# Designing the download section #
In this email, I will explain the the mockup for the download page and
the ideas that went into making the design.
First, a link to the mockup:
Remember, this is a work in progress, and everything is open for
discussion... and also subject to change.
As for this particular mockup, while the text is somewhat accurate, it
mainly exists to convey concepts for this page.
## Background ##
Goal: To make it easy for anyone visiting oVirt.org to download and use
By "use", I mean *both* trying oVirt on existing hardware as well as
installing it to a hard drive.
To accomplish this, we need to:
* make it _extremely_ clear how to download oVirt
* provide a quick getting started guide to walk through a few steps
* inform the user what sort of hardware is expected
### Reasons to focus on an all-in-one "appliance" model ###
Having one favored, easy-to-use download allows us to:
* Eliminate the risks of things going wrong when a user sets up oVirt on
their own system.
* Isolate oVirt from the distribution kernel and subsystem changes in
distributions which may break functionality.
* Provide the latest and greatest features to oVirt users independent of
waiting for distributions to play catch-up.
* Test a known stack of software to ensure that oVirt works as intended.
Possible downsides of focusing on this all-in-one approach:
1) "It doesn't run on _my_ distribution"
Answer: oVirt + a very basic version of Fedora is a virtualization
platform that is just enough to run hosts inside of. Sitting on top of a
distro (even a very stripped-down one) and the fact that it's running on
top of the Linux kernel are both basically implementation details. Any
operating system, including all the different flavors of Linux, can
easily run inside — oVirt plays nicely with whatever anyone wants to run.
Furthermore, it doesn't make sense to run a mail server, web server, or
any other service parallel to oVirt. Those services should be running
inside of hosts running on top of oVirt.
As a result, it doesn't matter what distribution oVirt runs on top of.
2) The all-in-one image isn't development-focused (but that's okay)
Answer: We need a user-focused website, especially for the download
page. It should be as easy as possible to download and set up oVirt.
Right now, we're assuming that people have some sort of system knowledge
of maintaining a Linux server. The download page, for this reason,
should not include how to build from source. (That belongs on the
website, sure, but in whatever we call the "develop" section... not in
It will still obviously be possible to develop for and run oVirt on any
distribution of choice. It shouldn't be the default (for reasons
outlined above), but it should be possible.
## Design of the page ##
At the very top, you see a summary, and a big button which makes it
obvious that oVirt can be downloaded. Clicking the button will
immediately download the ISO. There's a size listed, so people know how
long it will take (roughly), and a hash (either MD5 or SHA1, but not
both) so that users can verify the download was successful.
Next, the page is split into two columns. As "what should I do with this
file?" is so very important, it has a prominent position on the page. At
the end, there's a paragraph about consulting documentation for more
information, as well as some quick links to a few commonly used
documents (in this case, I think it would be neat to see how people are
using oVirt, for the common use cases).
Hardware requirements / suggestions are very important, so they're at
the top too.
Regardless of having an easy-to-install image, many people will want to
install oVirt on their distribution of choice. We do want to make things
as easy as possible, but we should provide a path for advanced users to
install oVirt on Debian, Fedora (existing installation), openSUSE,
Ubuntu, and other distributions. Therefore, I made an "Alternate
installation methods" section on the page.
Provided we get permission for using the logos in this way (and I'm
pretty sure we can), it provides a simple, clear approach for others who
want to download oVirt for their existing machines.
## In closing ##
Thanks for taking the time to read this! I'm looking forward to what you
have to say about the ideas expressed in the mockup.
I will be on vacation next week.
You can expect more designs the week following. (There are a few
Please feel free to send replies to the design emails, including the
design for the new download page (and proposed all-in-one delivery
method). I'll read and respond when I return.
Warning: This email is long, but important.
I've been working on a new website design for oVirt, and gave folks a
preview during yesterday's weekly status IRC meeting.
The website mockup is at:
(This is simply a static PNG exported from Inkscape, wrapped in a very
simple HTML page. Therefore, don't expect it to scale with your browser,
have selectable text, etc.)
The mockup has many different sections and updates, and I will explain
each change, as well as the thought process that went into each, below.
There are two main things to remember about this design:
1) It's a bunch of individual changes that work together.
2) It's a work in progress.
Also, the mockup was designed with our target audience in mind:
administrators (setting up and running the software), enthusiasts (who
may run instances at home), and programmers (tinkering with and
contributing back to the project), all with experience using Linux or
some form of UNIX. It is also important to note that our audience is
specifically _not_ casual desktop users (although they could benefit
from someone setting up and maintaining oVirt for them).
I'm eager to hear feedback on any and all changes, and work with you to
When you do provide feedback, and want to discuss more than one point,
please limit each email to one aspect of the site at a time. If you'd
like to talk about the logo and the site structure, for instance, please
send one email specifically talking about the logo, and then another
discussing the structure. This should make conversations easier for
everyone to follow and make it easier for me to track requested updates.
== Detailed changes ==
= Logo =
The oVirt logo is actually quite similar. I altered the "o" glyph, to
make it more aesthetically pleasing.
Comparison graphic between current and new (in simple greyscale, to make
it easy to see the difference):
= Color =
oVirt.org, right now, uses a green color throughout the site. The oVirt
administration UI also features green in its header. As a result, I've
pulled in that green and used it as the primary accent color for the new
(It also has the advantage that it is not blue, which is overused for
iconography, on the Internet, and for software in general.)
= Style =
Based on the typeface of our logo and our highlight color, our new style
reflects simplicity, openness, vibrancy, and elegance.
We can make this style work for both the WordPress and Wiki parts of the
= Site structure =
A revised site structure is hinted at in the front page mockup. You can
see this reflected in the top navigation. I did some overall
categorization, strongly influenced by Dave Neary's pre-existing work on
You can see a proposed sitemap here:
This is a general grouping of types of content, not necessarily a view
of the top-level page, or of sub-pages. In some cases, these items would
be sub-level pages, in others, they would be part of the navigation page.
The documentation page would highlight the best documentation available,
regardless of format - e.g. wiki, blog posts, etc. - and also have a
prominent link to the wiki. Other sub-pages may also link to the wiki,
if there is pertinent information (such as live docs for developers,
linked to from the develop section).
= Tagline =
This is a short, catchy phrase to indicate what the project is all
about. Since the target of oVirt is running on a server, most likely in
a datacenter, and it's open source, I figured we should make this prominent.
Usually taglines are simple and direct, and often have some sort of play
on words. "Open your virtual datacenter" can be interpreted in a few ways:
1) You can use oVirt to start (open up) a datacenter with virtualization
2) Take your existing datacenter and virtualize it
3) Use oVirt as an open source solution to manage your datacenter
= Supporting lead-in text =
It's important to start with some powerful explanatory text to state the
overall goal of the project. Usually, this ranges from a phrase to
around a sentence or two.
I wanted to express the purpose of the oVirt software in a very
high-level view, as a hook to get people interested to read more.
= Call to action =
"Start using oVirt now »" is a call-to-action button. After the simple
text explaining what oVirt is, it's important to provide an obvious next
After clicking the button, it would take the viewer to another page
where it provides a quick and simple way to start using oVirt.
Naturally, one would have to download oVirt to use it, so it should be
super-easy to do on this page. The page should also start a simple
step-by-step guide on getting oVirt working on one's own system(s).
I'm thinking that this may be, perhaps, simply a link to the "Download &
Use" section. Yes, it's in the navigation, but it does provide a very
important and clear next step, which helps with a natural-feeling
progression for an interested viewer of oVirt.org.
(BTW: If the simple guide is too complex, then we need to work at
further simplifying the process of setting up oVirt. It's important to
try to lower the barrier to entry. Part of this is making sure that
oVirt can run on one machine as well, and possibly booting from live USB
media for first-time evaluation purposes.)
= Front-page sections =
Most of text on the mockup is, in some way, based on content from the
current oVirt.org website — it's just edited a bit.
While most everyone appreciates a clean aesthetic, our primary target
group *also* likes to get to the point and see the information right up
front. The mockup of the front page that I'm presenting is based on this
In addition to being an overview of the project and the software it
produces, it also makes it really easy to explore from the content areas
to relevant other parts of the website. By bringing the top-level
navigation into the context of the overviews, we make it easier for
someone to jump to other sections, instead of having to scroll back up
to rely on the navigation.
The order of the front-page sections is important too. A goal with this
design was to:
1) Introduce people to oVirt, with a simple explanation
2) Let people know right upfront that it's an active project (release
3) Detail some of the most important features
4) Make it clear that it's a community project
5) Provide timely news & a way to easily get more info
6) Publish information on upcoming oVirt-related events (currently, in the
mockup, there's filler text for the time being)
Items #5 & #6 should both have a way to subscribe so that someone could
access this information without visiting oVirt.org. Twitter solves the
news component for us; we have to make sure the calendar is able to be
subscribed to as well.
Thanks for reading all of this! I'm looking forward to all
conversations, especially if it's constructive (regardless of a
positive, negative, or neutral slant).
A single instance of the following meeting has been cancelled:
Subject: oVirt Weekly Meeting
Organizer: "Mike Burns" <mburns(a)redhat.com>
Location: #ovirt of oftc.net
Time: Wednesday, August 29, 2012, 10:00:00 AM - 11:00:00 AM GMT -05:00 US/Canada Eastern
Required: danken(a)redhat.com; oschreib(a)redhat.com; ykaul(a)redhat.com; sgordon(a)redhat.com; dfediuck(a)redhat.com; Jon.Benedict(a)netapp.com; pmyers(a)redhat.com; simon(a)redhat.com; imad.sousou(a)intel.com; aliguori(a)us.ibm.com; lhawthor(a)redhat.com ...
Optional: arch(a)ovirt.org; board(a)ovirt.org; menescu(a)cisco.com
Weekly Sync Meeting for the oVirt Project
* This meeting will take place at 10:00 AM EDT and follow US DST.
* A call for agenda items will be sent out weekly on Monday or Tuesday
Standing Agenda items:
* Next Release status
* Sub-Project report
* The maintainer or a delegate from each of the core projects (node, engine, vdsm)
* Docs representative
* QE Representative
* Release Manager
* Anyone who proposes a topic for discussion for the meeting
Minutes (text): http://ovirt.org/meetings/ovirt/2012/ovirt.2012-08-22-14.00.txt
#ovirt: oVirt Weekly Sync
Meeting started by mburns at 14:00:41 UTC. The full logs are available
* Agenda and Roll Call (mburns, 14:00:48)
* Upcoming Workshops (mburns, 14:03:18)
* LC North America is next week (mburns, 14:04:36)
* presenters: acathrow jb_netapp abaron mburns (mburns, 14:05:22)
* at 93 out of 100 spots full (mburns, 14:05:43)
* still looking for board companies to provide reviewers of CFP
* please contact lh if you have any questions on CFP (mburns,
* Bangalore workshop is in October (mburns, 14:10:33)
* LINK: http://wiki.ovirt.org/wiki/OVirt_Global_Workshops (mburns,
* 1 talk proposal for Bangalore workshop currently (mburns, 14:13:16)
* still need more presenters (mburns, 14:13:32)
* Release Status (mburns, 14:14:27)
* we're currently in the planning phase for the next release (call it
3.2 for simplicity) (mburns, 14:14:42)
* we need to decide on a target release date (mburns, 14:15:01)
* we need to decide on planned features that we're going to track
against (mburns, 14:15:21)
* LINK: http://wiki.ovirt.org/wiki/Release_Process (mburns,
* we need to finalize release criteria (mburns, 14:15:52)
* Release date (mburns, 14:16:27)
* proposed target release date is November 14 (mburns, 14:25:10)
* not enough maintainers available to make final decision (mburns,
* Release Status (continued) (mburns, 14:26:58)
* not enough maintainers around to determine proposed features or to
discuss release criteria (mburns, 14:27:17)
* LINK: http://wiki.ovirt.org/wiki/OVirt_3.1_release_management
* that is the release criteria for 3.1 release (mburns, 14:28:21)
* ACTION: mburns to make release status page for 3.2 release (mburns,
* other topics (mburns, 14:32:49)
* not much point doing sub-project statuses when there aren't any
maintainers here (mburns, 14:33:11)
Meeting ended at 14:37:12 UTC.
* mburns to make release status page for 3.2 release
Action Items, by person
* mburns to make release status page for 3.2 release
People Present (lines said)
* mburns (77)
* lh (15)
* RobertM (4)
* quaid (4)
* dougsland (3)
* ovirtbot (3)
* rgolan (1)
* dustins (1)
Generated by `MeetBot`_ 0.1.4
.. _`MeetBot`: http://wiki.debian.org/MeetBot
Now that oVirt 3.1 has shipped, we need to start the planning process
for the next release. One of the major topics for this week's weekly
sync is to review the release criteria.
The criteria we used for 3.1 is laid out on the wiki . I will be
posting an equivalent version for the next release in the next couple
days, but it will mostly be copy/paste from this page.
Please think about release criteria and whether or not we want to
add/remove/change things for this release. This needs to be determined
now to make sure that the release process runs smoother down the line.
On 08/19/2012 10:18 AM, Mike Kolesnik wrote:
> I think putting the "search box" in the bottom of the page makes it harder to find & notice.
> Usually search is amongst the topmost and/or central elements in the site, as it makes it much easier for people to navigate across the site & locate the information they want.
I made a deliberate decision to downplay the importance of search on the
mockup for the front page for these reasons:
• Someone should be able to easily find the correct content without
having to resort to search.
• Right now, the form only searches WordPress, which is not very useful.
Searching the contents of the is a great thing, however.
Solutions for improving search:
1) Combined WordPress + MediaWiki search results. (If it's not easily
possible , we could consider _only_ searching MediaWiki, perhaps.)
2) Highlight search in the documentation area. Basically, when someone
clicks on documentation, it has the most common and useful documentation
grouped on the page, and above that, a big search entry (which is
prefocused, so one could simply type and hit enter, when visiting
 There are several plugins for integrating the two, but they all seem
to focus on embedding, adding comments, or using a single sign-in (which
could still be useful for us).
I'm currently working on a designs for the sections, and will be
including a large search at the top of the documentation page to make
sure searching is more prominent. Hopefully this will address your concern.
Thanks for your feedback!
Meeting Time and Place
oVirt Weekly Sync
* Wednesdays @ 15:00 UTC (may change during DST changes) - always
at 7:00am US Pacific, 10:00am US Eastern.
* To see in your timezone date -d 'WEDNESDAY 1000 EDT'
* On IRC: #ovirt on irc.oftc.net
This is the agenda for the 2012-08-22 meeting:
* Status of Release
* Sub-project reports (engine, vdsm, node, infra)
* Upcoming workshops
If you have other topics, please reply to me and I will add them to the
agenda. If you propose a topic, please be prepared to lead the
discussion during the meeting.
Thank you to Jon Benedict and Kyle Mestery for volunteering to sit on
the program committee for the oVirt CFP for KVM Forum + oVirt. We are
still actively soliciting for members of Board companies to nominate a
reviewer for the program committee. Please contact me for more details
or to get set up as a reviewer.
I'd also like to ask all the Board companies to promote KVM Forum +
oVirt via their communications channels. I will be reaching out to the
Open Virtualization Alliance for their help in spreading the word, but
additional support from Board companies would be greatly appreciated. If
folks would find it useful, I can see about getting some boilerplate
materials crafted for folks to use in their communications - just let me
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: oVirt CFP for KVM Forum + oVirt
Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2012 16:43:26 -0700
From: Leslie Hawthorn <lhawthor(a)redhat.com>
Organization: Red Hat
To: users(a)ovirt.org, arch(a)ovirt.org
oVirt Workshop Europe 2012: Call For Participation
November 7-9, 2012 - Hotel Fira Palace - Barcelona, Spain
(All submissions must be received before midnight Sep 14th, 2012)
The oVirt Project is an open virtualization project for anyone who cares
about Linux-based KVM virtualization. Providing a feature-rich server
virtualization management system with advanced capabilities for hosts
and guests, including high availability, live migration, storage
management, system scheduler, and more. By open we mean open source&
open governance, done right.
During this workshop you’ll learn about the technical background and
direction of the oVirt project. You’ll meet the developers, and have an
opportunity to see and dive into the code right away. The workshop is
open to all who want to use, get involved with, or learn about the
comprehensive open virtualization management platform, oVirt. The
sessions cover the technical projects details, governance, getting
involved, usage, and much more. If you have any interest in an Open
Virtualization Management platform, this workshop is for you!
We are excited to announce that this oVirt Workshop will be held in
conjunction with the KVM Forum.
The KVM Forum and oVirt Workshop are co-located with the Linux
Foundation's 2012 LinuxCon Europe in Barcelona, Spain.
oVirt Workshop attendees will be able to attend KVM Forum sessions and
are eligible to attend LinuxCon Europe for a discounted rate.
We invite you to lead part of the discussion by submitting a speaking
proposal for oVirt Workshop 2012.
- community use case/stories
- deep dives into features/areas
- deep dives into code/debugging/tuning
- integration and extensions
- components: engine, vdsm, node, sdk/cli, reports, mom, guest agent, etc.
- subjects: network, storage, vm life cycle, scheduling& sla, gluster, etc.
- packaging, installation and distributions
- community infrastructure and services
Abstracts due: Sep 14th, 2012
Notification: Sep 28th, 2012
Please submit a short abstract (~150 words) describing your presentation
proposal. In your submission please note how long your talk will take.
Slots vary in length up to 45 minutes. Also include in your proposal
the proposal type -- one of:
- technical talk
- end-user talk
- birds of a feather (BOF) session
Submit your proposal here:
You will receive a notification whether or not your presentation proposal
was accepted by Sep 14th.
One of the big challenges as developers is to know what, where and how
people actually use our software. We will reserve a few slots for end
users talking about their deployment challenges and achievements.
If you are using oVirt in production you are encouraged submit a speaking
proposal. Simply mark it as an end-user collaboration proposal. As an
end user, this is a unique opportunity to get your input to developers.
We will reserve some slots in the evening after the main conference
tracks, for birds of a feather (BOF) sessions. These sessions will be
less formal than presentation tracks and targetted for people who would
like to discuss specific issues with other developers and/or users.
If you are interested in getting developers and/or uses together to
discuss a specific problem, please submit a BOF proposal.
In addition to submitted talks we will also have some room for lightning
talks. These are short (5 minute) discussions to highlight new work or
ideas that aren't complete enough to warrant a full presentation slot.
Lightning talk submissions and scheduling will be handled on-site at
HOTEL / TRAVEL
The oVirt Workshop Europe 2012 will be held in Barcelona, Spain at the
Hotel Fira Palace.
Thank you for your interest in oVirt. We're looking forward to your
submissions and seeing you at the oVirt Workshop Europe 2012 in November!
your oVirt Workshop Europe 2012 Program Commitee
Community Action and Impact
Open Source and Standards @ Red Hat