MPU Meeting Tuesday 8th February 2011

Software Build Farm

The past week was a lot quieter. Stephen has been writing more documentation. Alastair asked about getting PkgForge to send mail; Stephen says that this can be configured, but that the email it sends out could do with more detail than it currently has. Another wee enhancement to make.

Lots of people have now tried out PkgForge. Not many people have used it in anger so far. It should be fine to make unrestrained and enthusiastic use of PkgForge for F13 builds (and for SL6 builds when they become possible) but care should be taken when building for SL5 as its world bucket dependency mess makes SL5 builds somewhat fragile.

Replacement for VMware Server

The proposals were accepted by the development meeting. From now on we can take to IS any services needing high availability.

The more lightweight KVM-based solution will have to wait for the advent of DICE SL6 servers - although we'll be able to experiment with the idea using F13 in the meantime.

Miscellaneous Development

  • Chris has been working on lcfg-sleep LCFG bug 327.
  • Stephen has established local mirrors for SL6 beta and EPEL6. He has documented the local mirroring process at PackagesSiteMirror for future reference. Please read it and give him any comments you have.
  • The email sent by pkgsubmit has been turned off. It would have been pointless to continue with it as most packages will now be submitted by PkgForge and anyway you can see who submitted a package (outside PkgForge) from its file ownership.
  • Alastair has been working on DIY DICE for F13. It's now usable. There is an issue with the package lists; it'll be far easier to tackle this issue on SL6 than on F13 so we'll do the former.
  • Stephen has improved the status check scripts for Kenny.
  • Kenny has suggested some improvements (and submitted a patch) for the lcfg-perlex component in LCFG bug 382.
  • Alastair has developed an xfree.h options header for F13. He will now add it to the monitor headers.
  • Stephen has built a new kernel for SL5. He is documenting the kernel-building process. Once this is done he will show Chris and Gordon how to build the F13 kernel.
  • Stephen has documented the new policy on component schema version changes.
  • Stephen has documented subversion branches.


  • We have updated all of our pandemic pages: ReleasesTop5HowTo, MPUPackageRepository, VirtualTop5 and PxeService. PxeService needs to have a date entered in the Last Updated column on the PandemicPlanning page.
  • Alastair tried installing F13 on bakerloo but had fibrechannel problems and bonding problems.
  • Our AFS cache size is 2GB. Stephen suggests that this now seems tiny. Let's propose that we make it a minimum of 8GB for new installs.
  • Gordon has been looking at a bug in the boot component (which bug?). We discussed it and decided that lcfg-cron should default to using a -q flag when running jobs added via cron.objects. Once that was done all of the grep [OK] stuff could be removed.
  • Our temporary IS virtual server trailblazer has now gone.

Server Shopping List

After talking about this we decided that:

  • The replacement LCFG slaves should have fast disks.
  • The PkgForge build servers should have fast disks and plenty of memory (say 16GB). They probably wouldn't benefit from having more than 2 CPUs however.
  • The replacement LCFG master will need mirrored/RAIDed disks.
  • Except as mentioned above, the new servers can be bog standard basic servers (whatever those turn out to be).

This Week

  • Alastair:
    • Add lcfg/options/xfree.h to monitor headers (By Friday)
    • PkgForge code review
    • Buy an SSD disk for experimentation

  • Chris:
    • Update F13 kernel
    • Further specify equipment required
    • Submit practical

  • Gordon:
    • Update F13 kernel
    • Work on boot component

  • Stephen:
    • Make sauce into a backup LCFG master/slave
    • Finish F13 kernel build instructions
    • Update F13 kernel
    • Write PkgForge(tm) technical talk

-- ChrisCooke - 09 Feb 2011

Topic revision: r5 - 15 Feb 2011 - 15:13:07 - AlastairScobie
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