It’s been just over 2 weeks since the launch of Ampere Arm deployed in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI). Check this article out to learn more (here). And it’s been about one week since I started looking into the new architecture and deployment, since I started provisioning the VM.Standard.A1.Flex Compute Shape on OCI and since I started migrating a specific application that has many different variations to it to test it all out.
What I’ll document here are some of the experiences that I’ve gone through. Some of it is due to the app. Some of it is due to my lack or understanding. Some of it is because I just had to get through it to make it work (for now) …
This is my first learning.
I was excited to work with the new VM.Standard.A1.Flex Compute Shape. The nice thing is that the OCI Always Free Tier allows up to 4 OCPUs and 24 GB of RAM to be provisioned of this shape.
The application that I was migrating across to this platform was less about compute and more about memory. Previously, I needed to scale out the number of VM.Standard.E2.1.Micro VMs to cater for the different components that I wanted to deploy. With the VM.Standard.A1.Flex VM, I’m able to allocate 6 GB of RAM at a minimum allowing the available OCPUs to be used for other purposes.
The next thing to consider is the Operating System to deploy onto the VM itself.
There’s already a set there are useful – Ubuntu, Oracle Linux and Centos (though it is 6.10). There is also a variation of Oracle Linux with many different packages already provisioned for developers including different programming languages and DevOps tools. It’s worth checking out (here).
The main thing that I needed to consider is this is that this is a different hardware architecture. As mentioned by Clay Magouyrk, Executive Vice President, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, there was a consolidation of workloads onto x86 especially in cloud. Moving to an arm64 has major benefits but there is a fundamental change to the whole stack.
And hence the effort to make best use of this technology has been very good to see. Reading up on the different partners and engineering groups that are invested on the platform is encouraging. Check out this article (here) about that work as well as how you can get started. If you want to contribute to the Arm ecosystem where you are an open-source developer, researcher, industry partner or an Oracle customer, there is an accelerator program to support Arm development that you can check out (here).
If you want to try this out yourself, sign-up (here) for the free Oracle Cloud Trial. I’d be interested to hear your experiences and learn from others as well. Leave a comment or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to collaborate.
There’s plenty of work to make this more achievable for everyone. And hence sharing this knowledge is the reason why I’m writing this series – #XDaysOfArm. I’ll keep documenting as long as I keep learning.