AB Meeting/September 2014 Minutes

From Xen


  • Lars Kurth (Chair)
  • Mike Woster (Linux Foundation)
  • Sarah Conway (Linux Foundation)
  • Chris Schlaeger (Amazon)
  • James Bulpin, Mark Hinkle (Citrix)
  • Don D Dugger (Intel)
  • Konrad R Wilk (Oracle)
  • Philippe Robin (ARM)
  • Sherry Hurwitz (AMD)

1 short of quorum This means we can proceed with the meeting, but no resolution/motions should be put forward


Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Don & Lars: Send detailed machine list to the list

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Lars: Work with test framework WG and board to finalise HW list. Aim to stay within the approved budget

Status: Sherry sent out a list with proposals. Waiting for Ian Jackson to be back from vacation to work on the details with AllNet

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Lars: Send COLO contract to Mike Woster for review ready to be signed, but want to review other documents first

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Lars: Send HW and support contracts to Mike Woster for review and finalise as per action above

Status: waiting for Mike to review the support contract. Propose to sign both EarthLink COLO proposal and AllNet maintenance contract if the latter is acceptable

Mike is going to sign both contracts today as agreed in the August AB meeting

Mike: On the HW list, which we are deferring, the Linux Foundation can only get Dell boxes at heavily discounted prices. Mike recommends that the project should purchase hardware through normal channels

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action All: member companies to come up with a list of their partners + contact details by the next board meeting.

Lars: restated the goal that this would be a list of companies and partners of existing board members that the Linux Foundation can approach.

Mike stated that leveraging partners of existing members is also how other projects successfully grow. Also the timing for reaching out to prospective members is right.

Konrad: will follow up on this for the next meeting

Lars: Larry also had some ideas, but could not make this call due to Linaro Connect

Lars: asked where we are with regards to APM

Mike: We are in the final stages with APM – expects a confirmation in the next two weeks (however the internal sponsor has moved position, and thus closing is at risk)

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Brian: Discuss issues raised [related to Xen Project – Linux Foundation Interface] with Mike Woster

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Lars: Sit together with Mike Woster and walk through issues that have been observed

Lars asked whether there has been any progress.

Mike: Have an overview of all 9 issues that Lars raised and a google document as draft. The background is that the increase of the number of projects in the LF has created a need of standardized processes aand to make sure it is clear to projects how these work. All this will be documented.

Examples of what needs to be documented are:

  • How to invoice and get contracts
  • How to request services from the Services team.
  • Sponsoring travel efficiently

Mike also apologized about the issue with the invoicing and stated that this has been fixed. In addition Mike will be the LF contact for the project and attend all AB meetings

Project Accounts

I need to do detailed accounts for the project, now as we are getting regular spending reports. I have not managed to do this yet, as I don’t fully understand how to map items back to the budget. I will put some time aside to do this when I have less of a travel load.

Mike stated that Brian is now sending out monthly budget reports

Lars: that is correct, but I have not had the bandwidth yet to integrate them into the planning spreadsheets

Press Updates (Sarah)

Nearly done with videos that we shot at LinuxCon

At the end of the week to members will be contacted for reviewing these individually

Sarah will create a mashup after each segment is approved

Analyst meeting is progressing: it will benefit from additional visuals

Sarah is looking for spokes people from the AB and will reach out. Candidates are Mark, Larry, Konrad, or anyone who wants to step up

If we plan this for LinuxCon, who is going to be available: Mark / Lars – yes, Konrad – no

Sarah will send out the monthly report, but August was quieter than in the past due to the summer lull

4.5 press release planning

Sarah is looking for press quotes. We should start identifying the salient features.

Lars was thinking of Intel features, but Konrad was stating these are not progressing as fast as hoped, but AMD features have

Konrad: a quick glance over the list shows that there have been hot spots of features on ARM, Security (Zentific / BiutDefender), PVH Dom0 (Oracle)

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Konrad: will go through the feature list and communicate, but there have been hot spots. Sarah to follow up with a conference call

Funding another (or two) OPW students for the winter round

We funded two OPW students in summer and were running GSoC and had initially approved three students for 2014. So we still have one unused, which does not need further AB approval.

Lars asked the question whether we do have enough mentoring capacity to make this worthwhile, given that the program clashes with the closing of the 4.5 release.

Konrad: Oracle has none

James: could probably accommodate one

Sherry: AMD could mentor one student for a suitableARMv8 project

Lars: we can work on a project, but HW availability needs to be considered

Lars: asked whether Intel could mentor an applicant?

Don: said he would need to investigate

The agreement then is that we will join OPW for the winter round with the previously approved and unused OPW slot

Extra tier of members for small companies (Mike Woster)

Following up from the previous months discussion, Mike stated

  • Most collaborative projects want to facilitate the support of smaller vendors that don’t have the financial resources to join otherwise
  • The challenge is that we need to define a membership class without giving undue influence to the members paying less
  • The basic proposal is a STARTUP class capped at 100,150,200 or 250 employees
  • There would be 1 vote for every 10 startup members with at most 3 votes
  • We would need a formal voting process
  • Non-voting observing members could be allowed. This would be an open question, but most projects do not allow for observing members

Bromium would need STARTUP class to continue (one and only) and Ian initially would most likely automatically elected

The draft resolution would be

RESOLUTION: That a new Xen Project STARTUP membership class be created for companies with less than 250 consolidated employees with an annual participation fee of $5,000 USD. STARTUP applicants will be accepted for membership only upon approval of the Advisory Board. The STARTUP membership class benefits include electing 1 Advisory Board seat for every 10 STARTUP class members, limited to at most 3 representatives, and any other benefits the Advisory Board may determine, with approval from The Linux Foundation. The Advisory Board asks The Linux Foundation to update the membership application to reflect the new STARTUP membership class.

Lars: as we do not have a quorum, I suggest we have an email vote.

Lars asked Philippe whether he could follow up any concerns about the size of the board, before the vote

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Philippe: follow up on any concerns ARM may have and report back if there is an issue

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Lars: organize email vote on resolution

User Summit / Developer Summits (Lars)

The split of User Summit / Developer Summits is not working. So far we only managed to sign up 30 users for user summit and no sponsors apart from Citrix. In contrast, we had 90 people at Developer Summit (the year before we had 95), but we did have $28K income from sponsorship. As such, the cost for the project for the event was lower than expected (somewhere between $7-$8K – I don’t have the final figures). In 2011 and 2012, when we did not have separate events, we had around 130 attendees. I have no real visibility on numbers prior to 2011 as this is the year I started and records were not kept.

I am proposing that going forward we

  • Either do not do user summits at all
  • Extend developer summits from a 2 day to a 3 day event and target developers and users – in fact we already have a 2.5 day event (including board meetings)
    • We could follow a structure where we start or end with developer only content (or Working Group, Community Organised mini summits, Board, Developer meetings)
    • And otherwise have overlapping user and developer tracks
    • We would need to reposition is as Xen Project Summit
    • This should make the events more cost effective and sponsorship easier to achieve and more attractive
  • We also have a timing issue : by alternating between US and EU we end up with a 9 months – 15 months gap which makes every other year bigger than the previous year. At least when it comes to content submissions.
  • It would also be interesting to find out how KVM Forum is doing – I heard rumours that KVM Forum has similar issues to our events – but am not 100% sure. It is also not clear to me whether KVM Forum is now always in the EU (it used to alternate, but it has been in the EU in two subsequent years)
  • Other things to consider: when we were co-located with Linux Plumbers in 2012, we attracted more developers, but at the same time this caused a lot of stress for people attending both. We are now out of sync with Linux Plumbers
  • We could try and re-set and hold the event in Seattle next year or stick with what the community asked for and colocate with the EU (which is either Budapest or Istanbul – not sure this has been decided). As the project is underwriting risk and cost, I think we can get away with either without causing an uproar in the community

Don: suggested that a proposal is made on the mailing list and that Lars reports back

Chris: thinks that combining events is a good thing.

Matt Wilson raised the point on email that he would prefer if Linux Plumbers was not at the same time as the Xen Project summit

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Lars: make proposal on the list – report back to next meeting

Pictogram voting comment 15px.png Action Mike: connect Lars to KVM Forum / Elena Linux Plumbers