We've just pushed out a maintenance release for the 2009.10 appliance batch featuring:
- Bugfixes for all outstanding issues (we're out of beta baby!)
- Security updates
- Simplified free subscription to Amazon EC2 AMIs
- New and improved Amazon EC2 AMIs
With the new Ubuntu 10.04 LTS release (Lucid Lynx) coming out in a couple of weeks this is the last TurnKey release batch based on the Ubuntu 8.04 series.
Note that Ubuntu 8.04 is a Long Term Support release which will continue to be supported by Canonical with security updates for another 3 years (until April 2013).
Unfortunately, unlike Canonical we don't have the resources to support multiple versions of Ubuntu simultaneously. So with this maintenance release we bid 8.04 a fond farewell. We're cleaning house and sweeping all the bugs and outstanding issues out of the way before we begin rebuilding the appliance library from the ground up on top of a brand new distribution.
Fixing all the bugs from the previous release before rebuilding on a new distribution isn't just neat and tidy, it's good engineering!
We've fixed all the major issues reported by the community and are proud to remove the beta label from nearly all the appliances in the library.
Many thanks to everyone who provided feedback and helped us track down bugs. Most of the issues were minor, but a couple (cough Zimbra cough) were nasty!
Pre-installed all security updates that have come out since our last release batch. Existing installations have already been auto-updated, so you don't need to do anything.
We now install security updates on first boot
Previously appliances were configured to install security updates daily but we've realized that isn't good enough! We need to install security updates on first boot to prevent a window of vulnerability from opening between the time a fresh appliance is deployed and until the cron job that installs the security updates runs.
On the other hand, installing security updates can take a few minutes and isn't critical in all usage scenarios (e.g., a local development VM) so when the appliance first boots the user is given a time-limited option to skip installation of the security updates.
Unified subscription (the easy part): we've created a single unified subscription that includes global access to all TurnKey appliance AMIs in all regions. Previously you had to subscribe to each appliance separately which was unnecessarily complicated.
Free (as in beer): we've decided to let users try out TurnKey on EC2 for free while we solicit more feedback from the community on pricing here.
In the future a reasonable mark-up on usage fees could be a great way to support development and allow users to each share a small part of the burden in keeping the project sustainable. But the devil is in the details, so we want your feedback on that!
The latest batch of Amazon EC2 images now features:
Support for the us-west-1 region: meaning TurnKey images are now available in all EC2 regions under a new bucket naming scheme:
- Support for automating EC2 instance setup: via a new user-data scripts mechanism (blog post).
- EBS auto-mounting support: replaces the old buggy ebsmount init script in previous images (blog post).
In the next few weeks we'll be launching a private beta of the TurnKey Hub, a web service we're building to make it super simple for users to deploy and manage TurnKey appliances in the cloud. If you're interested in receiving an invitation, register here.