[volunteers] Migration plan has apparently been changed

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Mon Oct 22 16:06:37 PDT 2007

On Sept. 25, 2006, I posted here:

> At least, that's what you would do if the system's package-management
> system were not, in addition, royally screwed -- something that was
> already the case when Marc Merlin handed the machine over.
> ...which in turn is why we have _not_ been pursuing maintenance in-place
> of the current box, because it's too fragile and cannot be maintained
> without serious risk of making the whole damned thing collapse.  Which 
> in turn is why the plan is -- instead -- to migrate the machine's
> services and contents to a virtual host provided free of charge by
> Linode, arranged through the good offices of VP Micah Dowty.

On Nov. 15, 2006, I posted:

> Project Priorities
> The Linode project is still on, at least as far as housing "www" site
> HTML (in wiki form) in addition to authoritative nameservice.  We will
> then assess whether remaining RAM really does suffice to also do mail
> and mailing lists.
> Long-term:  Move "www" Web contents in MoinMoin wiki rendition to
> "Linode virthost".  Determine whether it is practical to run other
> services there.  Set up real-time MoinMoin real-time mirroring to at
> least one physical box, as hot spare.  Move other services/contents to
> wherever they best fit.

On April 24, 2007, I posted:

> J. Paul Reed (ex-Pres.) got his VP Micah Dowty to negotiate for free
> virthosting, and got the owner of Linode to give us a free Linode
> virthost:  80 MB RAM, 3072 MB disk space.  My understanding is that the
> Linode folks expect us to credit them as the (hosting) sponsor of our
> Web site, to acknowledge their gift.
> Once Paul Reiber's fix is implemented, all the remains for MoinMoin
> deployment is importing Heather's MoinMoin stuff.  I believe she said
> she put a copy of it on the current/legacy SVLUG host[2], in her home
> directory.
> The question frequently arises as to whether we should maybe either
> scrap the Linode virthost, or use it for nameservice only.  We could do
> that.  Ultimately, that decision is up to the Pres. and VP.
> We're using the Linode host because Micah made that arrangement with
> Linode, and because Paul Reed decided to move our Web presence there.
> If we keep just the DNS there, Linode _might_ cancel its gift on grounds
> that we aren't crediting them, and aren't using it as agreed.  Or they
> might not.  If our virthost gets cancelled, we'll have to move master
> DNS.

On April 25, 2007, I wrote 

[about the Linode host:]

> OK, MoinMoin next.  We aren't seeking to perpetuate Amy's 1998-ish
> design, but rather to migrate to a wiki.  So, it's good to know that 
> Lighty will do PHP (I knew it would), but not actually useful for
> MoinMoin.
>  Basically, the plan was to get plain ol' MoinMoin up and running
> _first_ with whatever is the minimum feasible customisations, and none
> of the CGI or Java stuff.[...]

On April 26, 2007 I wrote:

[about the Linode host, and the MoinMoin prototype:]

> There's now a good dozen or more pages there that haven't gotten the
> subsequent site updates on the legacy site, and thus the same applies to
> the snapshot Heather exported from Moin -- which is what we'll import on
> Linode.  So, that part will require some work following the import.
> Plus, exhaustion set in before I was able to recode (in Moin markup)
> some of the more daunting pages.  The Previous Meetings page is the most
> significant of those.

On Sept. 18, 2007, I wrote:

> To make a really long story short, despite then-VP Micah Dowty's opinion
> that all of SVLUG's Internet services can fit within the original Linode
> limits (3072 MB disk, 80 MB RAM), upon reflection that struck me and
> other sysadmins as utterly impossible.  But it _did_ seem quite feasible
> if you kept mail services (SMTP, Mailman + related Web host) elsewhere
> (DNS names "lists.svlug.org" and "svlug.org").  Linode/gruyere would
> still serve everything else, that being primary DNS nameservice + main
> HTML stuff (DNS names "www.svlug.org" and "ns1.svlug.org").
> Migration stage 3 could logically be to arrange at least one failover
> location (site) to house replicas of the main Web content.  "brie" would
> certainly be the first obvious place for that.  Again, in the event of
> Linode/gruyere becoming unavailable, just repoint the DNS.

On Sept. 17, 2007, I wrote:

> "gruyere" = linode virthost, IP, 8192 MB disk (originally
>  3072 MB, and will need repartitioning to use the extra).  Was originally 
>  limited to 80MB RAM, but Lisa Corsetti talked to them and got it upped
>  to 256MB.  Has DNS name "ns1.svlug.org" (serving as primary DNS 
>  nameserver).  Slated to get "www.svlug.org" migrated to it, housing 
>  the MoinMoin wiki-format replacement Web site Heather and I worked 
>  so long and hard on.[1]  (Migration stage 1.)
> "brie" = SVLUG's "new" [sic] VA Linux Systems model 2230 with outboard
>  SCSI RAID array.  512 MB RAM.  _Was_ at Via.net (IP, 
>  but I hear that Paul recently had it at Heather's house after some
>  meltdown(?).  Slated to house a hot-backup copy of the Web site, 
>  that can be brought online quickly via DNS repointing, if needed.
>  Slated to get DNS names "lists.svlug.org" and "svlug.org" pointed to 
>  it, _after_ the separate Web-site migration described above.  
>  (Migration stage 2.)
> Having completed migration stage 2, we'll finally be able to reformat
> and repurpose the now-unfixably funky (as to software) and brittle (as
> to hardware) legacy host.
> I might have missed some change of plan.  (This is Paul and Mark's baby,
> ultimately.)  Please advise if I missed something.

"Please advise if I missed something."  
(Oh well.)

There have also been other postings where I've reiterated the plan as
it's been established, and asked that we volunteers be informed if the
plan's been changed.  I heard no reply, and so assumed we were

However, I couldn't help notice that the VA Linux Systems 22030 box 
("brie") has been unpingable for _months_, so I asked Paul at Saturday's 
installfest what's up, and if the plan's been changed despite my repeatedly 
asking to be advised if the plan's changed, and despite hearing nothing
in response.

Anyhow, the plan _has_ changed.  And we were not "advised".

Paul now says:  The VA Linux box has apparently been sitting at
Heather's house (Why not in rackspace at via.net? No clue.), having
something done to it involving virtual machines -- and Paul no longer
wants to host SVLUG's Web site at Linode -- though he hadn't bothered to
tell us about the change of plan.  

I'm unclear on what Paul is doing.  I'm unclear on what Heather's doing.
I'm unclear on how we're going to retain the Linode host (which houses
our master DNS), if we're not going to run our Web site on it.

Maybe Paul will now fill the volunteers list in.

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