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Discussion on the state of cloud computing and open source software that helps build, manage, and deliver everything-as-a-service.

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Recent blog posts

[reposted from the Citrix blog]

The title of this post is a riff on the now famous quote by Mark Twain a.k.a. Samuel Clemens about the New York Journal’s confusion between him and at time his ailing cousin James Ross Clemens who was a continent away. The same thing happened recently with regards to two unrelated events. An organizational change here at Citrix and the perceived vitality of one of the technologies we help support, Apache CloudStack.

Recently we combined the Citrix Cloud Platforms Group and the Citrix Cloud Networking Group into one integrated unit called Citrix NCSP (Networking, Cloud & SP Group). We believe these changes will strengthen our position in the quickly evolving data center market.  Klaus Oestermann as the VP and GM of NCSP will lead the newly combined group. This will create a closer working relationship between the teams that develop our Citrix Cloud Platform (powered by Apache CloudStack), Citrix Netscaler and XenServer(built on Xen Project) and other related products.

Unfortunately some of the pundits in our industry are speculating as part of a recent  reorganization at Citrix (and the departure of some of our former colleagues to pursue other opportunities) that this is a sign that we are abandoning our commitment to Apache CloudStack and the project would die. That’s probably because they don’t exactly understand how the Apache Software Foundation(ASF) works and how Citrix supports them.

I suspect many of them don’t understand that despite the lack of fanfare that the ASF provides technologies that power most of the internet’s websites, a huge part of the Java ecosystem and much, much more. While the tech industry swoons over Big Data (a market that is estimated to reach $50 billion by 2017). They might be surprised to know that the Hadoop mapreduce technology that is the lynchpin for the movement is developed by a relatively small set of developers in the Apache Software Foundation. Or the the Apache httpd server that powers more websites on the internet than any other is maintained by a dedicated group of volunteers not a multi-billion dollar company.

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Open Source and Code Signing

Posted by on in Open Source

What is code signing

 

Code signing is the application of cryptographic hashes to code. Most people sign code in order to guarantee that no one has tampered with the code since publishing, and to explicitly be able to say that specific artifact originated somewhere. Most code signing relies on trusted third parties to effectively vouch for the identity of the signer. 

 

Open Source

 

Code signing isn’t really new, even in the open source world. Most Linux distributions have been signing their packages for years. But Linux distributions are fortunate in many ways. They own everything from the kernel to user land applications, and typically a user installs most if not all software via the distributions package repositories. This means you trust a code signing key shortly after or during installation for that distribution. Linux distribution users ‘trust’ packages that are signed by the same key as their installation medium. Most don’t check to verify that the signatures match what the project proclaims, but such verification is available. 

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Last night, the CloudStack Bay Area SF Users Group held a meetup in Palo Alto, CA at SAP Labs. Thank you to Alexander Graebe and SAP Labs for hosting our group yesterday evening!

John Kinsella kicked off the night with an introduction of speakers and ended the evening with a quick reminder about the CloudStack Collaboration Conference Europe held in Budapest, Hungary on November 19-22nd, 2014. The schedule is now available and the early bird registration deadline ends August 15th! Register now. ApacheCon Europe will be co-located with the CloudStack Collaboration Conference from November 17-21st, 2014.

Our guest speaker, Nitin Mehta, presented Replacing realhostip.com with your custom domain since Citrix will be ending RHIP on September 30th, 2014. Nitin helped CloudStackers understand the prerequisites, procedure and troubleshooting steps for customizing their cloud with their own domain. Currently Secondary Storage virtual machine (SSVM) and Console Proxy virtual machine (CPVM) use realhostip.com as default SSL domain for functionalities such as viewing virtual machine console, copying templates across zones, download template/iso/volume and these functionalities will be impacted with the shutdown of realhostip.com. Slides are available here. The video will be posted in about two weeks.

John Kinsella gave the talk, Don't Break the Glass! In Case of Emergency. The video can be found here.

meetup 2

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Great Session Lineup Awaits Attendees in New York City!

xpus-join_us-2014

It’s time to make your travel plans to New York City for the September 15 arrival of the Xen Project User Summit!

The Lighthouse Executive Conference Center will play host to the only full day user-centric Xen Project event on this year’s calendar.

Attendees will find an excellent selection of talks waiting for them at this year’s event.

Is Your Head in the Clouds?

We have a number of terrific cloud-related talks on the schedule!

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Only last week, the Xen Project team was at OSCON where we launched Mirage OS 2.0 (event report to follow soon, but in the meantime check out the following sessions Nymote and Mirage, Floss Weekly on Mirage OS and Community War Stories) and now our Developer Summit is just round the corner. As we have seen tremendous community growth in the last 12 months (>30%) and the most feature reach Xen Project Hypervisor release coming up soon, I thought I'd share what you can expect.

xpds14
(click image to go to event website)

What to expect?

Xen Project Developer Summits are packed with highly technical content where the core developers of the Xen Project community come together to discuss the evolution of the Xen Project. The conference is a mixture of talks and interactive sessions in un-conference format (which we call BoFs). Newcomers and those who are interested in the progress and future of the Xen Project, it's sub projects (Hypervisor on ARM and x86, Upstreams and Downstreams, Embedded and Automotive variants, Cloud Operating Systems such as Mirage OS) usually will get tremendous value from attending the event. Besides roadmap, feature updates and developer topics, this year features a few themes:

  • Network Function Virtualization
  • Security
  • Performance and Scalability
  • Cloud Operating Systems
  • Topics that are important for automotive/embedded/mobile use-cases, such as Real-time virtualization, certification and ARM support

Why not check out the agenda or watch last year's sessions to get a sense of what is coming. Note that BoF's and discussion groups will be published next week.

How to get the most out of the Summit?

Our developer events are designed to help you make connections and to participate. A good way to network are our evening social event and to network during the breaks. Another great way to get the most out of the summit is to submit a BoF/discussion groups about a topic you care about or to participate in a BoF/discussion group. BoF submissions are open until August 11 and the BoF schedule will be published the week before the event. Most of our talks will have an extensive and interactive Q&A portion, which is another way to engage.

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Open@Citrix

Citrix supports the open source community via developer support and evangeslism. We have a number of developers and evangelists that participate actively in the open source community in Apache Cloudstack, OpenDaylight, Xen Project and XenServer. We also conduct educational activities via the Build A Cloud events held all over the world. 

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