Happy birthday, CentOS!

15 years ago, the CentOS project started up in order to fill a gap left by a change in the way that Red Hat decided to market their product.

Many of the people that were involved in those early days are still involved today, although in different capacities than they were then. Over they years, their involvement has changed, due to their own changing job responsibilities, as well as the shifting technological landscape.

Over the next few months, as part of our celebration of our 15 year anniversary, I'm going to be talking with some of these people that were involved in the early days, as well as some that have joined later on, to talk about how and why people get involved in this project.

If you would like to tell your story, please get in touch with me at rbowen@centosproject.org and we'll schedule an interview.

Virtualization SIG quarterly report, Dec 1 2018 - February 28 2019

Purpose

Packaging and maintaining different FOSS based virtualization applications that one can install and run natively on CentOS.

https://wiki.centos.org/SpecialInterestGroup/Virtualization

Membership Update

We are always looking for new members.

Tomasz Baranski and Yuval Turgeman joined the SIG for oVirt project.

Releases and Packages

oVirt 4.2 reached end of life with the upstream release of oVirt 4.3. Upstream is planning 4.3.1 to be shipped live on February 26th, the SIG will rebase on that.

On Xen side, Xen 4.8 has been updated to 4.8.5-1

On libvirt side, latest upstream release 5.0 has been tagged for release

Health and Activity

The Virtualization SIG remains fairly healthy. All the projects within the SIG are updating regularly on biweekly meetings.

oVirt had a conference in Milan on November 16th 2018 and is planning a new conference in Rome this spring.

oVirt was also present at Devconf.cz and Fosdem.

Xen 4.10.2 is also available, and the dom0-enabled Linux kernel is at 4.9.127. Release candidate builds of Xen 4.12 are also available.

Issues for the Board

oVirt pushed a patch for having a CentOS appliance including oVirt Guest Agent in https://github.com/CentOS/sig-cloud-instance-build/pull/127

We've updated centos-release-xen to default to Xen 4.8 in the CBS repos.

In this post, we're going to talk about how to use buildah to build container images on CentOS.

buildah is a command line tool that facilitates building OCI compliant images. There's a plethora of information available around what buildah is on its GitHub landing page so we won't dive more into what it is. However, it's worth mentioning that buildah helps you build container images without having to run any daemon in the background, unlike the docker CLI tool which requires the Docker daemon to be running in the background.

Installing buildah

buildah is already available in the CentOS repos. All we need to do is:

$ yum install -y buildah
$ buildah -v
buildah version 1.5-dev (image-spec 1.0.0, runtime-spec 1.0.0)

buildah offers a number of features and options. To know about these, simply execute buildah on the command line or refer to its manual page (man buildah).

Building the container image

buildah can build a container image by referring the same Dockerfile that docker build refers to. Let's consider this simple Dockerfile for example. All it does is install the wget package:

$ cat Dockerfile
FROM registry.centos.org/centos/centos

RUN yum install -y wget && yum clean all

Now, build the container image named wget :

$ buildah bud -t wget .
$ buildah images
IMAGE ID             IMAGE NAME                                               CREATED AT             SIZE
2f254a4fff8d         registry.centos.org/centos/centos:latest                 Dec 17, 2018 05:07     210 MB
9b6563cfaff2         localhost/wget:latest                                    Jan 16, 2019 11:01     234 MB

You can use this container image with podman by doing:

$ podman run -it --rm wget bash

podman is a tool for managing pods, containers, and container images. Its website contains extensive detail about its capabilities and uses.

Use the container image with Docker

buildah also makes it possible to use the image thus built via the local Docker daemon. It's as simple as doing a buildah push:

$ docker images
REPOSITORY          TAG                 IMAGE ID            CREATED             SIZE

$ buildah images
IMAGE ID             IMAGE NAME                                               CREATED AT             SIZE
2f254a4fff8d         registry.centos.org/centos/centos:latest                 Dec 17, 2018 05:07     210 MB
9b6563cfaff2         localhost/wget:latest                                    Jan 16, 2019 11:01     234 MB

$ buildah push wget:latest docker-daemon:registry.centos.org/centos/wget:latest
Getting image source signatures
Copying blob sha256:b05580fca2f9aabb2d8fa975b29146c9147c8418e559f197c54a4fac04babb95
 200.47 MiB / 200.47 MiB [==================================================] 4s
Copying blob sha256:fa5e7b9f8f4d8f07f7af27cd06269ba16ba0f06cbacacc7c7e96a616da885cab
 22.82 MiB / 22.82 MiB [====================================================] 0s
Copying config sha256:9b6563cfaff28baa1075e86b60c502f85fc31b56bdb641d314a7c61d2e91fae8
 1.33 KiB / 1.33 KiB [======================================================] 0s
Writing manifest to image destination
Storing signatures
Successfully pushed registry.centos.org/centos/wget:latest@sha256:66f4c1c8378c7d9e22a0d3c9a0943739082dfeae3344e5f2b069e9c9ddf08271

$ docker images
REPOSITORY                        TAG                 IMAGE ID            CREATED             SIZE
registry.centos.org/centos/wget   latest              9b6563cfaff2        6 minutes ago       226 MB

Initially, the local Docker daemon storage had no container images. We did buildah push wget:latest docker-daemon:registry.centos.org/wget:latest to push the image to local Docker daemon's storage. Now doing docker images shows the image and can then be used with docker run

That's it

In this blog, we saw simple steps that need to be performed to install and use buildah to build OCI images which can then be pushed to local Docker daemon's storage. buildah can also push container images to the remote registry. It is highly recommended to read the documentation to know about more features and capabilities of buildah.

In a future blog, we will share how the CentOS Container Pipeline team managed to build container images on OpenShift using buildah.

Just a quick update - the schedule from the recent CentOS Dojo at FOSDEM has been updated to include the videos from each presentation.

Note: Three of the talks are missing video due to equipment failure.

Dear CentOS enthusiast,

Another month into 2019, and we have a lot to tell you about.

Releases and updates

Errata and Enhancements Advisories

We issued the following CEEA (CentOS Errata and Enhancements Advisories) during January:

Errata and Security Advisories

We issued the following CESA (CentOS Errata and Security Advisories) during January:

Errata and Bugfix Advisories

We issued the following CEBA (CentOS Errata and Bugfix Advisories) during January:

SIG Updates

SIGs - Special Interest Groups - are where people work on the stuff that runs on top of CentOS.

Several of our SIGs published their quarterly reports this month:

Next month we hope to hear from:

  • Artwork
  • Cloud Instance
  • OpsTools
  • Public CI
  • Virtualization

Events

We started off February with a bang, with our annual CentOS Dojo at FOSDEM.  You can read a summary of that event on the CentOS blog. We will be posting video from the event on the CentOS YouTube channel as soon as possible.

We also had a table at FOSDEM itself. FOSDEM is a gathering of 6000 free/open source software enthusiasts at Brussel's ULB. Topics covered are everything from distributions to licensing to community to storage. Video from almost every session at the event is already available at the event website.

Next month, we expect to have a presence at FOSSAsia in Singapore.

And in April we are planning to hold a Dojo at Oak Ridge National Labs, in Oak Ridge Tennessee.

If you would like to host a Dojo, or have a suggestion for where we should have one, please get in touch with the CentOS Promo mailing list.

Other upcoming events are always listed on the events wiki page.

Contributing to CentOS Pulse

 

We are always on the look-out for people who are interested in helping to:

  • report on CentOS community activity
  • provide a report from the SIG on which you participate
  • maintain a (sub-)section of the newsletter
  • write an article on an interesting person or topic
  • provide the hint, tip or trick of the month

Please see the page with further information about contributing. You can also contact the Promotion SIG, or just email Rich directly (rbowen@centosproject.org) with ideas or articles that you'd like to see in the next newsletter.

 

On February 1st (last week) there were a large number of enhancements/updates released by the CentOS community:

 

Errata and Enhancements Advisories

We issued the following CEEA (CentOS Errata and Enhancements Advisories):

Errata and Security Advisories

We issued the following CESA (CentOS Errata and Security Advisories):

Errata and Bugfix Advisories

We issued the following CEBA (CentOS Errata and Bugfix Advisories):

On Friday of last week, we once again gathered in Brussels for our annual CentOS Dojo at FOSDEM.

14 speakers gave talks on a wide variety of topics, ranging from deeply technical, to community-centered, to a vision of what's coming in CentOS 8. The full schedule is on the event website, and the videos from the event will be posted on YouTube as soon as we can possibly get them up.

We had roughly 90 people in attendance at this event, which was about the same as last year.

At lunch time, we celebrated CentOS's 15th birthday with a lovely birthday cake.

(More pictures here.)

If you missed us in Brussels, don't worry. We have lots of other events coming up.

If you would like to host a Dojo, or have a suggestion of where we should run on, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us on the CentOS-Promo mailing list.

We are pleased to announce new official Vagrant images of CentOS Linux 6.10 and CentOS Linux 7.6.1810 for x86_64. All included packages have been updated to January 28th, 2019.

Known Issues

  1. The VirtualBox Guest Additions are not preinstalled; if you need them for shared folders, please install the vagrant-vbguest plugin and add the following line to your Vagrantfile:
    config.vm.synced_folder ".", "/vagrant", type: "virtualbox"

    We recommend using NFS instead of VirtualBox shared folders if possible; you can also use the vagrant-sshfs plugin, which, unlike NFS, works on all operating systems.

  2. Since the Guest Additions are missing, our images are preconfigured to use rsync for synced folders. Windows users can either use SMB for synced folders, or disable the sync directory by adding the line
    config.vm.synced_folder ".", "/vagrant", disabled: true

    to their Vagrantfile, to prevent errors on "vagrant up".

  3. Installing open-vm-tools is not enough for enabling shared folders with Vagrant’s VMware provider. Please follow the detailed instructions in https://github.com/mvermaes/centos-vmware-tools
  4. Some people reported "could not resolve host" errors when running the centos/7 image for VirtualBox on Windows hosts. We don't have access to any Windows computer, but some people reported that adding the following line to the Vagrantfile fixed the problem:
    vb.customize ["modifyvm", :id, "--natdnshostresolver1", "off"]

Recommended Setup on the Host

Our automatic testing is running on a CentOS Linux 7 host, using Vagrant 1.9.4 with vagrant-libvirt and VirtualBox 5.1.20 (without the Guest Additions) as providers. We strongly recommend using the libvirt provider when stability is required.

Downloads

The official images can be downloaded from Vagrant Cloud. We provide images for HyperV, libvirt-kvm, VirtualBox and VMware.

If you never used our images before:

vagrant box add centos/6 # for CentOS Linux 6, or...
vagrant box add centos/7 # for CentOS Linux 7

Existing users can upgrade their images:

vagrant box update --box centos/6
vagrant box update --box centos/7

Verifying the integrity of the images

The SHA256 checksums of the images are signed with the CentOS 7 Official Signing Key. First, download and verify the checksum file:

$ curl http://cloud.centos.org/centos/7/vagrant/x86_64/images/sha256sum.txt.asc -o sha256sum.txt.asc
$ gpg --verify sha256sum.txt.asc

Once you are sure that the checksums are properly signed by the CentOS Project, you have to include them in your Vagrantfile (Vagrant unfortunately ignores the checksum provided from the command line). Here's the relevant snippet from my own Vagrantfile, using v1803.01 and VirtualBox:

Vagrant.configure(2) do |config|
  config.vm.box = "centos/7"

  config.vm.provider :virtualbox do |virtualbox, override|
    virtualbox.memory = 1024
    override.vm.box_download_checksum_type = "sha256"
    override.vm.box_download_checksum = "b24c912b136d2aa9b7b94fc2689b2001c8d04280cf25983123e45b6a52693fb3"
    override.vm.box_url = "https://cloud.centos.org/centos/7/vagrant/x86_64/images/CentOS-7-x86_64-Vagrant-1803_01.VirtualBox.box"
  end
end

Feedback

If you encounter any unexpected issues with the Vagrant images, feel free to ask on the centos-devel mailing list, or in #centos on Freenode IRC.

Ackowledgements

I would like to warmly thank Brian Stinson, Fabian Arrotin and Thomas Oulevey for their work on the build infrastructure, as well as Patrick Lang from Microsoft for testing and feedback on the Hyper-V images. I would also like to thank the CentOS Project Lead, Karanbir Singh, without whose years of continuous support we wouldn't have had the Vagrant images in their present form.

I would also like to thank the following people (in alphabetical order):

  • Graham Mainwaring, for helping with tests and validations;
  • Michael Vermaes, for testing our official images, as well as for writing the detailed guide to using them with VMware Fusion Pro and VMware Workstation Pro;
  • Kirill Kalachev, for reporting and debugging the host name errors with VirtualBox on Windows hosts.

NFV SIG Quarterly Report through February 1st, 2019

Purpose

The CentOS NFV  SIG exists to support Network Function Virtualization (NFV) in CentOS. Specifically, the idea is to be a vehicle to provide packages for implementers of software networks on the CentOS platform.

Membership Update

In this reporting period, we have had little formal participation. However, there has been continued in NFV on CentOS and interest in deploying our packages on CentOS. We are always looking for additional community participation in all aspects of this SIG, including promoting, building releasing other packages for NFV.

Anyone interested in participating in the NFV SIG should subscribe to the generic CentOS mailing list.

Releases and Packages

fd.io VPP

The past quarter has been a slow one in terms of actual delivered packages. Our main active package, VPP has not been released since 1807. Upstream version 1810 requires dev-toolset 7.

However, recently dev-toolset-7 and all prerequisites have been built and-or cross tagged into the NFV SIG common. We are currently in the process of building vpp 19.01 for release and plan to have these packages ready in February.

To install latest release of VPP,

yum install centos-release-fdio

yum install vpp*

Health and Activity

The health of NFV SIG could be better. It was originally perceived as the sponsor for getting OPNFV project into the CentOS distribution. However, subsequently OPNFV releases its own CD images. Subsequently it was primarily sponsoring building opendaylight packages which are still built as part of the upstream product CI.

Since Q1 2018 the project has been focused on building packages and dependencies for upstream fast data plane project, fd.io

including vpp.

At this point, the project is looking for a renewed focus. Perhaps, packages to facilitate containerization and kubernetes. Other ideas and sponsors are welcome.

Also, we have also been working towards several upcoming events.

On February 1st, we will have a presentation about NFV SIG at  CentOS Dojo at FOSDEM, in Brussels.

Issues for the Board

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

 

As per the SIG reporting guide, the Promo SIG offers its quarterly report for the period from Nov 1, 2018 through Feb 1, 2019

Purpose

The CentOS Promotion SIG exists to provide promotion, and consistent messaging, of CentOS, both at physical events and online.

Membership Update

In the reporting period, we have had participation from a handful of people. We are always looking for additional community participation in all aspects of this SIG, including, but not limited to, helping out at events.

Anyone interested in participating in the Promo SIG should subscribe to the mailing list.

Activity

The past quarter has been a slow one in terms of actual event participation.

We had a presence at the Supercomputing event SC18 in Dallas, Texas, where Rich Bowen interviewed some of the student cluster competition teams. Those videos may be seen on the CentOS YouTube channel.

We have also been working towards several upcoming events.

On February 1st, we will be holding the annual CentOS Dojo at FOSDEM, in Brussels. At the time of this writing, we have 125 people registered for the event. A followup event report will be posted here in the next 2 weeks.

In April, we are planning to hold a Dojo at ORNL, in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA. The schedule is coming together and we should be announcing more details immediately after FOSDEM.

Later in 2019, we plan to hold dojos at DevConf.US, and DevConf.IN. No details are available for either of these events, but should be announced in the next month.

Each month we publish the community newsletter. These may be read on this blog, and are listed in the wiki.

We are planning various things around the upcoming 15th anniversary of the CentOS project, including birthday cakes at various of our Dojos, and a series of interviews with people who have been around the project for many years. We hope to record some of these interviews at FOSDEM, and others both online, and at upcoming events during the year. If you would like to be interviewed, please contact Rich on the promo mailing list.

This has been a slow quarter for social media, as November and December often are. However, we continue to post content to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Reddit. With the announced retirement of Google+, we have discontinued posting content there.