RPMforge: the desire for more professionalism

Submitted by dag on Mon, 2009/09/28 - 05:03

I am being fed up with the state of our RPMforge infrastructure lately. The RPMrepo website is down, and the RPMforge wiki is hosted there. This is a theme recurring every XX months. I myself neglected the infrastructure (as long as the repositories work!), simply because I lack the time to maintain it.

But since it is becoming a liability and we have more people involved, I want to fix this once and for all, I am looking for a few donated managed servers that we can set up so a single glitch does not rip out some of our infrastructure.

I am not just looking for hardware, I am looking for hardware that is managed, internet connected and the associated bandwidth. This hardware would be used as:

  • KVM hosts with VMs for RPMforge and ELRepo
    • an automated buildsystem (lack of HW now caused me to manually trigger builds)
    • website, wiki, planet, mailinglists, subversion, repositories
    • test-systems for automated package-testing/building/infrastructure
  • tier1/tier2 (managed) mirrors for RPMforge and ELRepo
    • a tiered setup, depending on the hardware/bandwidth

Next to this, I will be looking for some people I can trust for maintaining this infrastructure as well. And this requires us to organize ourselves better.

The lack of proper infrastructure/hardware always limited what we could do as a team. And this resulted in poor automation where in theory we could be doing a superb job ! We all know where our soft spots are: unresolved deps, single point of failure (me), compatibility with other repos, few good mirrors, hard to contribute, limited communication (me)...

Before the end of the year I would like to have a much more professional RPMforge project, seeing ELRepo in action gives me hope that we can pull this off with RPMforge as well :-) And I will commit time the coming months to spend on this.

I am sorry to have to ask for this, but if your company makes use of RPMforge, it will directly benefit from a more professional RPMforge project. Better tools will allow us to engage more people more efficiently.

Thanks in advance for your consideration !

I send the above message to the RPMforge mailinglists, so if you want to discuss this within the community you can reply on the list as well.

One possiblity you might consider...

You may want to look in to "ServerPronto" (first link on google) for low-cost managed server hardware. The customer service is non-existent, and the reliability occasionally poor. However, for modern hardware connected to a wide-open 100Mbit uplink, you simply can't beat $30 per month per server. I wouldn't even consider them as your primary provider, but as a backup or a mirror, it's a really good deal. It costs less than you spend on coffee.

I've had a standby server there for about half a year, and except for some difficulty in the first week, I haven't had any trouble at all. The server has always been there when I needed it.

And $30/mo is well within the range where you can get people to donate or sponsor a mirror.

Machines & bandwidth

I'm happy to donate machine(s) and bandwidth, but unfortunately can't donate any manpower to manage it or anything like that. We've got our hands full as it is.

If the server(s) and bandwidth are interesting, let me know.


Hi Dag,

Days have passed and not much feedback to your (great btw!) plan. :-)

There are people out there who rely & could do a LOT for this project. I could help with providing some decent mirrors in various european countries (ro/de/uk) and even some web hosting, tho I have a feeling the mirrors won't be a problem.
As an end-user I'm looking forward to seeing a geo-enabled mirror service. :-)

Good luck!

Is RPMForge gone?

I have been unable to download RPMs from dag.wieers.com for a while now. The links redirect to http://rpmforge.sw.be/ , and it seems that site has been down for some time now.

I am not clear on the relationship between RPMforge, the Dag RPM Repository and rpmrepo.net. However, I appreciate all of your hard work over the years and I wish I could help more.

I also see that Fedora now also hosts https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/EPEL

-= Stefan