Adding a cluster

Add a cluster to centrally manage installs and configurations within Lifecycle Manager for DataStax Enterprise clusters.

Add a cluster to centrally manage installs and configurations within Lifecycle Manager for DataStax Enterprise clusters. By default, all datacenters within a cluster inherit the configuration profile from the cluster level, unless overridden when creating the datacenter model. By default, all nodes within a datacenter inherit the configuration profile from the datacenter level, unless overridden when creating the node models. SSH settings can also be inherited or overridden at the datacenter or node levels. Repositories are only specified at the cluster level and are inherited by datacenters and nodes.

If authentication is enabled in the config profile associated with a cluster, prompts recommend changing the default password of the cassandra user. After selecting a configuration profile that includes cassandra.yaml settings to enable the Internal or password authentication scheme, the Add or Edit Cluster dialog prompts for old and new passwords for the built-in cql user named cassandra. The cassandra user is present by default in the Internal authentication scheme, and has a publicly known default password of cassandra. LCM changes the default cassandra password using the supplied password fields.
Warning: It is a security risk to leave the default cassandra password in place. Change the default password to prevent unauthorized access and avoid security breaches.


Important: When enabling node-to-node encryption on an existing cluster, the cluster will experience a network partition during the transition, leading to temporary loss of consistency. If possible, choose whether to employ node-to-node encryption when first creating the cluster. See Configuring SSL/TLS for DSE using LCM.


  1. Click Clusters from the Lifecycle Manager navigation menu. If you do not have any clusters yet, click the adding a cluster link on the Getting Started page.
  2. Click the + (plus) sign icon above the Clusters pane.

    Access the Add Cluster dialog by clicking the plus sign above the Clusters pane

    The Add Cluster dialog appears.

    LCM Add Cluster dialog

  3. Required: Enter a unique name for the cluster. The name reflects the cluster name in both DataStax Enterprise and Lifecycle Manager.
    The cluster name cannot be edited after clicking Save because LCM populates the cluster_name field in cassandra.yaml with the entered value.
  4. Select predefined SSH Credentials to use for accessing the machines that nodes reside on.
  5. Optional: Specify an SSH Management Port to override the default of 22.
  6. Select a predefined Repository from which to access DataStax Enterprise install packages. Datacenters and nodes inherit the repository from the cluster level. Defining a repository for the datacenter or node level is not necessary.
  7. Select a predefined Config Profile to apply at the cluster level. If config profiles are not defined for datacenter or node levels, those levels inherit from the cluster.
    Select a config profile at the cluster level so that LCM can determine any authentication protocol and prompt only once for credentials upfront rather than every time you run a job.
    Warning: If authentication is enabled and a job is going to be run, the required credentials must be set prior to running the job. Not doing so causes LCM to fail registering the cluster automatically with OpsCenter monitoring. Set the credentials upfront within the Add or Edit Cluster dialogs in the LCM UI, or set old and new passwords using the LCM API.
    A prompt indicates that internal or password authentication is enabled (the default for LCM security settings), and password fields appear.

    Prompts in the Cluster dialogs instruct you to change the cassandra default password

    For an initial install, set the Old Password to cassandra. Click the tooltip icon for more information:

    Tooltip that explains changing the default cassandra password for better security

    Internal or Password authentication is enabled. The authentication scheme includes a default user with the username 'cassandra' and a publicly known default password 'cassandra'. Change the default password to prevent security breaches. To change the default password, or your existing password (if you have already changed it from the default 'cassandra'), enter the current password in Old Password field and the desired password in New Password field. LCM ensures that DSE can be accessed with the new password. You can change the password for the cassandra user at any time through the use of this dialog.

  8. Optional: Enter a descriptive comment about the cluster. Example: Dev cluster, or Prod cluster.
  9. Click Save.
    The newly defined cluster displays in the Clusters pane. Click the cluster title to view its details. The Datacenters pane becomes visible.

    Viewing cluster details

What's next

  1. Add another cluster. Repeat this procedure as necessary.
  2. Add datacenters to the cluster.
  3. Add nodes to the datacenters.
  4. Run an installation job. After Lifecycle Manager successfully creates a cluster during an install job, LCM automatically adds the cluster to the OpsCenter workspace for monitoring and management.
Important: After the new datacenter has been added and the nodes are all online, you must change the replication strategy either manually with CQL (see ALTER KEYSPACE), or using OpsCenter. Run nodetool rebuild to propagate the datacenter with data. LCM does not perform those operations.
Tip: When editing a cluster that has authentication enabled in its config profile, the changed password fields are shown as already set. Click Change to change the password for the cassandra user again.