OpenStack made easy – Start a project and create the first machine

by | Oct 30, 2019

We are celebrating successes with our new OpenStack environment – performance, stability, flexibility and favourable prices are convincing our customers. However, the multitude of functions overwhelms some users when they first start using it. We are happy to help shed light on this and show how easy it actually is.

To begin with, we need a NWS account. This can be created free of charge at All you have to do is enter an email address and the desired password, as well as whether you want a business or standard account. A short time later, a validation link is sent by e-mail. After confirming the account, you can already log in. A demo credit card is stored for the quick start, but it is advisable to store the desired payment method (credit card/invoice/PayPal) directly via the menu item “Account”-> “Edit payment method”.

Now, in the menu item “Account”-> “Edit account”, we enter our desired billing data, email address for sending the invoice, etc. and validate our account via phone call or SMS.

Now it is time to start our OpenStack. All it takes is a quick click on “Your Apps” in the upper right corner.

Finally, the click on “Start your first app now” brings us to our goal – here you just have to follow the OpenStack button and confirm the unpopular clauses on terms and conditions and data protection – but what has to be, has to be.

Now our App overview shows our OpenStack. Just one click away, behind the inconspicuous tile, you will find all the important information you need to get started.

The OpenStack login window also appears. The login details here differ from those selected in the NWS, but are easy to find in the “Access” tab.

So we now insert the data we have spotted in the “LiveView” tab. Alternatively, the OpenStack application is of course also available fullscreen at

That’s it – our OpenStack is ready and waiting for the first machine to be used.

Start the first machine

Don’t worry – this is also almost as easy.

Let’s navigate to “Compute”-> “Instances” and start a new instance in the upper right corner

In the first step we assign a name for our instance

Now we work through the other tabs on the left and check the “Source” tab.

Here we select “Image” as the boot source and choose the desired operating system from the list at the bottom (the arrow on the far right to select). We leave the other buttons untouched – an explanation of this will follow in later posts. Only when starting Windows machines do we click on “No” for “Create New Volume” – why? More on this in a later article!

The menu item Flavour offers various presets for the desired sizes of the machines. Here you select what you need. Is a desired flavour missing? Just send us a short email and we will take care of it!

The next tab is all about networking, where our OpenStack network is selected, which is the same as our OpenStack project.

For the moment, we will ignore a few tabs and turn our attention to the Key-Pair tab.

Using the button “Import Key Pair”, we import our SSH pubkey in its original form and give it a name of our choice. This is also clicked “up” again.

Finally, the instance can be started – only a few seconds later it is ready.

However, two things still need to be done before it can be used for the first time.

Assign a floating IP

To do this, we click on the small arrow pointing downwards on “Associate Floating IP” in the machine overview on the right of the desired machine, obtain a new IP from the pool using “+” and assign it to the machine.

Now we see that the machine has an IP in the internal network, as well as the currently assigned floating IP – we need this later to connect to the machine.

Edit security groups

Our OpenStack already comes with a firewall. Therefore, access via SSH or RDP does not work yet. However, this is also done with a few clicks.

In the main navigation of OpenStack we go to Network->Security Groups. Here we “Manage” the “Rules” of our default security group via “Manage Rules” and add a new rule for SSH via “Add Rule” and release all networks for access for the time being.

Since all created machines already contain the “default” rule, access to the machine via SSH works from now on. In later articles we will go into more detail about handling security groups and assigning them to machines, but that would go beyond the scope of this article.

Connect with machines

If all steps have been carried out as described, you can now connect to the machine via SSH using the floating IP. For Ubuntu systems, connect as user ubuntu, for Debian as debian, and so on. For Windows machines, you can enter the password when you start the machine for the first time; to do this, you have to click through the details in the instance overview of the machine.


Time is money – for us too! That’s why all machines and individually used resources are billed by the hour (prices here) at fair and transparent prices. Therefore you can keep an eye on everything, we have recorded the current costs and the forecast for the current month (assuming constant use) in our cost calculator.

Need more?

No problem. With a little patience, more and more articles will come here. If you can’t wait or don’t want to bother, you can book a remote training with us, watch our webinar or book our competent MyEngineers.


In this article we go into more detail about the security groups.

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