Support questions from the end users are sent to this address
In addition to the email addresses, the setup also requires an SMTP relay host to use to send email. The port for the relay will usually be 587.
There are two more pieces of information required for the Avalon set up to complete.
Now that all of the changes have been made the Avalon is nearly ready to use. The access URL is displayed on this screen. Take note of this URL; you will use this to access Avalon after reboot. However, note that if you need to register your virtual machine's MAC network address with your institution's DHCP server after reboot, this URL will change.
Press Finish to reboot the machine and apply all of the changes.
Once the VM has rebooted and the login screen has appeared, the Avalon system is ready to use. To use Avalon, open a web browser in your desktop operating system and point it to the access URL that was displayed prior to rebooting.
If the URL that was displayed on the reboot screen doesn't work, the IP of the VM may have changed during the reboot. There are a couple of ways to determine the access URL:
After you have connected to the VM via a web browser, Avalon VM can be used like any other Avalon installation. The Avalon Collections Guide contains information for using Avalon. The Avalon user created during the first boot process will be able to manage both collections and groups.
Besides the hostname (which is covered above), all of the settings and passwords that were set by the install process are stored in /root/avalon-setup.log.
The SFTP dropbox user is "avalondrop" and the random password generated user can be discovered by running this as root:
grep avalondrop /root/avalon-setup.log
Matterhorn runs on http://<access host>:18080 and has an administrative user called "admin". The password can be determined by running this as root:
grep security.admin.pass /root/avalon-setup.log
The username for the fedora instance on http://localhost:8983/fedora is "fedoraAdmin". The password can be determined by running this as root:
grep fedoraAdmin /root/avalon-setup.log
All of the avalon configuration scripts below leave a log of changes in /root/avalon-setup.log. Since this file may contain passwords, make sure the file permissions are set appropriately.
The avalon email addresses can be reconfigured by running (as root):
/usr/share/avalon/avalon_config_email <comments_email> <notifications_email> <support_email> <smtp_server_address> <smtp_port>
To use the existing value for any of the above arguments, use '-'. The Avalon application stack will need to be restarted for the changes to take effect.
To randomize the passwords used by Avalon, the command
can be used. The changes will appear in /root/avalon-setup.log and all Avalon-related services will need to be restarted to make sure the passwords work correctly.
Reconfiguring the accessible network address is more complicated. On each reboot the accessible name is reconfigured during startup when
is run. If the file /etc/sysconfig/avalon_host_config contains a name, that is used for the accessible name, otherwise the DNS name for the host is used. If this script is run during normal operations, the avalon services will need to be restarted to be updated with the new configuration.
If you have the root password, select "Other..." on the Login box, and use "root" for the username, and the root password. When the desktop has started, go to the Applications menu and select "System Tools/Terminal" to start a terminal.
Within the terminal, run the password change command, replacing "username" with the username that was created during install.
After the password is changed, log out and log in to the initial user using the password just created.
Change the password.
mount -o remount,rw / passwd root mount -o remount,ro /
Known Issues - a list of bugs, workarounds, and cautions.
In addition, there are some issues for us to consider in future releases of this VM image:
|information||oddity, potential todo item||todo item||issue w/o workaround||issue with workaround|