2015-03-15

Clocker News and Announcements

It's been a long time since the last update to Clocker, at least in the fast-moving world of Docker. Since then we have had multiple releases of the Docker Engine, now at version 1.5.0, and the announcement of beta releases of the Compose, Swarm and Machine tools, Socketplane.io joined Docker, competing container software has appeared, like Rocket from CoreOS, and there have been several new minimalist, Docker-specific operating systems and distributions annouced. So far, Clocker has caught up to the latest Docker release, and supports some of its new features, and we are working on adding support for Compose and Swarm. As it stands, Machine is not as useful for Clocker, since we leverage the powerful jclouds library and the mechanisms provided by Brooklyn for VM creation and deployment. The most exciting integration is going to be using the Compose language as a blueprint for Clocker, allowing re-use of existing application definitions.

The main feature of 0.8.0 is the pluggable Software-Defined Networking capability. In the previous releases it was possible to enable Weave as a SDN mechanism that provided networking between containers on different hosts. In this release I have made the SDN provider a generic interface and written multiple implementations, porting the original Weave code across to work this way also. The latest SDN provider is the Project Calico for Docker, from Metaswitch, which will be merged into the code later this week. I am very excited about this integration, as it shows that Clocker can be used to orchestrate Docker CLouds in various configurations with whatever choice of features is optimal. This opens the way for further integrations like Flocker from ClusterHQ for storage, using their Powerstrip extension prototyping mechanism.

Clocker 0.8.0 Developer Preview

This release of Clocker is a developer preview or early-access release of 0.8.0 which will be available until the final 0.8.0 is shipped. Since the development for 0.8.0 was dependent on a SNAPSHOT release of jclouds it was carried out on a feature branch, and was less visible. I have now merged that code with master and made customised releases of both jclouds and Brooklyn available, thanks to Cloudsoft, on their Artifactory server. This means it will be possible to clone and build the latest code and test the SDN features I have been building. I would appreciate any comments about usability and any bugs found, and will try and incorporate them into the final release. Over the next week I will work through the outstanding issues and tasks, particularly finalising the Project Calico integration, and generally improve the quality of the released code.

Please check back for further updates before the final 0.8.0 announcement, with release notes and further documentation for new features...

To test the code, use the following commands to download and run a Docker Cloud with weave networking in SoftLayer. You may need to configure your credentials for the Brooklyn location first. If you don't have a SoftLayer account, any cloud supported by Apache jclouds is suitable.

% wget --quiet -O brooklyn-clocker-dist.tgz http://git.io/ppnt
% tar zxf brooklyn-clocker-dist.tgz
% cd brooklyn-clocker
% ./bin/clocker.sh jclouds:softlayer:lon02

Remember to send any bug reports or feedback on this pre-release to clocker@cloudsoft.io or create an issue on GitHub, and I will investigate.

Clocker Talks and Presentations

One of the things that has kept me busy recently is speaking about Clocker, and you can view the slides from a couple of these presentations online. At DockerCon in Amsterdam I gave an overview of Clocker and its Weave integration, then this month in London I spoke during the Docker track at QCon. There I explained more about the ways that Clocker can create a Docker Cloud and optimise its deployment to fit your specific needs. The slides are linked to below, and there is a longer list on the Clocker Wiki. I will link to the video of the QCon talk when it is available.

I will also be speaking at ApacheCon North America about Clocker, as well as my colleagues Andrea Turli and Alex Heneveld, so please come along if you are attending. The dates for your diary are listed below.

Finally, if you are in Edinburgh this week, Peter White from Metaswitch will be speaking at the Edinburgh Docker Meetup on Thursday. The Meetup is sponsored by Cloudsoft and will be at CodeBase in Argyle House on Thursday 19 March from 18h00 onwards. There will be beer and pizza beforehand, followed by Peter's talk on Project Calico and a demonstration of the Clocker integration, and plenty of time for discussion about Docker and DevOps...

https://github.com/brooklyncentral/clocker/

Clocker is available on GitHub under the Apache 2.0 license. You can provide feedback with any comments or problems on the incubator-brooklyn-dev mailing list, or add issues to the GitHub repository. If you have an idea for an improvement or a new feature, just fork the code and issue a pull request! See the Trello board for the current roadmap and task list.