[Users] Minutes

Frank Loeffler knarf at cct.lsu.edu
Mon Mar 9 10:20:19 CDT 2015


Present were today:


The main discussion revolved around using 'docker' as a way to deploy
the ET, either at tutorials, or possibly HPC systems (although that
would require more work and cooperation).

Docker has its roots in cloud-computing (and is supported by several big
players there), and was mentioned in a workshop Erik went to last week.
It is a "virtual environment" instead of a "virtual machine". The
difference is that unlike in a virtual machine, where an entire host is
emulated, only a new 'software environment' is created, while that still
runs under the same "host"-OS, using the same kernel. In the end, the
user runs stuff (almost) like any other executable.

This tight coupling between docker and the host-kernel is the reason for
one possible disadvantage: it runs natively only in linux, and Erik
mentions that is is possible to painlessly have it run also on Macs,
using a tiny VM to run the linux kernel. Windows is, as far as everyone
knew, not directly supported. The way to run docker executables there
would be to run them within a regular virtual machine.
Also, docker requires a daemon to run that needs root - which might
require convincing arguments at HPC centers.

In any case, Erik currently tries to have the ET release run in one of
these containers, and will report about his success later on.


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