1. OpenStack Days 2018

    During last few days I was in Kraków, Poland at OpenStack Days conference. It had two (Tuesday) or three (Monday) tracks filled with talks. Of different quality as it happens on such small events.

    Detailed list of presentations is available on conference’s agenda. As usual I attended some of them and spent time on hallway track.

    There was one issue (common to Polish conferences): should speaker use Polish or English? There were attendees who did not understand Polish language so some talks were mix of Polish slides with English presentation, full English ones and also fully Polish ones. Few speakers asked for language option at start of their talks.

    Interesting talks? The one from OVH about updating OpenStack (Juno on Ubuntu 14.04 -> Newton on Ubuntu 16.04). Interesting, simple to understand. Szymon Datko described how they started with Havana release and how moved from in-house development to cooperation with upstream.

    Other one was about becoming upstream OpenStack developer given by Sławek Kapłoński from Red Hat. Git, gerrit etc. Talk turned into discussion with several questions and notes from the audience (including me).

    DreamLab guys spoke about testing OpenStack. Rally, Shaker and few other names appeared during talk. It was interesting but their voices were making me sleepy ;(

    Attended several other presentations but had a feeling that those small conferences give many slots to sponsors which not always have something interesting to fill them. Or title sounds good but then speaker lacks presentation experience and is unable to keep the flow.

    Met several people from Polish division of Red Hat, spoke with folks from Mirantis, OVH, Samsung, Suse (and other companies), met local friends. Had several discussions. So it was worth going.

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  2. From a diary of AArch64 porter — parallel builds

    Imagine that you have a package to build. Sometimes it takes minutes. Other one takes hours. And then you run htop and see that your machine is idle during such build… You may ask “Why?” and the answer would be simple: multiple cpu cores.

    On x86-64 developers usually have from two to four cpu cores. Can be double of that due to HyperThreading. And that’s all. So for some weird reason they go for using make -jX where X is half of their cores. Or completely forget to enable parallel builds.

    And then I came with ARM64 system. With 8 or 24 or 32 or 48 or even 96 cpu cores. And have to wait and wait and wait for package to build…

    So next step is usually similar — edit of debian/rules file and adding --parallel argument to dh call. Or removal of --max-parallel option. And then build makes use of all those shiny cpu cores. And it goes quickly…

    UPDATE: Riku Voipio told me that Debhelper 10 does parallel builds by default. If you set ‘debian/compat’ value to at least ‘10’.

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  3. Yet another blog theme change

    During morning discussions I had to check something on my website and decided that it is a time to change theme. For nth time.

    So I looked, checked several ones and then started editing ‘Spacious‘ one. Usual stuff — no categories, colours/fonts/styles changes. Went much faster than previous time.

    But then I realised that I do not remember all previous ‘looks’ of my blog. Web archive to the rescue ;D

    When I started on 1st April of 2005 I used some theme. Do not remember how it was called:


    About one year later I decided to change it. To Barthelme theme. Widgets arrived, clean view etc. At that time all my FOSS work was done in free time. As people were asking about donating money/hardware I had a special page about it. Anyone remembers Moneybookers?


    Year passed, another theme change. “Big Blue” this time. Something is wrong on styles as that white area in top left corner should have blue background. At that time I had my own one person company so website had information about available services. And blog got moved to “blog.haerwu.biz” domain instead of “hrw.one.pl” one.


    In 2009 I played with Atahualpa theme. Looks completely broken when loaded through web archive. Also changed site name to my full name instead of nickname. Also got rid of hard to pronounce properly name in favour of “marcin.juszkiewicz.com.pl” which may not be easier to pronounce but several people already were able to call my last name properly.


    Same year I went for “Carrington blog” theme. Looks much better than previous one.


    2012 happened. And change to Twenty Twelve happened too. End of the world did not happened.


    Some restyling was done later. And subtitle went from OpenEmbedded to ARM/AArch64 stuff.


    Three years with one theme. Quite long time. So another change: Twenty Sixteen. This was supposed to look properly on mobile devices (and did).


    And now new theme: Spacious. For another few years?


    One website and so many changes… Still keeping simplicity, no plans for adding images to every post etc.

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  4. GDPR?

    Generic Data Protected Reduction or something like that. Everyone in EU (those in UK too) knows about it due to amount of spam from all those services/pages you registered in the past.

    I would not bother writing anything about it but we had a discussion (beer was involved) recently in a pub and I decided to blog.

    So to make sure you know: there was some data stored in this system. Every time you left a comment all that data you wrote was recorded. And could be used to identify author so we can agree that those were personal details, right?

    If by any chance you want those data removed then write to me. With url of comment you wrote, from email address used in that comment. I will remove your email, link to website (if present) and replace your name with some random words (like Herman Humpalla for example).

    If I remember correctly there is no other data stored in my system. All statistics done by WordPress are anonymous.

    Website moved to be generated into static pages. No statistics, no ads, no embedded YouTube. No cookies.

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  5. Android at Google I/O: what’s the point?

    Another year, another Google I/O. Another set of articles with “what’s new in xyz Google product”. Maps, Photos, AI, this, that. And then all those Android P features which nearly no one will see on their phones (tablets look like dead part of market already).

    I have a feeling that this part is more or less useless with current state of Android. Latest release is Oreo. On 5.7% of devices. Which sounds like “feel free to ignore” value. Every 4th device runs 3 years old version (and usually lacks two years of security updates). Every 3rd one has 2 years old Nougat one.

    Android versions usage chart
    Android versions usage chart

    How many users will remember what’s new in their phones when Android P will land on their devices? Probably very small part of crazy geeks. Some features will get renamed by device vendors. Other will be removed. Or changed (not always in positive way). Reviewers will write “OMG that feature added by VENDORNAME is so awesome” as no one will remember that it is part of base system.

    In other words: I stopped caring what is happening in Android space. With most popular version being few years old I do not see a point in tracking new features. Who would use them in their apps when you have to care about running on four years old Android?

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  6. Mass removal of image tags on Docker hub

    At Linaro we moved from packaged OpenStack to virtualenv tarballs. Then we packaged those. But as it took us lot of maintenance time we switched to Docker container images for OpenStack and whatever it needs to run. And then we added CI job to our Jenkins to generate hundreds of images per build. So now we have lot of images with lot of tags…

    Finding out which tags are latest is quite easy — you just have to go to Docker hub page of linaro/debian-source-base image and switch to tags view. But how to know which build is complete? We had some builds where all images except one got built and pushed. And the missing one is first in deployment… So whole set was b0rken.

    How to remove those tags? One solution is to login to Docker hub website and go image by image and click all those tags to be removed. No one is so insane to suggest it. And we do not have credentials to do that as well.

    So let’s handle it as we do that in SDI team: by automation. Docker has some API so it’s hub should have some too, right? Hmm…

    I went through some pages, then issues, bug reports, random projects. Saw code in JavaScript, Ruby, Bash but nothing usable in Python. Some of projects assume that no one has more than one hundred of images (no paging in getting list of images) and limits itself to some queries.

    Started reading docs and some code. Learnt that GET/POST are not the only methods of doing HTTP. There is also DELETE one which was exactly what I needed. Sorted out authentication, web paths and something started to work.

    First version was simple: login and remove tag from image. Then added querying for whole list of images (with proper paging) and looping through the list with removal of requested tags from requested images:

    15:53 (s) hrw@gossamer:docker$ ./delimage.py haerwu debian-source 5.0.0
    haerwu/debian-source-memcached:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-glance-api:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-nova-api:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-rabbitmq:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-nova-consoleauth:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-nova-placement-api:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-glance-registry:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-nova-compute:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-keystone:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-horizon:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-neutron-dhcp-agent:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-openvswitch-db-server:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-neutron-metadata-agent:5.0.0 removed
    haerwu/debian-source-heat-api:5.0.0 removed

    Final version got MIT license as usual, I created git repo for it and pushed code. Next step? Probably creation of a job on Linaro CI to have a way of removing no longer supported builds. And some more helper scripts.

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  7. XGene1: cursed processor?

    Years ago Applied Micro (APM) released XGene processor. It went to APM BlackBird, APM Mustang, HPe M400 and several other systems. For some time there was no other AArch64 cpu available on market so those machines got popular as distribution builders, developer machines etc…

    Then APM got aquired by someone, CPU part got bought by someone else and any support just vanished. Their developers moved to work on XGene2/XGene3 cpus (APM Merlin etc systems). And people woke up with not-supported hardware.

    For some time it was not an issue - Linux boots, system works. Some companies got rid of their XGene systems by sending them to Linaro lab, some moved them to ‘internal use only, no external support’ queue etc.

    Each mainline kernel release was “let us check what is broken on XGene this time” time. No serial console output again? Ok, we have that ugly patch for it (got cleaned and upstreamed). Now we have kernel 4.16 and guess what? Yes, it broke. Turned out that 4.15 was already faulty (we skipped it at Linaro).

    Red Hat bugzilla has a Fedora bug for it. Turns out that firmware has wrong ACPI tables. Nothing new, right? We already know that it lacks PPTT for example (but it is quite new thing for processors topology). This time bug is present in DSDT one.

    Sounds familiar? If you had x86 laptop about 10 years ago then it could. DSDT stands for Differentiated System Description Table. It is a major ACPI table used to describe what peripherals the machine has. And serial ports are described wrong there so kernel ignores them.

    One of solutions is bundling fixed DSDT to kernel/initrd but that would require adding support for it into Debian and probably not get merged as no one needs that nowadays (unless they have XGene1).

    So far I decided to stay on 4.14 for my development cartridges. It works and allows me to continue my Nova work. Do not plan to move to other platform as at Linaro we have probably over hundred XGene1 systems (M400 and Mustangs) which will stay there for development (hard to replace 4.3U case with 45 cartridges by something else).

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
  8. Shenzhen trip

    Few months ago, at the end of previous Linaro Connect gathering, there was announcement that next one will take place in Hong Kong. This gave me idea of repeating Shenzhen trip but in a bit longer version.

    So I mailed people at Linaro and there were some responses. We quickly agreed on going there before Connect. Alex, Arnd, Green and me were landing around noon, Riku a few hours later so we decided that we will meet in Shenzhen.

    We crossed border in Lok Ma Chau, my visa had the highest price again and then we took a taxi to the Maker Hotel (still called “Quchuang Hotel” in Google Maps and on Booking.com) next to all those shops we wanted to visit. Then went for quick walk through Seg Electronics Market. Lot of mining gear. 2000W power supplies, strange PCI Express expanders etc. Dinner, meeting with Riku and day ended.

    I have woken up at 02:22 and was not able to fall asleep. Around 6:00 it turned out that rest of team is awake as well so we decided to go around and search for some breakfast. Deserted streets looked a bit weird.

    Back at hotel we were discussing random things. Then someone from Singapore joined and we were talking about changes in how Shenzhen stores/factories operate. He told us that there is less and less of stores as business moves to the Internet. Then some Chinese family came with about seven years old boy. He said something, his mother translated and it turned out that he wanted to touch my beard. As it was not the first time my beard got such attention I allowed him. That surprise on his face was worth it. And then we realized that we have not seen bearded Chinese man on a street.

    As stores were opening at 10:00 we still had a lot of time so went for random walk. Including Shenzhen Center Park which is really nice place:

    Shenzhen Center Park
    Shenzhen Center Park

    Then stores started to open. Fake phones, real phones, tablets, components, devices, misc things… Walking there was fun itself. Bought some items from my list.

    Store with floors of small shops
    Store with floors of small shops

    They also had a lot of old things. Intel Overdrive system for example or 386/486 era processors and FPUs.

    Intel Overdrive
    Intel Overdrive

    From weird things: 3.5” floppy disks and Intel Xeon Platinum 8175 made for Amazon cloud only.

    brand new 3.5" floppies
    brand new 3.5” floppies
    Intel Xeon Platinum 8177
    Intel Xeon Platinum 8177

    Lot and lot of stuff everywhere. Need power supply? There were several stores with industrial ones, regulated ones etc. Used computers/laptops? Piles after piles. New components? Lot to choose from. Etc, etc, etc…

    After several hours we finally decided to go back to Hong Kong and rest. The whole trip was fun. I really enjoyed it. Even without getting half of items from my ‘buy while in Shenzhen’ list ;D

    And ordered Shenzhen fridge magnet on Aliexpress… They were not available to buy at any place we were.

    Written by Marcin Juszkiewicz on
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