Monthly Archives: November 2011

Thinkpad X220(with SSD) and Fedora16

Last night, a new Lenovo Thinkpad X220 arrived. It has an Intel Sandybridge Chipset, and a solid state drive, 8G memory. Here is the Smolt profile info.

Without haste, I booted up a live-usb stick with Fedora 16 on it and started the hard-disk install. I clocked the live-usb install time for fun. It took 1 minute to copy live image to hard-disk, and a minute more to perform post-install file-system changes, install boot-loader. Nearly 3 minutes, install was complete and smooth w/o any glitches. That was pretty neat.

I did some usual post-install configurations. Then, configured virtualization with bridging. Speaking of bridging, some good news here. Red Hat’s Laine Stump recently submitted a patch to libvirt upstream, a very handy interface for bridging. Which now makes, adding a bridge as trivial as:

# virsh iface-bridge eth0 br0 

or with the recent Consistent Network Device Naming feature (which uses the BIOS provided network interface names.)

# virsh iface-bridge em1 br0 

I previously had a Lenovo X200, compared to that, X220 seems to have improved many folds w/ more screen real-estate and an optional touch-pad as well. And oh, did I mention Fedora runs smooth as ever on Thinkpads?


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FUDCon Pune 2011 — Day1, Day2 and Day3

Just wrapped up with FUDCon Pune, 2011. First off, it was a great conference and I thoroughly enjoyed being part of the organizing team and a participant in the talks/demos over the course of 3 days. It’s always a pleasure to map IRC nicks to real faces, meet lots of new people, have exciting hallway conversations and get some things done along the way.

The day started off with Fedora Project Leader Jared Smith‘s really entertaining keynote talk about his vision for Fedora, with pleasant visuals and no slides with text. He had several pictures, each one depicting a theme of the topic he was discussing. Later, several talks/demos were happening parallely, and more people trickled in as the day progressed. I also managed to attended a few sessions like Gitolite by Sitaram Chamarty(not a relation), GlusterFS talk by Krishna Srinivas from Red Hat. And had several useful hallway discussions, impromptu demos.

There was an extra glow on student volunteers this day — maybe the anticipation of FUDPub later the evening :). Being security as part of my work, I started the day by attending Security in the Open Source world! talk by Red Hat’s Eugene Teo and Huzaifa Sidhpurwala where they gave a good over view of how security flaws are fixed, and a lifecycle of a software vulnerability . Later, I followed the previous day’s GlusterFS intro talk w/ GlusterFS hacking session by Amar, where he discussed the starting points to work on for people beginning on storage. Afte the talk, during lunch, Amar also gave me a short interesting demo of some Glusterfs concepts on his development laptop. Post lunch, I attended Amit Shah’s highlevel overview of Virtualization Stack in Fedora. I followed it up with my talk on Virtualization with Libvirt and a small demo of virtuliazation shell built on top of virsh. Though not the best of presenters, the talk was recorded here. I thought it went good and we had a decent bunch of questions which Amit Shah and myself handled.

FUDPub: It was fun, loud music, glitzy with bling. It’s better to watch the pictures rather talk about it.

Most folks who were supposed run hackfests might have hit the hay a little late(probably effect of extra tonic at FUDPub?) and came in a little late. Myself(and a couple others), happened to be the first at venue(hey, I don’t prefer to drink) and noticed the student volunteers were right on time at 8:30 AM and with a surprised look on their face wondering about the speakers. To keep them engaged, we chatted a little bit about technologies which were presented over the last two days and what they were specifically interested in. They seemed to enjoy the exposure to the variety of technologies. They were also keen on trying virtualization and asked me to give a detailed walk-through of KVM virtualization on Fedora. Half-way through our conversation, Amit Shah and rest of the crew walked in. People gave a 2 minute pitch about several hackfests/demos they wanted to do. Later the day I ended up doing a nearly 2 hour hands-on session covering things like Virt-manager, virt-install, networking with NAT, bridging, guestfish and friends, other virt-tools, and a basic idea of a kickstart to do automated installs. Most of them were like good students paid close attention, asked a torrent of questions and tried things diligently on their laptops along with me.

Several sessions happened simultaneously. The ones I recall top off the head – Fedora packaging, Puppet. Shanks and myself also did a demo of SSSD and helped out people configure SSSD on their laptops.Later the day, I joined Izhar and learnt little bit on LXC(Linux Containers). I’ve never tried out LXC before, apart from reading about it on the inter-webs. We started off by discussing pros and cons of LXC vs using regular virtual machines. At-least for him, the main bottle neck w/ VMs seems to be I/O. With LXC there is apparently no I/O bottleneck as there are no disk images, and a very small foot print on the host. Primarily useful for application sandboxing(Examples: deplyoing Plone or Drupal like CMS). Izhar gave a quick demo of LXC on his laptop and I did a quick try using Dan Berrange’s post of Getting started w/ LXC.

Later the night, we had a speakers (sumptuous) dinner at Cucoon hotel with some fun conversations. After that, we(most of the organizing team, Robert Scheck, Eugene Teo, Izhar and a few other international vistors) also had a late night retrospective meeting with Jared Smith in his hotel room. I’m sure there will be a wiki post with some notes very soon to capture the thoughts.

Over all it was a thoroughly enjoyable event. Thanks to all the tireless efforts from Rahul Sundaram, Amit Shah, PJP, Satya, Saleem, enthusiastic College of Engineering-Pune volunteers, speakers who visited(hope you enjoyed your stay) and all those names I missed.

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