Growing Ubuntu's cloud community

Ahmed Kamal ahmed.kamal at
Thu Sep 9 16:59:47 BST 2010

  On 09/08/2010 09:53 PM, Carlos Ribeiro wrote:
> On Wed, Sep 8, 2010 at 16:01, Scott Kitterman <ubuntu at 
> <mailto:ubuntu at>> wrote:
>     On Wednesday, September 08, 2010 09:44:44 am Ahmed Kamal wrote:
>     >   Hi folks,
>     >
>     > For the 11.04 cycle, I will be focusing on growing the community
>     around
>     > Ubuntu's cloud offerings (and by extension Ubuntu server).
>     Please reply
>     > back with what you consider to be the most important areas that need
>     > work to achieve such a target
>     > In particular I think we should try to answer questions like
>     >   * Where do we see new contributers adding value to Ubuntu's cloud
>     > offerings ? What can they do
>     >   * How to make it easier for new contributers to jump-in and
>     have an
>     > easy start
>     >
>     > Awaiting your suggestions and past experiences.
>     > Thanks
>     Personally I've found all this emphasis on cloud instead of
>     traditional server
>     applications (many of which are used in the cloud) to be quite
>     demotivating.
>     I spend considerably less time on server related development than
>     I used to.
> Interesting.
> As for myself, I'm really interested in cloud deployment - I'm 
> thinking about running a commercial service based on Ubuntu in the 
> next few months, probably around the year's end. But I still found the 
> literature regarding cloud in Ubuntu to be insufficient for my needs. 
> It's not clear how do the pieces interact; for example, there's little 
> information regarding design issues; networking tips for cloud 
> scenarios; building a storage with Ubuntu (I found a great howto 
> yesterday on the wiki, but that's all that I could find - a single 
> article) and other stuff like that. But I understand what Scott is saying.
> In the end it seems to me that focusing on cloud issues should not be 
> done at the cost of focusing on the development of the server. Cloud 
> is much bigger and has a much wider scope. Maybe there should be 
> separate initiatives, one for cloud (focused on system-wide issues) 
> and another one for the server.
> -- 
> Carlos Ribeiro
> Consultoria em Projetos
> twitter:
> blog:
> mail: carribeiro at <mailto:carribeiro at>

Thanks folks for all the great feedback. I won't try to comment on 
Scott's important observations, mainly because I didn't live through 
this shift of focus he describes. However, it seems so far everyone I've 
talked to is convinced building a contributing community around Ubuntu 
Server has proven hard. I'm very interested however to hear why do you 
think this is hard, why are new members failing to engage, is the server 
product just not as sexy as desktops? Are we talking to the wrong 
people? What steps can be taken to improve the situation.

As mentioned in this thread, perhaps more system level and architectural 
best practices on how to build and operate your storage and networking 
in a cloud context might help newcomers. Along with with managing 
"ubuntu-server" and writing scalable apps for the cloud. I am convinced 
making available such technical information would help improve the 
situation, however that's most likely not the only thing missing. So 
more thoughts and insight are welcome.

Keep em coming
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