Install python-openstackclient on Linux and Mac OS

Remote management

The Cloud Control Panel isn't the only way to
manage Cloud Servers. If you're running a script or program, you can use the
Cloud Servers API,
but that involves some coding effort.

If you want to manage your servers from the command line without dealing
directly with the API, you can use an open-source client application
called python-openstackclient.

Note: Rackspace doesn't maintain the openstackclient, and it's not
guaranteed to operate with Rackspace Cloud.


To run python-openstackclient, you need to install Python® 2.7 or later on
your system. You can run the client from either a desktop machine or
a remote system, like a Cloud Server. You also need pip, which is a
Python package manager.

Install the package

To install the client, run the following command:

pip install python-openstackclient

Set the environment variables

Now that you've installed openstackclient, set up the environment variables that
enable it to connect to your Rackspace Cloud account.

To set some environment variables, run the following command to open your
.bash_profile file for editing:

nano ~/.bash_profile

Then add the following lines in the data center section, changing values to
match your requirements. Pay particular attention to the username, password,
and tenant name or account number. You can find your account number
in the upper-right corner of the Cloud Control Panel
after you log in.

Use the following format:



After you've set the environment variables, save the file. Because
it includes a password, run the following command to set permissions on
the file so other people can't read it:

chmod 600 ~/.bash_profile

Environment variable explanations

The following table lists explanations for each environment variable and
offers suggested values:

Variable nameValue typeDescription
OS_USERNAMEusernameSet this value to your Rackspace Cloud account username.
OS_TENANT_NAMEaccount numberSet this value to your Rackspace Cloud account number, visible in the upper-right corner of the Cloud Contol Panel when logged in.
OS_AUTH_SYSTEMrackspaceSet this value to rackspace to connect to the Rackspace Cloud.
OS_PASSWORDpasswordSet this value to your Rackspace Cloud account password.
OS_AUTH_URLidentity endpointSet this value to the endpoint for the Identity service the client uses to authenticate for API operations,
OS_REGION_NAMEdata center regionThe code for the data center region containing the servers you want to manipulate. You can check your server's data center by checking its details screen in the Cloud Control Panel. The data center code is just the first three letters of the datacenter's identifier, such as DFW, IAD, ORD, HKG, SYD, or LON. You can override the region setting with the --os-region-name command-line option.
OS_NO_CACHE0 or 1On newer versions of the Ubuntu® operating system the openstackclient tries to use a system keyring that's not set up on servers. Setting this value to 1 addresses the issue. It shouldn't be necessary on other systems, and it shouldn't interfere with the client's operations either. You can override the os_no_cache setting with the --no-cache command-line option.

Load the environment variables

To apply these environment variables to your current shell, run the following

source ~/.bash_profile

Test the client

Next, run a quick query to make sure the openstackclient is ready to go.
To see if you can talk to the API server, run the following command:

openstack image list

If the command is successful, the system displays a list of the images available
to you when creating a server.

Keychain password message

If you run the client on the Ubuntu® operating system and it asks for a
keychain password, run the client with the --no-cache option, as shown in
the following example:

openstack --no-cache image-list

Or you can set the environment variable OS_NO_CACHE=1 as shown in
the preceding configuration sample.

View the command list

You can get a full list of commands by using the following command:

openstack help

Note: You can't to use every command listed. The openstackclient uses
recent development versions of OpenStack®, so it includes support for
some features that Rackspace has not implemented in the Rackspace Cloud.

You can get more help for a subcommand by running the following command:

openstack help network


Use the --debug flag to output both the full request from openstackclient
and any responses from the Rackspace Cloud APIs. This information can help
when you file a bug report or open a support ticket.

A common problem is entering the username, tenant name, or password
incorrectly, so be sure to double-check those settings.

Remember that if you change any environment variables, you need to
either log out and log back in or tell your shell to reapply the
.bash_profile again by using the following command:

source ~/.bash_profile

You can also use the options listed in the openstack help output
to override some environment variable settings. If you're unsure about
the region, for example, you can substitute it with the
--os-region-name option as shown in the following example:

openstack --os-region-name ORD image list

Advantages over the Cloud Control Panel

The openstackclient supports features in the Cloud Servers API but that the
Cloud Control Panel does not expose. For example, the following command creates
a server with the OpenStack Config Drive and user data for cloud-init:

openstack server create --image "Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus) (PVHVM)" --flavor general1-1 --config-drive=True --user-data=rack-ubuntu.yml openstack-server

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