A few weeks ago now, most of the Linaro engineers met at “Linaro Connect”, the new name for our get-together.  Linaro bootstrapped its processes by borrow heavily from Ubuntu, including the “two planning meetings, two hacking meetings” pattern. Over the last year though it’s become clear that this isn’t totally appropriate for Linaro and while we’re sticking to the same number of meetings, 4 a year, each meeting now has the same status and will be a mix of planning and hacking.  Based on a sample size of 1, this seems to be a good idea – last week’s meeting was excellent.  Very intense, which is why I never got around to blogging during the event, but also very productive.

The validation team had a dedicated hacking room, and on Monday we set up a “mini-Lab” that we could run tests on.  This took a surprisingly (and pleasingly) short amount of time, although we weren’t as neat about the cabling as we are in the real lab:

The main awkwardness in this kind of setup where you are connecting to the serial ports via USB rather than a console server is that the device names of the usb serial dongles is not predictable, and so naming boards becomes a challenge.  Dave worked out a set of hacks to mostly make this work, although I know nothing about the details.

Now that a few weeks have passed I can’t really remember what we did next :)  There was a lot of hacking and a lot talking.  These are some things I remember:

  • I spent some time talking to the Android developers about getting the results of the tests to display on the build page. Luckily there were no new surprises and I managed to come up with a plan for getting this to work (have the process that runs the tests and uploads the bundle to the dashboard print out the URL to the result bundle and have the lava scheduler read this and record the link).
  • We all talked to the kernel team about how to test their work on an automated basis.
  • I talked to Michael Hope about the toolchain builds that are currently done in his basement, although we mostly deferred that conversation until after the event itself.
  • There was a lot of talk about making the front page of the validation server show something more useful.
  • I implemented a prototype for replacing QATracker with something that could guide a user through manual tests and upload the results directly to the dashboard.
  • We talked to ARM about possibly using some of the LAVA components we have built for their internal testing,
  • There was talk about the practicalities of using the LAVA lab to measure the effect of power management changes.

I’m sure there was lots of other stuff, but this should give some impression of how much went on!