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Re: Requalification of Alpha for etch

On Sat, Oct 08, 2005 at 11:04:40PM -0700, Steve Langasek wrote:
> Here are the things that are taken into consideration when the DSA folks
> evaluate a new buildd offer:
> - local admin is a DD (or other known quantity) who knows the architecture
>   *and* is available when maintenance is needed
> - the type of machine -- proc speed, bus speed, disk capacity, memory, and
>   whether the hardware is of a class that can actually handle sustained
>   uptimes as expected

A bit more detail about that: one CPU of a DS20E with lots of RAM is
enough to keep up with building. I guess another machine of about this
strength would be perfect.

> - where it's hosted -- is the machine in a hosting facility with HVAC and
>   UPS, or is it under someone's desk?  Is it hosted by agreement with the
>   owner/management of the facility, or is it being done under the table
>   (which again usually means "under someone's desk" ;)?

Interestingly, nobody ever asked me where I put the machines :-) They
are in a climate controlled server room right now but escher served
most of it's time in our printer room. I'd say it should be some
balance between reachability and server environment.

> - what kind of connection does the machine have -- how much bandwidth is
>   available, is it a reliable connection or is it consumer-grade ADSL?  Are
>   there transfer caps that we and/or our sponsors have to worry about, or is
>   the buildd allowed to use whatever bandwidth it can?  Are we free and clear
>   of firewall problems that will be an issue for getting packages and mail in
>   and out of the buildd?  Note that a preexisting local mirrors will somewhat
>   mitigate the bandwidth costs of running a buildd, but that a buildd must
>   also be able to pull build dependencies from incoming.debian.org.

The bandwith sure is an issue: the average traffic per day on goedel
is 423M.

> Now, I can't give you any kind of authoritative answer on whether a
> particular machine would be accepted as a buildd without talking to Ryan and
> James first, but the more of this information we have up front and the
> better-sounding the answers are, the easier it would be to make a decision
> to accept a machine as a new buildd.

If bandwith, DD as local admin and computing strength are ok I guess
there will be no problem. Well, at least I got no questionaire when I
offered escher and later got goedel as a donation.
> I do have a collection of emailed alpha buildd offers that came in this
> spring after the Vancouver blow-up, FWIW; I'll start to go through these and
> see which sound like they might be good choices.  (Up to this point, I've
> been working on trying to get a sparc buildd first, because the existing
> vore.debian.org buildd is *not* fast enough to keep up with unstable
> reliably, which means sparc needs two whole new buildds to qualify...)
> BTW, interesting tidbit -- according to Ryan Murray, there have actually not
> been *any* machine offers mailed to debian-admin this year... <shrug>

Be warned: sending such mails to debian-admin may be a bit time
consuming: one week time for answers is about normal (and I'd bet that
it's Joey who cares); in May 2004, when the debian-mips list discussed
that they needed another buildd, I offered a machine and never got any
response at all. Sending a mail directly to Ryan (like: please turn on
the existing buildd on escher) needs one week minimum (if you don't
end up in his spam filter).

When the machine is installed and root access for the admins is set
you can expect three weeks until they take over the machine. No joke.

Yes, I'll still happily care for my two Alphas but there are clear
indications that the admin team is overworked. No question that it's
not their fault and that they're doing good work. But nevertheless a
bit frustrating. Sorry, had to ventilate a bit...


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