14.4. Launching and tuning real-time instances

After you deploy and configure Real-time Compute nodes, you can launch real-time instances on those nodes. You can further configure these real-time instances with CPU pinning, NUMA topology filters, and huge pages.



  1. Launch the real-time instance:

    # openstack server create  --image <rhel> \
     --flavor r1.small --nic net-id=<dpdk_net> test-rt
  2. Optional: Verify that the instance uses the assigned emulator threads:

    # virsh dumpxml <instance_id> | grep vcpu -A1
    <vcpu placement='static'>4</vcpu>
      <vcpupin vcpu='0' cpuset='1'/>
      <vcpupin vcpu='1' cpuset='3'/>
      <vcpupin vcpu='2' cpuset='5'/>
      <vcpupin vcpu='3' cpuset='7'/>
      <emulatorpin cpuset='0-1'/>
      <vcpusched vcpus='2-3' scheduler='fifo'

Pinning CPUs and setting emulator thread policy

To ensure that there are enough CPUs on each Real-time Compute node for real-time workloads, you need to pin at least one virtual CPU (vCPU) for an instance to a physical CPU (pCPUs) on the host. The emulator threads for that vCPU then remain dedicated to that pCPU.

Configure your flavor to use a dedicated CPU policy. To do so, set the hw:cpu_policy parameter to dedicated on the flavor. For example:

# openstack flavor set --property hw:cpu_policy=dedicated 99

Make sure that your resources quota has enough pCPUs for the Real-time Compute nodes to consume.

Optimizing your network configuration

Depending on the needs of your deployment, you might need to set parameters in the network-environment.yaml file to tune your network for certain real-time workloads.

To review an example configuration optimized for OVS-DPDK, see the Configuring the OVS-DPDK parameters section of the Network Functions Virtualization Planning and Configuration Guide.

Configuring huge pages

It is recommended to set the default huge pages size to 1GB. Otherwise, TLB flushes might create jitter in the vCPU execution. For general information about using huge pages, see the Running DPDK applications web page.

Disabling Performance Monitoring Unit (PMU) emulation

Instances can provide PMU metrics by specifying an image or flavor with a vPMU. Providing PMU metrics introduces latency.


The vPMU defaults to enabled when NovaLibvirtCPUMode is set to host-passthrough.

If you do not need PMU metrics, then disable the vPMU to reduce latency by setting the PMU property to "False" in the image or flavor used to create the instance:

  • Image: hw_pmu=False
  • Flavor: hw:pmu=False