Version 9 (modified by Christopher Small, 13 years ago) (diff)


Cluster B Meeting Agenda for GEC5

The GPO has given us two timeslots to meet as a cluster at the next GEC. Below are draft agendas for those meetings. Please feel free to update this page as needed, or send feedback and/or suggestions to Chris Tracy

Note: Though these are meetings for Cluster B, anyone is welcome to attend.

Cluster Meeting: Monday, July 20, 1:00 - 5:00

Introductions and Status Reports

Demo Rehearsal?

Clusters C and D have decided to use this time as a sort of "dress rehearsal" for the demo session on Monday night. They are giving each group a chance to present our demos, one at a time, to each other -- because it's rather difficult to go around and see others' demos while you are busy presenting your own demo.

According to the list of active tickets, several projects within Cluster B are giving demonstrations on Monday night. These include:


Is there any desire by these groups (or other Cluster B participants) to show their demo on Monday during the Cluster meeting?

If I have missed anybody who plans to give a demo, please forgive me -- feel free to edit this page and add your group.

Cluster Meeting: Tuesday, July 21, 1:00 - 3:00

Control Framework Plans and Priorities

Goals and Tasks for Spiral 1 wrap-up

Defining goals for Spiral 2

Backbone Discussion

Leveraging the backbone provided by ProtoGENI (in partnership with Internet2 and HP) and NLR FrameNet to provide physical connectivity between groups within Cluster B, or possibly to other clusters. For groups which cannot easily access this backbone, connections will be tunneled over existing R&E IP network infrastructure.

The following notes were taken by Christopher Small, GPO System Engineer

Monday 1:00-5:00

To Do List

  • Larry Peterson

Plan for this meeting is to bring each other up to speed on what we're doing.

Introductions around the room

"We are extremely heavily focused on federation."

Three ways to federate.

SFA only -- WSDL interface specification, you implement it. This is what Enterprise GENI has done. Generated this based on the running code, but plan to go forward using the WSDL spec as the base and we'll use it. SFA-lite is a variant, without security (creation, destruction, and job control on slices). "... called a slice manager is our terminology; it's what the GPO calls a clearinghouse." Only Enterprise GENI is using this.

SFA + geniwrapper -- includes security. Write your own back end to geniwrapper. If you've got a preexisting testbed, this is probably the fastest way to go; use the security machinery and interface spec, and have it call into your system.

SFA + geniwrapper + MyPLC -- includes PlanetLab O&M machinery

RSpecs are the place where we've always put things that we don't know how to deal with. Deined on a per-aggregate basis. Two examples: PlanetLab (nodes only), Max and VINI (nodes + topology). Two representations, XML and XSGR (easier to read).

We're dropping Eclipse types going forward, using Sugar instead going forward.

"Aggregate of aggregates" is "slice manager".

SFI tool runs on the desktop, talks to aggregates directly. Larry sees this as a feature, not a bug; each end user should be able to decide which aggregates he/she want to talk to.

The SFI tool is handed a bunch of RSpecs, and it transmits them to the aggregate manager(s) / slice manager(s) that do the work. The SFI tool is not very smart (Larry's words).

Naming convention: plc.organization.slice, plc.organization.user, plc.aggregate, plc.aggregate.user (plc.princeton.codeen,, plc.max, plc.max.christracy).

Did demo of PlanetLab with MAX nodes.

  • James Sterbenz

GpENI demo, showed that Lancaster University UK, ETH-Zurich are getting set up. Not using SFI to create topology. They are running their own PLC at KSU. Separare PLC, separate VINI, not federated.

  • Jeannie Albrecht

XML description of the experiment. Command line program reads the xml, sets up and runs the experiment.

  • Chris Tracy

Describes the recursive aggregate manager model they have running, including a mention of OSCARS (although not by name).


Tuesday 1:00-3:00

  • Larry Peterson

We need to work on attracting real users

  • 4300+ registered PlanetLab users
  • GetResources() + CreateSlice()

Let's advertise our new cluster B aggregates to those users

  • James Sterbenz

Are we just adding users to have users? Are you suggesting we advertise our resources as standard PlanetLab nodes?

  • Larry Peterson

Control Framework todo

  • Complete transition to "new" RSpec model. WSDL file is there.
  • Rework with standard SSL
  • Round out SFI as a full-fledged per-user slice manager

Federation todo

  • Settle on peering plan and naming conventions
  • Settle on SFA-lite
  • Define realistic policies

How are we going to put Enterprise GENI in? Suggest that we plug in the Enterprise GENI control framework underneath SFI as a slice manager.

  • Guido Appenzeller

Eventually we'd like to have something that abstracts some of the details away, a web interface, to make this all easier to deal with.

  • Larry Peterson

Chris Tracy put up a recursive aggregate manager, this may be what you want.

Maybe we can teach GUSH about recursive aggregates, so it can recurse and provide more detail when desired.

As long as this remains homogeneous, the slice manager is pretty easy to manage, e.g. PLC, PLE, PLJ. When it's heterogeneous it gets harder.

If the user wants to use VINI, the user needs to know how to deal with VINI. Can't abstract that away.

Went to nested RSpecs and it got messy, for now pulling back to flat (or set of flat)

  • Guido Appenzeller

Don't we need some kind of pluggable user interface to manage heterogeneous aggregates?

  • Larry Peterson

That's what Chris Tracy demonstrated, this is what we need. The SFI tool is a very primitive version of this.

There is no single point that authoratatively knows where all the slices are.

We've just broken the clearinghouse model.

  • Peter O'Neil

From a usability standpoint this will be chaos. Need a single portal.

  • Larry Peterson

There's not just one portal to the internet.

There is a philosophical issue here. Is GENI this single NSF-funded thing, or is it a loose federation of entities?

  • Guido Appenzeller

Seems to fit into GENI goals to have one centralized clearinghouse.

  • Larry Peterson

What do you mean by GENI?

  • Guido Appenzeller

The internet has DNS, it tells me where I can look for things

  • Larry Peterson

we can have a root registry and if we want to kill a slice we can iterate through it and ask each to kill its part of the slice.

I don't want the GMOC to kill slices on PlanetLab. My definition of what's bad behavior isn't necessarily the same as yours. I'd hate to have the British in charge of when slices are killed because I don't agree with their policy.

I think we have a three month plan here, but I think we're only partway done.

We need to define some realistic policies. Goal ought to be modest; "these are the slices I'm willing to host." E.g. "Codeen I will support, XYZ I won't support." Some sort of peering agreement.

Policies will only be as sophisticated as the mechanisms.

  • Guido Appenzeller

We only talk with known entities. We talk to an SM / clearinghouse, not a user. A researcher hand-editing XML sounds ambitious.

  • Larry Peterson

Writing an SM that spoke to a hererogeneous collection of aggregates bogged us down, so we have one that talks to homogeneous aggregates.

Alternative to concatenating VLANs is to talk IP. We'll say to the GPO that we'll do both, push concatenated VLANs as far as we can push it and we always have IP as an alternative.

If you're creating non-IP protocols, you can run them through tunnels or over layer 2 links.

I can create a tunnel that acts within epsilon of a true layer 2 link.

Building internets out of concatenated VLANs is a path that was not chosen; we went with the Internet instead. Why are we doing this now? Can somebody explain this to me?

  • James Sterbenz

Because the GPO told us to.

  • James Kempf (?)

You might want dedicated bandwidth

  • Larry Peterson

IP encapsulation is only 28 bytes, it's running over layer 2.

  • Guido Appenzeller

We want to give people hop-by-hop layer 2 so they can put a router in between. We want it to look like there is a dedicated link between them, not have an IP header.

  • Larry Peterson

My argument is cost effectiveness. This will be a large investment of time and effort with minimal value.

  • Jon Turner

Both are legitimate; you can get to more places with IP, layer 2 VLANs will let you get closer to the bare network.

  • Guido Appenzeller

Every slice must support IP fallback

  • Larry Peterson

We haven't solved the problem because we still need to demux between different slices both tunneling between a pair of hosts. GRE tags? UDP ports?

User level tools and user level services

My view is that we're not going to make a lot of progress on per-aggregate RSpec viewing / editing tools. I'm setting the bar fairly low on user-level tools.

  • Jeannie Albrecht

Once you have a stable version of SFI, I can try to make things prettier. But it doesn't make sense until SFI stabilizes.

  • Larry Peterson

Look at the VINI rspec.

If we're going to attract real users, we've got to give them something usable.

Goal for SFI: readable/editable RSpecs e.g. using XSGR

  • Chris Tracy

We have some tools that might be usable

  • Larry Peterson

Show of hands -- who has time for a GUI?

  • Guido Appenzeller

What we see as the hard part of the GUI is how to help the user if the request fails, what changes they can make to get their request to be accepted.

  • Larry Peterson

Will try for pretty text plus policy feedback.