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Why you should care about RISC-V

Why you should care about RISC-V

If you haven’t heard about the RISC-V (pronounced “risk five”) processor, it’s an open-source (open-hardware, open-design) processor core created by the University of Berkeley. It exists in 32-bit, 64-bit, and 128-bit variants, although only 32- and 64-bit designs exist in practice. The news is full of stories about major hardware manufacturers (Western Digital, NVidia) looking at or choosing RISC-V cores for their product.

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Reducing the startup overhead of SystemTap monitoring scripts with syscall_any tapset

Reducing the startup overhead of SystemTap monitoring scripts with syscall_any tapset

A number of the SystemTap script examples in the newly released SystemTap 4.0 available in Fedora 28 and 29 have reduced the amount of time required to convert the scripts into running instrumentation by using the syscall_any tapset.

This article discusses the particular changes made in the scripts and how you might also use this new tapset to make the instrumentation that monitors system calls smaller and more efficient. (This article is a follow-on to my previous article: Analyzing and reducing SystemTap’s startup cost for scripts.)

The key observation that triggered the creation of the syscall_any tapset was a number of scripts that did not use the syscall arguments. The scripts often used syscall.* and syscall.*.return, but they were only concerned with the particular syscall name and the return value. This type of information for all the system calls is available from the sys_entry and sys_exit kernel tracepoints. Thus, rather than creating hundreds of kprobes for each of the individual functions implementing the various system calls, there are just a couple of tracepoints being used in their place.

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Analyzing and reducing SystemTap’s startup cost for scripts

Analyzing and reducing SystemTap’s startup cost for scripts

SystemTap is a powerful tool for investigating system issues, but for some SystemTap instrumentation scripts, the startup times are too long. This article describes how to analyze and reduce SystemTap’s startup costs for scripts.

We can use SystemTap to investigate this problem and provide some hard data on the time required for each of the passes that SystemTap uses to convert a SystemTap script into instrumentation. SystemTap has a set of probe points marking the start and end of passes from 0 to 5:

  • pass0: Parsing command-line arguments
  • pass1: Parsing scripts
  • pass2: Elaboration
  • pass3: Translation to C
  • pass4: Compilation of C code into kernel module
  • pass5: Running the instrumentation

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Introduction to Linux interfaces for virtual networking

Introduction to Linux interfaces for virtual networking

Linux has rich virtual networking capabilities that are used as basis for hosting VMs and containers, as well as cloud environments. In this post, I will give a brief introduction to all commonly used virtual network interface types. There is no code analysis, only a brief introduction to the interfaces and their usage on Linux. Anyone with a network background might be interested in this blog post. A list of interfaces can be obtained using the command ip link help.

This post covers the following frequently used interfaces and some interfaces that can be easily confused with one another:

After reading this article, you will know what these interfaces are, what’s the difference between them, when to use them, and how to create them.

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EclipseCon Europe: Che sessions by Red Hatters

EclipseCon Europe: Che sessions by Red Hatters

EclipseCon Europe is almost here, and many Red Hatters are working furiously to make the show as valuable as possible for attendees. (We’re partly doing it for ourselves as well, of course, because it’s a great opportunity to get the entire Che/Theia community together.)  If you aren’t familiar with Eclipse Che, it’s is a next-generation cloud IDE and developer workspace server for teams and organizations. Theia is an extensible open-source framework to develop multi-language IDEs for the cloud and desktop using state-of-the-art web technologies.

The conference will be held next week on October 22–25 in Ludwigsburg, Germany. Here’s a rundown of what will be offered.

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Announcing Red Hat Developer Studio 12.9.0.GA and JBoss Tools 4.9.0.Final for Eclipse 2018-09

Announcing Red Hat Developer Studio 12.9.0.GA and JBoss Tools 4.9.0.Final for Eclipse 2018-09

Attention desktop IDE users: Red Hat Developer Studio 12.9 and the community edition, JBoss Tools 4.9.0 for Eclipse 2018-09, are now available. You can download the Developer Studio bundled installer, which installs Eclipse 4.9 with all of the JBoss Tools already configured. Or, if you have an existing Eclipse 4.9 (2018-09) installation, you can download the JBoss Tools package.

This article highlights some of the new features in both JBoss Tools and Eclipse Photon, covering WildFly, Spring Boot, Camel, Maven, and many Java-related improvements—including full Java 11 support.

Developer Studio/JBoss Tools provides a desktop IDE with a broad set of tooling covering multiple programming models and frameworks. If you are doing container/cloud development, there is integrated functionality for working with Red Hat OpenShift, Kubernetes, Red Hat Container Development Kit, and Red Hat OpenShift Application Runtimes. For integration projects, there is tooling covering Camel and Red Hat Fuse that can be used in both local and cloud deployments.

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Dynamic IP address management in Open Virtual Network (OVN): Part Two

Dynamic IP address management in Open Virtual Network (OVN): Part Two

In part one of this series, we explored the dynamic IP address management (IPAM) capabilities of Open Virtual Network. We covered the subnet, ipv6_prefix, and exclude_ips options on logical switches. We then saw how these options get applied to logical switch ports whose addresses have been set to the special “dynamic” value.  OVN, a subproject of Open vSwitch, is used for virtual networking in a number of Red Hat products like Red Hat OpenStack Platform, Red Hat Virtualization, and Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform in a future release.

In this part, we’re going to explore some of the oversights and downsides in the feature, how those have been corrected, and what’s in store for OVN in future versions.

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The future of Java and OpenJDK updates without Oracle support

The future of Java and OpenJDK updates without Oracle support

Oracle recently announced that it would no longer supply free (as in beer) binary downloads for JDK releases after a six-month period, and neither would Oracle engineers write patches for OpenJDK bugs after that period. This has caused a great deal of concern among some Java users.

From my point of view, this is little more than business as usual. Several years ago, the OpenJDK 6 updates (jdk6u) project was relinquished by Oracle and I assumed leadership, and then the same happened with OpenJDK 7. Subsequently, Andrew Brygin of Azul took over the leadership of OpenJDK 6. The OpenJDK Vulnerability Group, with members from many organizations, collaborates on critical security issues. With the help of the wider OpenJDK community and my team at Red Hat, we have continued to provide updates for critical bugs and security vulnerabilities at regular intervals. I can see no reason why this process should not work in the same way for OpenJDK 8 and the next long-term support release, OpenJDK 11.

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Dynamic IP Address Management in Open Virtual Network (OVN): Part One

Dynamic IP Address Management in Open Virtual Network (OVN): Part One

Some background

For those unfamiliar, Open Virtual Network (OVN) is a subproject of OpenVswitch (OVS), a performant programmable multi-platform virtual switch. OVN provides the ability to express an overlay network as a series of virtual routers and switches. OVN also provides native methods for setting up Access Control Lists (ACLs), and it functions as an OpenFlow switch, providing services such as DHCP. The components of OVN program OVS on each of the hypervisors in the network. Many of Red Hat’s products, such as Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Virtualization, are now using OVN. Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform will be using OVN soon.

Looking around the internet, it’s pretty easy to find high-quality tutorials on the basics of OVN. However, when it comes to more-advanced topics, it sometimes feels like the amount of information is lacking. In this tutorial, we’ll examine dynamic addressing in OVN. You will learn about IP address management (IPAM) options in OVN and how to apply them.

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Eclipse MicroProfile and Red Hat Update: Thorntail and SmallRye

Eclipse MicroProfile and Red Hat Update: Thorntail and SmallRye

During the last three months, there have been some changes regarding Eclipse MicroProfile at Red Hat. If you haven’t been following the details, this post recaps what’s changed and introduces Thorntail and SmallRye.

Bye-bye WildFly Swarm! Hello Thorntail!

You may have missed this important news. Our MicroProfile implementation changed its name two months ago.

After a lot of feedback from the community, we decided to rename “WildFly Swarm” to Thorntail. While the former name was nice, we found that the “Swarm” term was a bit overloaded in the IT industry and could be confusing. It’s the same for the “WildFly” part; sharing this name with our Java EE application server was a source of confusion for some users, making them think it was a subproject of WildFly.

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