[openstack-dev] [docs][all] Software design in openstack

Fox, Kevin M Kevin.Fox at pnnl.gov
Thu Feb 4 20:02:38 UTC 2016

OpenStack does have a bit of a high level design objective woven into the cross project meetings:

But there is a current big gap in the system where major features that can involve multiple projects can't get agreement from the individual project silo's easily. This process is something very important that is currently missing.

Two such stalled features are:
 * Instance Users - https://review.openstack.org/#/c/222293/
 * dnsaas+http certs - https://review.openstack.org/#/c/228074/

Lack of planning on this level has made each project silo at times reimplement wheels in different ways, and has prevented useful features from being implemented.

It would be very nice to figure out a way to resolve this issue.

From: Clint Byrum [clint at fewbar.com]
Sent: Thursday, February 04, 2016 11:33 AM
To: openstack-dev
Subject: Re: [openstack-dev] [docs][all] Software design in openstack

Excerpts from Nick Yeates's message of 2016-02-03 21:18:08 -0800:
> Josh, thanks for pointing this out and in being hospitable to an outsider.
> Oslo is definitely some of what I was looking for. As you stated, the fact that there is an extensive review system with high participation, that this alone organically leads to particular trends in sw design. I will have to read more about ‘specs', as I don’t quite get what they are and how they are different from blueprints.
> When I said "What encourages or describes good design in OpenStack?”, I meant, what mechanism's/qualities/artifact's/whatever create code that is well-received, well-used, efficient. effective, secure… basically: successful from a wider-ecosystem standpoint. It sounds to me like much is built into 1) the detailed system of reviews, 2) an informal hierarchy of wise technicians, and now 3) modularization efforts like this Oslo. Did I summarize this adequately?
> What artifacts were you going to send me at?
> I have still yet to find a good encompassing architecture diagram or white paper.

Hi Nick.

The specification process is pretty mature at this point, but it varies
a bit from project to project. You may want to browse around this:


And look at ongoing reviews for the various -specs repositories here:


These contain high level specs for features and refactoring work going
on in OpenStack. They are as close to we have as a "good design" process
in OpenStack. Note that we get together in a physical meeting space
every 6 months to discuss these specs face to face.


Note that many of us have lamented the lack of an agreed upon
"architecture" in OpenStack. While Josh is right that Oslo often
facilitates many of our agreed upon technology choices, it doesn't really
shape the overall picture. We also have recently starting doing some
detailed cross-project sessions to discuss overall themes, but these
aren't necessarily architectural decisions, they're just optimizations
of similar concerns.

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