When you boot a virtual instance under OpenStack, your instance has access to certain instance metadata via the Nova metadata service, which is canonically available at http://169.254.169.254/.

In an environment running Neutron, a request from your instance must traverse a number of steps:

  • From the instance to a router,
  • Through a NAT rule in the router namespace,
  • To an instance of the neutron-ns-metadata-proxy,
  • To the actual Nova metadata service

When there are problem accessing the metadata, it can be helpful to verify that the metadata service itself is configured correctly and returning meaningful information.

Naively trying to contact the Nova metadata service listening on port 8775 will, not unexpectedly, fail:

$ curl http://localhost:8775/latest/meta-data/
<html>
 <head>
  <title>400 Bad Request</title>
 </head>
 <body>
  <h1>400 Bad Request</h1>
  X-Instance-ID header is missing from request.<br /><br />
 </body>

You can grab the UUID of a running instance with nova list:

$ nova list
+--------------------------------------+-------...
| ID                                   | Name  ...
+--------------------------------------+-------...
| 32d0524b-314d-4594-b3a3-607e3f2354f8 | test0 ...
+--------------------------------------+-------...

You can retry your request with an appropraite X-Instance-ID header (-H 'x-instance-id: 32d0524b-314d-4594-b3a3-607e3f2354f8'), but ultimately (after also adding the tenant id), you’ll find that you need to add an x-instance-id-signature header. If you investigate the Nova source code, you’ll find that this header is calculated via an HMAC over the instance ID and a shared secret:

expected_signature = hmac.new(
    CONF.neutron_metadata_proxy_shared_secret,
    instance_id,
    hashlib.sha256).hexdigest()

You can get the shared secret from /etc/nova/nova.conf:

# grep shared_secret /etc/nova/nova.conf
neutron_metadata_proxy_shared_secret=deadbeef2eb84d8d

And insert that into the previous Python code:

Python 2.7.5 (default, Nov 12 2013, 16:18:42) 
[GCC 4.8.2 20131017 (Red Hat 4.8.2-1)] on linux2
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>> import hmac
>>> import hashlib
>>> hmac.new('deadbeef2eb84d8d',
>>> '32d0524b-314d-4594-b3a3-607e3f2354f8',
>>> hashlib.sha256).hexdigest()
'6bcbe3885ae7efc49cef35b438efe29c95501f4a720a0c53ed000d8fcf04a605'
>>> 

And now make a request directly to the metadata service:

$ curl \
  -H 'x-instance-id: 32d0524b-314d-4594-b3a3-607e3f2354f8' \
  -H 'x-tenant-id: 28a490a0f8b28800181ce490a74df8d2' \
  -H 'x-instance-id-signature: 6bcbe3885ae7efc49cef35b438efe29c95501f4a720a0c53ed000d8fcf04a605' \
  http://localhost:8775/latest/meta-data
ami-id
ami-launch-index
ami-manifest-path
block-device-mapping/
hostname
instance-action
instance-id
instance-type
kernel-id
local-hostname
local-ipv4
placement/
public-hostname
public-ipv4
public-keys/
ramdisk-id
reservation-id

And you’re done!



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