LinuxTag – part 2

I’m sitting in the S8 to Frankfurt Airport where I’ll switch to the ICE to Stuttgart to visit my cousins and my aunt. Linux Tag was quite amazing, I finally met some of the people behind OpenVZ (Kir and Kirill), saw a bit of Andrew Morton’s Kernel FAQ (Kir told us that) and met some people including Bertl, doener, derjohn, zeng, foo, … of the linux-vserver community. Both workshops were quite interesting and I learned a lot of things about openvz and it’s userland tools and linux-vserver (finally I understood the CPU Tokenbucket system).

Even if I didn’t arrive in time to watch Kir and Kirill’s presentation of openvz and its features completely, I managed to watch Kir demonstrating the live migration between two different nodes. Even if Kirill needed to reboot his system due to a readonly filesystem (it was / that was the whole bugger) I have to admit it really impressed me (since that’s a feature we had to pay 3000€ for VMware ESX and no I don’t want do hear a single word about it). Sadly the OpenVZ stuff isn’t ported yet to SPARC so I’ll keep vServer running on the U1 (Ultra1). I also met Hollow in person, which really was the highlight of all days. He was my mentor when I joined Gentoo and is the person that I’m doing most of my work on Gentoo / Linux vServer / OpenVZ related things. Bertl’s talk nearly took four hours but those four hours were quite informative and interesting. He held a general introduction into virtualization theory (which took him two hours). After a small fifth teen minute break he demonstrated most of the things possible with linux-vserver (including resource limits to kill kill certain memory/cpu hogs).

Demonstration ended at 18:10 and we got back up to the Linux vServer booth were I finally managed to ask Bertl about his patch name versioning scheme. And I finally understood it!

We also stopped by at the SWsoft booth to say goodbye to Kir and Kirill and to talk about the SRPMS but they already had left. We did some group photos of all present at the Linux vServer booth. Afterwards Hollow and I grabbed our backpacks and took of to the station. On the way we had a little discussion about problems and stuff that we recently noticed. First was the /dev/console virtualization effort, since we switched from init-style Gentoo (which we removed from the utils) to plain. The virtualization would show some effect if you’re wanna be able to see what’s happening on the startup phase of a vServer. Second thing was the reintroduction of the fastboot bug (that’s what I call it). The util-vserver package leaves a plain and empty file in the guests root filesystem, which really annoys me. The third thing is the vserver-init.$( mktemp )´ file that is placed in /tmp but isn’t deleted after startup is complete. Another thing we talked about was the vserver stop´ which only waits for the vkill timeout to kick in but isn’t going to stop the vServer by itself.

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