Distributed Computing

Qr code Description automatically generated

General description

The Distributed Computing component is responsible for executing computing tasks (eg, API calls to Docker setups to change the number of resources used) and distributes the intensive computing work tasks through a cluster, composed by a group of work nodes. So, computing performance is improved by splitting large tasks into smaller ones, reducing overall processing time. Finally, the results of intensive computing work tasks coming from different nodes are recombined and structured in the Manager node as the expected result type from the main task (API Call), returning to the requesting component.

The Component also uses a Resource location mapper, whose intention is to provide the physical location of each computational resource in the cluster. This location is then passed as one or more Tags to the execution of a task, which is then used as a delimitation on where the task may be executed.

Source CodeLink
Online DocumentationLink
X Open API SpecLink
Further GuidanceNone
Related DatasetsNone
Additional LinksNone


The following images are illustrative screen shots of the component:

Component Author(s)

Company NameZDMP AcronymWebsiteLogo
Ascora GmbHASCwww.ascora.de

Commercial Information

IPR LinkDistributed computing component
Marketplace linkhttps://marketplace-zdmp.platform.zdmp.eu/63a1cedd3da47

Architecture Diagram

The following diagram shows the position of this component in the ZDMP architecture

Figure 12: Architecture Diagram


The primary benefits are:

  • Facilitates creation of logical structure for location of computational devices which can be used in efficient distribution of computational tasks at either Edge, Fog, or Cloud level

  • Distribute computational task as per location constraints

  • Central orchestration for computational resources in different locations

  • Separating computing resources against each other to get more security

  • Central overview of resources and workloads


The Distributed Computing component offers the following features:

  • Registering multiple Kubernetes clusters

  • Deploying applications to the different clusters

  • Deploy to specific nodes or nodes groups with tags

  • Available cluster resources

  • Integration with ZDMP Core components

  • Overview of deployed tasks with an endpoint to access it

Create Location

Allow the creation of a locations structure representing the physical structure of factories and other buildings. Each location can have sub-locations.

Create Computational Resource

Allow the creation of computational resources representing physical or virtual machines located within the physical location previously defined. These resources are distributed and orchestrated by the controller.

Distributed Computing with locational constraints

Allows the execution of tasks in a distributive way, also allows the definition of the environment of execution, such as Fog, Edge based on the location, or the computational resources defined. Locations can be assigned to cluster with tags and labels. The cluster nodes can be assigned to sub-locations also with tags and labels.

System Requirements

The Distributed Computing has the following requirements:

Hardware Requirements

  • 2 CPUs

  • 8GB RAM

  • 64GB disk space

Software Requirements

  • Docker

  • Rancher Server (2.4.x)

  • Kubernetes Cluster:

    • The cluster can be a k3s or a normal k8s cluster

    • The nodes must be able to reach the rancher server over the network

Associated ZDMP services


Installation via Docker Compose

The Distributed Computing component can be installed via docker-compose, for this a server is also needed for the email credentials:

  1. Download the latest docker-compose file from ZDMP’s HCE GitLab

  2. Add the environment variable values. Choose the way to do it following the instructions from docker: https://docs.docker.com/compose/environment-variables/.

As an example, create a file named ‘.env’ in the same folder of the docker-compose file, with the following information:





  1. Install and start the component by executing the following command:

docker-compose up -d

Installation via miniZDMP

To install the Distributed Computing component on a miniZDMP instance, some preliminary work is necessary. To follow this guide, we assume that the installation and setup of the miniZDMP platform has been completed. Instructions on how to do this can be found here (https://gitlab-zdmp.platform.zdmp.eu/enterprise-tier/t6.4-application-run-time/-/tree/master/minizdmp or D087 Platform Integration and Federation).

For the component to be used, the following things must be ready to use:

  1. Please login into your Rancher Instance and navigate to the Apps Section.

Figure 13 - Rancher Lunch an App

  1. Please click on the Lunch Button to launch a new Application on the miniZDMP Kubernetes Cluster

  2. Search for the Entry of “Distributed Computing / zdmp-distributed-computing” and click on it.

Figure 14 - Lunch the Distributed Computing App

  1. In this step there are a few configurations needed, please set it to your needs.

    1. Storage Type
      Please set it to LOCAL or NFS. For NFS it is needed that you configure an NFS-Server in your miniZDMP Platform. Local means that the Data that are collected in this component will be saved to the local Server disk. In case of a NFS the data can be saved to Network Shared Directory (recommended way, prevents data loss).

    2. Domain Settings

You can adjust here the domain name, where this component will be available. The default is set to zdmp.home which is also a default of the miniZDMP Platform.

  1. Private Registry Settings

These settings are necessary to download the container of registry of ZDMP. For the HCE Gitlab please use your own credentials as username and password.

  1. Database

You need to provide data credentials for a mongodb Database.

  1. Environment Vars

Here it is possible to adapt the URLs in order to call up either other components or internal components. In a standard installation of miniZDMP, no changes should be necessary here.

How to use

The Distributed Computing component can be used through an API or a user interface.


Please refer to http://localhost:28021/api or https://distributed-computing-backend-zdmp.zdmp.home/api for the Swagger instructions on how to use the API. There can be found all the possible requests the component accepts, and its expected parameters or body content. The API can be accessed in http://localhost:28021/ or https://distributed-computing-backend-zdmp.zdmp.home (miniZDMP)

User Interface (UI)

Access http://localhost:28022 or https://distributed-computing-zdmp.zdmp.home (miniZDMP) to access the user interface.


The location is a way to identify the physical structure of the factory, company or any other building needed. Using these locations, the user may define Computational resources where tasks may be executed. Computation of tasks can be guided to be executed within a specific room or computer (locations), also applying computation on Edge level.

To create a resource location the following is needed:

  • Location Description: This property is used by the user to identify the Location. An Id is automatically generated

Follows a UI example with the creation of a Location:

Figure 15: Create New Location

After the Location is created, it can be used to add other Locations or a computational resource.

Follows a UI example with the view of a Location with Computational resource and an inner location:

Figure 16: Resource’s List View

For the integration with the security designer, the UI and the data structure for the Resource Location is Updated to contain more information about the network of resources and the connection between them.

Computational Resource

The computational resource is a machine, device, or any other mechanism able to execute computational tasks, these resources are used to identify and allocate tasks to be executed in edge level.

To create a computational resource the following is needed:

  • Title: This property is used by the user to identify the Computational Resource. An Id is automatically generated

  • Icon: The icon is used as a visual attributed to help identify the type of computational resource, it is an optional field

  • Additional Information: This field can be used for the user to add any information related to the computational resource necessary, it is an optional field

Follows a UI example with the creation of a computational resource:

Figure 17: Create Computational Resource

After the Location is created, it can be used to add other Locations or a computational resource.


The user can use Distributed computing UI to create clusters and deploy applications to the Edge environment.

To create a cluster the following is needed:

  • Name: The name that identifies the cluster

  • Annotations: Annotations to attach to the cluster, composed of key and value, it is an optional field

  • Labels: Labels to attach to the cluster, composed of key and value, it is an optional field

Follows a UI example with the creation of a cluster:

Figure 18: Create Cluster

After the Cluster is created, the user is redirected to the page where the commands to initiate the cluster are displayed, the user should use these commands to import it to Rancher.

Figure 19: Cluster – Init commands

The user can then return to the cluster list where all clusters are listed.

Figure 20: Cluster List

The user can deploy new services and applications using the function to import YAML.

Figure 21: Cluster List – Import YAML

The user then needs to specify the deployment using a valid YAML notation. See the Kubernetes official documentation for more information. Follow an example with a nginx deployment:

Figure 22: Cluster – Import YAML

Integration with the Security Designer

The integration with the security designer provides additional network information for the Location Resources Mapper, the Structure of the Location Resources are also upgraded to provide the additional information and display this data in a more human readable form. This feature is still in the planning phase and more information to be provided later.

Execute Distributed Task

To execute a distributed Task the user uses the YAML-Import function (for more information, see the Kubernetes official documentation). The following needs to be provided:

  • Task definition: A valid Kubernetes manifest YAML file must be provided. Everything that is needed for the task must be included, like the Deployment, Services or Volumes

  • Location: The location can be controlled with node labels. Custom node labels must be configured by the cluster administrator, for more information visit the Kubernetes official guide. It is also possible to use a node hostname as target label:

    • Edit YAML file: Everything within the YAML file can be adapted and changed like the container image or the location

  • Workloads: The imported tasks are displayed as workloads on an overview site with the URL to an endpoint if the task provided it.

Last modified October 26, 2023