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Server: Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols on Docker and SMACK, Sean Michael Kerner on OpenPower

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  • What is Docker and why is it so darn popular?

    Five years ago, Solomon Hykes helped found a business, Docker, which sought to make containers easy to use. With the release of Docker 1.0 in June 2014, the buzz became a roar. And, over the years, it's only got louder.

    All the noise is happening because companies are adopting Docker at a remarkable rate. In July 2014 at OSCon, I ran into numerous businesses that had already moved their server applications from virtual machines (VM) to containers.

  • Understanding the SMACK stack for big data

    Just as the LAMP stack revolutionized servers and web hosting, the SMACK stack has made big data applications viable and easier to develop. Want to come up to speed? Here are the basics.

  • OpenPower Foundation Aims to Power Server Acceleration Beyond Moore's Law

    When IBM first created the OpenPower Foundation in 2013, there were vendors that thought they would get into the silicon business and build their own chips, but as it turns out, that's not quite what happened.

    At the OpenPower Summit 2018 event, Brad McCredie, IBM fellow and VP, outlined how OpenPower has progressed over the last five years and what members are actually building.

    [...]

    An offshoot of the OpenPower Foundation is OpenCAPI, which is an effort to build an Open Coherent Accelerator Processor Interface that is supported by AMD, Google, Mellanox and Micron among the group's founding members.

Server: GNU/Linux on OpenPOWER and ARM64

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  • Inspur Unveils Open Source Software Adapted Server at OpenPOWER Summit 2018

    Inspur, a member of the OpenPOWER Foundation, showcased its FP5280G2 server based on OpenPOWER9 that has completed the adaptation of mainstream open source software for cloud computing, big data and AI. It was the first time that this product was introduced in North America. As the initiator of the OpenPOWER Foundation, IBM disclosed more details of POWER9 processors: designed for emerging applications such as AI, cloud computing, and big data, and has 50% to 200% performance improvement compared to POWER8.

  • Updated Oracle Linux 7 update 4 ARM64/aarch64 with uek5 4.14.26-2

    We refreshed the installation media for OL7/ARM64 with the latest uek5 preview build based on upstream stable 4.14.26 and added perf and tuned.

    You can download it from the OTN OL ARM webpage. Ignore the 4.14-14 in the text, that will get updated. We're also working on updating the Raspberry Pi 3 image to match the same version. Hopefully using grub2 there as well to make it easier to have a single image repo.

  • Oracle Linux 7 For ARM64 Updated, Using Linux 4.14 Kernel

    Oracle has made available updated installation media for Oracle Linux 7 for ARM64.

    With Oracle's Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel 5 they are using the Linux 4.14 LTS base and that includes for this 64-bit ARM support too. Oracle has made available Oracle Linux 7 for 64-bit ARM with an "Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel 5" based on the upstream Linux 4.14.26 kernel.

Server: Containers, Kubernetes, Varnish 6.0, HHVM 3.25.0, 3.24.4, and 3.21.8

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  • Container Isolation Gone Wrong

    One of the main advantages of embracing containers is "lightweight virtualization." Since each container is just a thin layer around the containerized processes, the user gains enormous efficiencies, for example by increasing the container density per host, or by spinning containers up and down at a very fast pace.

    However, as the troubleshooting story in the article will show, this lightweight virtualization comes at the cost of sharing the underlying kernel among all containers, and in some circumstances, this can lead to surprising and undesirable effects that container users typically don't think about.

    This troubleshooting tale is rather involved. I've started from the basics and worked up to the more complex material in the hope that readers at all levels can get value out of it.

  • Introducing Agones: Open-source, multiplayer, dedicated game-server hosting built on Kubernetes

    In the world of distributed systems, hosting and scaling dedicated game servers for online, multiplayer games presents some unique challenges. And while the game development industry has created a myriad of proprietary solutions, Kubernetes has emerged as the de facto open-source, common standard for building complex workloads and distributed systems across multiple clouds and bare metal servers. So today, we’re excited to announce Agones (Greek for "contest" or "gathering"), a new open-source project that uses Kubernetes to host and scale dedicated game servers.

  • Varnish 6.0 Released

    It's that time of March again, and Varnish 6.0.0 is here.

  • HHVM 3.25.0, 3.24.4, and 3.21.8

    HHVM 3.25 is released! This release contains new features, bug fixes, performance improvements, and supporting work for future improvements. Packages have been published in the usual places.

  • HHVM 3.25 Released, Now Defaults To PHP7 Mode

    Facebook developers working on the HHVM Hack/PHP language stack have released version 3.25 of the HipHop Virtual Machine.

    HHVM 3.25's PHP support now defaults to PHP7 rather than the PHP5 mode, which is now in an unsupported state. As expressed previously, Facebook will be focusing more on their Hack language support than PHP7 thanks to all the upstream improvements with PHP 7 especially on the performance front. But the large compatibility with PHP7 will happen to continue at least for the time being. With HHVM 3.25 includes support for PHP7 Throwable/Error/Exception hierarchy, changes to visibility modifiers, and other compatibility work.

Server: Kubernetes, Apache Cassandra, and OpenStack Queens

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  • Container orchestration top trumps: Let's just pretend you don't use Kubernetes already

    Container orchestration comes in different flavours, but actual effort must be put into identifying the system most palatable.

    Yes, features matter, but so too does the long-term viability of the platform. There's been plenty of great technologies in the history of the industry, but what's mattered has been their viability, as defined by factors such as who owns them, whether they are open source (and therefore sustained by a community), or outright M&A.

    CoreOS, recently bought by Red Hat, offered Fleet. Fleet, alas for Fleet users, was discontinued because Kubernetes "won".

  • 6 ways Apache Cassandra prepares you for a multi-cloud future

    The incentives for enterprises to pursue a multi-cloud deployment strategy—a cloud-agnostic infrastructure, greater resilience, the flexibility that comes from not being reliant on any single vendor, to name just a few—have never been more compelling, and they are constantly increasing. Yes, the technological feat of implementing and managing deployments that straddle multiple clouds comes with some challenges. But as the need for this future-ready architecture increases, Apache Cassandra is a uniquely primed open source database solution for enabling such deployments.

  • How Containers Work in OpenStack Queens

    There are many different ways in which containers are used and enabled throughout the open-source OpenStack cloud platform. With the OpenStack Queens platform, which was released on Feb. 28, there are even more options than ever before.

    OpenStack has been supporting containers for several years, beginning with the nova-docker driver in the OpenStack Nova compute project that has now been deprecated. Among the different OpenStack container efforts in 2018 are Zun, Magnum, Kuryr, Kolla, LOCI, OpenStack-Helm and Kata containers.

  • The cost of hosting in the cloud

    Should we host in the cloud or on our own servers? This question was at the center of Dmytro Dyachuk's talk, given during KubeCon + CloudNativeCon last November. While many services simply launch in the cloud without the organizations behind them considering other options, large content-hosting services have actually moved back to their own data centers: Dropbox migrated in 2016 and Instagram in 2014. Because such transitions can be expensive and risky, understanding the economics of hosting is a critical part of launching a new service. Actual hosting costs are often misunderstood, or secret, so it is sometimes difficult to get the numbers right. In this article, we'll use Dyachuk's talk to try to answer the "million dollar question": "buy or rent?"

Servers/Containers: Kubernetes, Former Docker CEO, and Linux Foundation Boosting Microsoft

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Server: Supercomputing, Kubernetes and More

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  • Supercomputing under a new lens: A Sandia-developed benchmark re-ranks top computers

    A Sandia National Laboratories software program now installed as an additional test for the widely observed TOP500 supercomputer challenge has become increasingly prominent. The program’s full name — High Performance Conjugate Gradients, or HPCG — doesn’t come trippingly to the tongue, but word is seeping out that this relatively new benchmarking program is becoming as valuable as its venerable partner — the High Performance LINPACK program — which some say has become less than satisfactory in measuring many of today’s computational challenges.

  • Bright Computing adds support for OpenHPC

    Today Bright Computing announced it has joined the Linux Foundation and will participate in the OpenHPC Community project. The latest release of Bright Cluster Manager provides the ability for Bright customers to easily integrate OpenHPC libraries and packages for use within a Bright cluster.

  • Kubernetes Becomes The First Project To Graduate From The Cloud Native Computing Foundation
  • Usenet, Authentication, and Engineering (or: Early Design Decisions for Usenet)

    A Twitter thread on trolls brought up mention of trolls on Usenet. The reason they were so hard to deal with, even then, has some lessons for today; besides, the history is interesting. (Aside: this is, I think, the first longish thing I've ever written about any of the early design decisions for Usenet. I should note that this is entirely my writing, and memory can play many tricks across nearly 40 years.)

  • The true costs of hosting in the cloud

    Should we host in the cloud or on our own servers? This question was at the center of Dmytro Dyachuk's talk, given during KubeCon + CloudNativeCon last November. While many services simply launch in the cloud without the organizations behind them considering other options, large content-hosting services have actually moved back to their own data centers: Dropbox migrated in 2016 and Instagram in 2014. Because such transitions can be expensive and risky, understanding the economics of hosting is a critical part of launching a new service. Actual hosting costs are often misunderstood, or secret, so it is sometimes difficult to get the numbers right. In this article, we'll use Dyachuk's talk to try to answer the "million dollar question": "buy or rent?"

  • Memcached DDoS Attacks Slow Down as Patching Ramps Up

    Days after the largest distributed denial-of-service attack in internet history, the attack size of memcached DDoS attacks is now on the decline.

    On March 5, Netscout Arbor Networks reported a 1.7-Tbps DDoS attack that was driven by the amplification of misconfigured memcached servers. While there were some initial fears that the attacks would continue to grow in size, the opposite has happened.

    "We're still seeing lots of them, but their average size is considerably smaller due to ongoing cleanup and mitigation efforts," Steinthor Bjarnason, senior network security analyst at Netscout Arbor, told eWEEK.

Kubernetes News

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  • Kubernetes Graduates CNCF Incubator, Debuts New Sandbox

    Though the Kubernetes container orchestration system has been widely deployed at scale in production around the world, it wasn't until March 6 that the project graduated from the Cloud Native Computing Foundation's (CNCF) incubator.

    The CNCF's process brings projects in as incubated projects and then aims to move them through to graduation, which implies a level of process and technology maturity. Kubernetes was the founding project for the CNCF, which was launched back in July 2015.

    Google contributed Kubernetes to the CNCF in an effort to help build a more diverse community of contributors and to spur adoption.

  • Kubernetes Ingress: NodePort, Load Balancers, and Ingress Controllers

    A fundamental requirement for cloud applications is some way to expose that application to your end users. This article will introduce the three general strategies in Kubernetes for exposing your application to your end users, and cover the various tradeoffs of each approach. I’ll then explore some of the more sophisticated requirements of an ingress strategy. Finally, I’ll give some guidelines on how to pick your Kubernetes ingress strategy.

  • Aqua Expands Container Security Platform With MicroEnforcer

    Aqua Security launched version 3.0 of its namesake container security platform on March 7, refocusing the product on providing Kubernetes cloud-native enterprise security controls.

    Aqua originally focused on just Docker container deployments, but with the new 3.0 update it is providing a series of capabilities that are aligned with Kubernetes deployments. Kubernetes provides container orchestration capabilities and has also been embraced by Docker Inc., which now also integrates Kubernetes as an option for its users.

    Looking beyond just Kubernetes, Aqua 3.0 also has a new capability called the MicroEnforcer, which is aimed at emerging forms of lightweight container deployments, such as the AWS Fargate service.

  • You got your VM in my container

    Containers and Kubernetes have been widely promoted as "disruptive" technologies that will replace everything that preceded them, most notably virtual machine (VM) management platforms such as vSphere and OpenStack. Instead, as with most platform innovations, Kubernetes is more often used to add a layer to (or complement) VMs. In this article, and in a presentation at SCALE16x, we'll be exploring two relatively new projects that aim to assist users in combining Kubernetes with virtualization: KubeVirt and Kata Containers.

    Most organizations still have large existing investments in applications that run on virtualized hosts, infrastructure that runs them, and tools to manage them. We can envision this being true for a long time to come, just as remnants of previous generations of technology remain in place now. Additionally, VM technology still offers a level of isolation that container-enablement features, like user namespaces, have yet to meet. However, those same organizations want the ease-of-use, scalability, and developer appeal of Kubernetes, as well as a way to gradually transition from virtualized workloads to containerized ones.

​Kubernetes graduates to full-pledged, open-source program

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At the Open Source Leadership Summit (OSLS), the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), which sustains and integrates open-source, cloud native technologies such as Prometheus and containerd, and Chen Goldberg, Google Cloud's director of engineering, announced that Kubernetes is the first project to graduate from the CNCF.

That may sounds a little odd since Kubernetes is already the dominant cloud container orchestration program. But, for the CNCF, graduation has a particular meaning. To graduate, a project must must show it has been adopted by multiple organizations, have a documented, structured governance process, and show a strong commitment to community success and inclusivity.

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Also: Microservices 101

PostgreSQL 10: a Great New Version for a Great Database

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PostgreSQL has long claimed to be the most advanced open-source relational database. For those of us who have been using it for a significant amount of time, there's no doubt that this is true; PostgreSQL has consistently demonstrated its ability to handle high loads and complex queries while providing a rich set of features and rock-solid stability.

But for all of the amazing functionality that PostgreSQL offers, there have long been gaps and holes. I've been in meetings with consulting clients who currently use Oracle or Microsoft SQL Server and are thinking about using PostgreSQL, who ask me about topics like partitioning or query parallelization. And for years, I've been forced to say to them, "Um, that's true. PostgreSQL's functionality in that area is still fairly weak."

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Late Coverage of OpenStack Queens

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  • New OpenStack Queens release provides support for GPUs, containers to meet edge, NFV and machine learning workload demands

    The OpenStack community released on Wednesday Queens, the 17th version of the open source cloud infrastructure software. A packed release resulting from a six-month development cycle, Queens offers advancements benefiting for both enterprises with mission-critical workloads as well as organizations investing in emerging use cases like containers, NFV, edge computing and machine learning. The software now powers 60 public cloud data centers and thousands of private clouds at a scale of more than six million physical cores.

  • OpenStack Queens, RedDrop Android Spyware, Oracle's VirtualBox and More

    OpenStack Queens was released yesterday. The 17th version of the open-source cloud infrastructure software "offers a packed release with advancements benefiting not only enterprises with mission-critical workloads but also organizations investing in emerging use cases like containers, NFV, edge computing and machine learning".

  • ​Open-source cloud royalty: OpenStack Queens released

    The cloud is growing faster than ever, and OpenStack, the open-source cloud for the enterprise, is growing with it.

    By next year, 60 percent of enterprise workloads will run in the cloud, according to 451 Research's Voice of the Enterprise: Cloud Transformation, Workloads and Key Projects survey. While much of that growth is in the public cloud, OpenStack enterprise adoption is expanding, with enterprises in nearly all businesses turning to private and hybrid cloud models for their mission-critical workloads. Indeed, as OpenStack moves toward making more than $6 billion in 2021, OpenStack's private clouds are expected to deliver more revenue than its public cloud implementations.

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Containers and 'Clouds'

  • [Podcast] PodCTL #39 – CI/CD and Kubernetes
    One of the characteristics of the most successful deployments of OpenShift are the CI/CD pipelines that enable application integrations. This week we dove into a question from a listener – “Can you talk more about best practices for integrating CI/CD systems into Kubernetes?“ Brian and Tyler talk about the latest news from the Kubernetes community, the difference between CI and CD, and various considerations for integrating CI/CD environments with Kubernetes.
  • Partners See Docker's 'Promise Of Choice' As A Unique Inroad To Enterprise Customers
  • Docker’s Name and Operations Could Appeal to Microsoft, Red Hat, VMware
    Docker Inc. owns one of the most prominent names in the cloud container ecosystem. But a recent report from Cowen and Company named a handful of established cloud players as potential acquirers of Docker Inc. Those included Microsoft, Red Hat, and VMware, with the first two deemed most likely to take the plunge. “Despite its strong name recognition and customer momentum, Docker’s long-term financial success – at least as an independent company – is hardly a fait accompli,” the Cowen and Company report stated. “We do believe that Docker will have to work hard in order to overcome its smaller footprint with enterprise companies.”
  • Every Silver Lining Has a Cloud

    The savings in cloud computing comes at the expense of a loss of control over your systems, which is summed up best in the popular nerd sticker that says, "The Cloud is Just Other People's Computers."

Mozilla: Motion, Contributors, Testday, ActivityMonitor, San Francisco Oxidation

  • Firefox has a motion team?! Yes we do!
    Motion may sometimes feel like an afterthought or worse yet “polish”. For the release of Firefox Quantum (one of our most significant releases to date), we wanted to ensure that motion was not a second class citizen and that it would play an important role in how users perceived performance in the browser. We (Amy & Eric) make up the UX side of the “motion team” for Firefox. We say this in air quotes because the motion team was essentially formed based on our shared belief that motion design is important in Firefox. With a major release planned, we thought this would be the perfect opportunity to have a team working on motion.
  • Firefox 61 new contributors
    With the upcoming release of Firefox 61, we are pleased to welcome the 59 developers who contributed their first code change to Firefox in this release, 53 of whom were brand new volunteers!
  • QMO: Firefox 61 Beta 14 Testday Results
    As you may already know, last Friday – June 15th – we held a new Testday event, for Firefox 61 Beta 14. Thank you all for helping us make Mozilla a better place!
  • IOActivityMonitor in Gecko
    This is a first blog post of a series on Gecko, since I am doing a lot of C++ work in Firefox these days. My current focus is on adding tools in Firefox to try to detect what's going on when something goes rogue in the browser and starts to drain your battery life. We have many ideas on how to do this at the developer/user level, but in order to do it properly, we need to have accurate ways to measure what's going on when the browser runs. One thing is I/O activity. For instance, a WebExtension worker that performs a lot of disk writes is something we want to find out about, and we had nothing to track all I/O activities in Firefox, without running the profiler. When Firefox OS was developed, a small feature was added in the Gecko network lib, called NetworkActivityMonitor.
  • San Francisco Oxidation meeting notes
    At last week’s Mozilla All Hands meeting in San Francisco we had an Oxidation meeting about the use of Rust in Firefox. It was low-key, being mostly about status and progress. The notes are here for those who are interested.