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Re: [virt-tools-list] [virt-viewer][PATCH 0/6] Create actions menu
- From: Doug Goldstein <cardoe gentoo org>
- To: lagarcia linux vnet ibm com
- Cc: Leonardo Garcia <lagarcia br ibm com>, virt-tools-list redhat com
- Subject: Re: [virt-tools-list] [virt-viewer][PATCH 0/6] Create actions menu
- Date: Fri, 18 Jan 2013 23:24:52 -0600
On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:27 AM, <lagarcia linux vnet ibm com> wrote:
> From: Leonardo Garcia <lagarcia br ibm com>
> On 01/07/2013 08:42 PM, Daniel P. Berrange wrote:
>> On Mon, Jan 07, 2013 at 05:52:54PM -0200, lagarcia linux vnet ibm com wrote:
>>> From: Leonardo Garcia <lagarcia br ibm com>
>>> This menu would hold entries related to the connected guest life-cycle management:
>>> - Restart
>>> - Shutdown
>>> - Forced Shutdown
>>> - Redefine Hardware Settings
>>> - etc.
>>> The inclusion of these new actions in virt-viewer would allow an end-user to be
>>> able to have some control over the running VM without the need of opening
>>> virt-manager or other management tools. This is specially useful in
>>> environments in which the end-user is not using a management tool to start the
>>> VMs, but, instead, have a direct link setup to connect to a local or remote VM
>>> in his/her desktop.
>> I don't really think this is somewhere that I want virt-viewer to go.
>> I really view virt-viewer as a minimal application for interacting with
>> the guest. In particular the intent is that the user of virt-viewer
>> should not need to have administrative privileges to libvirtd, which
>> your suggested menu options would require.
> Ok, I understand your point.
>> IMHO the use case you're describing really is one for virt-manager to
>> have. There is no requirement that virt-manager display its main manager
>> window - it has a command line flag to make it immediately display the
>> GUI console of a single VM, which pretty much provides the functionality
>> you describe.
> Although I can agree that virt-manager would be more appropriate to hold the
> features I am describing, I think I am trying to address a use case scenario
> that is currently not properly supported by any of these two tools. So, first,
> let me try to define the audience I am interested in: my average end-user here
> is a desktop user.
> My view is that currently available virt-viewer and virt-manager tools are
> designed to fit the needs of system administrators or developers managing
> virtual machines. Both of them are targeted to the user dealing with
> virtualization in an enterprise/data-center environment. However, it is
> becoming more and more common that average desktop users, that are usually
> involved in administrative or operational tasks and that might not have any
> knowledge on how virtualization works, need to use virtualized environments
> running on their desktops (or even remotely) to accomplish daily tasks. Using a
> virtualized environment to accomplish some specific tasks would be important
> and necessary due to security reasons: to avoid any kind of contamination
> between the desktop user system and the system running the tools he/she uses to
> accomplish important tasks and that might have confidential/sensitive
> information. Also, it may be the case that customer contracts enforce the use
> of isolated systems to access the customer's IT environment: the use of
> virtualization allows one person to have access to multiple isolated
> environments in an easy way yet avoiding any contamination between the
> The way I see today, virt-viewer is a too simple tool that only provides access
> to the virtual machine console. And, on the other hand, virt-manager is quite a
> complex tool for a desktop user. A desktop user might not be interested in the
> details involved in creating and managing virtual machines (IT department will
> work on that). But, at the same time, the desktop user would definitely want to
> access the virtual machine console and have some kind of control over the
> machine, even though he/she don't want to interact with any other complexities
> related to the virtual machine infrastructure. In that scenario, I am really
> targeting something in between from what virt-viewer and virt-manager console
> viewer provides today.
> The specific use cases I am interested in are:
> 1) Pause/Resume virtual machine
> As a desktop user I want to be able to pause/resume the execution of the
> virtual machine. This is important in cases in which I want to temporarily
> suspend the work being executed at some point and resume the work in a later
> time. From my point of view, this operation is similar to the suspend operation
> in my desktop/laptop and it is intuitive for me to execute the same action in a
> virtual machine.
> 2) Restart virtual machine
> As a desktop user I want to be able to restart the virtual machine. This is
> important in cases in which the applications running on the virtual machine
> blocks its operation for some reason (specially when using Windows virtual
> machines, which happens to be a very common case).
> 3) Shutdown
> As a desktop user I want to be able to shutdown the virtual machine. The use
> case here is similar to the one above: sometimes it is needed to simply turn
> off the virtual machine to recover from a bad behaving state. Also, it is
> intuitive for myself that I would be able to shutdown the virtual machine the
> same way I do with my desktop/laptop. More importantly, this is the more
> effective way to free up resources being used by the running virtual machine.
> 4) Forced shutdown
> As a desktop user I want to be able to forcefully turn off the running virtual
> machine. This is important in cases where the virtual machine is not responding
> anymore, e.g. BSOD.
> 5) Delete Virtual Client
> As a desktop user I might be interested in deleting the current virtual
> machine. This is important when, for instance, IT is deploying a new version of
> the virtual machine and I need to decide whether I want to continue using the
> old one, whether I want both versions (temporarily or in a definitive way), or
> whether I would, eventually, destroy the old machine and start using the new
> 6) Create shortcut on Desktop
> As a desktop user I want to be able to easily access my virtual machines.
> Ideally I would be able to do that from a desktop application launcher shortcut
> that would: 1) Check if the virtual machine is running and, if not running,
> start it; 2) Connect to the virtual machine console.
> This desktop shortcut will be pre-configured by IT in my machine, but I need an
> easy way to recover it if I mistakenly delete it.
> Notice that the desktop shortcut would led me directly to the virtual machine
> console viewer with all the features I am interested in. I don't want to look
> on all the complexities shown by the virt-manager management window, for
> 7) Changes the console viewer exit routine to shutdown the guest when the
> application is terminated.
> As a desktop user it is counter intuitive that the virtual machine continues to
> run when I left the console viewer application. I am used that when I close an
> application all the resources being used by it are also freed up. In that case,
> I would want to link the viewer exit routine to the virtual machine shutdown
> Of course that this might be configurable, as little bit more advanced desktop
> user might understand the fact that the virtual machine can continue to run
> even though the viewer is closed.
> 8) Leave virtual machine running in the background
> As a desktop user, I want to be able to quit the viewer application but leave
> the virtual machine running. This is the default behavior in viewers today, but
> if we introduce the use case #7 (which is interestingly a cause of a good
> amount of desktop users' requests) and the user configures it to be the default
> behavior, we need to leave a way for myself to keep the virtual machine running
> while I quit the viewer application.
> 9) USB redirection functionality
> As a desktop user I want to be able to attach a USB device in my laptop/desktop
> and get it available in the running guest if the console viewer has the UI
> focus at the time the USB device is attached. I would also be able to manually
> select which USB devices already attached to the host I want to make available
> to the guest.
> Current development status:
> Use cases #1, #2, #3, and #4 are currently implemented in virt-manager console
> viewer. It would be useful though to have a way to open it without opening the
> virt-manager management window.
> Use case #5 is currently implemented in virt-manager management window, but
> this is not a window in which a desktop user would be interested in as it is
> too complex for the average desktop user.
> Use case #9 is currently implemented only in virt-viewer.
> Use cases #6, #7, and #8 are currently not implemented in any tools.
> Please, let me know your thoughts.
> Best regards,
> Leonardo Garcia
> Leonardo Garcia (6):
> Create Actions menu.
> Move File menu subitems to the more appropriate Actions menu.
> Expose virt_viewer_get_domain interface.
> Add menu action to reboot virtual machine.
> Add menu action to shutdown virtual machine.
> Add menu action to power off virtual machine.
> src/Makefile.am | 12 ++++--
> src/virt-viewer-app.c | 4 +-
> src/virt-viewer-window.c | 100 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++-----
> src/virt-viewer.c | 12 +++++-
> src/virt-viewer.h | 5 ++
> src/virt-viewer.xml | 80 ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++------
> 6 files changed, 182 insertions(+), 31 deletions(-)
> virt-tools-list mailing list
> virt-tools-list redhat com
You're right that virt-viewer is a simple tool. Its a simple tool for
providing the ability to view the console which is exactly the small
tight use case that is desired for this application. You're assuming
that users of this are power users or IT oriented in their own right
which isn't necessarily the case. For example our accountant often
needs to login directly into the Windows Server 2008 instance to
access the QuickBooks environment directly. He has a limited access
account and has no need for the above use cases, in fact some of those
features violate the very nature of his limited account. How I see it
there are 3 use cases of the libvirt APIs.
1. VM console access, akin to VNC or RDP. This is what virt-viewer provides.
2. VM state access, akin to a local administrator of a machine with
physical access. e.g. they can press the power button, attach
peripherals. This is what you're proposing virt-viewer become.
3. Host state access, akin to the IT guys managing backing stores and
knowledge of the host. This is what heavy power users need or data
center guys need (e.g. OpenStack).
virt-manager provides a subset of #1, #2, and #3. So I'll agree with
you that the tool to do #2 well does not exist fully yet, GNOME Boxes
is really the closest thing out there.
Effectively to sum it up you're looking for virt-viewer to be what
VirtualBox is on the PC, which is something I can't really agree with.
So I'll agree with Dan on the NACK.
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