I visited EuroBSDcon this year agaian which was held between 20 - 23 September 2018 in Bucharest, Rumania. This was the fifth time that I’ve visited a EuroBSDcon after 2011, 2012, 2016 and 2017. I don’t have any experience in visisting other BSD conferences. Hopefully that will happen one day! So find below a summary of my EuroBSDcon 2018.
Last year I was not able to attend the BGP tutorial by Peter Hessler. But this year it did fit my agenda. I was very happy that this was on again this year. The tutorial was well presented and Peter is very knowledgable on both the general BGP subject as well as on OpenBGPD. A good amount of people (approx. 20) visited the tutorial. It teached me the basics of BGP in general and the OpenBGPD implementation of it. And as I did not know anything really substantial about BGP and OpenBGPD this was a very well spent day!
Conference and talks - my highlights
The highlights of my conference were:
- Introduction of FreeBSD in new environments The good, the bad, the ugly: a lot of different angles and views were shared in this talk about the strenght and the (perceived) weeknesses of FreeBSD and the project. Which was good. It puts you in front of the mirror! I found it funny that it was mentioned that the standard FreeBSD csh was disliked. I’ve always used it. Once I’ve changed it for another shell and I got problems with the FreeBSD Ports. A second observation is that I agree with the statement that it would be benefitial for FreeBSD that bhyve would have live migration functionality! But I recognise that this is very difficult to implement with so few developer resources!
- Using Boot Environments at Scale
Managing and Updating Remote Systems with ZFS: I am using boot environments and ZFS on my bhyve hosts, so this was a no brainer to attend. Although I do not run as many as ScaleEngine this talk was still worth my money. Allan presented his material in a clear and precise manner. It was also very nice to learn about the
poudriere, which I did not know!
- Unveil in OpenBSD: I am not running any OpenBSD workloads at the moment. But I attended the 2017 talk about pledge in OpenBSD and I thought this was a good follow up! Bob is a lively and good speaker and presented what he has done in a clear manner. It was good to follow, even as I am not a programmer! By attending talks like this you pick up on how some operating system internals work.
- FreeBSD: What to (Not) Monitor: I looked forward to this one, because I (also) manage and monitor a FreeBSD based infrastructure. But the presenter did not let me down. He showed the audience what to monitor using SNMP, including CPU, memory, disk and ZFS related items. Nagios was also mentioned and the audience added Icinga through questions and expreriences compared to Nagios. I do not use SNMP myself, so maybe I have to look at it. But for now my Nagios implementation works for me.
- FreeBSD/VPC: a new kernel subsystem for cloud workloads: VPC stands for Virtual Private Cloud and is a network blue print used in cloud platforms like AWS and Cloudstack. This talk presented a solution for this functionality on FreeBSD! I find this so cool! The talk was good and the material was presented in a clear way. The basis is there and work needs to be done on the tools to make this easier to implement for system administartors. But I am confident they will get there. This will be so nice when combined with bhyve. Let alone if live migration becomes possible on bhyve. But that is still in the dreaming phase …
Closing thoughts and observations
Some closing thoughts and observations:
- This year the conference had 1 track less than last year (3 instead of 4 last year)
- Overall this year had less interesting subjects and talks, but still interesting enough to go!
- The food was good this year (better than last year)!
- One talk was not presented because the presenter did not show up …
- All in all a good EuroBSDcon again this year!