A customer asked me to help them setup a tiny lab with many open-source tools. They are planning to move from corporate services to open-source alternatives such as NextCloud, Gitea, etc.
Unfortunately, they run only Linux, Ubuntu to be more specific, and as a UNIX gentlemen, I didn’t want to put everything into a single host, so I decided to use containers, in this case, LXC, a.k.a Linux Containers.
How hard could it be?
Oh god, layers of abstraction on within the system that have no idea about each other.
Like, who would assume that LXC would automatically download and install
dnsmasq and assign IP addresses without my knowledge, or that it would push rules into the firewall?
The more I use Linux Container, the more I understand why FreeBSD Jails / illumos Zones didn’t win.
People don’t want automation or control, they want “please do this for me as I don’t wanna do it myself” tools.
I’d expect at least a message post-installation that says “We have installed and configured
dnsmasq, reconfigured some
systemd things, modified the following file (which is not mentioned in any man page, so you can use Google instead of man/apropos) and will use IP address ranges that you didn’t approve”
Is this why Docker won? Is it because people DIDN’T want to learn how to do software packaging? I hope not. I wanna believe its because developers wanted to “think operationally”
Oh, and from a FreeBSD perspective, what’s even more weird is that
- there are no proper manual pages.
- the documentation is weird. It talks about a utility named
lxcbut I’m using 20 utilities named
lxc-*, and I still cannot find the proper documentation for that
- it’s very much segmented. For example, on FreeBSD, we talk about which is better, jail.conf, BastilleBSD, pot, AppJail or Jailer. Here the same utility (
lxc) that has multiple config files with no proper versioning, pretty complex manual pages and the not even examples or HowTos.
I’m looking at this and thinking ”oh well, if we build a proper tool, I bet we can win some of the market” until you realize, of course, that when people hear FreeBSD, they will be thinking ”it’s not Linux? maybe it’s not worth it, otherwise I would’ve heard about it”
I’m just angry here. Please ignore my rants.