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pkg-gate / doc / image.txt

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1.  Summary

2.  Discussion

2.1.  Image types

    Each collection of installed package instances is some kind of
    image.  We envision three kinds:

    - entire images
        An entire image contains (and can contain) all appropriate
        packages from a repository.  It has a machine type and release.

    - partial images
        A partial image contains (and can contain) all appropriate
        packages from a repository.  An partial image is tied to an
        entire image and has an identified list of non-writeable
        directory paths.  It inherits its machine type and release.

    - user images
        A user image consists entirely of relocatable packages.  It is
        tied to an entire image for dependency satisfaction of
        non-relocatable packages.  It inherits its machine type and

2.2.  Image configuration

2.2.1.  Configuration inheritance

    Some aspects of configuration can be shared between all images.  For
    instance, a user image may specify publishers beyond those encoded
    into the system defaults.  So, a user image must have authoritative
    configuration, but be able to draw on the parent image's state for
    default settings.

    Operations on partial images and non-live entire images may need to
    access image configuration data when smf(5) for that image is
    unavailable.  So images of these kinds must have cached
    configuration state.

    Roughly, these aspects are sufficient to constrain our configuration
    behaviour for user and entire images:

    [user image]
      look up local configuration
      if undefined, request properties from svc://application/pkg
      if unavailable, examine parent's configuration cache
      if undefined or unavailable, use hard-coded default

    [entire image]
      request properties from svc://application/pkg
      if unavailable, examine configuration cache
      if undefined or unavailable, use hard-coded default

    Partial images could have differing behaviour depending on whether
    the operation is invoked from within the partial image's "packaging
    context" (as it would be for an operation issued from within the
    zone), or outside it (operations on the entire image and its
    associated partial images).

    For the first case, the configuration strategy is the same as that
    for an entire image.  For the second case, we could do

    [partial image, external context]
      examine partial image configuration cache
      if unavailable, request properties from svc://application/pkg
      if undefined or unavailable, examine entire image configuration
      if undefined, use hard-coded default

    For certain properties (or even certain packages), it may be
    inappropriate to let the partial image configurations drift from
    that of the entire image.

2.2.2.  Configuration components

    List of publishers.  For each publisher, we have a prefix, an
    origin URL, a list of mirror URLs, and annotations.

    publisher_[escaped_name]/  Property group of type "com.sun.pkg,publisher"
      /prefix                  pkg: publisher
      /origin                  http:, https:, or ftp: URL
      /mirrors                 list of URLs
      /disabled                boolean indicating whether publisher should be used

    Image properties.  The image has a collection of simple properties,
    like machine type and policies that control the behavior of the pkg(5)
    software within that image.  Policies are properties with a boolean value.

      /pursue-latest            (not currently used)
      /require-optional         (not currently used)
      /display-copyrights       (not currently used)
                                should downloaded compressed files be removed
                                after a successful install
      /preferred-publisher      preferred publisher for unknown package lookups
      /title                    title of image for use in GUIs and other UIs
      /description              longer description of the content of the image

    Entire images have a property group for each tied partial image.

    partial_[escaped_name]/     Property group of type "com.sun.pkg,partial"
      /path                     Filesystem path
      /vdomainname              Defined if this image is a virtual
                                domain controlled on this system.
      /vdomaintype              "xen", "zone", ...

    (XXX Should we instead assume that each of Zones and Xen will
    acquire service FMRIs per zone/domain?)

2.3  Image-filesystem interactions

    The intent is to utilize snapshot-capable filesystems to provide a
    rollback mechanism that includes both the pkg(1M)-driven
    modifications as well as subsequent modifications from configuration
    methods, etc.  In most cases, we are considering a filesystem with
    capabilities similar to ZFS.

    XXX Is fssnap_ufs(1M) sufficient to build something meaningful for

    With appropriate policies set, the image plan, prior to execution
    must snapshot the involved filesystems.

    There seem to be two options:

    1.  The image can build its list of filesystems and types (plus
	other attributes, like mutability.

    2.  A list of filesystems is given to each package plan, the package
	plan then evaluates its proposed actions against that list, and
	offers a method to return the affected subset of the list.

	In this case, we must also determine whether or not we are
	restricted to clones (because one or more packages in the image
	plan require kernel-restart) or are potentially live.

    XXX Either of these approaches is applicable in the image/substrate
    model, where the substrate owns the low-level properties specific to
    a particular "place to write data".

    In the case that one or more filesystems in the image is or are not
    capable of snapshots, we have two choices:

    - take no snapshot, as image-revert not possible in any safe or
      complete sense

    - take a set of snapshots that lead to a revert point that requires
      manual forcing

    We must warn about images of this kind, unless policy settings allow
    us otherwise.  Since we want to allow and understand "zfs
    split"-style operations [1], we also need to determine if a snapshot
    set taken before a split can sensibly be restored after the split

3.  References

[1] (The zfs split RFE.)
Please Confirm