CentOS Hyperscale SIG Quarterly Report for 2021Q1

Monday , 5, April 2021 Leave a comment

This report covers work that happened between January 13th and April 2nd 2021.

Purpose

The Hyperscale SIG focuses on enabling CentOS Stream deployment on large-scale infrastructures and facilitating collaboration on packages and tooling.

Membership update

The SIG was established in January with six founding members (Davide Cavalca, Filipe Brandenburger, Matthew Almond, Justin Vreeland,Thomas Mackey, David Johansen). Since then, four more members have joined (Igor Raits, Neal Gompa, Anita Zhang, Michel Salim).

We welcome anybody that’s interested and willing to do work within the scope of the SIG to join and contribute. See the membership section on the wiki for the current members list and how to join.

Releases and Packages

The SIG releases packages in a main repository. Sources for these packages are maintained in c8s-sig-hyperscale branches in dist-git (example).

Packages released in main are designed to be drop-in replacements for the corresponding packages on a stock CentOS Stream 8 system. This repository can be enabled by installing the centos-release-hyperscale package.

systemd

We ship a backport of systemd 247 based on the Fedora packaging. This includes a variety of bug fixes in existing features such as timers and cgroups, as well as new properties that take advantage of the latest kernel features. You can also look forward to new knobs in the various tools and daemons to make debugging and configuration easier.

By default, this backport will boot the system using the unified cgroup hierarchy (i.e. cgroup2), in line with systemd upstream policy. This can be changed with the appropriate kernel cmdline knobs.

This systemd backport also includes a SELinux overlay module, which allows running systemd 247 on a system in enforcing mode. Nonetheless, the SELinux integration has only seen limited testing and should be considered experimental at this point.

Grep

We ship a backport of Grep 3.6 based on the Fedora packaging. Compared to the stock 3.1 version shipped with the distribution, it includes major performance improvements and several bugfixes.

iptables

The iptables package on CentOS Stream 8 ships with only the nftables backend enabled. As part of the work to enable the legacy backend as well, we have packaged legacy-enabled versions of arptables and ebtables.

MTR

We ship a backport of MTR 0.94 based on the Fedora packaging. This includes several bug fixes, notably improving reliability when running in TCP mode.

dwarves

We ship a backport of dwarves 1.20 based on the Fedora packaging. This includes several improvements to the pahole tool, notably including much better BTF support.

Meson

We ship the latest version (0.55.3 ⇒ 0.57.1) of meson and the latest version (1.8.2 ⇒ 1.10.2) of ninja-build based on the Fedora packaging. This includes many different bug fixes and improvements. We will keep updating them as new versions will get released.

Health and Activity

The SIG was approved by the CentOS board on January 13. So far we’ve been able to maintain a healthy development pace, and hope to continue doing so in the future.

Meetings

The SIG holds regular bi-weekly meetings on Wednesdays at 16:00 UTC. Meetings are logged and the minutes for past meetings are available.

The SIG also uses the #centos-hyperscale IRC channel for ad-hoc communication and work coordination, and the centos-devel mailing list for async discussions and announcements.

Conference talks

The SIG was first introduced at CentOS Dojo, FOSDEM, 2021 (recording). SIG activities were also covered as part of DevConf.cz 2021 (recording) and FOSDEM 2021 (recording).

Future SIG-related talks are planned for CentOS Dojo, May 2021 and for LISA21.

Planned work

The SIG tracks pending work as issues on our Pagure repository. Notable projects currently in flight include:

  • Setting up the experimental repository and publishing a Copy-on-Write enabled build of the packaging stack and optional support for Btrfs-based atomic updates using Micro DNF
  • Shipping up-to-date versions of libvirt backported from Fedora
  • Completing the work to publish an iptables with the legacy backend enabled
  • Engaging with the Cloud SIG to build a set of Cloud images with the Hyperscale repo and packages already baked in

Issues for the Board

We have no issues to bring to the board’s attention at this time.

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