oVirt Engine Development Environment

Development Environment

NOTE: The latest certified documentation is available in the source tree at README.adoc.

The purpose of this page is primarily to align the community experience with the certified procedures.


RPM-Based Systems

  1. Set Up the Snapshot Repository

    • Automatically

      Run the following command:

        # yum install

      NOTE: This does not work for master because it is available after release.

    • Manually

      Create the file /etc/yum.repos.d/ovirt-snapshots.repo, and replace @distro@ in the following code block with fc for Fedora or el for RHEL or an equivalent distribution.

  2. Install the Third-Party Packages
    # yum install git java-devel maven openssl postgresql-server postgresql-contrib \
       m2crypto python-psycopg2 python-cheetah python-daemon libxml2-python \
       unzip pyflakes python-pep8 python-docker-py mailcap python-jinja2 \
       python-dateutil gdeploy
  3. Application Servers

    Following application servers are required for engine development:

    • WildFly 8.2 for oVirt 3.6+ development
      # yum install ovirt-engine-wildfly ovirt-engine-wildfly-overlay
    • JBoss 7.1.1 for backporting changes to oVirt 3.5
      # yum install ovirt-engine-jboss-as
  4. Install the oVirt Packages
    # yum install ovirt-host-deploy ovirt-setup-lib ovirt-js-dependencies
  5. Set Up Java

    Make sure openjdk is the java preferred:

     # alternatives --config java
     # alternatives --config javac

Note: javassit used in some of the unit tests hits a regression introduced in java-1.7.0-openjdk- In order to avoid this issue, you can downgrade to java-1.7.0-openjdk-

Debian-Based Systems

  1. Install the following third-party packages:
    # apt-get install git openjdk-7-jdk maven openssl postgresql \
       python-m2crypto python-psycopg2 python-cheetah python-daemon \
       jboss-as unzip python-dateutil
  2. Download jboss-as-7.1.1 from jboss site and extract to $HOME.

  3. Install oVirt packages:

  4. Ensure openjdk is the preferred version of Java:
    # update-alternatives --config java


  1. Some distributions require you to initialize the database prior to usage.


    # postgresql-setup initdb


    # /etc/init.d/postgresql initdb


    # emerge --config postgresql-server
  2. Configure PostgreSQL to accept network connection by locating pg_hba.conf file, locations includes:

    • Fedora, RHEL: /var/lib/pgsql/data/pg_hba.conf
    • Debian: /etc/postgresql/\*/main/pg_hba.conf
    • Gentoo: /etc/postgresql-\*/pg_hba.conf

    Locate: and ::1/128 and allow “password” authentication for IPv4 and IPv6 connections.

     # IPv4 local connections:
     host    all             all               password
     # IPv6 local connections:
     host    all             all             ::1/128                 password
  3. Configure PostgreSQL to support at least 150 concurrent connections - find postgresql.conf file, usually in the same location of pg_hba.conf, locate ‘max_connections’ and set it to 150.

  4. Restart PostgreSQL service for definitions to take effect:
    • Fedora: systemctl restart postgresql.service
    • RHEL: service postgresql restart
    • Gentoo: /etc/init.d/postgresql-* start
  5. You may want to set the postgresql service to start at boot.
    systemctl enable postgresql.service
  6. Create database and user, using the following commands as root:
    # su - postgres -c "psql -d template1 -c \"create user engine password 'engine';\""
    # su - postgres -c "psql -d template1 -c \"create database engine owner engine template template0 encoding 'UTF8' lc_collate 'en_US.UTF-8' lc_ctype 'en_US.UTF-8';\""
    # su - postgres -c "psql -d template1 -c \"CREATE EXTENSION \\\"uuid-ossp\\\";\""


Checkout source:

$ mkdir -p "$HOME/git"
$ cd "$HOME/git"
$ git clone git://



Once prerequisites are in place, you are ready to build and use ovirt-engine.

Build product and install at $HOME/ovirt-engine, execute the following as unprivileged user while residing within source repository:

$ make install-dev PREFIX="$HOME/ovirt-engine"

Build may be customized, refer to README.developer for further information.

If WildFly 8.2 should be used, then it’s required to manually setup ovirt-engine-wildfly-overlay using following command:

echo "ENGINE_JAVA_MODULEPATH="/usr/share/ovirt-engine-wildfly-overlay/modules:${ENGINE_JAVA_MODULEPATH}"" \
> $PREFIX/etc/ovirt-engine/engine.conf.d/20-setup-jboss-overlay.conf

Run the following command and follow the prompts to set up oVirt. If you followed the procedure to create a database above, the database user is ‘engine’, the password for this user is ‘engine’, and the database name is also ‘engine’.

$ $HOME/ovirt-engine/bin/engine-setup

If JBoss is installed at an alternate location, add the following while JBOSS_HOME contains the location: --jboss-home="${JBOSS_HOME}"

When oVirt has been set up, run the following command to start the ovirt-engine service:

$ $HOME/ovirt-engine/share/ovirt-engine/services/ovirt-engine/ start

The service will not exit as long as engine is up, to stop press Ctrl+C.

Open a web browser and navigate to one of the following links to access the welcome page:

  • http://localhost:8080
  • https://localhost:8443

Debug port is available via port 8787, to be used by Eclipse or any other debugger.

When performing code changes that do not modify the database, there is no need to re-execute the setup; run the following command:

$ make install-dev PREFIX="$HOME/ovirt-engine"

And start the engine service.

To rebuild everything use:

make clean install-dev PREFIX="$HOME/ovirt-engine"

To rebuild a single artifact, for example utils:

make clean install-dev PREFIX=$HOME/ovirt-engine \
      EXTRA_BUILD_FLAGS="-pl org.ovirt.engine.core:utils"

Now make a single artifact that resides within the ear (bll,etc):

make clean install-dev PREFIX=$HOME/ovirt-engine \
      EXTRA_BUILD_FLAGS="-pl org.ovirt.engine.core:bll,org.ovirt.engine:engine-server-ear"

Now your updated artifact is in place.

Advanced Usage

JMX Support

Starting ffrom 3.6, using the and credentials to admin@internal you can interact with ovirt JMX console and its beans:

  • add/change loggers and level
  • get statistics on transactions, connections, threading
  • redeploy, shutdown the instance
  • stats from exposed oVirt beans like LockManager (see what engine entities are locked for provisioning)

First make sure JBOSS_HOME is set:

export JBOSS_HOME=/usr/share/ovirt-engine-wildfly

Do an interactive session:

$JBOSS_HOME/bin/ --controller= --connect --user=admin@internal

Get the engine data-source statistics:

ls /subsystem=datasources/data-source=ENGINEDataSource/statistics=jdbc

Get threading info:

ls /core-service=platform-mbean/type=threading/

Enable DEBUG log - Runtime Change; No Restart

Using the JMX Support you can interact with the logging bean and change it in runtime:

  • adding loggers
  • modifying logger’s log level

Example open all org.ovirt.engine.core to debug:

Make sure JBOSS_HOME is set:

  export JBOSS_HOME=/usr/share/ovirt-engine-wildfly

Add a logger in runtime:

  $JBOSS_HOME/bin/ --controller= --connect --user=admin@internal \

Change log level of a logger in runtime:

  $JBOSS_HOME/bin/ --controller= --connect --user=admin@internal \

keywords: how to debug ovirt-engine

Enable DEBUG Log - Restart Required

There is a file share/ovirt-engine/services/ovirt-engine/ in the deployed engine environment. Open it and look for <subsystem xmlns="urn:jboss:domain:logging:1.1"> section. This section contains all output handlers (server.log, engine.log and console output) with associated level filters.

<file-handler name="ENGINE" autoflush="true">
      <level name="DEBUG"/>
            <pattern-formatter pattern="%d %-5p [%c] (%t) %s%E%n"/>
      <file path="$getstring('ENGINE_LOG')/engine.log"/>
      <append value="true"/>

To actually get the DEBUG messages to those handlers add the following to the end of the subsystem section:

<logger category="org.ovirt._package_you_are_interested_in">
      <level name="DEBUG"/>

To enable full database DEBUG logging to engine.log change the level to DEBUG in the following snippet:

<logger category="org.ovirt.engine.core.dal.dbbroker.PostgresDbEngineDialect$PostgresJdbcTemplate">
      <level name="WARN"/>

Restart the JBoss instance and you will see the logs.

Enable Query by Query postgresql Log

Go to /var/lib/pgsql/data/postgresql.conf and change log_statement to ‘all’. You can then find the logs in /var/lib/pgsql/data/pg_log/.

Enable Unit Tests

$ make install-dev PREFIX="$HOME/ovirt-engine" BUILD_UT=1

Enable DAO Tests

Optional: Create database, provided the user is engine, password engine:

  # su - postgres -c "psql -d template1 -c "create database engine_dao_tests owner engine;""
  $ PGPASSWORD=engine ./packaging/dbscripts/ -d engine_dao_tests -u engine -c apply

Build with tests:

  $ make maven BUILD_GWT=0 BUILD_UT=1 EXTRA_BUILD_FLAGS="-P enable-dao-tests \
      -D engine.db.username=engine \
      -D engine.db.password=engine \
      -D engine.db.url=jdbc:postgresql://localhost/engine_dao_tests"

GWT Debug

    $ make install-dev PREFIX="$HOME/ovirt-engine"
    # GWT classic dev mode:
    $ make gwt-debug
    # OR
    # GWT super dev mode:
    $ make gwt-debug DEV_BUILD_GWT_SUPER_DEV_MODE=1

See Debugging Frontend Applications and GWT Debug Quick Refresh for more information.


RPM packaging

Build system supports standard RPM packaging out of source tarball.

Create source tarball by executing:

  $ make dist

Install build dependencies, replacing @x@ with file names, this should be executed second time only if build dependencies are changed:

  $ rpmbuild -ts @tarball@
  # yum-builddep @srpm@

Build RPMS:

  $ rpmbuild -tb @tarball@

RPM customization is supported refer to

Variable Default Description Usage
ovirt_build_quick 0 build as quickly as we can syntax checks
ovirt_build_minimal 0 minimal build development fully functional for firefox only
ovirt_build_gwt 1 gwt enablement build or skip
ovirt_build_locales 1 build extra locales production build


  rpmbuild -D"ovirt_build_minimal 1" -tb @tarball@


Before you begin

Check if all prerequisites are installed, refer to prerequisites

  • Don’t forget to browse to the webadmin from a browser which the project was built to using the make command.


There are issues when building oVirt engine using the IBM JDK.

The workaround to this problem is to remove all GWTAR files inside the gwt-user.jar package and build the project using EXTRA_BUILD_FLAGS="-Dgwt.usearchives=false".

Author: Alon Bar-Lev (Alonbl)