I thought I would take a break from feverishly preparing for the project Sputnik product launch, to give an update on the Profile tool.
As you may remember, besides the needed drivers and basic utilities/tools there are two “extra-bits” that are part of the overall project Sputnik solution: the Profile tool and the Cloud launcher. I will use a future post to give an update on the Cloud Launcher but today I want to focus on the Profile tool.
With regards to the Profile tool we are doing a bit of reset on this effort and going forward will be doing the development out in the open and asking the community to dive in.
What is the Profile tool
In short, the profile tool provides access to a library of community created profiles on github, such as Ruby and Android, to quickly set up your development environments and tool chains.
As alpha cosmonaut Charles Lowell (aka cowboyd), who originally teed up the idea, put it
What I’d like to see is not only a gold-standard configuration, but also a meta-system to manage your developer configuration… The devops revolution is about configuration as code. How cool would it be if my laptop configuration were code that I could store in a source repo somewhere?
Here’s how it would basically work, when a developer creates a profile based on a development framework e.g rails, this profile template is published to central catalog. On another machine, the same developer—or another developer if the authoring developer makes his template shareable—grabs the template and runs it. The profile tool then reads the template, brings in any necessary dependencies (packages, package archives, SCM repositories, keys, dotfiles, etc) and places them in a sandbox within the user’s home directory.
Making it so, with a little help for our friends
Our original idea was to build out the profile tool in two phases: Phase I – “System Configuration” and Phase II – “User Configuration.” We started down the path of building out Phase I but have realized two things 1) we cant look at the two phases separately and 2) we need to be developing this out in the open and incorporating direct feedback.
Given this we are opening up development at the Sputnik page on github and are looking for people like you to steer the course we eventually take. At this stage nothing is set in stone and the profile tool is experimental beta work with several different prototypes. If this is something that appeals to you please dive in and help shape the future of project Sputnik!