Maintaining a Service

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Responsiblities

Service Maintainers are what keeps COSI running smoothly, and from the Roles and Responsibilities page:

  • For each service, produce and maintain a document describing how the services are configured/started/shutdown, what version/type of server software is being run, requirements for running each service
  • First point of contact for problems with that service
  • Keep server software well patched
  • Produce some usage statistics on each service (bytes downloaded from mirror, connections to www, etc.) where possible and present to CSLAB-ADMIN board once per semester

Knowledge

Service Maintainers should have working knowledge of their server, and keep their Wiki page updated. Service Maintainers should also be prepared to instruct new members on how to keep the Service updated and running smoothly, to simplify passing the Service off.

Background Knowledge

This question gets raised fairly often, and the answer is that you do not need to know anything about the service to become a maintainer . This is a learning environment, thus no previous experience is required! If you are interested in a Service, contact the current maintainer, they should be more than happy to instruct you on how the Service functions.

Service Maintainers Should Know

  • Where in the labs the Service is hosted. (e.g. Physical machine, VM Host, etc.)
  • What Operating System it is running, and how to keep it updated
  • Solution to common problems
  • How to configure any software in use
  • How the machine is configure on the network

This list is not a requirement, and nor is it a complete list, though Service Maintainers are expected to at least have a rough understand how it works.

Service Hand-off

All Service Maintainers at some point should prepare (if appropriate), to hand off their Service to another member. Service handing-off can be made easier by doing the following:

  • Keep the wiki page up-to-date with all relevant documentation. (this is important, especially if for some reason there is no new maintainer)
  • Finding a successor long before departure.
  • Work with the new person, giving them access to the service, and showing them the ropes.
  • Completely hand off the server prior to departure, and act as a mentor to the new maintainer.

Becoming a Maintainer

If you are interested in becoming a maintainer, contact a current maintainer who is looking to pass off his/her Service, or contact a Director, who will happily find something for you. Alternatively, you are also welcome to provide a suggestion for a new Service, provided you able to build, and maintain it. Contact a Director, or VM Host Maintainer for more information on creating a new Service.