Attach/detach volumes without Nova

Services like Ironic want to use Cinder w/o Nova. Also it would be useful to attach Cinder volumes not only for Nova/Ironic instances: e.g. make simple CLI to attach volume to some host (VM, workstation, etc) outside OpenStack cloud.

Problem description

Currently there is not a tool which could automate all the attach/detach process without using Nova.

Use Cases

  • Attach volume to Ironic instance

  • Attach volume to any virtual/baremetal host which is not provisioned by Nova or Ironic

  • Attach volume to Magnum container

  • Attach volume to Docker container

Proposed change

Provide a command-line (CLI) tool and Python API which could interact with Cinder and attach volumes to the local host. It will be implemented as python-cinderclient extension and won’t require to add any dependency if extension is not used. This extension won’t be installed by default. Users will be able to install it using PIP or OS package management tool:

pip install python-brick-cinderclient-ext

CLI interface e.g.:

cinder local-attach <volume_id>
cinder local-detach [--attachment-id attachment-id] <volume_id>
cinder get-connector

In case of Ironic when we don’t want to install any package into the user’s instances. Users could install package themselves via pip or OS package managers (apt, yum, etc.).

After this command cinder client will call Cinder API to change volume status to ‘in-use’ because we don’t know when user will attach volume to the host.

Volume attachment:

cinder local-attach [--mountpoint /mnt/disk]
                    [--multipath True]
                    [--enforce-multipath True]
                    [--mode rw]

Volume detachment:

cinder local-detach [--attachment-id id]
                    [--multipath True]
                    [--enforce-multipath True]
                    [--device-info device-info]

‘attachment_uuid’ is required option only for multi-attachment scenario.

Detach procedure should contain the following steps:

  • disconnect_volume

  • terminate_connection with a ‘force’ flag

  • detach

Force detach feature is out of scope of this spec and will be described in a separate spec.

Get connector details:

cinder get-connector

Since mount/unmount is admin only operation we need to run python-cinderclient as root to not add oslo.rootwrap dependency.


  1. Cinder already has all needed APIs. Any API consumer could use existing methods to implement attach/detach actions without Nova.

  2. We can implement needed API inside new python-brickclient.

  3. We can introduce new binary (e.g.: brick) inside python-cinderclient project. In such case we’ll have two different clients inside single repository. From the packager’s point of view it will increase numbers of possible python-cinderclient packages. E.g.: python-cinderclient-iscsci, python-cinderclient-rbd, etc.

Data model impact


REST API impact


Security impact


Notifications impact


Other end user impact

This change will provide new CLI options and Python for python-cinderclient.

Performance Impact


Other deployer impact

  • Deployers could install new package to have new functionality

Developer impact

  • All drivers should implement initialize_connection which could be invoked several times without any side-effect. We’ve filed bugs for some of the drivers.



Primary assignee:

Ivan Kolodyazhny <e0ne>

Work Items

  • Implement proof-of-concept based on a python-cinderclient

  • Get feedback and complete the spec

  • Fix typos in the spec

  • Make changes to Cinder API if needed

  • Unit-tests and Tempest tests are required

  • Functional tests on python-cinderclient gates will be implemented

  • New repository for python-brick-cinderclient-ext is needed


  • os-brick

  • python-cinderclient

  • Linux: open-iscsi, ceph-common, nfs-common or other tool to attach and detach volumes via drivers’ protocols Windows: tools for Windows to be able to attach and detach volume via drivers’ protocols.


  • Unit-tests should be implemented

  • New python-cinderclient API will be tested via functional tests on gates to test attach/detach features without Nova instances.

  • Functional tests for Ironic will be implemented to test attach/detach features to Ironic instances.

Documentation Impact

User manual will be updated to contain information about python-cinderclient extension.