Monthly Archives: August 2008

Another Fedora Test Day – recap

Another Fedora Test Day down. This time the two focus areas were ApplianceTools and BetterPrinting.

There was a really strong developer turn out for this Test Day.  In addition to David Huff, the appliance-tools developer, some of the oVirt team showed up to help walk through oVirt’s use of appliance-tools. This was tremendously helpful to see how appliance-tools can be used by other projects. Thanks to Alan Pevec, Bryan Kearney and Darryl Pierce from the oVirt team for joining the event.  Having such a tight feedback loop with the developers during Test Days has been very helpful, I hope we can continue with that format.

This tool couldn’t be simpler to use. The getting started instructions published on the wiki are concise, for example only a few commands are needed to build and run an appliance image …

# Install the required packages
$ yum install appliance-tools livecd-tools qemu kvm

# Build an appliance image using the provided kickstart file
$ appliance-creator -n ThinCrust -c /usr/share/appliance-tools/aos-rawhide.ks --cache /var/tmp/act/

# Activate the appliance image
$ virt-image ThinCrust.xml

# Connect to new image's console
$ virt-viewer ThinCrust

Most of the day was spent talking through several oVirt use cases and exercising the instructions posted to the ApplianceTools test plan.  While a large list of bugs didn’t fall out from this venture, it was very helpful to identify/discuss appliance-tools and oVirt use cases.

While ApplianceTools seemed to get most of the attention, some folks did manage to walk through the BetterPrinting test planTim Waugh asked for some help in exercising samba-shared printers with the latest gtk+ changes.  Fedora QA contributor Jason Taylor answered the call and was able to start shaking out some bugs.  If you have access to network shared printers, especially Samba, please take a moment to walk through the test plan.

Bug 460526 [RFE] add qcow support
Bug 460549 appliance-creator –logfile only works with -d
Bug 460540 SELinux error message on build
Bug 460531 Wrong output path given
Bug 460670 No Password Prompt for Unprivileged Printer Addition
Relevant bugs filed

Thanks for everyones help in contributing to another Fedora Test Day.  If you have a suggestion for a future topic, or some ideas to share, please don’t hesitate to contact me.  Until then, stay tuned this week for another installment featuring Save to Bugzilla and Connection Sharing.

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Another Fedora Test Day – recap

Another Fedora Test Day down. This time the two focus areas were ApplianceTools and BetterPrinting.

There was a really strong developer turn out for this Test Day.  In addition to David Huff, the appliance-tools developer, some of the oVirt team showed up to help walk through oVirt's use of appliance-tools. This was tremendously helpful to see how appliance-tools can be used by other projects. Thanks to Alan Pevec, Bryan Kearney and Darryl Pierce from the oVirt team for joining the event.  Having such a tight feedback loop with the developers during Test Days has been very helpful, I hope we can continue with that format.

This tool couldn't be simpler to use. The getting started instructions published on the wiki are concise, for example only a few commands are needed to build and run an appliance image …

# Install the required packages
$ yum install appliance-tools livecd-tools qemu kvm

# Build an appliance image using the provided kickstart file
$ appliance-creator -n ThinCrust -c /usr/share/appliance-tools/aos-rawhide.ks --cache /var/tmp/act/

# Activate the appliance image
$ virt-image ThinCrust.xml

# Connect to new image's console
$ virt-viewer ThinCrust

Most of the day was spent talking through several oVirt use cases and exercising the instructions posted to the ApplianceTools test plan.  While a large list of bugs didn't fall out from this venture, it was very helpful to identify/discuss appliance-tools and oVirt use cases.

While ApplianceTools seemed to get most of the attention, some folks did manage to walk through the BetterPrinting test planTim Waugh asked for some help in exercising samba-shared printers with the latest gtk+ changes.  Fedora QA contributor Jason Taylor answered the call and was able to start shaking out some bugs.  If you have access to network shared printers, especially Samba, please take a moment to walk through the test plan.

Bug 460526 [RFE] add qcow support
Bug 460549 appliance-creator –logfile only works with -d
Bug 460540 SELinux error message on build
Bug 460531 Wrong output path given
Bug 460670 No Password Prompt for Unprivileged Printer Addition
Relevant bugs filed

Thanks for everyones help in contributing to another Fedora Test Day.  If you have a suggestion for a future topic, or some ideas to share, please don't hesitate to contact me.  Until then, stay tuned this week for another installment featuring Save to Bugzilla and Connection Sharing.

Fedora Test Day – recap

So, a few days later … I’ve had some time to think.

My first Fedora Test Day was a busy event. I’m very pleased with the participation level. Several new users joined the event, which was a great experience for me. I’m thankful for their time! Especially when it comes to helping review and execute test documentation. A fresh set of eyes can often point out things you’ve glossed over or grown accustomed to workingaround. Their contribution also helped highlight the ubiquity of virtualization. While I’ve seen it before in earlier discussion in #fedora-qa, and worked with it for many years on ppc, it didn’t resonate until experienced first hand. Whether it’s qemu, kvm, xen, or VirtualBox or $other … virtualization has become a household name.

Having developers Ray Strode (plymouth) and Dave Lehman (anaconda) available for Q+A for much of the event was instrumental. As the key folks responsible for two very visible features in Fedora 10, what more can you ask for? With no boundaries in the way (bugzilla, mailing lists), we were able to engage in great collaborative discussion around known issues, expectations and use cases. Out of that came a list of bugs and enhancement requests (some of which were patched the same day). The list included:

Bug 459116 anaconda needs to restrict certain encrypted device combinations
Bug 459094 Password prompt for encrypted devices doesn’t show which device is about to decrypt
Bug 459115 Plymouth fails to decrypt secondary partitions from the first time
Bug 459121 AttributeError: RaidRequestSpec instance has no attribute ‘setPassphrase’
Bug 459123 Encrypted Software RAID device members don’t display a lock icon
Bug 459191 RFE – plymouth boot support for global passphrase
Bug 459089 Entering wrong passphrase when attempting to disk probe continues to prompt for passphrase without imforming the user the password is wrong
Bug 458278 Plymouth should not fail on headless systems (serial console)
Bug 459111 When prompted for passphrase to unlock root device, hitting <esc> prevents passphrase entry

While overall a very positive experience, these things wouldn’t be worthwhile if there weren’t improvements to be made. Some things that proved a challenge:

  • Plymouth, while very promising once you have things lined up, was a bit rough around the edges for alpha. Newer versions of plymouth built after F10-Alpha show much more promise, and the soon-to-land kernel modeline support will remove the need for booting with "vga=0x318". Until Beta trees begin to land, you can test out the latest plymouth by upgrading from rawhide:
    $ yum update plymouth mkinitrd
    $ mkinitrd -f /boot/initrd-$(uname -r) $(uname -r)
    $ grubby --update-kernel=/boot/vmlinuz-$(uname -r) --args "rhgb vga=0x318"
  • Testing encrypted installations requires one to think.  While perhaps obvious, it’s too easy to have 3 to 4 different entries in the test matrix going and then forgetting which is which when that all go south.  There are many combinations to test and the support for stacking encryption doesn’t ease the burden.  How are you using encrypted block devices on your systems?
  • If you don’t like typing a passphrase, you’re in trouble.  Typing in the passphrase to unlock previously encrypted devices, to configure newly encrypted block devices, and to unlock them during bootup  … is not only frustrating, but your hands will begin to hurt after typing the same stuff that many times.  Ray thought of that.  Discussion turned towards enhancing plymouth to remember your passphrase during boot (see Bug 459191).  Dave also is debating extending the global passphrase support when probing existing devices to be used during device creation.  Both will be barely visible changes, but much appreciated usability enhancements.
  • Testing installation issues can be easier.  While the Live image (CD/USB) are extremely useful for rapidly exercising user-interface functionality, there still are a lot of moving pieces.  Whether it’s rawhide, a snapshot, a milestone, a yum repo, a compose tree, or a set of iso’s, build your own, or pull it from a mirror.  All the pieces are out there.  But how do they fit together?

In short … thanks everyone for participating!  I look forward to another exciting Fedora Test Day [1] walking through a few more Fedora 10 Accepted Features.

[1] Alternative names submissions being accepted.  The current candidate proposed by Robert Williams: TestFest!

Fedora Test Day – recap

So, a few days later … I've had some time to think.

My first Fedora Test Day was a busy event. I'm very pleased with the participation level. Several new users joined the event, which was a great experience for me. I'm thankful for their time! Especially when it comes to helping review and execute test documentation. A fresh set of eyes can often point out things you've glossed over or grown accustomed to working around. Their contribution also helped highlight the ubiquity of virtualization. While I've seen it before in earlier discussion in #fedora-qa, and worked with it for many years on ppc, it didn't resonate until experienced first hand. Whether it's qemu, kvm, xen, or VirtualBox or $other … virtualization has become a household name.

Having developers Ray Strode (plymouth) and Dave Lehman (anaconda) available for Q+A for much of the event was instrumental. As the key folks responsible for two very visible features in Fedora 10, what more can you ask for? With no boundaries in the way (bugzilla, mailing lists), we were able to engage in great collaborative discussion around known issues, expectations and use cases. Out of that came a list of bugs and enhancement requests (some of which were patched the same day). The list included:

Bug 459116 anaconda needs to restrict certain encrypted device combinations
Bug 459094 Password prompt for encrypted devices doesn't show which device is about to decrypt
Bug 459115 Plymouth fails to decrypt secondary partitions from the first time
Bug 459121 AttributeError: RaidRequestSpec instance has no attribute 'setPassphrase'
Bug 459123 Encrypted Software RAID device members don't display a lock icon
Bug 459191 RFE – plymouth boot support for global passphrase
Bug 459089 Entering wrong passphrase when attempting to disk probe continues to prompt for passphrase without imforming the user the password is wrong
Bug 458278 Plymouth should not fail on headless systems (serial console)
Bug 459111 When prompted for passphrase to unlock root device, hitting <esc> prevents passphrase entry

While overall a very positive experience, these things wouldn't be worthwhile if there weren't improvements to be made. Some things that proved a challenge:

  • Plymouth, while very promising once you have things lined up, was a bit rough around the edges for alpha. Newer versions of plymouth built after F10-Alpha show much more promise, and the soon-to-land kernel modeline support will remove the need for booting with "vga=0x318". Until Beta trees begin to land, you can test out the latest plymouth by upgrading from rawhide:
    $ yum update plymouth mkinitrd
    $ mkinitrd -f /boot/initrd-$(uname -r) $(uname -r)
    $ grubby --update-kernel=/boot/vmlinuz-$(uname -r) --args "rhgb vga=0x318"
  • Testing encrypted installations requires one to think.  While perhaps obvious, it's too easy to have 3 to 4 different entries in the test matrix going and then forgetting which is which when that all go south.  There are many combinations to test and the support for stacking encryption doesn't ease the burden.  How are you using encrypted block devices on your systems?
  • If you don't like typing a passphrase, you're in trouble.  Typing in the passphrase to unlock previously encrypted devices, to configure newly encrypted block devices, and to unlock them during bootup  … is not only frustrating, but your hands will begin to hurt after typing the same stuff that many times.  Ray thought of that.  Discussion turned towards enhancing plymouth to remember your passphrase during boot (see Bug 459191).  Dave also is debating extending the global passphrase support when probing existing devices to be used during device creation.  Both will be barely visible changes, but much appreciated usability enhancements.
  • Testing installation issues can be easier.  While the Live image (CD/USB) are extremely useful for rapidly exercising user-interface functionality, there still are a lot of moving pieces.  Whether it's rawhide, a snapshot, a milestone, a yum repo, a compose tree, or a set of iso's, build your own, or pull it from a mirror.  All the pieces are out there.  But how do they fit together?

In short … thanks everyone for participating!  I look forward to another exciting Fedora Test Day [1] walking through a few more Fedora 10 Accepted Features.

[1] Alternative names submissions being accepted.  The current candidate proposed by Robert Williams: TestFest!

Fedora Test Day – Thursday, August 14, 2008 – Encrypted installs and Plymouth

Just sent this to fedora-test-list … but for those planet readers not subscribed …

Wanted to invite folks to join #fedora-qa this Thursday, August 14, 2008 for a Fedora Test Day. The topic for this test day is Encrypted installs and Plymouth. Perhaps slightly aggressive, but each are closely related so it made sense to combine the events.

There will be a cast of testers and developers on hand between 8am – 5pm EDT (12:00 – 21:00 UTC) to help guide testing, answer questions, triage and troubleshoot issues.

Want to get involved? You don’t have to be an experienced developer or tester to join the fun. There are plenty of activities that need your help, all leveraging different skill sets.

For example …

  • Triage existing issues
  • Validate fixes
  • Exploratory testing
  • Test execution
  • Documentation

For more details, please stay tuned to https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/QA/Test_Days/2008-08-14.

Hope to see you in #fedora-qa this Thursday!

Fedora Test Day – Thursday, August 14, 2008 – Encrypted installs and Plymouth

Just sent this to fedora-test-list … but for those planet readers not subscribed …

Wanted to invite folks to join #fedora-qa this Thursday, August 14, 2008 for a Fedora Test Day. The topic for this test day is Encrypted installs and Plymouth. Perhaps slightly aggressive, but each are closely related so it made sense to combine the events.

There will be a cast of testers and developers on hand between 8am – 5pm EDT (12:00 – 21:00 UTC) to help guide testing, answer questions, triage and troubleshoot issues.

Want to get involved? You don't have to be an experienced developer or tester to join the fun. There are plenty of activities that need your help, all leveraging different skill sets.

For example …

  • Triage existing issues
  • Validate fixes
  • Exploratory testing
  • Test execution
  • Documentation

For more details, please stay tuned to https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/QA/Test_Days/2008-08-14.

Hope to see you in #fedora-qa this Thursday!