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Last pushed: 4 months ago
Short Description
Allows Marathon applications to scale to meet load requirements, without user intervention.
Full Description

Marathon Autoscaler

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The aim of this project is to allow Marathon applications to scale to meet load requirements, without user intervention. To accomplish this, it monitors Marathon's application metrics and scales applications based on user-defined thresholds.

Table Of Contents

Build and deploy the Autoscaler

The Makefile requires REGISTRY environment variable to be set to your Docker registry. make

To manually build the app, the following commands build and deploy the Autoscaler Docker container:

Build the python zipapp:

mkdir -p build/target
python -m zipapp lib/marathon-autoscaler -o build/target/marathon-autoscaler.pyz

Build the docker image:

docker build -t marathon_autoscaler .

Push the image to your registry:

docker push {{registry_url}}/marathon_autoscaler:latest

Run the Autoscaler

Deploying the Autoscaler to Marathon

In the scripts directory, can be executed to deploy an
instance of the Autoscaler to your Marathon system. The parameters needed are explained below:

cli switch environment variable description
--interval INTERVAL The time duration in seconds between polling events
--mesos-uri MESOS_URI The Mesos HTTP endpoint
--mesos-agent-port AGENT_PORT The port your Mesos Agent is listening on (defaults to 5051)
--marathon-uri MARATHON_URI The Marathon HTTP endpoint
--marathon-user MARATHON_USER The Marathon username for authentication on the marathon-uri
--marathon-pass MARATHON_PASS The Marathon password for authentication on the marathon-uri
--cpu-fan-out CPU_FAN_OUT Number of subprocesses to use for gathering and sending stats to Datadog
--dd-api-key DATADOG_API_KEY Datadog API key
--dd-app-key DATADOG_APP_KEY Datadog APP key
--dd-env DATADOG_ENV Datadog ENV variable to separate metrics by environment
--log-config LOG_CONFIG Path to logging configuration file. Defaults to logging_config.json
--enforce-version-match ENFORCE_VERSION_MATCH If set, version matching will be required of applications to participate
--rules-prefix RULES_PREFIX The prefix for rule names

Run the scripts/ script:

cd scripts && python {PARAMETERS}

Deploying a Marathon application to use the Autoscaler


The autoscaler is a standalone application that monitors Marathon for applications that use specific labels. To make your application participate in the autoscaler the use_marathon_autoscaler label needs to be set to something truthful or a version number. To enable version matching, the autoscaler needs to be deployed with the --enforce-version-match commandline switch or ENFORCE_VERSION_MATCH environment variable.

The Autoscaler considers the following list of strings as true:

["true", "t", "yes", "y", "1"]

Minimum and Maximum Instances

Number of minimum and maximum number of application instances.

"labels": {
  "min_instances": 1,
  "max_instances": 10

Scaling Rules

Scaling rules are set in a Marathon application's labels in its application definition. To get you introduced to scaling rules, let's jump right into an example:

"labels": {
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup": "cpu | >90 | PT2M | 3 | PT1M30S"

Explanation: The above rule is called "fastscaleup" which states: if cpu is greater than* 90 percent for 2 minutes, then scale up by 3 instances and backoff for 1 minute and 30 seconds**. These values in the label value are the same as the original upper and lower thresholds, but you are no longer bound to stating both cpu and memory conditions. The idea of having exclusive conditions is now implied by having multiple rules with the same name. Here's an example of the above rule added to other conditions:

"labels": {
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup_1": "cpu | >90 | PT2M | 3 | PT1M30S",
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup_2": "mem | >85 | PT2M | 3 | PT1M30S"

Notice that the tolerance, scale factor and backoff values are repeated, this is for clarity, but when the autoscaler sees 2 or more rules with the same name, it will combine them into one rule and use the tolerance, scale factor, and backoff of the first rule it sees. In the example above, the suffix "_1" and "_2" are for Marathon's sake because Marathon does not support having repeat label names. If this suffix is numeric, the autoscaler will order them numerically and take the tolerance, scale factor and backoff from the mas_rule_fastscale_1 rule.

To complete the example above, so it contains scale down rules, here is example extended:

"labels": {
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup_1": "cpu | >90 | PT2M | 3 | PT1M30S",
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup_2": "mem | >85 | PT2M | 3 | PT1M30S",
    "mas_rule_slowscaledown_1": "cpu | <=90 | PT1M | -1 | PT30S",
    "mas_rule_slowscaledown_2": "mem | <=85 | PT1M | -1 | PT30S"

Let's explore some other ideas...
Maybe your application is only interested in scaling based on CPU:

"labels": {
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup": "cpu | >90 | PT2M | 3 | PT1M30S",
    "mas_rule_slowscaledown": "cpu | <=90 | PT1M | -1 | PT30S",

Perhaps you want your application to scale up and down differently for different conditions:

"labels": {
    "mas_rule_slowscaleup": "cpu | >40 | PT2M | 1 | PT1M30S",
    "mas_rule_fastscaleup": "cpu | >60 | PT1M | 3 | PT30S",
    "mas_rule_hyperscaleup": "cpu | >90 | PT1M | 5 | PT15S",
    "mas_rule_slowscaledown": "cpu | <90 | PT1M30S | -1 | PT30S",
    "mas_rule_fastscaledown": "cpu | <10 | PT3M | -5 | PT30S",

When multiple rules focus on the same metric, the autoscaler should take the action of the rule that matches closest to the given tolerance and threshold. It is possible that your application may never trigger some rules depending on the application's behavior.

* Comparisons can use >, <, <=, >=, = or ==

** A Wikipedia Reference on ISO8601 time duration

Testing the autoscaler with the Stress Tester app

To see how the Autoscaler behaves with an application's scaling settings in a controlled environment, build and deploy the stress test application to an environment running the Autoscaler.

cd tests/stress_tester_app && docker build -t autoscale_test_app .

Push the image to the registry:

docker push autoscale_test_app:latest

Run the scripts/ script:

cd scripts && python --marathon-uri MARATHON_HTTP --marathon-user MARATHON_USER --marathon-pass MARATHON_PASS
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