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Bug#657678: ITP: simplelxc -- Minimalist package to create LXC guests and then manage them simply.

On Sat, Jan 28, 2012 at 07:15, Daniel Baumann
<daniel.baumann@progress-technologies.net> wrote:
> On 01/27/2012 11:15 PM, Bekir Dogan wrote:
>> Main objective is to make testing of any program easy on personal computers
>> (for now it works only for Debian systems) without losing time for these:
>> * does not require to manually configure networking on host system,
>> * does not require to manually create template,
>> * does not require to manually determining IP addresses,
>> * does not require to manually configuring any other parameters needed.
>> Just install simplelxc, create a guest and go.
> i would rather much prefere if those little bits would be incorporated
> into lxc-debconf in lxc itself. there's only minimal effort needed, as
> lxc-debconf already determines all the defaults anyway and just needs
> the one or other update to determine them better.

Thanks for you sugestion.

Simplelxc have conventions to ensure simplicity:

* Simplelxc creates a container even if no parameter is given and asks
  nothing, this is to help users who are not interested in what the
  system is.

* Simplelxc hardly asks something. If needed parameters not given just
  do the defaults else only show help and stop.

* No advanced configuration or cli parameters to avoid confusion of

* Simplelxc supports only one kind of networking (veth), preconfigures
  both host system and containers (not very good yet) and assumes the
  user will not change the configuration.

* Network architecture is nat based (because some wireless/ethernet
  drivers does not support to be added to a bridge) and ip addresses
  of new containers mainly managed automatically

* Simplelxc access to and controls continer's hostname, ipaddress and
  continer ssh authorized key when needed. (info, list, create and

Actually in my opinion many of these are shouldn't be done by lxc.
But a wrapper like simplelxc is much more suitible for this. My
intention is not to replace lxc creation and mangement utils in lxc
package but when I've started to develop simplelxc idea, there is no
lxc wrapper (/usr/bin/lxc) around and writing 'lxc-start -d -n test'
irritates me.

After your mail I thought that, maybe I could use included lxc-debconf
script with a preseed file (which I've never tested before) for
container creation backend. This way I also can help debian lxc
package by recommending various solutions as an active user or may be
I can send patches. But at first I was not sure about lxc-debconf
development speed, it does not coming from upstream and seems like
changing very fast and I didn't want to update my package that often.

On the other side, here are my thoughts about lxc-debconf, and these
are my main motivation to crate a new package.

Many people around me tested lxc with lxc-debian script shipped with
debian lxc package but you need to give full path, so users must call
something like "sudo /usr/lib/lxc/templates/lxc-debian -p
/var/lib/lxc/test". This looks like an advanced operation that
generally fails for me. (I'm sorry for not reporting bugs, I will try
to be more participant as of now)

Then it asks confusing questions like preseed file, distribution,
archives, mirrors, archive areas for many users who are not familiar
with debian. But many users just want to get a running container don't
want to know which dist ribution they are using or not interested in
using mirrors. I've implented simplelxc with a lot of conventions to
prevent this, but in lxc package's case it doesn't looks right to have
this kind of conventions because it is the main infrastructure package
to support many scenarios.

The way lxc-debconf script chosen is not very easy and understandable
for many users who are not familiar with debian and debconf. And also
generally the first act of users who encounter to the blue screen
asking for a preseed file is pressing Ctrl-c which is not working with

These are only my thoughts, and I am curious about yours?


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