[arch-dev-public] New build server in the US?

Eli Schwartz eschwartz at archlinux.org
Thu Apr 19 21:26:23 UTC 2018

On 04/19/2018 03:19 PM, Florian Pritz via arch-dev-public wrote:
> We already have a second build server (sgp.pkgbuild.com) which is hardly
> used. Souyz is really used quite a bit, but in general it has quite some
> resources left to spare. I guess it depends on what you want and when.
> Do you want to get builds done quickly (like on a local machine) or are
> you happy with waiting until the machine is free? Maybe someone wants to
> work on a system that allows to pause builds if people don't care when
> they finish so that those that want them done quickly get priority? That
> way we could possibly use our available resources better. Maybe it's
> even as simple as queuing builds, but I don't know how long the builds
> that people run on soyuz take. If a single build takes an hour, queuing
> won't really work.
> Some feedback on how people use soyuz would probably help a lot here.
> What are your build times, how quickly do you want the result, do you
> need to see live output, does the latency to the machine matter
> (interactive usage?), ...?

I usually only use soyuz for annoyingly long builds like my custom repo
with glibc-git, thunderbird-gtk2, etc. which can take as long as it
needs to (assuming I remember to run it in tmux so it doesn't die when I
lose internet).

> Is anyone interested in taking on this project and maybe also setting
> up/maintaining some build service if that turns out to be a good idea?

We could probably do something dead simple with a wrapper script that
checks pgrep makechrootpkg || sleep 1m in a loop, before running a
build. Anyone with a build they just want to run as soon as no one else
is doing one, could use that.

Just run it in tmux in case of latency/disconnection.

> Regarding the OSUOSL idea: I'm slightly against getting machines from
> yet another organisation. While it doesn't matter much during normal
> operation, fixing problems is usually more difficult because things like
> getting a live system booted, getting serial console access or even just
> getting support are often not easily possible when servers are hosted at
> companies that don't see hosting as a core goal. We've had this happen
> before and it's not great. I don't know what the situation is for this
> offer, but let's not rush into creating even more work for us.
>> I honestly have no idea about Arch's financial situation, or how soyuz is
>> paid for in practice.
> Soyuz is a rented server at hetzner.de (like all our other important
> servers) and payed for with donation funds.
> Looking at a recent treasury report from SPI[1] we have around $47k
> right now and looking back a few months, it seems to be growing.
> [1] http://lists.spi-inc.org/pipermail/spi-general/2018-April/003845.html

I guess we could afford to rent another server if we really needed one!

But I guess it is probably more used by people with large packages, in
which case faster builds was the reason they decided to use soyuz in the
first place.

We could just upgrade soyuz. I think that might double what we're
currently paying, but OTOH so would buying a second server.

Eli Schwartz
Bug Wrangler and Trusted User

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