About OMIs

An OUTSCALE Machine Image (OMI) is a template for virtual machines (VMs) containing at least an Operating System (OS) and possibly other software applications and other configurations like block device mappings.

OMIs enable you to create VMs with a predefined software configuration and applications you need, without having to install the same software applications on all the VMs you create for a specific use case.

General Information

An OMI is a machine image used as a template to create VMs based on a Block Storage Unit (BSU) volume as the root device. An OMI provides at least an OS (Linux or Windows), and can provide software applications or copies of other BSU volumes.

To function properly, Windows VMs require at least a v3 processor generation, 2 vCores, and 4 GiB of memory. For more information, see VM Types.

An OMI also provides a configuration for VM attributes, like DisableApiTermination, which you can modify if needed. For more information, see Modifying a VM Attribute.

OMIs can be created either from a snapshot of a volume or from a VM:

  • If you create an OMI from a snapshot, the latter is used to create the root device of the VMs to be created.

  • If you create an OMI from a VM, a snapshot of the root device is created to create the OMI, and then to create the root device of the VMs to be created. If other BSU volumes are attached to the source VM, snapshots of each of these volumes are created and VMs are created with copies attached to them.

  • You can also add other volumes to an OMI when creating it using block device mappings. For more information, see Defining Block Device Mappings.

  • You cannot delete snapshots that are currently used by an OMI.

3DS OUTSCALE provides official OMIs, that are created and supported by 3DS OUTSCALE, as well as OMIs from OUTSCALE Marketplace, that are created and supported by seller partners from 3DS OUTSCALE’s trusted ecosystem.

You can also create your own OMIs from your snapshots or your VMs. By default, your OMIs are private, but you can share them with one or more specified accounts.

3DS OUTSCALE cannot guarantee the proper functioning of VMs created from non-official sources.

3DS OUTSCALE ensures that the content of official OMIs is up-to date. However, once a VM is created using one of these OMIs, you are responsible for updating your run-time environment.

Two architectures are available for OMIs:

  • 32-bit architecture (i386)

  • 64-bit architecture (x86_64)

3DS OUTSCALE provides only 64-bit official OMIs, but you can create both 32-bit and 64-bit OMIs.

OMIs Permissions, Privacy, Copies and Exports to OOS

You can share your OMIs with other accounts within the same Region. This enables these other accounts to create a VM from the OMI or create a copy of it. The shared OMI still belongs to you. For more information, see Modifying the Attributes of an OMI.

You can also copy an OMI between accounts in different Regions or in the same one. Contrary to a shared OMI, the copy of an OMI is independent from the source one, has its own ID and lifecycle, and belongs to the other account.

  • To copy an OMI between accounts in different Regions, the owner of the source OMI first needs to export this OMI to an OUTSCALE Object Storage (OOS) bucket. Using the pre-signed URL of the manifest file of the OMI, the other account then needs to import it, which creates a copy in its own account. For more information, see Tutorial: Copying an OMI.

    Before exporting an OMI or a snapshot to another Region, you need to make sure that this action is authorized by all applicable third-party licenses. If the export is authorized, only an OMI export guarantees the application of third-party licenses in the target Region, whereas a snapshot export does not.

  • To copy an OMI between accounts in the same Region, you can either use the export/import method above, or share the OMI with the other account who can then copy it. For more information, see Copying an OMI Within One Region.

  • We strongly recommend using only official OMIs or OMIs from OUTSCALE Marketplace. OMIs from other sources may have a root password or an embedded SSH key. These are not deleted when you first create a VM and add your keypair. In these cases, you must check the ~/.ssh/authorized_keys file and only keep the last entry, which is the public part of your keypair.

  • When using a non-official or non-Marketplace OMI for Windows, ensure that its creator has performed a sysprep on the source VM before creating the OMI. Otherwise, VMs created using this OMI do not work properly and are not supported. For more information, see the Windows Sysprep documentation.

  • Exporting an OMI to an OOS bucket also enables you to create a backup of this OMI, stored on OOS.

  • Copying an OMI to another Region enables you to create similar VMs in different Regions to improve the availability of your applications.

  • If you want to use an OMI that does not belong to you, we strongly recommend to create your own copy of the OMI before creating your VMs. When 3DS OUTSCALE updates its official OMIs, their ID is modified. For OMIs created by other accounts, the owner of an OMI may deregister it. If you use automation tools or scripts, this can compromise your deployment. Creating your own OMI based on the one shared with you before using it prevents these risks.

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