I started testing OpenStack at Canonical a while ago. The project is so interesting that I wanted to spend some of my spare time contributing to it. However, it was not until last ODS in Vancouver that I really got engaged in upstream work and started to believe that I could make an impact on the overall quality of OpenStack. I had never attended the OpenStack Developer Summit before, I enjoyed my days in Vancouver and managed to do a lot of networking with other like minded people.
I kept asking roughly the same kind of questions in different test related meetings: what are we doing about coverage, how are we planning to improve the stability of the APIs, where can we contribute new test cases that are generic (as opposed to project specific). I wasn't the only one asking these questions, there was a critical mass of engineers from different companies attending the same meetings and interested in the same topics. This is how we all met and decided to do something about it. We had lunch together and started talking about our challenges when it comes to testing OpenStack, what things we can or cannot do with the existing tools/test suites and what projects are the better suited for us to contribute to so we can improve the quality of OpenStack. That is how the OpenStack tailgaters team was born.
I learnt about the Big Tent (video and article) and what it means for the existing test suites and quality of OpenStack itself. Basically there are a few projects that are mature and part of every cloud out there or adhering to the OpenStack governance guidelines and contributing that are considered the "core" of OpenStack, and there is the rest of the projects. There is no "integrated release" anymore. I am not sure what this will mean in the long run, but to me it feels like a step in the right direction to enhance the quality of OpenStack.
If you want to get in touch with the tailgaters (the guys that are trying to add value by making OpenStack more testable and adding new end to end test cases), the options are:
- IRC, freenode, channel #openstack-tailgate.
- Weekly IRC meetings at 5pm UTC on Thursdays, in our freenode channel.
- There is a mailing list that you can request to be added to.