Testing is an important part of any project; it allows the engineer to discover errors that could have occurred while adding a new feature or a regression introduced while fixing a bug. These are all a normal part of the software development process.

While companies generally have dedicated resources available for this task, the same isn’t always true for open source projects. Obtaining the necessary hardware for testing infrastructure can pose a challenge, without even taking into account the resources required for hosting and managing the systems.

Recently the need for this came around when we were looking at building testing infrastructure for our own open source projects. Instead of building and hosting something in-house, we decided to donate hardware and funding for development to the OSU Open Source Lab.

Our mutual goal is to provide an easy to use service for projects to do testing on various operating systems and hardware architectures. The initial available hardware is x86 based with both 32-bit and 64-bit guest operating systems available. There are also OS X servers available for those projects that need explicitly test on Mac OS. Going forward we’re hoping that Supercell will be built out to support a number of other platforms as the OSL works with projects to understand exactly what they need.

Initial testing of the cluster and the management software is now underway. The OSL team along with some help from Google Code-In students have written a web based front-end that allows users to easily interact with the virtualization software. The Ganeti Web Manager project is open to contributions, and another piece of useful open source technology that has come out of this project.

If you’re an open source project interested in using Supercell, more information is available at at http://supercell.osuosl.org.

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