EaaSI Platform Release Notes: v2021.10

Greetings everyone,

I am thrilled to announce that we have been able to put a cap on our latest, lengthy round of software testing, and that our dev team has pushed and tagged a new stable release of the EaaSI platform and all components. For internal consistency, this release has been tagged v2021.10, so do forgive us the delay in this announcement while we ran quality assurance tests on migrations from the previous (2020.03) EaaSI release. A high-level summary of changes from the 2020.03 version can be found in the release notes below.

For those running their own, locally-hosted versions of EaaSI, this is a major update, encompassing over 600 total tickets and bug reports in GitLab, and many under-the-hood adjustments and improvements intended to fulfill and stabilize the workflows promised by the design of the EaaSI UI, originally pushed out in the 2020.03 release. These edits have also put the whole system, front-end included, on much more solid footing as a foundation for future improvements and the planned features in our development roadmap. We will communicate our new plan and pace for further feature updates in the new year.

A number of fixes and improvements also resulted directly from reports from our users in the 2021 SPN hosted emulation service pilot program, so our deep gratitude goes out to all those who have participated in the pilot for their assistance.

Updating as soon as possible is highly recommended, and the EaaSI team will not support any new deployments using the v2020.03 tag from this point forward. Please use the recommended v2021.10 tags if you are looking to start fresh with a new EaaSI install and/or seek assistance with your installation from the EaaSI team. The Setup and Deployment section of the EaaSI User Handbook has been updated with complete instructions and current recommendations for either installing or updating EaaSI.

(Administrators looking to move their EaaSI installation from 2020.03 to 2021.10 should also please take note of this dedicated section of the Handbook which contains a few added concerns for this particular migration)

My personal thanks go out to @oooleg and our partners at Dual Lab for their tireless work on this release. A few bullet points here truly undersells the amount of troubleshooting and design that was required.

Release notes for 2021.10

Updated system requirements:

  • support for Ubuntu 16.04 hosts was removed, support for Ubuntu 20.04 has been added
  • the requirement for a configured SMTP mailer present in the 2020.03 release of the EaaSI UI has been removed

Reconfigured deployment:

  • simplified user-facing configuration (most default, supported values now hidden)
  • EaaSI system administrators can now opt for a single- or multi-tenancy deployment (e.g. multiple “organizations” or nodes within a single EaaSI installation
  • “superadmin” control of tenancies has been added via a provided eaas-orgctl script
  • automated one-time resource migration from previous EaaSI releases baked into eaasi-installer
  • simplified user roles (removed “Manager” role; available roles are now only “Admin” and “Configuration User”)

New features and integrations:

  • “mix-and-match”-style Environment creation using the Emulation Project menu
  • integrated Keycloak into EaaS back-end and shifted user/identity management and authentication from front-end database to Keycloak
  • OAuth2 / OpenID Connect support including external IDPs
  • resource storage is now S3-object compatible via MinIO integration
  • low-latency WebRTC audio delivery is now the default for all Environments

Performance and stability improvements:

  • more than 400 EaaSI UI front-end tasks and bug reports closed
  • more than 200 EaaS back-end tasks and bug reports closed
  • simplified front-end EaaSI UI application’s PostgresQL database schema for clarity and performance
  • improved and made caching behavior more consistent throughout the EaaSI UI
  • reduced redundant storage of some metadata in both EaaSI UI front-end and Emulation-as-a-Service back-end
  • a number of text and labeling clarifications, including removing some aspirational (and non-functional) metadata elements, buttons, and menus in the EaaSI UI