Manual Chapter : Getting Started with BIG-IQ Virtual Edition

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BIG-IQ Centralized Management

  • 8.0.0
Manual Chapter

Getting Started with BIG-IQ Virtual Edition

What is BIG-IQ Virtual Edition?

BIG-IQ Virtual Edition (VE) is a version of F5 BIG-IQ Centralized Management that runs as a
virtual machine
on specifically-supported hypervisors. BIG-IQ VE emulates a hardware-based BIG-IQ system running a VE-compatible version of BIG-IQ software.

BIG-IQ VE compatibility with
Linux KVM

The BIG-IQ Virtual Edition (VE) software includes support for a growing list of public and private cloud platforms. For a list of the supported platforms, refer to the BIG-IQ Virtual Edition Supported Platforms matrix.
This BIG-IQ version only supports the
Hypervisors
identified in this guide. Installation attempts on unsupported platforms might not be successful.

Hypervisor guest definition requirements

The
Virt Manager
virtual machine guest environment for the BIG-IQ Virtual Edition (VE), at minimum, must include:
  • 4 virtual CPUs
    The amount of reserved CPU must match the amount of CPU allocated to the virtual machine.
  • 32 GB RAM
    The amount of reserved RAM must match the amount of RAM allocated to the virtual machine.
  • 1 virtual network adapter
  • At least 128GB disk
If you do not supply at least the minimum virtual configuration limits, it produces unexpected results.
The resources required for a BIG-IQ virtual machine depend to some degree on what you intend to do with it. Refer to
Determine the resources required for deployment
on
support.f5.com
for details.
There are also some maximum configuration limits to consider for deploying a BIG-IQ VE virtual machine, such as:
  • CPU reservation can be up to 100 percent of the defined virtual machine hardware. For example, if the hypervisor has a 3 GHz core speed, the reservation of a virtual machine with 2 CPUs can be only 6 GHz or less.
  • To achieve optimum performance limits, all allocated CPU and RAM must be reserved, and virtual disks should be deployed Thick (allocated up front).

Determine your image and resource requirements

The BIG-IQ Virtual Edition (VE) software images available for download are available in two images sizes. Once installed and configured, the standard image makes 120 Mb of disk space available for storage and the large image provides 500 Gb.
If you choose the 500 Gb image, only 120 Mb of the 500 Gb is allocated initially. You must allocate extra disk space beyond 120 Mb before you can use it. Usually, the extra storage space is for DCDs. However, there are also situations in which BIG-IQ systems can use the extra space. For example, you might want to store a large number of UCS backups. Or, your business needs might require you to store multiple versions of the BIG-IP or BIG-IQ software so you can move back and forth between BIG-IP or BIG-IQ versions. If needed, you can also expand the available disk space up to 1.9 Tb. The optimal size for your installation depends on how you plan to use it.
In BIG-IQ version 7.1.0, the size requirement for the /var directory increased from 10 to 25 Gb. If you are updating from a previous version, you might need to allocate additional disk space to accommodate this requirement.
The following table lists the minimum resources for deploying a BIG-IQ. Refer to
When does a BIG-IQ system need additional resources?
and
When does a DCD need additional resources?
(below) for guidance on when you need to exceed these minimums.
Minimum resource requirements per BIG-IQ deployment
Deployment type
Device Type
CPU
RAM
Disk Space
BIG-IQ deployment with statistics collection enabled, as well as alerts and events.
BIG-IQ
8
32 Gb
Generally, 120 Mb; or 500 Gb if extra space is needed.
DCD
8
32 Gb
Initially, 500 Gb. VE disk space can be extended further as needed.
BIG-IQ deployment with alerts and events enabled.
BIG-IQ
8
32 Gb
Generally, 120 Mb; or 500 Gb if extra space is needed.
DCD
8
32 Gb
Initially, 500 Gb. VE disk space can be extended further as needed.
BIG-IQ deployment without statistics collection, alerts, or events.
BIG-IQ
8
32 Gb
Generally, 120 Mb; or 500 Gb if extra space is needed.
License Manager.
BIG-IQ
4
32 Gb
120 Mb
F5 has tested the CPU, RAM and disk space combinations listed in the table. Other higher allocations may be possible. Generally, increasing CPU and RAM support more managed devices, services, or data collection (events, alerts, statistics), and increasing disk space to store more data on the BIG-IQ or DCDs.

When does a BIG-IQ system need additional resources?

When the number of BIG-IP devices you are managing from BIG-IQ deployment exceeds the specified thresholds, F5 recommends that you allocate 8 CPUs and 64 Gb of RAM to your BIG-IQ systems.
The following table lists the threshold for each BIG-IP service, depending on the number of BIG-IP devices you are managing.
A BIG-IQ managing devices
Needs 64 Gb to manage more than:
provisioned with Access
32 devices
provisioned with ADC
80 devices
provisioned with ASM
40 devices
provisioned with DNS
100 devices
provisioned with FPS
50 devices
deployed in a VMware service scaling group
100 devices
deployed in an AWS or Azure service scaling group
50 devices
This is a rough approximation. Depending on the number of objects on each BIG-IP device. When your managed BIG-IP devices are provisioned with multiple modules, the RAM requirement increases.

When does a DCD need additional resources?

For a broader consideration of the factors that can impact the CPU, RAM, and disk space requirements for DCD devices, refer to the
BIG-IQ Centralized Management DCD Sizing Guide
.
For work flows that describe how to manage your disk space, refer to the
BIG-IQ Centralized Management: Data Collection Device Disk Space Management Guide
on
support.f5.com
.

DCD Image Sizing Considerations

TMOS (the architecture underlying BIG-IP and BIG-IQ) imposes a size limit of 1.9Tb for each BIG-IQ VE. When you calculate how many BIG-IQ VE instances your solution requires based on data storage, it's important to understand how much of that 1.9Tb is available for data storage.
  • TMOS reserves half of the disk for upgrades.
  • Space consumed by your data's Elasticsearch replicas cuts the effective storage in half again.
So of the 1.9Tb maximum disk size, approximately 450 Gb is available for data storage on each BIG-IQ DCD.
There are a couple more image size factors to consider:
  • F5 does not support external data storage of BIG-IQ data except for backups and snapshots.
  • F5 in-house testing confirms up to 20 DCDs in one Elasticsearch cluster.
For additional sizing detail or to download sizing tools, refer to
BIG-IQ: Sizing Guidelines
on
support.f5.com