There are two main ways to install MAAS
If you are interested in testing the latest development version you
can also check out the very latest source and build MAAS yourself.
Installing MAAS from the archive
Installing MAAS from packages is thankfully straightforward. There are
actually several packages that go into making up a working MAAS
install, but for convenience, many of these have been gathered into a
virtual package called ‘maas’ which will install the necessary
components for a ‘seed cloud’, that is a single server that will
directly control a group of nodes. The main packages are:
- maas - seed cloud setup, which includes both the region
controller and the cluster controller below.
- maas-region-controller - includes the web UI, API and database.
- maas-cluster-controller - controls a group (“cluster”) of nodes
including DHCP management.
- maas-dhcp/maas-dns - required when managing dhcp/dns.
If you need to separate these services or want to deploy an additional
cluster controller, you should install the corresponding packages
individually (see the description of a typical setup
for more background on how a typical hardware setup might be
There are two suggested additional packages ‘maas-dhcp’ and
‘maas-dns’. These set up MAAS-controlled DHCP and DNS services which
greatly simplify deployment if you are running a typical setup where
the MAAS controller can run the network (Note: These must be
installed if you later set the options in the web interface to have
MAAS manage DHCP/DNS). If you need to integrate your MAAS setup under
an existing DHCP setup, see Manual DHCP configuration
A more up-to-date MAAS is available for the most recent Ubuntu LTS
release in the Canonical cloud archive. You can activate the archive
with sudo add-apt-repository cloud-archive:tools. Using packages
from this archive is recommended as it contains important fixes and
new features that are not always available in the Ubuntu archive.
At the command-line, type:
$ sudo apt-get install maas maas-dhcp maas-dns
You will see a list of packages and a confirmation message to
proceed. The exact list will obviously depend on what you already have
installed on your server, but expect to add about 200MB of files.
The configuration for the MAAS controller will automatically run and
pop up this config screen:
Here you will need to enter the hostname for where the region
controller can be contacted. In many scenarios, you may be running the
region controller (i.e. the web and API interface) from a different
network address, for example where a server has several network
Once the configuration scripts have run you should see this message
telling you that the system is ready to use:
The web server is started last, so you have to accept this message
before the service is run and you can access the Web interface. Then
there are just a few more setup steps Post-Install tasks
Installing MAAS from Ubuntu Server boot media
If you are installing MAAS as part of a fresh install it is easiest to
choose the “Multiple Server install with MAAS” option from the
installer and have pretty much everything set up for you. Boot from
the Ubuntu Server media and you will be greeted with the usual
language selection screen:
On the next screen, you will see there is an entry in the menu called
“Multiple server install with MAAS”. Use the cursor keys to select
this and then press Enter.
The installer then runs through the usual language and keyboard
options. Make your selections using Tab/Cursor keys/Enter to proceed
through the install. The installer will then load various drivers,
which may take a moment or two.
The next screen asks for the hostname for this server. Choose
something appropriate for your network.
Finally we get to the MAAS part! Here there are just two options. We
want to “Create a new MAAS on this server” so go ahead and choose that
The install now continues as usual. Next you will be prompted to enter
a username. This will be the admin user for the actual server that
MAAS will be running on (not the same as the MAAS admin user!)
As usual you will have the chance to encrypt your home
directory. Continue to make selections based on whatever settings suit
After making selections and partitioning storage, the system software
will start to be installed. This part should only take a few minutes.
Various packages will now be configured, including the package manager
and update manager. It is important to set these up appropriately so
you will receive timely updates of the MAAS server software, as well
as other essential services that may run on this server.
The configuration for MAAS will ask you to configure the host address
of the server. This should be the IP address you will use to connect
to the server (you may have additional interfaces e.g. to run node
The next screen will confirm the web address that will be used to the
After configuring any other packages the installer will finally come
to and end. At this point you should eject the boot media.
After restarting, you should be able to login to the new server with
the information you supplied during the install. The MAAS software
will run automatically.
NOTE: The maas-dhcp and maas-dns packages are not installed by
default. If you want to have MAAS run DHCP and DNS services, you
should install these packages:
$ sudo apt-get install maas-dhcp maas-dns
And then proceed to the post-install setup below.
If you now use a web browser to connect to the region controller, you
should see that MAAS is running, but there will also be some errors on
The on screen messages will tell you that there are no boot images
present, and that you can’t login because there is no admin user.
Create a superuser account
Once MAAS is installed, you’ll need to create an administrator
$ sudo maas createadmin --username=root --email=MYEMAIL@EXAMPLE.COM
Substitute your own email address for MYEMAIL@EXAMPLE.COM. You may also
use a different username for your administrator account, but “root” is a
common convention and easy to remember. The command will prompt for a
password to assign to the new user.
You can run this command again for any further administrator accounts you
may wish to create, but you need at least one.
Import the boot images
MAAS will check for and download new Ubuntu images once a week.
However, you’ll need to download them manually the first time. To do
this you will need to connect to the MAAS API using the maas-cli
tool. (see Logging in for details). Then you need to
run the command:
$ maas-cli maas node-groups import-boot-images
(substitute in a different profile name for ‘maas’ if you have called
yours something else) This will initiate downloading the required
image files. Note that this may take some time depending on your
This API command is only available in MAAS versions 1.3 and above.
For lower versions, you need to run sudo maas-import-pxe-files once
on each cluster controller.
Login to the server
To check that everything is working properly, you should try and login
to the server now. Both the error messages should have gone (it can
take a few minutes for the boot image files to register) and you can
see that there are currently 0 nodes attached to this controller.
Configure switches on the network
Some switches use Spanning-Tree Protocol (STP) to negotiate a loop-free path
through a root bridge. While scanning, it can make each port wait up to 50
seconds before data is allowed to be sent on the port. This delay in turn can
cause problems with some applications/protocols such as PXE, DHCP and DNS, of
which MAAS makes extensive use.
To alleviate this problem, you should enable Portfast for Cisco switches
or its equivalent on other vendor equipment, which enables the ports to come
up almost immediately.
Once everything is set up and running, you are ready to start