Installing CTERA Portal Instances
  • 30 Nov 2022
  • 4 Minutes to read
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Installing CTERA Portal Instances

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  • PDF

Use the following workflow to install CTERA Portal.

  1. Creating a Portal Instance.
  2. Logging in to the Server to Create the Archive Pool.
  3. Configuring Network Settings.
  4. Optionally, configure a default gateway.
  5. Additional Installation Instructions for Customers Without Internet Access
  6. For the first server you install, follow all of the steps in Configuring the Primary Server.
  7. For any additional servers beside the primary server, install the server as described below and configure it as an additional server, as described in Installing and Configuring Additional CTERA Portal Servers.
  8. Make sure that you replicate the database, as described in Configuring the CTERA Portal Database for Backup.
  9. Backup the server as described in Backing Up the CTERA Portal Servers and Storage.

You can use snapshots block-storage-level snapshots for backup, but snapshots are periodical in nature, configured to run every few hours. Therefore, using snapshots, you cannot recover the metadata to any point-in-time, and can lose a significant amount of data on failure. Also, many storage systems do not support block-level snapshots and replication, or do not do so efficiently.

Creating a Portal Instance

Contact CTERA Support, and request the latest ESXi CTERA Portal OVA file.


The following procedure uses the vSphere Client. You can also use the vSphere Host Client. When using the vSphere Host Client, because the OVA file is larger than 2GB, you must unpack the OVA file, which includes the OVF file, VMDK and MF files. Use the OVF and VMDK files to deploy the CTERA Portal.

To install the CTERA Portal Server:


The following procedure is based on vSphere Client 7.0.3. The order of actions might be different in different versions.

  1. In the vSphere Client console click File > Deploy OVF Template.
  2. The Deploy OVF Template wizard is displayed.
  3. Browse to the CTERA Portal OVA file and choose it.
  4. Click NEXT.
  5. Continue through the wizard specifying the following information, as required for your configuration:
    • A name to identify the CTERA Portal in vCenter.
    • The location for the CTERA Portal: either a datacenter or a folder in a datacenter.
    • The compute resource to run the CTERA Portal.
  6. Click NEXT to review the configuration details.

    Click Ignore.

  7. Click NEXT.
  8. Select the virtual disk format for the CTERA Portal software and the storage to use for this software. Refer to VMware documentation for a full explanation of the disk provisioning formats. For Select virtual disk format select either Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed or Thick Provision Eager Zeroed according to your preference.
    * Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed – Creates a virtual disk in a default thick format. Space required for the virtual disk is allocated when the virtual disk is created. Data remaining on the physical device is not erased during creation, but is zeroed out on demand at a later time on first write from the virtual machine. Using the default flat virtual disk format does not zero out or eliminate the possibility of recovering deleted files or restoring old data that might be present on this allocated space.
    * Thick Provision Eager Zeroed – Creates a virtual disk that supports clustering features such as Fault Tolerance. Space required for the virtual disk is allocated at creation time. In contrast to the flat format, the data remaining on the physical device is zeroed out when the virtual disk is created. It might take much longer to create disks in this format than to create lazy zeroed disks.
  9. Click NEXT.
  10. Select the Destination Network that the CTERA Portal will use.
  11. Click NEXT to review the configuration before creating the VM and then click FINISH.
    The CTERA Portal is created and powered off.
  12. Right-click the portal in the navigation page and chose Edit Settings.
    The Hard disk 2 and Hard disk 3 entries together make up the data pool.
  13. Click ADD NEW DEVICE > Hard Disk.
    A new hard disk is added to the list of hard disks.
  14. Enter a size for the new hard disk.

    The minimum archive pool should be 200GB but it should be sized around 2% of the expected global file system size.

  15. Expand the New Hard disk item and for Location browse to a the datastore you want for the archive pool.
  16. Select the disk to use for the archive pool.
  17. Click OK.
  18. Power on the CTERA Portal virtual machine.

Logging in to the Server to Create the Archive Pool

Create the archive pool on the primary database server and when PostgreSQL streaming replication is required, also create an archive pool on the secondary, replication, server. See Using PostgreSQL Streaming Replication for details about PostgreSQL streaming replication.

To log in to the CTERA Portal server:

  • Log in as root, using SSH or through the console.
    The default password is ctera321
    You are prompted to change the password on your first login.

To create the archive pool:

  1. Log in as root, using SSH or through the console.
  2. Run fdidk -l to identify the disk to use for the archive pool.
  3. In the command line, enter the following command to create the archive pool: create_db_archive_pool device
    where Device is the Device name of the disk to use for the archive pool.
    For example: create_db_archive_pool sdd

    When using NFS storage, use the following command to create the database archive pool: create_db_archive_pool -nfs <NFS_IP>:/export/db_archive_dir
    where NFS_IP is the IP address of the NFS mount point.

  4. Start CTERA Portal services, by running the following command: start

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