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Re: Bug#756521: ITP: kadeploy -- Scalable, efficient and reliable cluster provisioning solution

On 01/08/14 at 13:55 +0200, Marc Haber wrote:
> On Fri, 1 Aug 2014 11:37:28 +0200, Lucas Nussbaum <lucas@debian.org>
> wrote:
> >On 31/07/14 at 08:17 +0200, Marc Haber wrote:
> >> On Wed, 30 Jul 2014 18:02:40 +0200, Lucas Nussbaum <lucas@debian.org>
> >> wrote:
> >> > Kadeploy is a scalable, efficient and reliable deployment system (cluster
> >> > provisioning solution) for cluster and grid computing. It provides a set of
> >> > tools for cloning, configuring (post installation) and managing cluster nodes.
> >> > It can deploy a 300-nodes cluster in a few minutes, and also supports
> >> > authorizing users to initiate their own nodes deployments (including with
> >> > concurrent deployments).
> >> 
> >> What does it do better/differently than existing tools like FAM?
> >
> >Which FAM are you talking about?
> I apologize. My brain meant to type FAI, my fingers thought
> differently.

Ah, sorry. I could have guessed that :-)

Tools such as FAI & Kickstart on one hand, and Kadeploy/CloneZilla on
the other hand, are quite different solutions to achieve a similar

FAI and Kickstart rely on an installation process (even if not
debian-installer's): packages are extracted, installed and configured.
Kadeploy and CloneZilla rely on cloning: you install and configure one
system first, then create an image from it, and copy this image to the
other systems.

Cloning has several advantages over FAI/Kickstart:
- Cloning can provide you with a byte-identical copy of the first system
  (if you copy the raw disk, or use tools such as e2image)
- Cloning is faster, since you don't need to execute
  installation/configuration scripts
- Cloning scales better (hundreds/thousands of systems), as you can
  easily use efficient schemes to broadcast all the data to nodes
- Cloning is distribution-agnostic, and quite OS-agnostic

One important advantage of FAI/KickStart over cloning-based approaches
is that one can easily do per-system configuration (e.g. select packages
based on the system's role, based on classes). However, I wonder if the
inclusion of such a feature is not justified by the fact that it
predates the massive use of configuration management systems such as
Puppet. If FAI was to be redesigned today, I wonder if it wouldn't leave
all the configuration part to a config management system.


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