Creating and using a local repository v23

If you create a local repository in your cluster directory, TPA makes any packages in the repository available to cluster instances. This provides an easy way to ship extra packages to your cluster.

Optionally, you can also instruct TPA to configure the instances to use only this repository, disabling all others. In this case, you must provide all packages required during the deployment, starting from basic dependencies like rsync, Python, and so on.

You can create a local repository manually or have TPA create one for you.


Specific instructions are available for managing clusters in an air-gapped environment.

Creating a local repository with TPA

TPA includes tools to help create such a local repository. Specifically you can use the --enable-local-repo switch with tpaexec configure to create an empty directory structure to use as a local repository. Use tpaexec download-packages to populate that structure with the necessary packages.

Creating the directory structure

To configure a cluster with a local repository, run:

`tpaexec configure --enable-local-repo …`

This command generates your cluster configuration and creates a local-repo directory and OS-specific subdirectories. See Local repo layout for details.

Populate the repository and generate metadata

Run tpaexec download-packages to download all the packages required by a cluster into the local-repo. The resulting repository contains the full dependency tree of all packages so the entire cluster can be installed from this repository. Metadata for the repository is also created, which means it's ready to use immediately.

Creating a local repository manually

Local repo layout

To create a local repository manually, you must first create an appropriate directory structure. When using --enable-local-repo, TPA creates a local-repo directory and OS-specific subdirectories within it (for example, local-repo/Debian/10), based on the OS you select for the cluster. We recommend that you also use this structure for repositories you create manually.

For example, a cluster running RedHat 8 might have the following layout:

`-- RedHat
    |-- 8.5 -> 8
    `-- 8
        `-- repodata

For each instance, TPA looks for the following subdirectories of local-repo in order and uses the first one it finds:

  • <distribution>/<version>, e.g., RedHat/8.5
  • <distribution>/<major version>, e.g., RedHat/8
  • <distribution>/<release name>, e.g., Ubuntu/focal
  • <distribution>, e.g., Debian
  • The local-repo directory itself.

If none of these directories exists, TPA doesn't try to set up any local repository on target instances.

Populating the repository and generating metadata

You must complete the steps that follow before running tpaexec deploy.

To populate the repository, copy the packages you want to include into the appropriate directory. Then generate metadata using the correct tool for your system, as follows.


You must generate the metadata on the control node, that is, the machine where you run tpaexec. TPA copies the metadata and packages to target instances.


You must generate the metadata in the subdirectory that the instance will use. That is, if you copy packages into local-repo/Debian/10, you must create the metadata in that directory, not in local-repo/Debian.

Debian/Ubuntu repository metadata

For Debian-based distributions, install the dpkg-dev package:

$ sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install -y dpkg-dev

Use dpkg-scanpackages to generate the metadata:

$ cd local-repo/Debian/buster
# download/copy .deb package files
$ dpkg-scanpackages . | gzip > Packages.gz

RedHat/SLES repository metadata

First, install the createrepo package:

$ sudo yum install -y createrepo

Use createrepo to generate the metadata:

$ cd local-repo/RedHat/8
# download/copy .rpm package files
$ createrepo .

How TPA uses the local repository

Copying the repository

TPA uses rsync to copy the contents of the repository directory to a directory on target instances. The contents include the generated metadata.

If rsync isn't already available on an instance, TPA can install it (that is, apt-get install rsync or yum install rsync). However, if you have set use_local_repo_only, the rsync package must be included in the local repo. If required, TPA copies just the rsync package using scp and installs it before copying the rest.

Repository configuration

After copying the contents of the local repo to target instances, TPA configures the destination directory as a local repository, that is, path based, rather than URL based.

If you provide, say, example.deb in the repository directory, running apt-get install example is enough to install it, just like any package in any other repository.

Package installation

TPA configures a repository with the contents that you provide. But if the same package is available from different repositories, it's up to the package manager to decide which one to install. Usually it installs the latest, unless you specify a particular version.

However, if you set use_local_repo_only: yes, TPA disables all other package repositories, so that instances can use only the packages that you provide in local-repo.