[openstack-dev] [ptg] Simplification in OpenStack

Jay Pipes jaypipes at gmail.com
Wed Sep 13 17:44:55 UTC 2017

On 09/12/2017 06:53 PM, Boris Pavlovic wrote:
> Mike,
> Great intiative, unfortunately I wasn't able to attend it, however I 
> have some thoughts...
> You can't simplify OpenStack just by fixing few issues that are 
> described in the etherpad mostly..
> TC should work on shrinking the OpenStack use cases and moving towards 
> the product (box) complete solution instead of pieces of bunch barely 
> related things..

OpenStack is not a product. It's a collection of projects that represent 
a toolkit for various cloud-computing functionality.

> *Simple things to improve: *
> /This is going to allow community to work together, and actually get 
> feedback in standard way, and incrementally improve quality. /
> 1) There should be one and only one:
> 1.1) deployment/packaging(may be docker) upgrade mechanism used by 
> everybody

Good luck with that :) The likelihood of the deployer/packager community 
agreeing on a single solution is zero.

> 1.2) monitoring/logging/tracing mechanism used by everybody

Also close to zero chance of agreeing on a single solution. Better to 
focus instead on ensuring various service projects are monitorable and 

> 1.3) way to configure all services (e.g. k8 etcd way)

Are you referring to the way to configure k8s services or the way to 
configure/setup an *application* that is running on k8s? If the former, 
then there is *not* a single way of configuring k8s services. If the 
latter, there isn't a single way of configuring that either. In fact, 
despite Helm being a popular new entrant to the k8s application package 
format discussion, k8s itself is decidedly *not* opinionated about how 
an application is configured. Use a CMDB, use Helm, use env variables, 
use confd, use whatever. k8s doesn't care.

> 2) Projects must have standardize interface that allows these projects 
> to use them in same way.

Give examples of services that communicate over *non-standard* 
interfaces. I don't know of any.

> 3) Testing & R&D should be performed only against this standard deployment

Sorry, this is laughable. There will never be a standard deployment 
because there are infinite use cases that infrastructure supports. 
*Your* definition of what works for GoDaddy is decidedly different from 
someone else's definition of what works for them.

> *Hard things to improve: *
> OpenStack projects were split in far from ideal way, which leads to 
> bunch of gaps that we have now:
> 1.1) Code & functional duplications:  Quotas, Schedulers, Reservations, 
> Health checks, Loggign, Tracing, ....

There is certainly code duplication in some areas, yes.

> 1.2) Non optimal workflows (booting VM takes 400 DB requests) because 
> data is stored in Cinder,Nova,Neutron....

Sorry, I call bullshit on this. It does not take 400 DB requests to boot 
a VM. Also: the DB is not at all the bottleneck in the VM launch 
process. You've been saying it is for years with no justification to 
back you up. Pointing to a Rally scenario that doesn't reflect a 
real-world usage of OpenStack services isn't useful.

> 1.3) Lack of resources (as every project is doing again and again same 
> work about same parts)

Provide specific examples please.

> What we can do:
> *1) Simplify internal communication *
> 1.1) Instead of AMQP for internal communication inside projects use just 
> HTTP, load balancing & retries.

Prove to me that this would solve a problem. First describe what the 
problem is, then show me that using AMQP is the source of that problem, 
then show me that using HTTP requests would solve that problem.

> *2) Use API Gateway pattern *
> 3.1) Provide to use high level API one IP address with one client
> 3.2) Allows to significant reduce load on Keystone because tokens are 
> checked only in API gateway
> 3.3) Simplifies communication between projects (they are now in trusted 
> network, no need to check token)

Why is this a problem for OpenStack projects to deal with? If you want a 
single IP address for all APIs that your users consume, then simply 
deploy all the public-facing services on a single set of web servers and 
make each service's root endpoint be a subresource on the root IP/DNS name.

> *3) Fix the OpenStack split *
> 3.1) Move common functionality to separated internal services: 
> Scheduling, Logging, Monitoring, Tracing, Quotas, Reservations (it would 
> be even better if this thing would have more or less monolithic 
> architecture)

Yes, let's definitely go the opposite direction of microservices and 
loosely coupled domains which is the best practices of software 
development over the last two decades. While we're at it, let's rewrite 
OpenStack projects in COBOL.

> 3.2) Somehow deal with defragmentation of resources e.g. VM Volumes and 
> Networks data which is heavily connected.

How are these things connected?

> *4) Don't be afraid to break things*
> Maybe it's time for OpenStack 2:
>   * In any case most of people provide API on top of OpenStack for usage
>   * In any case there is no standard and easy way to upgrade 
> So basically we are not losing anything even if we do not backward 
> compatible changes and rethink completely architecture and API.

Awesome news. I will keep this in mind when users (like GoDaddy) ask 
Nova to never break anything ever and keep behaviour like scheduler 
retries that represent giant technical debt.


> I know this sounds like science fiction, but I believe community will 
> appreciate steps in this direction...
> Best regards,
> Boris Pavlovic
> On Tue, Sep 12, 2017 at 2:33 PM, Mike Perez <thingee at gmail.com 
> <mailto:thingee at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     Hey all,
>     The session is over. I’m hanging near registration if anyone wants to
>     discuss things. Shout out to John for coming by on discussions with
>     simplifying dependencies. I welcome more packagers to join the
>     discussion.
>     https://etherpad.openstack.org/p/simplifying-os
>     <https://etherpad.openstack.org/p/simplifying-os>
>>     Mike Perez
>     On September 12, 2017 at 11:45:05, Mike Perez (thingee at gmail.com
>     <mailto:thingee at gmail.com>) wrote:
>      > Hey all,
>      >
>      > Back in a joint meeting with the TC, UC, Foundation and The Board
>     it was decided as an area
>      > of OpenStack to focus was Simplifying OpenStack. This
>     intentionally was very broad
>      > so the community can kick start the conversation and help tackle
>     some broad feedback
>      > we get.
>      >
>      > Unfortunately yesterday there was a low turn out in the
>     Simplification room. A group
>      > of people from the Swift team, Kevin Fox and Swimingly were nice
>     enough to start the conversation
>      > and give some feedback. You can see our initial ether pad work here:
>      >
>      > https://etherpad.openstack.org/p/simplifying-os
>     <https://etherpad.openstack.org/p/simplifying-os>
>      >
>      > There are efforts happening everyday helping with this goal, and
>     our team has made some
>      > documented improvements that can be found in our report to the
>     board within the ether
>      > pad. I would like to take a step back with this opportunity to
>     have in person discussions
>      > for us to identify what are the area of simplifying that are
>     worthwhile. I’m taking a break
>      > from the room at the moment for lunch, but I encourage people at
>     13:30 local time to meet
>      > at the simplification room level b in the big thompson room.
>     Thank you!
>      >
>      > —
>      > Mike Perez
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