Fedora Weekly News Issue 146
Welcome to Fedora Weekly News Issue 146 for the week ending October 5, 2008.
In this issue of FWN, Max Spevack covers the announcement of the beta for Fedora 10 (Cambridge) and reminds us of the upcoming Fedora Board IRC chat. Oisin Feeley provides another detailed look into Fedora development, covering the recent PATH:/sbin discussion, efforts to speed up Modprobe and MAKEDEV, announcement of the Fedora 10 early branch for developers, and more. Jason Taylor writes on documentation, including discussion on changing language codes in Fedora and the beginnings of an ongoing debate on how to properly document examples of system commands. Runa Bhattacharjee, writing for the translation project, provides detail on the Fedora 10 translation dates and summarizes the most recent meeting of the translation team. Huzaifa Sidhpurwala updates us on discussion on the infrastructure list, including metalinks for Fedora 10 downloads. Nicu Buculei covers the release of the second issue of the art team excellent voice, Echo Monthly News, and Paul Frields' recent request for a remix logo, a secondary watermark for derivative spins. David Nalley brings us up-to-date on the latest security advisories for Fedora 8 and 9 issued this past week. Finally, Dale Bewley gets us current with the many happenings on the four virtualization lists he covers -- the Enterprise Management Tools, Fedora Xen, library virtualization and oVirt development lists.
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FWN Editorial Team:
In this section, we cover announcements from the Fedora Project.
Contributing Writer: Max Spevack
Fedora 10 (Cambridge) Beta
Jesse Keating announced the release of Fedora 10 Beta. "Just on the heels of the Fedora Project's fifth anniversary, the Beta of Fedora Linux version 10 (code-named Cambridge) is now available."
Among the new, fun, and interesting features:
- New NetworkManager with connection sharing
- Improved printer handling
- Remote virtualization and easier virt storage
- Sectool, an auditing and security testing framework
- RPM 4.6, the first big RPM change in several years
Additionally, Jesse reported "there was a small problem during image creation that led to the x86_64 Live KDE actually being the content for the x86_64 Live XFCE. I have recreated these images and updated the master mirror and the torrent server."
For full disclosure, here are the SHA1SUMs of each:
6f32b75c09838a407371aec211e1951d357baf03 *F10-Beta-x86_64-Live-KDE.iso 04195ea383229bdd356188e86ba8c39985118abb *F10-Beta-x86_64-Live-XFCE.iso
Fedora Board IRC Meeting
Paul Frields reminded everyone that "the Board is holding its monthly public meeting on Tuesday, 7 October 2008, at 1800 UTC on IRC Freenode."
The public is invited to do the following:
- Join #fedora-board-meeting to see the Board's conversation. This channel is read-only for non-Board members.
- Join #fedora-board-public to discuss topics and post questions. This channel is read/write for everyone.
The moderator will direct questions from the #fedora-board-public channel to the Board members at #fedora-board-meeting. This should limit confusion and ensure our logs are useful to everyone.
In this section the people, personalities and debates on the @fedora-devel mailing list are summarized.
Contributing Writer: Oisin Feeley
PATH:/sbin Tab Confusion
Some time ago (2008-04-23) it was proposed by Tom Callaway to append
/usr/sbin to the path of non-root users. The rationale was to make it easier for non-root users to use tools which are traditionally perceived as "administration" tools, for example
fdisk. A good overview of the problem was posted by Behdad Esfahbod . An excellent compendium of objections to the proposal posted by Enrico Scholz encapsulates most of the problems perceived at the time. Several prolonged discussions on the topic mostly centered around alternate strategies which included moving binaries from
/bin, symlinking from one to the other directory, or setting up
sudo by default.
The case for moving many of the binaries was made strongly by David Cantrell and arch-skeptic Ralf Corsepius voiced a general objection that "[...] this discussion is as old as */sbin exists [... and I] consider both proposals to be populist propaganda." After much thrashing out of the issue the proposal was coalesced in the Feature named "/sbin Sanity" and
/usr/local/sbin:/usr/sbin:/sbin were appended to the
PATH of normal users of Fedora 10. A related change suggested was to allow firstboot to configure sudo to grant the first created user all privileges but this feature is not present in Fedora 10 Beta.
With the release of Fedora 10 Beta some of the predicted daily inconveniences of the change have been realized. Matt Miller (who had been consistently opposed to the change) reported that command-line completion was cluttered with multiple unwanted choices: "We've just made the command line a lot less user friendly for common use in exchange for an ugly fix to a small inconvenience." In a wryly humorous post he noted that due to wanting
/etc/profile.d to continue working he could not simply set a static path. Stephen Smoogen joked that Matt was the "[...] first systems administrator I have met in several years who hasn't had /usr/sbin:/sbin in their default path. You sure they didn't make you a manager and didn't tell you?" and added that "I think the chance for putting it back is still there.. if someone is willing to do the work on the hard but correct way? I think it was crickets the last couple of times when volunteers were asked for that." Nigel Jones was among several who asserted that typing the full paths was what they preferred and Stephen admitted that he had received some offlist ribbing and promised to mend his ways: "I am removing /sbin:/usr/sbin from my path and learning to type /usr/sbin for the commands I have 'shortcutted' over the years. Next I will be removing the bad habit of '/sbin/sudo bash' :)"
Over on @fedora-desktop Rahul Sundaram suggested a
kickstart snippet which would add the first user to the wheel group and add blanket permissions to the wheel group in
/etc/sudoers . Colin Walters agreed with the concept but wondered "[a]re we too far into the F10 process for this?"
Speeding-up Modprobe and MAKEDEV
Inspired by Arjan van de Ven's five-second Asus EeePC boot and Mandriva's work on similar topics Jakub Jelinek posted his patches to improve the speed of
MAKEDEV. He hoped that this sharing would result in more community experimentation. The first patch enables
depmod -a to produce compact binary files which can be searched for aliases and dependencies more quickly than the standard text files, which are still also produced. The patch to
MAKEDEV similarly reduces the size of the searched files, in this case config files, and improves the efficiency of an inner loop. The times appeared to be decreased by several orders of magnitude according to the sample figures posted by Jakub.
Kyle McMartin was excited and suggested that "[t]he biggest win by far for
MAKEDEV is profiling the often hit devices, and prioritizing things. Dave Airlie moved a bunch of the cciss and other almost never-seen devices to be sourced last and ended up with a huge win." Bill Nottingham responded that
MAKEDEV ought not to be run at boot at all. Jakub Jelinek was not optimistic that the
MAKEDEV patch would be applied upstream as he noted that he had sent it upstream over ten months ago.
Uniform Proxy Settings
The issue of constructing a uniform method of enforcing proxy settings for applications was raised by Kulbir Saini. He complained "[w]henever I try a new version of Fedora, the first problem I face is setting the proxy. It seems for almost every application, I have to specify proxy at a different place."
A reply by Simon Andrews recapped previous debates on the topic by pointing out the twin problems of a lack of a common setting and the inability of many applications to update their proxy settings on the fly. Simon suggested that a localhost proxy could be forced on all applications if
NetworkManager were to contain hooks to re-route local proxy requests either directly to the internet or via a secondary proxy. He admitted "this all feels a bit icky to me - but I can't think of a nicer way of doing this which doesn't require the cooperation of the authors of every proxy-aware application."
Nicolas 'kwizart' Chauvet had also thought about the problem and made some changes to
libproxy which he hoped would solve the problem. Dan Winship wrote a great post explaining that
libproxy could adaptively use whichever backend was appropriate for the environment in which it was used and although it was not widely used by applications it looked set to become an integral part of GNOME.
After Colin Walters commented that he would like to "[...] see the desktop standardize around
libsoup , for two primary reasons: 1) Mainloop integration 2) Hopefully forthcoming support for reading Firefox cookies [...]" a minor flamewar erupted when James Antill wondered "Why do "desktop people" keep proposing things that are _only_ acceptable in a monolithic desktop application?" with reference to the mainloop integration. This developed into a comparison between future scenarios in which PackageKit overrode yum downloads in a desktop scenario versus the simplicity of using yum on the command line. James was scathing on the subject of ignoring actual users (whom he asserted prefer gnome-terminal) to "[...] 60+ year olds who don't, and are about to be a majority of our users RSN."
 libsoup is a GNOME client/server library for HTTP used in evolution, seahorse and rhythmbox among others and is integral to the OnlineDesktop.
Fedora 10 Early Branch Now Available
Jesse Keating announced on 2008-10-01 that it was now possible for developers wishing to concentrate on stabilization to branch their packages. A link to request a branch was provided. In response to Jeroen van Meeuwen it was explained that this was not mass-early-branching but was an attempt to satisfy two classes of maintainers: those that needed to continue future development and those that used the entire development cycle for the current release.
Michael Schwendt rejected the idea as "[u]nconvincing and not helpful", citing increased bureaucracy as the main negative outcome and suggesting that a potential cascade of maintainers scrambling to branch and rebuild in response to early branches of dependencies would result.
SELinux - Copying ISO Files
A paraliptic swipe at SELinux by Jon Masters asked "[...] how is the *average* user supposed to [...] copy the content of /mnt over to e.g. /somewhere/fedora/9/i386 for NFS installs [?]" Dan Walsh was surprised and responded "Why would the copy fail? cp should just work and set the files to the context of the destination directory. If this fails it is a bug." Jon conceded that there was a bug and segued into a mini-rant on SELinux.
Jesse Keating offered: "The average user double clicks on the iso in Nautilus, which mounts it for them. Then they click/drag the fileset to where they want it and Nautilus copies it for them."
In this section, we cover the Fedora Documentation Project.
Contributing Writer: Jason Taylor
New Language Codes
There was some discussion this week between the docs team and members of the translation team about changing the language codes in the Fedora documentation. The proposed change(s) would make the Fedora documentation, in this case the Release-Notes compatible with ISO naming standards.
Command Examples Documentation
Murray McAllister brought to light some discussion recently about how to properly document examples of system commands. There was some interesting discussion on list about how to go about this and we look forward to a consensus in the near future.
This section covers the news surrounding the Fedora Translation (L10n) Project.
Contributing Writer: Runa Bhattacharjee
F10 Translation deadline revised to 21st October 2008
The software and documentation translation deadlines for Fedora 10 has been revised to 21st October 2008. The decision was taken after a meeting last week between John Poelstra and the Translation and Documentation teams. Currently, the Fedora Translation and Documentation teams are finalizing the process of task scheduling in perspective of the main Fedora Release Engineering schedule which would be used for future Fedora releases as well.
Fedora Translation Project meeting held
The fortnightly meeting of the Fedora Translation Project was held on 30th September 2008, chaired by Dimitris Glezos. Issues discussed included an update of the translation schedule revision and problems with publican documents on the status page. Additionally, Robert-André Mauchin raised a concern about identification of new translators for a language, being sponsored into the cvsl10n group.
This section contains the discussion happening on the fedora-infrastructure-list
Contributing Writer: Huzaifa Sidhpurwala
func logrotate fix
Mike McGrath wrote on the @fedora-infrastructure-list  that he would like to implement a global fix to logrotate in which /etc/init.d/funcd condrestart would be replaced by /etc/init.d/funcd condrestart > /dev/null. The reason for the fix is because the original config is generating spam. However [[JonStanley|Jon Stanley] opposed this, saying that it violates the concept of a change freeze. However at the end the change was implemented.
Matt Domsch wrote on the @fedora-infrastructure-list  that mirrors.fp.o now supports metalinks . metalinks are XML documents that act like a yum mirror list, but with more detail, allowing client download tools to more easily select a mirror that will be fastest for them.
Jeffrey Ollie asked if these links were supposed to work on firefox, atleast for testing  on which Jesse replied that there was some work done on Mirror Manager yesterday and they should be working.
Thomas Spura wrote on @fedora-infrastructure-list  and asked "Why isn't it possible to configure an smtp-server to send username fedoraproject org mails?" To this Mike replied that in In your mail client you should be able to set a @fedoraproject.org address. Many other providers support this as well (like gmail for example) 
In this section, we cover the Fedora Artwork Project.
Contributing Writer: Nicu Buculei
The latest news about Echo icons
Martin Sourada announced on @fedora-art a new issue of the Echo Monthly News, a periodic publication outlining the development in the last month for the Echo icon set. We covered part of them in Fedora Weekly News, but for those interested in details, it is a good read, covering the following topics: "1. New Icons; 2. Updated Tutorials; 3. Guidelines Update; 4. Releases; 5. Echo Enabled in Rawhide as Default Icon Set;6. Icons We Need to Create for F10; 7. Roadmap Updates".
Paul Frields asked for a logo graphic, a secondary wordkmark, on @fedora-art: "Having a secondary wordmark, a community-usable mark for derivative spins, will help drive more interest in Fedora", a process crossed with @fedora-marketing "I'll start a discussion about the wording for the mark on Fedora Marketing List which anyone should (as always) feel free to join". After receiving input from marketing and legal the name was settled to "fedora remix" and a wiki page was created to hold the proposals. So far it has evolving proposals from Nicu Buculei, Mairin Duffy, Clint Savage and Jayme Ayres.
In this section, we cover Security Advisories from fedora-package-announce.
Contributing Writer: David Nalley
Fedora 9 Security Advisories
- rubygem-activerecord-2.1.1-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01316.html
- rubygem-activesupport-2.1.1-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01317.html
- rubygems-1.2.0-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01318.html
- rubygem-activeresource-2.1.1-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01319.html
- rubygem-rails-2.1.1-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01320.html
- rubygem-actionpack-2.1.1-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01321.html
- rubygem-actionmailer-2.1.1-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01322.html
- firefox-3.0.2-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01334.html
- xulrunner-22.214.171.124-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01335.html
- cairo-dock-126.96.36.199-1.fc9.1 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01336.html
- devhelp-0.19.1-4.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01337.html
- blam-1.8.5-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01338.html
- epiphany-2.22.2-4.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01339.html
- chmsee-1.0.1-5.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01340.html
- epiphany-extensions-2.22.1-4.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01341.html
- galeon-2.0.5-3.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01342.html
- evolution-rss-0.1.0-3.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01343.html
- gnome-web-photo-0.3-14.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01344.html
- gnome-python2-extras-2.19.1-18.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01345.html
- google-gadgets-0.10.1-5.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01346.html
- gtkmozembedmm-1.4.2.cvs20060817-21.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01347.html
- kazehakase-0.5.5-1.fc9.1 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01348.html
- Miro-1.2.4-3.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01349.html
- mugshot-1.2.2-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01350.html
- mozvoikko-0.9.5-3.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01351.html
- totem-2.23.2-7.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01352.html
- ruby-gnome2-0.17.0-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01353.html
- yelp-2.22.1-5.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01354.html
- seamonkey-1.1.12-1.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01403.html
- emacspeak-28.0-3.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-October/msg00010.html
- libxml2-2.7.1-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-October/msg00125.html
- pam_krb5-2.3.0-2.fc9 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-October/msg00166.html
Fedora 8 Security Advisories
- blam-1.8.3-18.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01361.html
- firefox-188.8.131.52-1.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01362.html
- chmsee-1.0.0-4.31.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01363.html
- cairo-dock-184.108.40.206-1.fc8.1 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01364.html
- epiphany-2.20.3-7.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01365.html
- devhelp-0.16.1-10.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01366.html
- epiphany-extensions-2.20.1-10.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01367.html
- evolution-rss-0.0.8-12.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01368.html
- galeon-2.0.4-5.fc8.3 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01369.html
- gnome-web-photo-0.3-13.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01370.html
- gnome-python2-extras-2.19.1-17.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01371.html
- kazehakase-0.5.5-1.fc8.1 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01372.html
- Miro-1.2.3-4.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01373.html
- gtkmozembedmm-1.4.2.cvs20060817-23.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01374.html
- liferea-1.4.15-4.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01375.html
- openvrml-0.17.8-2.0.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01376.html
- ruby-gnome2-0.17.0-2.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01377.html
- yelp-2.20.0-13.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01378.html
- seamonkey-1.1.12-1.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-September/msg01384.html
- emacspeak-28.0-3.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-October/msg00012.html
- libxml2-2.7.1-2.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-October/msg00130.html
- pam_krb5-2.2.18-2.fc8 - https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-package-announce/2008-October/msg00150.html
In this section, we cover discussion on the @et-mgmnt-tools-list, @fedora-xen-list, @libvirt-list and @ovirt-devel-list of Fedora virtualization technologies.
Contributing Writer: Dale Bewley
Enterprise Management Tools List
This section contains the discussion happening on the et-mgmt-tools list
virt-manager Adds Disk and Network I/O Graphs
Guido Günther submitted a patch for
virt-manager to display with disk and network input/output graphs in addition to the CPU and memory utilization graphs.
virt-manager Supports Multiple Serial Consoles
Cole Robinson patched
virt-manager to combine "the serial console window with the VM details window. Opening the serial console now appends a tab to the details view. In addition, multiple serial consoles are now supported, not just the primary/first defined console, though this still only works for 'pty' devices."
Maintaining VM State While Restarting libvirtd Needed
libvirt necessitate a restart of
libvirtd. Guido Günther asked if there was any progress on saving enough state to restart
libvirtd without restarting any guests. Daniel P. Berrange replied this has been solved for the LXC driver and the same approach may apply to the QEMU driver.
Guido pointed out "This would solve the problem of restarting libvirtd. How are we going to distinguish this from daemon shutdown on e.g. system reboot?" To which, Daniel B. proposed "We can probably distinguish by picking a specific signal for orderly shutdown of the daemon + vms, vs a simple restart." Adding, "Perhaps we should have an explicit API, or a convenient virsh command to shutdown all VMs in one go."
Fedora Xen List
This section contains the discussion happening on the fedora-xen list.
No Dom0 Support in Fedora 10
Daniel P. Berrange laid it out there. "There is pretty much zero chance that Fedora 10 will include a Xen Dom0 host. While upstream Xen developers are making good progress on porting Dom0 to paravirt_ops, there is simply too little time for this to be ready for Fedora 10. So if you need to use Fedora 10 as a host, then KVM is your only viable option at this time. If you can wait for Fedora 11 (or use RHEL-5 / CentOS-5) then Xen may be an option for you." See also FWN 143.
This section contains the discussion happening on the libvir-list.
Running Xen Guests Without xend
Stefan de Konink asked if users could someday run xen guests without a xend running. Gerd Hoffmann said there are patches queued up which begin to allow qemu to do this. Adding, "If things work out well we might have that in the F11 timeframe." Assuming Dom0 support in the pv_ops based kernel is completed.
cgroups API and LXC Driver Support
Dan Smith posted a patch set which "adds basic cgroup support to the LXC driver. It consists of a small internal cgroup manipulation API, as well as changes to the driver itself to utilize the support."
Dan agreed to "reswizzle" the API after Daniel P. Berrange commented, "My thought on the overall design of this internal API is that it is too low level & pushing too much work to the caller." Also, "While LXC driver is the only current user, as more controllers are added I anticipate that QEMU driver might use cgroups, eg for I/O controls and CPU schedular controls. As such I'd expect an API to be at a slightly higher level of abstraction, strongly typed and a single cgroup object associated with a domain object."
There was discussion of how to mount the controllers. The cgroups kernel interace is less than ideal, because "...once you mount a particular controller, you can't change the way it's mounted. So if libvirt mounted each controller separately, then the admin couldn't have a mount with multiple controllers active, and vica-verca."
This prompted Balbir Singh to begin a new thread recommending the use of
libcgroups rather than an internal implementation. Adding, "I understand that in the past there has been a perception that libcgroups might not yet be ready, because we did not have ABI stability built into the library and the header file had old comments about things changing. I would urge the group to look at the current implementation of libcgroups (look at v0.32) and help us."
Daniel Veillard pointed to issues of dependency and API completeness raised in the past. "In the meantime we got a relatively simple, sufficient for now, usable right now, patch fullfilling our needs." Adding support for taking Dan Smith's patch with it's internal cgroups implementation.
Dhaval Giani offered that version 0.32 of
libcrgoups will be available in Rawhide soon. The thread amicably continued on in great detail about the implementation details of
libvirtd Multi-threaded Support in the Works
Daniel P. Berrange posted "I've been doing some proof of concept work to make the libvirtd daemon multi-threaded, and this in turns mean that the QEMU / LXC / OpenVZ drivers need to have some degree of locking on their internal data structures." The internal APIs extensive use of linked lists makes fine grained locking of objects very difficult, which lead to Daniel's series of patches aimed at removing all use of linked lists.
Host Device Enumeration API
In August David Lively announced an intent to work on an API for host device enumeration, creation, and deletion. Daniel P. Berrange inquired as to the status of the work. The "oVirt guys" are keen to have the functionality ASAP.
David reported progress on HAL-based and more limited DevKit-based drivers and posted a preliminary patch. Daniel B. concurred that "HAL is clearly the more portable option for a little while to come, but for Linux at least DeviceKit will (eventually) be the preferred way to access this kind of info." David later gave up on DevKit for now. Work continues on the API.
SDL Display Support for QEMU Driver
Daniel P. Berrange posted a patch to enable SDL displays for QEMU. Daniel explained "QEMU has two modes of providing a graphical display, VNC and SDL. Now most of our tools just use VNC, but occasionally people want to use SDL for some crazy reason. We already support this in Xen driver, but the QEMU impl has been rather lacking."
oVirt Devel List
This section contains the discussion happening on the ovirt-devel list.
oVirt Web API ala EC2 Web Services
Noel Rocher asked if there was web-enabled API similar to EC2 which could be used manage guest images and instances. Hugh O. Brock explained there is a REST API for scripting most
oVirt operations, soon to be accompanied by a command-line interface. However, the API is in early stages and poorly documented.
QPID Modeling Framework and libvirt-qpid
Ian Main wanted to say a few words about the patches to
ovirt which "provides an interface with libvirt using QMF (qpid modeling framework) which utilizes the AMQP protocol. The Advanced Message Queuing Protocol (AMQP) is an open standard application layer protocol providing reliable transport of messages."
"QMF provides a modeling framework layer on top of qpid (which implements AMQP). This interface allows you to manage hosts, domains, pools etc. as a set of objects with properties and methods."
"With this patch in place, you can log into the WUI, and use qpid-tool (a generic qpid QMF client) to view and manipulate nodes/domains/pools etc."
QPID was added to
libvirt in September.
Booting Guest From ISO Image
Darryl L. Pierce is adding support for booting a VM from an ISO image. After adding an ISO image to the Cobbler server on the appliance with the full NFS URL needed to mount it, "If the filename ends in '.iso' then the virtual machine will mount the file as a CDROM device and boot it. Otherwise, it mounts it as a hard disk device." There remains a bug which requires manual intervention to complete the boot from CDROM.