This walk-thru is targeting developers who want to explore the bleeding edge of Lustre. If you are evaluating Lustre for production, you should choose a Lustre Release.


Describe the steps you need to build and test a Lustre system (MGS, MDT, MDS, OSS, OST, client) from the master branch on a x86_64, RHEL/CentOS 6.4 machine.


  • A newly installed RHEL/CentOS 6.4 x86_64 machine connected to the internet.
  • EPEL Repository: this is a convenient source for git.
    NOTE the EPEL 5 repository is used because it includes quilt.
  • NOTE It is suggested that you have at least 1GB of memory on the machine you are using for the build.
  • NOTE Verify that SElinux is disabled.


pre-built RPMs are available

Lustre servers currently require a patched and compiled kernel. A patched and compiled Lustre server kernel is available from Whamcloud. A separate page is available to walk thru setting up Lustre with these pre-built RPMs. This document is for those who wish to build their Lustre system from source.  Note that if you are not modifying the kernel patches on the server, it is possible to use the pre-built Lustre server kernel RPMs, and only build the Lustre code. Note that a patched kernel is NOT needed for the Lustre client.

Patches are available in the Git source repository. A test suite is included with the Lustre source. This document walks through the steps of patching the kernel, building Lustre and running a basic test of the complete system. 


The procedure requires that a OS is setup for development - this includes Lustre sources, kernel source and build tools. Once setup, a new kernel can be patched, compiled, run and tested. Further reading on building a RHEL RPM based kernel is available from, among other sources, the CentOS site.

Provision machine and installing dependencies.

Once RHEL 6.3 is newly installed on rhel6-master login as root.

  1. Install the kernel development tools.

    # yum -y groupinstall "Development Tools"

    Problem with installing 'Development Tools'

    If the Development Tools group is not be available for some reason, you may find the following list if individual packages necessary to install.

    # yum -y install automake xmlto asciidoc elfutils-libelf-devel zlib-devel binutils-devel newt-devel python-devel hmaccalc perl-ExtUtils-Embed rpm-build make gcc redhat-rpm-config patchutils git
  2. Install additional dependencies

    # yum -y install xmlto asciidoc elfutils-libelf-devel zlib-devel binutils-devel newt-devel python-devel hmaccalc perl-ExtUtils-Embed bison elfutils-devel audit-libs-devel
  3. Install EPEL 5.  NOTE EPEL5 is used because it contains quilt and libselinux-devel

    # rpm -ivh
  4. Install quilt and libselinux-devel

    # yum -y install quilt libselinux-devel


    newt-devel may not be available if you are using RHEL6. One option is to download newt-devel, slang-devel, and asciidoc RPMs from CentOS and install with:

    yum --nogpgcheck localinstall ./newt-devel-0.52.11-3.el6.x86_64.rpm ./slang-devel-2.2.1-1.el6.x86_64.rpm ./asciidoc-8.4.5-4.1.el6.noarch.rpm

Preparing the Lustre source.

  1. Create a user build with the home directory /home/build

    # useradd -m build
  2. Switch to the user build and change to the build $HOME directory.

    # su build
    # cd $HOME
  3. Get the MASTER branch from HPDD git.

    # git clone git://
    # cd lustre-release
  4. Run sh ./
  5. Resolve any outstanding dependencies until completes successfully. Success will look like:

    # sh ./
    Checking for a complete tree...
    checking for automake-1.9 >= 1.9... found 1.9.6
    ... installing `./config.sub' installing `./install-sh' installing `./missing'
    Running autoconf

Prepare a patched kernel for Lustre

You can have different ways to prepare a patched kernel for Lustre. The easier method is to download built RPM packages from the Releases page. You're going to need the packages starting with 'kernel-'. After new kernel packages are downloaded, you can skip the following few steps and go to the section 'Installing the Lustre kernel and rebooting'.

If you want a more challenge life, you can patch the kernel by yourself, in that case, please follow the steps below.

Prepare the kernel source

In this walk-thru, the kernel is built using rpmbuild - a tool specific to RPM based distributions.

  1. Get the kernel source. First create the directory structure, then get the source from the RPM. Create a .rpmmacros file to install the kernel source in our user dir.

    # cd $HOME
    # mkdir -p kernel/rpmbuild/{BUILD,RPMS,SOURCES,SPECS,SRPMS}
    # cd kernel
    # echo '%_topdir %(echo $HOME)/kernel/rpmbuild' > ~/.rpmmacros
  2. Install the kernel source:

    # rpm -ivh 2>&1 | grep -v mockb
    NOTE: For RHEL 7, you can use
    # rpm -ivh 2>&1 | grep -v exist

    RHEL kernel versions

    Red Hat periodically release updates to their distributed kernel. The Lustre Master attempts to stay up-to-date with the most recent kernel from Red Hat. In the event that the link above is not completely up-to-date, you should visit the Red Hat source RPM download site and ensure you are downloading the most recent kernel. The most recent supported kernel is recorded in lustre/kernel_patches/which_patch.

  3. Prepare the source using rpmbuild.

    # cd ~/kernel/rpmbuild
    # rpmbuild -bp --target=`uname -m` ./SPECS/kernel.spec

    This will end with:

    gpg: Total number processed: 1
    gpg:               imported: 1
    + gpg --homedir . --export --keyring ./ Red
    gpg: WARNING: unsafe permissions on homedir `.'
    + gcc -o scripts/bin2c scripts/bin2c.c
    + scripts/bin2c ksign_def_public_key __initdata
    + cd ..
    + exit 0

At this point, we now have kernel source, with all the RHEL/CentOS patches applied, residing in the directory /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD/kernel-2.6.431.5.1.el6/linux-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6.x86_64/

Patch the kernel source with the Lustre code.

  1. Add a unique build id so we can be certain our kernel is booted. Edit ~/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD/kernel-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6/linux-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6.x86_64/Makefile and modify line 4, the EXTRAVERSION to read:

    EXTRAVERSION = .431.5.1.el6_lustre
  2. Enter the directory ~/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD/kernel-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6/linux-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6.x86_64/

    # cd ~/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD/kernel-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6/linux-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6.x86_64/
  3. Overwrite the .config file with ~/lustre-release/lustre/kernel_patches/kernel_configs/kernel-2.6.32-2.6-rhel6-x86_64.config

    # cp ~/lustre-release/lustre/kernel_patches/kernel_configs/kernel-2.6.32-2.6-rhel6-x86_64.config ./.config
  4. Link the Lustre series and patches

    # ln -s ~/lustre-release/lustre/kernel_patches/series/2.6-rhel6.series series
    # ln -s ~/lustre-release/lustre/kernel_patches/patches patches
  5. Apply the patches to the kernel source using quilt

    # quilt push -av
    patching file fs/jbd2/transaction.c
    Hunk #3 succeeded at 1222 (offset 3 lines).
    Hunk #4 succeeded at 1357 (offset 3 lines).
    Now at patch patches/jbd2-jcberr-2.6-rhel6.patch

Build the new kernel as an RPM.

  1. Go into the kernel source directory and issue the following commands to build a kernel rpm.

    # cd ~/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD/kernel-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6/linux-2.6.32-431.5.1.el6.x86_64/
    # make oldconfig || make menuconfig
    # make include/asm
    # make include/linux/version.h
    # make SUBDIRS=scripts
    # make include/linux/utsrelease.h
    # make rpm
    NOTE: with RHEL 7,
    # make oldconfig
    # make -j4 rpm
  2. A successful build will return:

    Wrote: /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/SRPMS/kernel-2.6.32lustremaster-1.src.rpm
    Wrote: /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/RPMS/x86_64/kernel-2.6.32.lustremaster-1.x86_64.rpm
    Executing(%clean): /bin/sh -e /var/tmp/rpm-tmp.f73m1V
    + umask 022
    + cd /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD
    + cd kernel-2.6.32lustremaster
    + rm -rf /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILDROOT/kernel-2.6.32.lustremaster-1.x86_64
    + exit 0
    rm ../kernel-2.6.32lustremaster.tar.gz

If you receive a request to generate more entropy, you need to trigger some disk I/O or keyboard I/O. In another terminal, you can either type randomly or execute the following command to generate entropy:

# grep -Ri 'entropy' /usr

At this point, you should have a fresh kernel RPM ~/kernel/rpmbuild/RPMS/x86_64/kernel-2.6.32.lustremaster-1.x86_64.rpm

Installing the Lustre kernel and rebooting.

  1. As root, Install the kernel

    # rpm -ivh $PKG_PATH/kernel-*.rpm

    Depending on how you got your kernel packages, the PKG_PATH should be ~build/kernel/rpmbuild/RPMS/x86_64 if you built the packages by yourself, or any other directory where you downloaded the packages from

  2. Create initrd using dracut (*This may not be required because initrd should have been created by installing new kernel*)

    # /sbin/new-kernel-pkg --package kernel --mkinitrd --dracut --depmod --install
  3. optional turn on lustre services, and specify network type for lnet

    * chkconfig lustre on 
    * vi /etc/modprobe.d/lustre.conf

    If you don't know what should be written to this file, just leave it empty for now.

  4. Reboot the system with the reboot command.
  5. view the login prompt with satisfaction, and make sure that new kernel is running:

    Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server release 6.0 (Santiago)
    Kernel 2.6.32l-'I'm new kernel' on an x86_64
    client-10 login:

Configure and build Lustre

  1. Configure Lustre source

    # cd ~/lustre-release/
    # ./configure --with-linux=/lib/modules/kernel-2.6.32_lustremaster/build
    LLCPPFLAGS:    -D__arch_lib__ -D_LARGEFILE64_SOURCE=1
    CFLAGS:        -g -O2 -Werror
    EXTRA_KCFLAGS: -include /home/build/lustre-release/config.h  -g -I/home/build/lustre-release/libcfs/include -I/home/build/lustre-release/lnet/include -I/home/build/lustre-release/lustre/include
    LLCFLAGS:      -g -Wall -fPIC -D_GNU_SOURCE
    Type 'make' to build Lustre.
  2. Make rpms:

    # make rpms
    Executing(%clean): /bin/sh -e /var/tmp/rpm-tmp.TsLWpD
    + umask 022
    + cd /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILD
    + cd lustre-2.0.61
    + rm -rf /home/build/kernel/rpmbuild/BUILDROOT/lustre-2.0.61-2.6.32_lustremaster_g0533e7b.x86_64
    + exit 0
    make[1]: Leaving directory `/home/build/lustre-release'
  3. You should now have build the following, similarly named, RPMs:

    # ls *.rpm

Installing e2fsprogs

e2fsprogs is needed to run the test suite.

  1. Download e2fsprogs from
  2. Install with

    # rpm -Uvh ./e2fsprogs-1.42.6.wc2-7.el6.x86_64.rpm  ./e2fsprogs-libs-1.42.6.wc2-7.el6.x86_64.rpm

Installing Lustre.

  1. Change to root and Change directory into ~build/lustre-release/
  2. Install modules lustre-modules and user space tools lustre-

    # rpm -ivh lustre-ldiskfs-3.3.0-2.6.32.lustremaster*
    # rpm -ivh lustre-modules-2.0.61-2.6.32.lustremaster*
    # rpm -ivh lustre-2.0.61-2.6.32.lustremaster_*
    # rpm -ivh lustre-tests-*

Disable SELinux (Lustre Servers)

SELinux, which is on by default in RHEL/CentOS, will prevent the format commands for the various Lustre targets from completing.  Therefore you must either disable it or adjust the settings.  These instructions explain how to disable it.

  1. Run  getenforce to see if SELinux is enabled.  It should return 'Enforcing' or 'Disabled'.
  2. To disable it, edit /etc/selinux/config and change the line 'selinux=enforcing' to 'selinux=disabled'.
  3. Finally, reboot your system.

    # vi /etc/selinux/config
    # This file controls the state of SELinux on the system.
    # SELINUX= can take one of these three values:
    # enforcing - SELinux security policy is enforced.
    # permissive - SELinux prints warnings instead of enforcing.
    # disabled - No SELinux policy is loaded.
    # SELINUXTYPE= can take one of these two values:
    # targeted - Only targeted network daemons are protected.
    # strict - Full SELinux protection.
    # shutdown -r now


  1. Run /usr/lib64/lustre/tests/

    # /usr/lib64/lustre/tests/
    Loading modules from /usr/lib64/lustre/tests/..
    gss/krb5 is not supported
    Formatting mgs, mds, osts
    Format mds1: /tmp/lustre-mdt1
    Format ost1: /tmp/lustre-ost1
    Format ost2: /tmp/lustre-ost2
    Checking servers environments
    Checking clients rhel6-master environments
    Loading modules from /usr/lib64/lustre/tests/..
    gss/krb5 is not supported
    Setup mgs, mdt, osts
    Starting mds1: -o loop,user_xattr,acl  /tmp/lustre-mdt1 /mnt/mds1
    Started lustre-MDT0000
    Starting ost1: -o loop  /tmp/lustre-ost1 /mnt/ost1
    Started lustre-OST0000
    Starting ost2: -o loop  /tmp/lustre-ost2 /mnt/ost2
    Started lustre-OST0001
    Starting client: rhel5-build: -o user_xattr,acl,flock rhel6-master@tcp:/lustre /mnt/lustre
    Using TIMEOUT=20
    disable quota as required
  2. You will now have a Lustre filesystem available at /mnt/lustre
  3. NOTE: if you receive an error similar to: mkfs.lustre: Can't parse NID 'rhel6-master@tcp' you'll need to associate the IP address of a non-loopback interface with name of your machine into the /etc/hosts file.


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