Service Engineering Highlights 2015

The year 2016 has arrived. I hope you had an excellent time with family for the Christmas and New Year celebrations and are prepared for 2016 with vigour and motivation.

Looking back at the year 2015, we witnessed a plethora of events around the world that will shape a different tomorrow. Detrimental changes in technology, politics, weather that moves or pushes humanity to a new era, sometimes bringing positive changes and some occurrences forcing a step backwards. Continue reading

ICCLab’s strategic cooperation with IAESTE Switzerland

The lab has been fortunate to have a successful strategic relationship with IAESTE Switzerland. Every year we have been getting about 2 exchange student interns through IAESTE from around the world. The students have learnt and grown professionally within our team and we learn a lot from them as well, boasting our rich international representation.

Our cooperation is recognised and rewarded by the IAESTE in their annual review magazine this year, where they feature our lab head’s aka TMB’s interview. Have a look! Continue reading

ACeN Begins!

Recently the ICCLab, ZHAW acquired a KTI project, ACeN – Apache CloudStack for NFV. Cloudstack is one of the front running Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platforms for cloud environment. Leveraging Network-function virtualization (NFV) as the concept of replacing dedicated network hardware with a software providing the same network functions, increases network capabilities such as service availability in the cloud. This project has now commenced and the interaction between partners Citrix, Exoscale and ZHAW. Everyone is highly engaged already and from our  perspective we’re very excited to about this work.

The ACeN project will deliver services and prototypes based on the NFV standard and Apache CloudStack. A novel hybrid load-balancing service (HLBS) will be created and and key NFV demonstrators will be prototyped. It is hybrid as it combines IP address management and load balancing into one service/function. All will follow a common architectural approach, on common technology. This work will leverage and can enable access to a market worth up to $2.4 Billion by 2018.

The majority of outputs from the project will be made open source (under ASL 2.0), including the hybrid load balancing service. Much of the work in ACeN is exploiting the research work carried out in Mobile Cloud Networking and also the Hurtle orchestration framework.

From our lab’s perspective, this project demonstrates concretely our research approach of bringing foundational research and open source impact through an innovation transfer process to Swiss SMEs.

Stay tuned for more updates!

 

A Web Application to Monitor and Understand Energy Consumption in an Openstack Cloud

In one of our projects we need to understand the energy consumption of our servers. Our initial work in this direction involved collecting energy consumption data using Kwapi and storing it in Ceilometer for further study. The data stored in Ceilometer is valuable; however, it is insufficient to really understand energy consumption in detail. Consequently, we are developing a web application which gives a much greater insight into energy consumption in our cloud resources. This is very much a work in progress, so this post just highlights a few points relating to the application as well as a video which shows the current version of the application.

The tool was developed to be totally integrated with Openstack. Users log in with their Openstack credentials (using Keystone authentication) and are  redirected to the overview page where they can see  the total energy consumed by the VMs in their projects for the the previous month as well as some  general information regarding virtual machines; a line chart displays how energy consumed varies over time.

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Profiling the Ceilometer API to Identify Performance Bottlenecks

We are using ceilometer to collect data energy from our servers. As noted previously we were having some performance issues and we needed to investigate further. In this blog post we will cover our approach to performing profiling on ceilometer API to determine where the problems arose.

Of course, the first step was to take a look at the log files (in /var/log/ceilometer-all.log); as there was nothing unusual in there, we decided to perform profiling of the code.

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