Chameleon Changelog for March 2019

Great news in Chameleon-land!

You’re probably a bit leery about any news today, and rightly so, but I can tell you that these new features are no joke.

Floating IPs are now reservable (in preview!) As the number of public floating IPs available in Chameleon is limited, we need to make sure they are used efficiently, just like our hardware resources. It thus made perfect sense to extend our reservation capabilities to include floating IPs, given our recent good experience with making the coveted ExoGENI VLANs reservable in advance.

You can now reserve one or several floating IPs for your experiment using the lease system. Reserved floating IPs automatically appear in your project when their reservation starts, and disappear when it ends. Rest assured, your workflow will remain unchanged for now. Only a limited range of floating IPs was made reservable: you can still request some directly from the system using the old way. Over time, we will make more floating IPs usable only via reservation, but will likely let projects still use a small number of floating IPs without reserving them, space permitting.

This new feature is available as a preview and is currently only supported by the blazar CLI. We are working on supporting it in our web interface. See our documentation for more details on how to reserve your first floating IP!

An easier way to save/load experimental data is here! When logged into an instance provisioned with a Chameleon-supported image (like our CentOS7 or Ubuntu16.04 images), you will now see a directory called “my_mounting_point” which is a already mounted to the Chameleon Object Store. This means that any data you’ve already uploaded will just be a `cp` away. Also, you can save your experiment results here (tarballs work great for this) so they survive even if your instance is terminated when your lease ends. We also updated the mounting tool, which now is called “cc-cloudfuse”. The new tool allows you to configure your Chameleon credentials using your existing RC files. Click here to learn more about mounting Chameleon object store as a file system.

Explore new tutorials in our Jupyter environment. Hopefully by now you’ve tried out our hosted Jupyter Notebook environment. If not, now’s a great time to start! When you log in to your Notebook server you should notice a new folder magically dropped in there called “notebooks”. This is a special Git repository we maintain of useful examples and tutorials for advanced features on Chameleon. Have a look and play around with some of the Bash-based notebooks that should help familiarize you with the Chameleon CLI and give you some powerful tools.

Project administration improvements. Last month we announced a long-requested feature where the system will now allow you to rename your project to something besides a soulless numeric ID prefixed by “CH-” via a nickname. We spruced this up a bit, allowing you to see your project nickname in the Dashboard, and also worked to ensure we properly notify you if a nickname is already taken.

Some big changes incoming. We are doing a lot of spring cleaning and are preparing to release an upgrade of the foundational layer to Chameleon, OpenStack. This change should bring numerous performance benefits as well as additional features. We will be announcing new features as they are polished, tested, and integrated via these changelog entries, which we know you read and love.

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