Berlin was the host of LinuxCon Europe this year, 4-6 october 2016. I had the opportunity to attend this conference as part of the Outreachy internship with the Linux Kernel and took the chance to be part of the Outreachy Kernel Report Panel session and present the work that I did, what I’ve learnt and how did this internship helped me.

Unlike Linaro Connect, the conference that I attended sometime in March, I had a bunch of people with me at the LinuxCon Europe. First of all, I met Julia, our project coordinator, and all the other participants from various rounds on the Outreachy Kernel internship. Also, some of my classmates where there as a reward for winning an Operating Systems contest that is help in my university.

The Outreachy Kernel Report session was held in the first day of the conference. We did not expect many people to attend it and so it was but those that were there are the people that are actually interested in how the kernel community welcomes the newbies. Because, let’s face it.. even though some of us now have full-time jobs we are still newbies. Julia presented the program as a whole, all the interns presented their work in about 5 minutes each and then the questions began. One of my favorite one is about the ramp-up process that a newbie goes through on order to get the hand of creating a patch, sending it as an text email on some mailing list, review it, etc. I, personally, have no particular problem with the mailing list way of work of the kernel, it seems to me that it’s as clean as possible and easy to use. But if you want to hear Greg KH’s opinion on this check out this video

You can find the slides here. My part won’t be there (at least when I published this).. because I am that kind of person that waits to get things done in the last minute.

When the hard part was done - we all presented ouw progress - the fun part began. I attended as many sessions. In the next part I will present some of the most interesting ones.

  • Geo-Replication and Disaster Recovery for Cloud Object Storage with Ceph Rados Gateway - Orit Wasserman

    During the time that I worked on Ceph - the distributed filesystem run by RedHat and Sage Weil - I only investigated and tried to improved cluster-wide performance without knowing or going into the concept of Geo-Replication. Learn a lot of new things and the direction Ceph is going at.

  • Ceph and Flash - Allen Samuels

Efficiency doesn’t only come from smart algorithms, sometimes you also need to choose your hardware appropriatly. Allen thaught us how to improve our Ceph clusters by working at the storage hardware.

  • lguest: A Journey of Learning the Linux Kernel Internals - Daniel Baluta

Daniel is a teaching assistent in my university, an Intel employee and also a mentor in the Outreachy Kernel. He was the one that held a kernel entry-level workshop in our faculty to introduce on the linux field from early on. This session was another attept to give newbies a welcoming entry in the kernel. lguest is basic hypervisor that introduces people into many important topics such as - interrupts, memorry assembly, stack trace etc. Great to watch.

  • Cgroups and namespaces, The Building blocks of linux containers - Rami Rosen

Used Docker in order to create and run multiple containers that would create the Ceph cluster. Eventually you have to learn also how these containers are created and managed by the kernel. If you also have the same opinion, check Rami’s talk.

  • Build your own ChromeOS distro and Image Server - Ronald G. Minnich

Being able to run your own software from firmware to OS is really an incredible thing. Intersting to see how some companies give the end-user the possibility to change everything in their systems. Unlike the majority, Google is doing that.

  • CephFS and LXC: Container High Availability and Scalability, Redefined - Florian Haas

Learnt about ansible playbooks in corelation with containers and LXC. Will have a look at that in the near future.

  • Locking down your Systemd services - Lennart Poettering

Last but not least, systemd - the controversial init system that lately becomes much more than that. In this talk, Lennard presented new options for service sandboxing. I think that going before people and owning your opinions and decisions no matter what takes a great man.

Fun fact:

25 years of Linux. I remember that during one of the keynotes, the presenter ask to raise the hand the people that were no older than 25. Well, not so many as I would expect but some. Oh, and he reminded nnot be too eager.. we will also get old.

Fun fact #2:

Linus did not attend LinuxCon.., instead it went to Linaro Connect LAs Vegas where he presented its opinion of the ARM ecosystem. Google it.

All in all, the LinuxCon experience was one of a kind. I hope to attend it also next year and to be a better part of the community as I grow as a person and a engineer.

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