Docker, Microservices

#DCOSWeek In Review

Well, today is the end of the DCOSWeek. What happened.

We started on Monday with a blog about innovation in the layers that mattered. This was followed up by the publishing of a case study by Derrick about how HolidayCheck used Mesos for their Microservice architecture. In between those two publications, we had our DCOS evening. The evening can be played back here. The evening consisted of:

  • Me talking about how companies can best win with disruptive technologies.
  • Frank and Phil sharing their experiences with building the Elastic framework for Mesos. They also explained how to get such a framework certified for the DCOS. (When a framework is certified and deployed to the DCOS, it is called a service.)
  • Finally, Michael spoke about the DCOS itself. His talk included showing the DCOS in action and fielding a variety of questions.

The event was a big success. The participants - as well as drinking 200 beers in 90 minutes - learnt about the DCOS from many angles: from the framework builder's perspective, from the user's perspective, from the manager's perspective. Everyone learnt how, as Matt would put it, Mesosphere 'made Mesos consumable for mere mortals'.

Speaking of Matt, Thursday saw the release of our interview with him, which you can catch here. In the interview Matt speaks about how accessible the DCOS is and just how powerful it is.

Friday, today, saw another blog from Daniel, this time about the 'Rise of Mesos' and how it eventually evolved to form the core of the DCOS.

Now, as if this wasn't enough... today we launched Mini Mesos. Container Solutions, in collaboration with Cisco Cloud Infrastructure and Mesosphere, have been working on a number of frameworks for Mesos, including one for Elastic, which we hope will go onto become full blown DCOS services. Now, testing frameworks is hard, so we came up with 'Mini Mesos'. Mini Mesos runs Mesos, and any frameworks, in a Docker container. We developed a DSL for testing, which means we can do things like this:

public class MesosClusterTest {
    public static MesosCluster cluster = new MesosCluster(MesosClusterConfig.builder()
            .slaveResources(new String[]{"ports(*):[9200-9200,9300-9300]","ports(*):[9201-9201,9301-9301]","ports(*):[9202-9202,9302-9302]"})
            .privateRegistryPort(15000) // Currently you have to choose an unused port by yourself (e.g. unique per Jenkins-Job)
    public void mesosClusterCanBeStarted() throws Exception {
        JSONObject stateInfo = cluster.getStateInfoJSON();
        Assert.assertEquals(3, stateInfo.getInt("activated_slaves"));

This means we can unit test our frameworks in milliseconds. This is pretty neat because it allows us to test our distributed systems as if they were not and for all you die harder XPers, it let's us do TDD against the whole cluster.


In conclusion, then, how do we think DCOSWeek went? We were able to show, on Tuesday night, about 60 people the power of the DCOS. This was a particularly successful event, which was also streamed to a larger audience. At the same event, Frank showcased the work we've been doing with Ken Owens and the team from Cisco Cloud Infrastructure. In doing so, he was able to teach people how to go about building a framework. We believe this is important. The more frameworks there are for Mesos, and the more services there are for the DCOS, the more people will go ahead and use them. This process will speed up if we can, on the one hand, demystify frameworks and services and, on the other, make them easier to build by creating tools like Mini-Mesos.


It's hard not to be happy with how this week went. We had great messaging and storytelling from Derrick, Matt and Daniel. We also had excellent technical demonstrations from Frank, Phil and Michael. Taken together, all these messages helped both technical people and decision makers learn about the DCOS. Finally, because of Ken and the work he is organising and coordinating at Cisco, we had the release of Mini Mesos, which will almost certainly go into the toolkit of all budding framework/service builders.

The question is, what next? The four companies - HolidayCheck, Container Solutions, Cisco and Mesosphere - will convene again in September for the Software Circus. At this conference we'll do an even deeper dive into the technologies. I am sure we'll also announce our latest tools, too.

Until then, thanks to Matt, Flo, Michael and Derrick, all from Mesosphere; thanks to Ken and Dimitri at Cisco Cloud; thanks to Frank, Phil, Daniel, Thijs and Pini from Container Solutions; and finally, thanks to Mark and Richard from Implicit-Explicit. At the nexus of all these companies, some pretty cool stuff happens! See you all at Software Circus.

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