Installing a Cassandra cluster on Amazon EC2

A step-by-step guide for installing the DataStax Community AMI (Amazon Machine Image).

The DataStax AMI allows you to set up a simple DataStax Community cluster using the Amazon Web Services EC2 Management Console. Installing via the AMI allows you to quickly deploy a Cassandra cluster within a single availability zone.

The AMI does the following: 

  • Installs the latest version of Cassandra with an Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (Precise Pangolin), image (Ubuntu Cloud 20140227 release), Kernel 3.8+.
  • Installs Oracle Java 7.
  • Install metrics tools such as dstat, ethtool, make, gcc, and s3cmd.
  • Uses RAID0 ephemeral disks for data storage and commit logs.
  • Choice of PV (Para-virtualization) or HVM (Hardware-assisted Virtual Machine) instance types. See Amazon documentation.
  • Launches EBS-backed instances for faster start-up, not database storage.
  • Uses the private interface for intra-cluster communication.
  • Sets the seed nodes cluster-wide.
  • Installs OpsCenter (by default).
Note: When creating an EC2 cluster that spans multiple regions and availability zones, use OpsCenter to set up your cluster. See EC2 clusters spanning multiple regions and availability zones.

Because Amazon changes the EC2 console intermittently, these instructions have been generalized. For details on each step, see the User guide in the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud Documentation.

To install a Cassandra cluster from the DataStax AMI, complete the following tasks: