Network and Engineering
Two Comcast Open-Source Projects Reach Key Community Milestone
Two Comcast open-source projects Kuberhealthy and Trickster, achieved important milestones in the global open-source community late last month when they were accepted as sandbox projects by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF).
Acceptance into the CNCF is reserved for open-source projects that achieve a high level of technical maturity, global engagement and collaboration. The CNCF is home to major projects like Kubernetes, and Prometheus, which benefit from ongoing contributions and collaboration by CNCF’s worldwide community of technologists. Each CNCF project has an associated maturity level, from sandbox, to incubating, or graduated. For more information on what qualifies a technology for each level, please visit the CNCF Technical Oversight Committee (TOC) process.
We’re honored that these projects – both of which were initially developed by Comcast engineers – have reached this milestone and are excited to see how both projects evolve and expand with the engagement of the global CNCF community.
Trickster is a tool developed to help make Prometheus, the open-source monitoring and alerting toolkit originally developed by SoundCloud, dashboards run smoother and faster. Written in Go, Trickster is a reverse proxy cache for the Prometheus HTTP APIv1 that considerably accelerates dashboard rendering times for any series queried from Prometheus. This is possible because of the delta proxy, step boundary normalization, and fast forward features. Through Trickster’s feature set, chart times load significantly faster, the highly cacheable data is conveyed visually to users in a way that they are used to, and all dashboard users see consistent data on their display. Prometheus became a part of the CNCF (Cloud Native Computing Foundation) as the second hosted project, after Kubernetes in 2016.
Kuberhealthy was initially developed to help Comcast engineering teams better monitor and understand the full picture of their Kubernetes clusters. When we were developing Kuberhealthy, we focused on taking Kubernetes monitoring to the next level by creating a tool that mimics real workloads in our clusters, while easily integrating with existing monitoring pipelines like Prometheus.
Kuberhealthy runs Daemonset deployment and termination, component health, excessive pod restarts and pod status all as defaults. This combination of tests gives us the most definitive answer to our original question: “is this cluster healthy?” Prometheus integration can also be enabled with one option at install time, providing alerts and metrics for your existing Prometheus alerting pipeline.
Thank you to James Ranson, creator of the Trickster project, and to Eric Greer, creator of the Kuberhealthy project. We’d also like to thank Joshulyne Park, who is a maintainer of the Kuberhealthy project. Additionally, we would like to thank Adam Ross and Chris Randles of Comcast, who reviewed more than 300 PR’s and contributed more than 3000 lines of code to Trickster. Finally we’d like to acknowledge Julis Volz and Ben Kochie, external project mentors who increased industry visibility of the project and contributed critical stability improvements that greatly benefited our community of early adopters.