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Problem this snippet solves:

A really slick & reliable way to stick to one and only one server in a pool.

Requirement: Direct traffic to only a single node in a pool at a time. Initially, traffic should always go to node A. If Node A fails, then traffic will go to Node B. When Node A comes back online, traffic should continue to go to Node B. When Node B fails, then the traffic should go to Node A.

To send traffic to only 1 pool member at a time, you can use an iRule and Universal Persistence to set a single persistence record that applies to all connections.

  1. Create a virtual server.
  2. Create a pool with the real servers in it.
  3. Create an iRule like this:
  4. Create a Persistence profile of type Universal which uses the iRule you just created. Set the timeout high enough so it will never expire under typical traffic conditions.
  5. In the virtual server definition, apply pool as the default pool, and the new persistence profile as the default persistence profile (both on the virtual server "resources" screen).

The first connection will create a single universal persistence record with a key of "1". All subsequent connections will look up persistence using "1" as the key, resulting in truly universal persistence for all connections. (Use 1 or any constant value. 0 will have the same affect as using 1. One of my customers uses "persist uie TCP__local_port"

When one node fails, the other is persisted to by all comers. When the 2nd node fails, the 1st again becomes the preferred node for all, ad infinitum.

Doesn't offer the capability of manual resume after failure, or true designation of a "primary" and "secondary" instance (sometimes required for db applications), but it sure does solve the problem of "only use one node at a time, I don't care which one, please" (You can use priority to gravitate towards the top of a list...)

Note: Priority-based load balancing with or without dynamic persistence doesn't quite address this requirement. Priority load balancing allows you to set a preferred server to which traffic should return once it recovers. With just Priority, and with dynamic persistence of any kind enabled, when a higher priority nodes come back up after failing, you will see traffic distributed across multiple pool members until old connections/sessions die off. With just Priority and no persistence, existing sessions will break once the preferred node again becomes available.

Code :

rule PriorityFailover {
  when CLIENT_ACCEPTED { persist uie 1 }
}
Comments
AgungDes_195148
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus
Hi Guys, I tried to using this code for the iRules but it still show another error for the iRules The Error Message like This One : 01070151:3: Rule [/Common/single_node] error: /Common/single_node:1: error: [undefined procedure: rule][rule PriorityFailover { when CLIENT_ACCEPTED { persist uie 1 } }]
slouma_210072
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus
the same problem please help us if somebody has an idea
CharlesCS_14932
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus
Only specify the 2nd line when creating the iRule. The "rule" line and the closing brace are created by the GUI.
Adam_Ali_246975
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus
is this solution applicable to BIG-IP v10.x?
lenny19_269578
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus
very good stuff, worked a treat
JTB_63532
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

This iRule just made my day! Thanks!

 

Stanislas_Piro2
Cumulonimbus
Cumulonimbus

Hi,

 

Another solution is to use a destination address persistence profile.

 

As the destination (IP address of the virtual server) is always the same, all requests will use only one pool member.

 

Michael_Gilin_1
Historic F5 Account

Hi, Using "persist uie 1" iRule is not recommended, since under certain conditions when a chosen pool member/node goes down it may lead to inconsistent persistence entries between TMMs (i.e. different TMMs may end up with persistence entries to different nodes).

 

If you need to persist to single pool member/node, use destination address persistence profile.

 

jdeeby_270877
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

I am getting this error when writing the rule.

 

1: error: [undefined procedure: persist uie 1 ][{ persist uie 1 }]

 

Here is the syntax when CLIENT_ACCEPTED { { persist uie 1 } }

 

Stanislas_Piro2
Cumulonimbus
Cumulonimbus

@jdeeby why didn't you copy / paste the code?

 

provided code :

 

when CLIENT_ACCEPTED { persist uie 1 }

your code:

 

when CLIENT_ACCEPTED { { persist uie 1 } }

or as I and Michael commented, use destination address persistence

 

Daniel_Gonzalez
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

Hi Stanislas, Michael

 

I understand that with a persistence profile of destination address you'll need to take care of the load balancing method to have the requests going to the same node. Specially of new requests.

 

I cannot think how it will work out by new requests reaching the LTM which are not in persistence table and in the event one of the nodes comes back online.

 

By reading Codecentral original post, it is required that in the event of a node coming back online, traffic keeps going to the same node.

 

Thanks

 

mderanek_60004
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

We having been using this for years with no problems. It's based on the VS name. Using uie 1 is not a good idea. Specially if you are using the irule for multiple VSs.

 

We create a universal persistence profile that calls the irule instead of assigning the irule to the virtual server.

 

when CLIENT_ACCEPTED { persist uie [virtual name] }

 

Just use destination address affinity instead, please. It results in a single persistence record applicable to all clients requesting the virtual. The record actually contains the virtual servers IP address (destination address affinity) and will be deleted/replaced in case the mapped pool member fails and a re-selection happens. Finally all traffic sticks to a single pool member as long as it is available. If it fails the persistence record will be replaced with the next incoming connection. This is an alternative to using priority groups. Priority groups may tend to flapping between pool members in case the high-priority member is not stable. Cheers, Stephan

 

k20
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

OK people I still don't know how exactly dst addr persistence or iRule will help. Here's what I believe both methods will fail to deliver.

 

Scenario 1:

 

T=0, nodes A and B are both online (where T = time), and persistence table is empty T=1, PC1 and PC2 start to connect. 1 of 4 mappings below could happen as persistence entries are created:

 

  1. PC1-A and PC2-B
  2. PC1-B and PC2-A
  3. PC1-A and PC2-A
  4. PC1-B and PC2-B

As you can see, we don't want 1 or 2 to happen. Nothing dst addr persistence or iRule could help when persistence entries don't exist yet.

 

Scenario 2:

 

T=0, node A online and node B offline, and persistence table is empty. T=1, PC1 and PC2 start to connect. The following mappings will be created in the persistence table:

 

PC1-A and PC2-A

 

T=3, node B comes online, PC1, PC2 and PC3 connect. The following mappings could happen:

 

PC1-A PC2-A PC3-A or PC3-B

 

As you can see, PC1 and PC2 don't change. However, the new PC3 could go to node A or node B. This will result in some new PC's will go to A or B while the existing PC's will still stick to A due to the existing persistence entries already exist.

 

Before dst addr persistence or iRule even kicks in, we have to make sure that only ONE node is taking the traffic. How can we accomplish that? Only when this first step is accomplished then dst addr persistence or iRule will help.

 

Hi k20, destination address affinity does not care about your client. The only thing of interest is the destination IP your clients are targeting. And this will be the IP address of your virtual server. Whenever a client is establishing a connection the virtual will establish a persistence table entry containing the virtual servers IP as key and pool member as value. With a new incoming connection (within the persistence timeout) it will lookup the table. The key is the virtual´s IP address and the value exact the same pool member. And this results in selecting the same pool member for all clients. Cheers, Stephan

 

k20
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

Stephan, I understand how persistence works. Did you forget that when T=0, there is nothing in the persistence table and you have both nodes are online, what decision will dst addr persistence make to ensure that all clients will get sent to a single node and not on both? You can't make persistence decision yet because it doesn't exist.

 

That´s true. If there is no persistence record the pool based load balancing method will pick a member. The persistence record will be created and every new connection to this virtual will be balanced to the same pool member now. We are not talking about prioritizing a specific pool member.

 

k20
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

So my question remains, how do we make sure that all connections will get sent to a single node when both nodes are up and no persistence records exist yet for those connections?

 

Does dynamic priority for pool members exist? So far, I only heard about static priority using Priority Group Activation.

 

Stanislas_Piro2
Cumulonimbus
Cumulonimbus

Destination address affinity will create one single persistence record : the virtual server address

 

Destination address affinity uses client side destination address... which is virtual server address for a standard vs

 

So the first connexion will select pool member, all other connexions will use the same pool member

 

k20
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

I'm sorry you are confusing me. "Destination address affinity uses client side destination address... which is virtual server address for a standard vs" Are you talking about the connection between the F5 and the real servers? If so, it doesn't apply to my environment because we are using SNAT. So the servers in our case can only see the SNAT address, NOT the virtual address.

 

Stanislas_Piro2
Cumulonimbus
Cumulonimbus

Client side connection is the connection between client and f5!!!

 

Stanislas_Piro2
Cumulonimbus
Cumulonimbus

Client side connection is the connection between client and f5!!!

 

Dominique_Peti1
Nimbostratus
Nimbostratus

Could someone be more explicit about how to configure "Destination address affinity" like suggested by Stephan Manthey? It is not clear to me if one should

 

  • just replace persist uie 1 by persist dest_addr in the iRule code example above?
  • or configure "Destination address affinity" persistence on the Default Persistence Profile of the virtual server?
  • or still something else?

Also,in a case where the connections are in principle permanent (e.g. to a database master node):

 

  • should the timeout be unset (Indefinite)?
  • In case a server node is temporarily inaccessible or administratively forced offline, the TCP connections to that node might survive, but during that time new connections could be established with other nodes thus resulting, when the node is accessible again, in a state where there are active connections to more than one node. How can it be avoided ? e.g how to cut all connections to other nodes when a new server node is chosen by the persistence?

     

  • would a custom destination affinity persistence with a CARP Hash Algorithm work like for source address persistence, i.e. it would always select the same server node when all nodes are available, even for the very first connection (e.g after a reboot)? cf. How Carp algorithm with source address persistence works?

     

Thanks in advance for your explanations!

 

Hi Dominique, I would recommend to create a new dest address affinity persistence profile with an appropriate timeout. It will be used as default persistence profile and replaces the iRule logic. Please use action on service down in the advanced pool config with the parameter of "reject" to terminate current connections in a case of pool members state change. With a state change the persistence record will be deleted and a new incoming connection will be balanced to another available pool member. A new persistence record will be created. Please keep in mind, that the record will be updated by new incoming connections only. That's why you will notice a reset of the remaining time only with newly established connections. Cheers, Stephan

 

Leonardo_Souza
Cirrocumulus
Cirrocumulus

I was reading an F5 configuration and saw the iRule in this codeshare link.

I knew it would have had to come from DevCentral. 😄

 

The solution proposed here works fine.

However, as indicated in previous comments, destination address does the same job.

 

I just want to add more information about the performance side.

I hope this will make clear that destination address persistence is a better option.

 

As a general rule, only use an iRule if there is no builtin functionality for what you want to do.

Destination address persistence is a builtin functionality, universal persistence is also builtin but triggers an iRule.

 

I don't have access to F5 source code, so I will assume how the persistence table lookups work.

The iRule is using "1" as the key, so if you use the same persistence profile in multiple virtual servers, you will end up with multiple persistence with the key "1".

The persistence table does show the virtual server IP, so it lists the following.

universal (persistence type) - 1 (key) - virtual server IP and port - pool member ip and port - TMM number

I assume the system first do a lookup for key "1", and from that list, do another lookup for the virtual server IP and port.

As someone said in the comments, using something unique to the virtual server, like virtual IP and port, should remove the need for the second lookup.

 

All that to say, it is better to use destination address persistence than the solution proposed in this code share.

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Last update:
‎18-Mar-2015 15:27
Updated by:
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