The current infrastructure

The current infra looks like this: “Infra V1”

Why ?

I like building and testing new infrastructure tools

The main goal of these pages:
  - is not to explain in details how each services work and communicate with each others
  - is to list the different steps I took and solutions I found


This infrastructure will hosts my services:

Why OpenBSD?

When building “cloud” infrastructures, nowadays there is only one magical-word: Docker

Docker (and other containers) and the ecosystem (Kubernetes, Swarm, etc.) are a tremendous benefit for SysAdmins/DevOps/SysOps (insert something in Ops).

But it only makes sense if they are used wisely: where complex and repetitve deployments needs to be eased in order help and empower your entire team/project/company. But keep in mind, it comes with its own complexity too, but at other levels.

That’s why for some parts of your infrastructure, you can stick to old recipes if you don’t want to lose your mind

For this project, some parts won’t need Docker because they won’t move a lot / don’t need to scale quickly or need special cares (security easily auditable, some manual actions needed, etc.):

  • the core stack (Consul Servers, Nomad Servers)
  • the edge nodes (traefik)

And here comes OpenBSD.

OpenBSD is my OS of choice for a ton of reasons: some smart people have already listed the main qualities and written a lots of helpful resources. It’s a great OS and is able to run everything I need and listed below.

Besides this, it’s also a great way to learn on how programs and services work. Indeed, running such complex services on a totally different OS will lead you to a lot of misconfigurations, bugs and questionings on how they really work. They don’t benefit from total integration and tests you could usually find in popular Linux distributions.

Why Debian?

I’ve been using Debian for a long time and it’s still an efficient distribution for hobbyists and professionals.

I will use it on the node (apps) nodes to deploy Docker containers.

Why Consul?

I want to build an infrastructure I can orchestrate with a high level of automation.

Consul is a simple and complete services discovery tool that brings tons of benefits in an infrastructure. Thus, it’s the first brick to make all the other tools flexible and smart. It also integrates perfectly (of course) with Nomad.

I have already used it in the past so I am just keeping my knowledge up-to-date.

Why Nomad?

I am building an infrastructure where the different services can:

  • be deployed quickly
  • scale
  • communicates and be aware of other services' changes

So I need an orchestrator that can implement this directly or by using an already installed service. And Nomad:

  • has a lots of connectors to Consul, Vault, etc.
  • can manage containers and processes (and even VMs)
  • is really simple to use and deploy

I have never used it and I really want to discover it. There is not so many articles on the Internet but the official documentation is rather complete (as usual with Hashicorp)

Why traefik?

traefik seems to be the de-facto tool to easily:

  • handle the routing between your applications
  • act as a trafic proxy
  • manage Let’s Encrypt/Acme certificates (without adding external tools and configurations)

I have never used it, so I wanted to give it a try as the main entrypoint for my infrastructure.

And the ohers?

Of course, I also use Ansible: it’s the perfect tool to provision a system and to maintain it.
Check my roles on my GitHub.

I also need OpenBSD’s carp and ifstated: they are used to handle the FailOver IP from OVH (you probably know a similar tool: keepalived).


All VMs are hosted on the OVH Public Cloud offer.

What about the security?

A lot more work is needed to achieve a decent secured infrastructure.

Here is what is already implemented:

  • all VMs are not reachable from the Internet
  • except for the bastion host (only SSH) and the edge nodes (only exposed services like HTTP/S)
  • the fingerprint of the bastion is stored in DNS (SSHFP record)
  • they can communicate inside a private network but firewall rules only allow expected services
  • restricted SSH users' access on all VMs
  • manually generated SSL certificates for Consul and Nomad communications

Here is what I need to do:

  • TLS for all communications inside the private network
  • SSL certificates automatically generated and short-lived
  • ACL / tokens for communications inside the private network

So let’build!

The current infrastructure has been built using:

  • Part 1: the initial infrastructure