TYPO3.org and TYPO3 Server Team Sprint in Karlsruhe

Categories: Community Created by Michael Stucki
The server team and a couple of friends from the typo3.org team came together for a code sprint at the punkt.de office in Karlsruhe over the weekend of November 6-8. This report aims at highlighting the major achievements during the weekend.

Server Team

Here's what the server team has been working on:

Gerrit Upgrade

Our Gerrit installation at https://review.typo3.org/ has been updated to the latest version 2.11.4. The major new feature is inline editing, more details can be found in the official release notes for 2.10 and 2.11.

Mailserver Migration

The actual mailserver migration took place in October, however we used the time here to cleanup some things, archive old data and finally shutdown the server. Furthermore, we added a "softfail" SPF record to typo3.org. Please contact us if you send mails with typo3.org sender from external servers, as we have to add them to our SPF record before switching from "softfail" to "fail".

SSL Enhancements

We reissued our *.typo3.org certificate under a SHA256 CA root. All corresponding configuration was updated to the current best practices where possible. We are aware that there are still some older servers which do not support all required settings and have started work on a replacement for these systems.

TYPO3 Association Member Listing

The Association member listing at http://typo3.org/association/membership/members/ has been improved under the hood. The membership information which is imported from an external source can now be accessed by other services within the typo3.org infrastructure. This solves a major problem - T3A members may have noticed that the t3a-members mailing list was not used for a while because the data could not be refreshed. We're happy to say that this is now fixed.

Discussion platform

Since many months we are looking for an open source alternative to disqus.com. We would really like to replace the existing commenting form on typo3.org with a modern reusable software. Ideally, such a tool could also be used for any content on the TYPO3 documentation site at http://docs.typo3.org/. Unfortunately, after a lot of research and testing, we have realized that there is no such software available.
Please take a look at our evaluation document which lists the requirements and the solutions that we checked: https://notes.typo3.org/p/Commenting_Software_for_T3O
If you have any further suggestions, please let us know! (And if you're about to start a new software project, we suggest that you take a closer look at this topic...)

Domain transfers

A lot of typo3.* domains are currently managed at different registrars. We have started to transfer all these domains into a single place which will simplify the management for us in the future...

Brainstorming on the best techniques for the future

We used the 2nd day of our sprint to have a long brainstorming session about the future of our infrastructure project:
  • What is the best tool / combination of tools to manage our infrastructure code (i.e. Ansible vs. Chef)
  • How can we decrease the level of complexity in our infrastructure - a.k.a. KISS - keep it simple stupid
  • How can we organize multiple versions of the same Chef cookbook in the long term?
  • What can we do to receive more contributions from the community?
  • How should our servers be hosted:
    • physical vs. virtual machines
    • Docker vs. traditional multi-process systems
    • distributed vs. single rack
Some results of the discussion
  • we will go on with Chef but try to make things simpler
    • provide skeleton cookbooks
    • add documentation and best practices
    • set up a deployment pipeline with automated testing
  • we will make our cookbook publicly available on Github:
    https://github.com/TYPO3-cookbooks
Further results of this session were captured and will now turn into real projects. As soon as there is more to tell about these plans, we will let you know...

TYPO3.org team

This is what the T3O team has achieved during the sprint (see also
https://notes.typo3.org/p/TYPO3_T3O_2016).

Vagrant and Jenkins issues

On of our main issues with typo3.org was the broken Vagrant box to develop typo3.org on a local machine. The provisioning was touched last time at T3DD15, but it was still not working. The team could finally fix these problems during the sprint in Karlsruhe. At the same time, our remote participant Tomas Norre Mikkelsen fixed the Jenkins build which is creating this Vagrant machine with up-to-date data and assets. He also fixed the whole development pipeline with tests and deployments, added a Jenkins plugin to easily see changes in config and whom to ask if question in that regard come up. Tomas added a Delivery Pipelline plugin to visualize the build dependencies. This is not meant as standalone documentation but being a part of it. The documentation for deployments was also updated.

typo3.org

The team changed the general workflow for contributing to typo3.org. They also started to integrate a Slack signup form into the website of typo3.org.

Future plannings

The T3O team is planning many changes for the TYPO3.org website in 2016, and the workflow for this has been discussed during the sprint. One result of this is that two new repositories have been created for the websites which will be launched and relaunched in the coming year. In the future, a local development box will be provisioned on the server and will be offered for "download & play" without provisioning or configuration on the local machine.

Thanks

We want to thank the whole team at punkt.de for being our host for this meeting. Special thanks go to Juergen Egeling who came to visit us on Saturday and invited us for a having lunch together.

Participants

The following people have attended the sprint - many thanks to all of them!
  • Andreas Beutel
  • Andri Steiner
  • Bastian Bringenberg (remote participant)
  • Benni Mack
  • Christian Herberger
  • Fabien Udriot (remote participant)
  • Josef Glatz
  • Martin Bless (remote participant)
  • Michael Lihs
  • Michael Stucki
  • Peter Niederlag
  • Philipp Gampe
  • Stefan Busemann
  • Steffen Gebert
  • Thomas Löffler
  • Tomas Norre (remote participant)

Closing words

There should be more events like this. Here's a quote by Christian Herberger: "For me, it was my very first participation at a community sprint. It was a cool event with nice people, and with quite hard challenges. But we came to conclusions and did our thing to bring TYPO3 and the community forward. It was really fun and motivating, and I am looking forward to joining more events like this one."