openSUSE/YaST/zypper update 'issues': One possible solution


Even once zypper is able to select fast mirrors and robustly handle mirrors better than it can now, there will still be an issue around availablility of mirrors and bandwidth, i.e. “I can always get a mirror, but not often at better than 20kb/s…” :slight_smile:

I have seen reports of the Ubuntu community firing up a download server using Amazon’s EC2 instances. This seems a natural way to handle this issue in the longer run.

The idea:

An openSUSE server (Amazon Machine Instance, AMI) is publicly available for anyone to launch with the latest package updates. Any user can start this mirror server and serve themselves, the general public or both. Cost to the person starting the server would be from USD 0.10/hr and USD 0.15/GB. See “Amazon web services” for details: AWS EC2. AMIS’s can be started using a point and click firfox plugin so there is not much of a technical barrier to entry/launch.

The issues:

  1. It appears that openSUSE is non-existent in the cloud, or at least the AWS cloud offering.
    Is it big in any others at the same or better costs? Do we use just openSUSE AMI’s or the best that work, probably Ubuntu or CentOS…?

  2. Are the packages periodically baked into the AMI or stored on an EBS that is updated more frequently. Who pays for the EBS storgae - openSUSE doen’t have any foundation to turn to, Novell haven’t got their act together in the cloud space so I’m not expecting them to grasp something so novell (pun intended).

  3. Is one AMI reserved for OSS, non-OSS and update repos, and other AMI’s for other repos?

  4. To keep the community involved and not restrict to a limited group hacking the AMI directly: Implement everything using a Chef cookbook/receipes (see Chef). Make this Chef cookbook available via GitHub and just have the AMI configured to be given its cookbook/recipe to mixin as user data when the AMI is started (see the AWS docs for how to pass user data to the AMI at start-up). Any user can customize the community recipe and mix this into the AMI when they lauch it. Ideally they’d just edit some simple default values if anything needs to be altered.

  5. How to integrate this into the current mirror management? This is critical if people want to provide a community mirror, for however long they want to. It is not so important for private mirrors, and such ‘private’ mirrors do reduce the burden on public mirrors so are to be encouraged as much as possible.

  6. Is there much interest in this idea? For community week?

  7. Is there a better way? It is…