FOSDEM 2017

FOSDEM is an annual event for software developers, focused on open source software, happening in Bruxelles during the first weekend of February.

The event this year was the 5th FOSDEM conference I attended, starting from 2010. During the years I have seen it evolve: as the presentation focus moved along with the industry, some topics faded out and got replaced by newer things. Many of these newcomers did not actually gain traction over the years and also faded out at some point.

One of the main transitions I have noticed was the one from abstract or too general things (e.g. discussions on the Linux Kernel or performance tricks in C/C++) towards end products and getting (soon to be) mature technologies applied in order to get clear outcomes.

FOSDEM 2017 Presentation
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XFS corruption – repairing

Note: The “magical” tool for XFS is (obviously) xfs_repair. Having it running can sometimes be the tough issue.

Introduction

How could a filesystem corruption happen? There are a couple of likely causes to it:

  • Kernel bugs: they are infrequent but they also did happen many times in the past and will still happen in the future. Not many things to be done about them, other than applying patches / keeping the kernel up to date;

  • Memory issues, e.g. memory errors propagated to the file system in control structures: they are usually mitigated with ECC memory but they can never be ruled out;

  • Underlying storage issues: quite unlikely but nevertheless possible;

  • Using the reset button on running servers: journaling file systems are almost always able to recover from such incident;

  • RAID controller issues: this could be the leading cause and not be easy to mitigate, even if firmware upgrade is sometimes possible.

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Angry Birds – Following on your passion

This is supposed to be a text about following your passion: some people follow on saving the world, others prefer apparently simpler things like popping green pigs. Don’t get me wrong: it’s not about the purpose per se but the way to get there. It’s always about work, a lot of work.

Looking at the screen below, one could easily conclude that – at some point – I did become very, very efficient in the pig popping business. At the end of the day, some of these golden eggs become available when winning 3 stars in maybe 60 different levels.

Golden Eggs

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