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Re: [MirageOS-devel] MirageOS fortnightly call - Wednesday 1st at 4pm BST

  • To: mirageos-devel <mirageos-devel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • From: Anil Madhavapeddy <anil@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 6 Jul 2015 18:06:27 +0200
  • Delivery-date: Mon, 06 Jul 2015 16:06:45 +0000
  • List-id: Developer list for MirageOS <mirageos-devel.lists.xenproject.org>

The call notes are below, and should be on the website in 30 minutes or so.
I also took the opportunity to write up Dave Scott's email notes about 
how to use coveralls.io -- I'll be trying them shortly myself for some of
the webstack.

1st July 2015: Network stack testing and Mirage 2.5 release

### Agenda ###

- Networking stack
- Mirage 2.5 release recap
- AoB (live stats, Irmin/Xen)

Attendees: Anil Madhavapeddy (chair), Hannes Mehnert, David Kaloper, Thomas
Leonard, Jeremy Yallop, Magnus Skjegstad, David Sheets, Justin Cormack, Mindy
Preston, Richard Mortier.

### Notes ###

#### Networking stack

There were various issues around duplicate acks and TCP retransmission
which were exposed due to the TLS stack integration.  Many of these were 
just regressions or lurking issues due to Lwt mvars, and are now fixed.

To stop them from coming back, we now have tests that run per PR within
Travis.  This uses vnetif to create virtual interfaces that directly short
circuit the need for a real `tuntap` device, and so happily work great inside a
container.  Coverage is patchy at the moment but is steadily improving (see
for coverage instructions).

ThomasG/L have put in [debug 
so we now have full trace viewer capability.  When ThomasL looked at it, every 
connection ends with
an exception being thrown, that noone had noticed before!  (The stack resolved
a thread in RST processing and then looped again).  That issue is now fixed,
but everyone is encouraged to use the browser profiler and find other lurking

Hannes has a TCP/IP test harness and will generate traces based on Peter
Sewells [Netsem](http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~pes20/Netsem/). This has not been
used much since 2005, but is being modernised for testing against Mirage

Magnus and Mindy have written some iperf tests using the virtual vnetif
interface.  Travis is timing out all the time due to very variable performance
within their infrastructure, so its hard to figure out how much to test.  Anil
suggested that we run them from cron against a repo like

The next feature that we are aiming for is to get IPv6 working with the stack.
Nicolas Ojeda Bar has implemented everything needed, but the only thing
blocking it is the configuration interface (which should be the easiest bit).
Hannes, Justin and many others are keen on this...

#### Mirage 2.5 release

This was a very complex release due to the growing number of libraries that
we have in the project.  It all went well this time, but Anil suggested 
what went right and wrong in the release this time.  A poll around the team 

- The blog posts were very close to the actual libraries releases, and it was
  hard to predict when something would work without a beta cycle.  Made 
  the posts challenging.

- We do not explicitly document API breakage for end users as we go along, and
  so it had to be pieced together from the changelog.  This is getting more 
  for users as we grow in size and have more production infrastruture.

- Do not release on a Friday afternoon and then go to the pub (or in the case of
  ThomasG, a wedding)

- The library changes are still happening in big chunks. This is partly due to 
  fact that some of the core Channel APIs were revved.  We are getting better at
  testing reverse dependencies, but this still needs some infrastructural help
  from OPAM to do bulk builds after a large set of releases.

- The use of a [mirage-dev](https://github.com/mirage/mirage-dev) remote 
  worked successfully.  Unfortunately, remotes in OPAM are global and not 
  and Anil pointed out that it would be nice to have some switches that were 
  upstream.  This is possible when using just `opam pin`, but not with a remote.

*ThomasG:* Mirage is a set of libraries that work together and a frontend tool 
that glues
them together.  Its fine to release libraries as a batch since we have OPAM, 
but what we
didnt manage well is evolving the API of the Mirage DSL itself which glues it 
all together
(Anil: this is referring to the `config.ml` API).
*Mort:* the Mirage DSL eis an implicit collation of a bunch of library versions 
and it is
hard to track since its not captured in OPAM.
*ThomasG:* we can fix this by adding conflicts in the OPAM metadata.

*ThomasL:* a number of Mirage packages have gone upstream into the OPAM package
repository and their unit tests fails. More testing on OPAM import is needed to
prevent dependent packages from breaking their unit tests due to an import of a
dependency.  *DavidS:* we only test the package version we are importing and so
we only test for one solution. Further changes will break upstream. We dont do
reverse dependencies for OPAM dependency tests.
*Anil*: The OPAM maintainers (several of whom are on this call) are aware of the
issue and are working on improving testing reverse dependencies on new package 

*Mort/DavidS*: the Mirage libraries should use the 
[ocaml-travis-ci-skeleton](https://github.com/ocaml/ocaml-travisci-skeleton) so 
that they take advantage of the improvements in reverse depenedency testing.
*Mort*: we need to figure out how to get around the Travis 50 minute limit.

#### Any Other Business

**Irmin/Xen** is at the pull request stage, and is green! ThomasG will do some 
more testing,
but is confident that we can merge it in now that the Xen/TLS changes are all 
It is still memory-only, so we will need to put together a block device store 
persistence (perhaps using 
or LevelDB.

**Log files**: David Sheets and Jeremy Yallop have a design for a logging 
library that
they are planning to write up soon.  This needs to be coalesced with the recent 
work in the TCP/IP stack.  One of the backends could be Irmin/Xen, but optional 
of course.
Hannes notes that the Bitcoin pinata uses a different logging system with a 
dom0 proxy,
which works fine if you control the Xen host (not the case with EC2).

**Live stats**: are [now working](https://mirage.io/stats/gc) on the mirage-www 
thanks to Dave Scott and are very fancy!  Anil encourages everyone to not put 
directly into the mirage-www repo, but to create a small library with it 


> On 1 Jul 2015, at 16:35, Anil Madhavapeddy <anil@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> The Google Hangout link for the call in 30 minutes is:
>   https://plus.google.com/hangouts/_/gq7e36svyh3okzlban3s65nwnya
> Talk to you all soon!
> -anil
>> On 30 Jun 2015, at 18:49, Amir Chaudhry <amc79@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>> Hi folks,
>> The next Mirage dev call will take place on Wednesday afternoon at 4pm BST 
>> and is open to all.
>> We'll be on Google hangout this time and weâll share the link shortly before 
>> the call â  both by email and in the IRC channel (#mirage on freenode).
>> The agenda for this week is currently as follows (subject to change):
>> â Quality and Test
>>      â Networking Stack
>> â 2.5 release
>>      â move to mirage.io
>>      â Blog posts
>> â Live stats on the website
>> If you have things to add/edit, please do so at 
>> https://github.com/mirage/mirage-www/wiki/Call-Agenda
>> Join us at 4pm BST on Wednesday!
>> Best wishes,
>> Amir
>> _______________________________________________
>> MirageOS-devel mailing list
>> MirageOS-devel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> http://lists.xenproject.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/mirageos-devel
> _______________________________________________
> MirageOS-devel mailing list
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> http://lists.xenproject.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/mirageos-devel

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