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Container's
Anatomy
Namespaces, cgroups,
and some filesystem magic
1 / 59
Who am I?
Jérôme Petazzoni (@jpetazzo)
French software engineer living in California
I have built and scaled the dotCloud ...
Outline
What is a container?
(high level and low level overviews)
The building blocks
(namespaces, cgroups, copy-on-write ...
What is a
container?
4 / 59
High level approach:
it's a lightweight VM
I can get a shell on it
(through SSH or otherwise)
It "feels" like a VM:
own pr...
Low level approach:
it's chroot on steroids
It's not quite like a VM:
uses the host kernel
can't boot a different OS
can't...
How are they implemented?
Let's look in the kernel source!
Go to LXR
Look for "LXC" → zero result
Look for "container" → 1...
How are they implemented?
Let's look in the kernel source!
Go to LXR
Look for "LXC" → zero result
Look for "container" → 1...
Ancient archeology
Five years ago...
When using the LXC tools (lxc-start, lxc-stop...)
you would often get weird messages ...
Modern archeology
Nowadays:
Cgroups are often in /sys/fs/cgroup
You quickly stumble on nsenter
(which tips you off about n...
The building
blocks
11 / 59
Control groups
12 / 59
Control groups
Resource metering and limiting
memory
CPU
block I/O
network*
Device node (/dev/*) access control
*With coop...
Generalities
Each subsystem (memory, CPU...) has a hierarchy (tree)
Hierarchies are independent
(the trees for e.g. memory...
Example
cpu memory/
├── batch ├── 109
│  ├── bitcoins ├── 25
│  │  └── 52 ├── 26
│  └── hadoop ├── 27
│   ├── 109 ├── 52
│...
Memory cgroup: accounting
Keeps track of pages used by each group:
file (read/write/mmap from block devices)
anonymous (st...
Memory cgroup: limits
Each group can have (optional) hard and soft limits
Soft limits are not enforced
(they influence rec...
Memory cgroup: tricky details
Each time the kernel gives a page to a process,
or takes it away, it updates the counters
Th...
Cpu cgroup
Keeps track of user/system CPU time
Keeps track of usage per CPU
Allows to set weights
Can't set CPU limits
OK,...
Cpuset cgroup
Pin groups to specific CPU(s)
Reserve CPUs for specific apps
Avoid processes bouncing between CPUs
Also rele...
Blkio cgroup
Keeps track of I/Os for each group
per block device
read vs write
sync vs async
Set throttle (limits) for eac...
Net_cls and net_prio cgroup
Automatically set traffic class or priority,
for traffic generated by processes in the group
O...
Devices cgroup
Controls what the group can do on device nodes
Permissions include read/write/mknod
Typical use:
allow /dev...
Subtleties
PID 1 is placed at the root of each hierarchy
When a process is created, it is placed in the same groups
as its...
Namespaces
25 / 59
Namespaces
Provide processes with their own view of the system
Cgroups = limits how much you can use;
namespaces = limits ...
Pid namespace
Processes within a PID namespace only see processes in
the same PID namespace
Each PID namespace has its own...
Net namespace: in theory
Processes within a given network namespace
get their own private network stack, including:
networ...
Net namespace: in practice
Typical use-case:
use vethpairs
(two virtual interfaces acting as a cross-over cable)
eth0in co...
Mnt namespace
Processes can have their own root fs (à la chroot)
Processes can also have "private" mounts
/tmp(scoped per ...
Uts namespace
gethostname / sethostname
'nuff said!
31 / 59
Ipc namespace
32 / 59
Ipc namespace
Does anybody knows about IPC?
33 / 59
Ipc namespace
Does anybody knows about IPC?
Does anybody cares about IPC?
34 / 59
Ipc namespace
Does anybody knows about IPC?
Does anybody cares about IPC?
Allows a process (or group of processes) to have...
User namespace
Allows to map UID/GID; e.g.:
UID 0→1999 in container C1 is mapped to
UID 10000→11999 on host
UID 0→1999 in ...
Namespace manipulation
Namespaces are created with the clone()system call
(i.e. with extra flags when creating a new proce...
Copy-on-write
38 / 59
Copy-on-write storage
Create a new container instantly
(instead of copying its whole filesystem)
Storage keeps track of wh...
Other details
40 / 59
Orthogonality
All those things can be used independently
Use a few cgroups if you just need resource isolation
Simulate a ...
One word about overhead
Even when you don't run containers ...
... you are in a container
Your host processes still execut...
One word about overhead
Even when you don't run containers ...
... you are in a container
Your host processes still execut...
Some missing bits
Capabilities
break down "root / non-root" into fine-grained rights
allow to keep root, but without the d...
Container
runtimes
45 / 59
LXC
Set of userland tools
A container is a directory in /var/lib/lxc
Small config file + root filesystem
Early versions ha...
systemd-nspawn
From its manpage:
"For debugging, testing and building"
"Similar to chroot, but more powerful"
"Implements ...
systemd-nspawn
From its manpage:
"For debugging, testing and building"
"Similar to chroot, but more powerful"
"Implements ...
systemd-nspawn
From its manpage:
"For debugging, testing and building"
"Similar to chroot, but more powerful"
"Implements ...
Docker Engine
Daemon controlled by REST(ish) API
First versions shelled out to LXC,
now uses its own libcontainerruntime
M...
rkt, runC
Back to the basics!
Focus on container execution
(no API, no image management, no build, etc.)
They implement di...
Which one is best?
They all use the same kernel features
Performance will be exactly the same
Look at:
features
design
eco...
Other containers
53 / 59
OpenVZ
Also Linux
Older, but battle-tested
(e.g. Travis CI gives you root in OpenVZ)
Tons of neat features too
ploop (effi...
Jails / Zones
FreeBSD / Solaris
Coarser granularity than namespaces and cgroups
Strong emphasis on security
Great for host...
Build your own
56 / 59
FOR EDUCATIONAL
PURPOSES ONLY
57 / 59
58 / 59
Thanks!
Questions?
@jpetazzo
@docker
59 / 59
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Anatomy of a Container: Namespaces, cgroups & Some Filesystem Magic - LinuxCon

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Containers are everywhere. But what exactly is a container? What are they made from? What's the difference between LXC, butts-nspawn, Docker, and the other container systems out there? And why should we bother about specific filesystems?

In this talk, Jérôme will show the individual roles and behaviors of the components making up a container: namespaces, control groups, and copy-on-write systems. Then, he will use them to assemble a container from scratch, and highlight the differences (and likelinesses) with existing container systems.

Veröffentlicht in: Technologie

Anatomy of a Container: Namespaces, cgroups & Some Filesystem Magic - LinuxCon

  1. 1. Container's Anatomy Namespaces, cgroups, and some filesystem magic 1 / 59
  2. 2. Who am I? Jérôme Petazzoni (@jpetazzo) French software engineer living in California I have built and scaled the dotCloud PaaS (almost 5 years ago, time flies!) I talk (too much) about containers (first time was maybe in February 2013, at SCALE in L.A.) Proud member of the House of Bash (when annoyed, we replace things with tiny shell scripts) 2 / 59
  3. 3. Outline What is a container? (high level and low level overviews) The building blocks (namespaces, cgroups, copy-on-write storage) Container runtimes (Docker, LXC, rkt, runC, systemd-nspawn...) Other containers (OpenVZ, Jails, Zones...) Hand-crafted, artisan-pick, house-blend containers (with demos!) 3 / 59
  4. 4. What is a container? 4 / 59
  5. 5. High level approach: it's a lightweight VM I can get a shell on it (through SSH or otherwise) It "feels" like a VM: own process space own network interface can run stuff as root can install packages can run services can mess up routing, iptables... 5 / 59
  6. 6. Low level approach: it's chroot on steroids It's not quite like a VM: uses the host kernel can't boot a different OS can't have its own modules doesn't need initas PID 1 doesn't need syslogd, cron... It's just a bunch of processes visible on the host machine (contrast with VMs which are opaque) 6 / 59
  7. 7. How are they implemented? Let's look in the kernel source! Go to LXR Look for "LXC" → zero result Look for "container" → 1000+ results Almost all of them are about data structures (or other unrelated concepts like "ACPI containers") There are some references to "our" containers, in documentation 7 / 59
  8. 8. How are they implemented? Let's look in the kernel source! Go to LXR Look for "LXC" → zero result Look for "container" → 1000+ results Almost all of them are about data structures (or other unrelated concepts like "ACPI containers") There are some references to "our" containers, in documentation ??? Are containers even in the kernel ??? 8 / 59
  9. 9. Ancient archeology Five years ago... When using the LXC tools (lxc-start, lxc-stop...) you would often get weird messages mentioning /cgroup/container_name/... The cgrouppseudo filesystem has counters for CPU, RAM, I/O, and device access (/dev/*) but nothing about network I didn't find about "namespaces" by myself (maybe noticing /proc/$PID/nswould have helped; more on that later) 9 / 59
  10. 10. Modern archeology Nowadays: Cgroups are often in /sys/fs/cgroup You quickly stumble on nsenter (which tips you off about namespaces) There is significantly more documentation everywhere 10 / 59
  11. 11. The building blocks 11 / 59
  12. 12. Control groups 12 / 59
  13. 13. Control groups Resource metering and limiting memory CPU block I/O network* Device node (/dev/*) access control *With cooperation from iptables/tc; more on that later 13 / 59
  14. 14. Generalities Each subsystem (memory, CPU...) has a hierarchy (tree) Hierarchies are independent (the trees for e.g. memory and CPU can be different) Each process belongs to exactly 1 node in each hierarchy (think of each hierarchy as a different dimension or axis) Each hierarchy starts with 1 node (the root) All processes initially belong to the root of each hierarchy* Each node = group of processes (sharing the same resources) *It's a bit more subtle; more on that later 14 / 59
  15. 15. Example cpu memory/ ├── batch ├── 109 │  ├── bitcoins ├── 25 │  │  └── 52 ├── 26 │  └── hadoop ├── 27 │   ├── 109 ├── 52 │   └── 88 ├── 88 └── realtime └── databases ├── nginx ├── 1008 │  ├── 25 └── 524 │  ├── 26 │  └── 27 ├── postgres │  └── 524 └── redis └── 1008 15 / 59
  16. 16. Memory cgroup: accounting Keeps track of pages used by each group: file (read/write/mmap from block devices) anonymous (stack, heap, anonymous mmap) active (recently accessed) inactive (candidate for eviction) Each page is "charged" to a group Pages can be shared across multiple groups (e.g. multiple processes reading from the same files) When pages are shared, the groups "split the bill" 16 / 59
  17. 17. Memory cgroup: limits Each group can have (optional) hard and soft limits Soft limits are not enforced (they influence reclaim under memory pressure) Hard limits will trigger a per-group OOM killer The OOM killer can be customized (oom-notifier); when the hard limit is exceeded: freeze all processes in the group notify user space (instead of going rampage) we can kill processes, raise limits, migrate containers ... when we're in the clear again, unfreeze the group Limits can be set for physical, kernel, total memory 17 / 59
  18. 18. Memory cgroup: tricky details Each time the kernel gives a page to a process, or takes it away, it updates the counters This adds some overhead Unfortunately, this cannot be enabled/disabled per process (it has to be done at boot time) Cost sharing means thata process leaving a group (e.g. because it terminates) can theoretically cause an out of memory condition 18 / 59
  19. 19. Cpu cgroup Keeps track of user/system CPU time Keeps track of usage per CPU Allows to set weights Can't set CPU limits OK, let's say you give N% then the CPU throttles to a lower clock speed now what? same if you give a time slot instructions? their exec speed varies wildly ¯_ツ_/¯ 19 / 59
  20. 20. Cpuset cgroup Pin groups to specific CPU(s) Reserve CPUs for specific apps Avoid processes bouncing between CPUs Also relevant for NUMA systems Provides extra dials and knobs (per zone memory pressure, process migration costs...) 20 / 59
  21. 21. Blkio cgroup Keeps track of I/Os for each group per block device read vs write sync vs async Set throttle (limits) for each group per block device read vs write ops vs bytes Set relative weights for each group Full disclosure: this used to be clunky for async operations, and I haven't tested it in ages. ☹ 21 / 59
  22. 22. Net_cls and net_prio cgroup Automatically set traffic class or priority, for traffic generated by processes in the group Only works for egress traffic Net_cls will assign traffic to a class (that has to be matched with tc/iptables, otherwise traffic just flows normally) Net_prio will assign traffic to a priority (priorities are used by queuing disciplines) 22 / 59
  23. 23. Devices cgroup Controls what the group can do on device nodes Permissions include read/write/mknod Typical use: allow /dev/{tty,zero,random,null}... deny everything else A few interesting nodes: /dev/net/tun(network interface manipulation) /dev/fuse(filesystems in user space) /dev/kvm(VMs in containers, yay inception!) /dev/dri(GPU) 23 / 59
  24. 24. Subtleties PID 1 is placed at the root of each hierarchy When a process is created, it is placed in the same groups as its parent Groups are materialized by one (or multiple) pseudo-fs (typically mounted in /sys/fs/cgroup) Groups are created by mkdirin the pseudo-fs To move a process: echo$PID>/sys/fs/cgroup/.../tasks The cgroup wars: systemd vs cgmanager vs ... 24 / 59
  25. 25. Namespaces 25 / 59
  26. 26. Namespaces Provide processes with their own view of the system Cgroups = limits how much you can use; namespaces = limits what you can see (and therefore use) Multiple namespaces: pid net mnt uts ipc user Each process is in one namespace of each type 26 / 59
  27. 27. Pid namespace Processes within a PID namespace only see processes in the same PID namespace Each PID namespace has its own numbering (starting at 1) When PID 1 goes away, the whole namespace is killed Those namespaces can be nested A process ends up having multiple PIDs (one per namespace in which its nested) 27 / 59
  28. 28. Net namespace: in theory Processes within a given network namespace get their own private network stack, including: network interfaces (including lo) routing tables iptables rules sockets (ss, netstat) You can move a network interface from a netns to another iplinksetdeveth0netnsPID 28 / 59
  29. 29. Net namespace: in practice Typical use-case: use vethpairs (two virtual interfaces acting as a cross-over cable) eth0in container network namespace paired with vethXXXin host network namespace all the vethXXXare bridged together (Docker calls the bridge docker0) But also: the magic of --netcontainer shared localhost(and more!) 29 / 59
  30. 30. Mnt namespace Processes can have their own root fs (à la chroot) Processes can also have "private" mounts /tmp(scoped per user, per service...) Masking of /proc, /sys NFS auto-mounts (why not?) Mounts can be totally private, or shared No easy way to pass along a mount from a namespace to another ☹ 30 / 59
  31. 31. Uts namespace gethostname / sethostname 'nuff said! 31 / 59
  32. 32. Ipc namespace 32 / 59
  33. 33. Ipc namespace Does anybody knows about IPC? 33 / 59
  34. 34. Ipc namespace Does anybody knows about IPC? Does anybody cares about IPC? 34 / 59
  35. 35. Ipc namespace Does anybody knows about IPC? Does anybody cares about IPC? Allows a process (or group of processes) to have own: IPC semaphores IPC message queues IPC shared memory ... without risk of conflict with other instances. 35 / 59
  36. 36. User namespace Allows to map UID/GID; e.g.: UID 0→1999 in container C1 is mapped to UID 10000→11999 on host UID 0→1999 in container C2 is mapped to UID 12000→13999 on host etc. Avoids extra configuration in containers UID 0 (root) can be squashed to a non-privileged user Security improvement But: devil is in the details 36 / 59
  37. 37. Namespace manipulation Namespaces are created with the clone()system call (i.e. with extra flags when creating a new process) Namespaces are materialized by pseudo-files in /proc/<pid>/ns When the last process of a namespace exits, it is destroyed (but can be preserved by bind-mounting the pseudo-file) It is possible to "enter" a namespace with setns() (exposed by the nsenterwrapper in util-linux) 37 / 59
  38. 38. Copy-on-write 38 / 59
  39. 39. Copy-on-write storage Create a new container instantly (instead of copying its whole filesystem) Storage keeps track of what has changed Many options available AUFS, overlay (file level) device mapper thinp (block level) BTRFS, ZFS (FS level) Considerably reduces footprint and "boot" times See also: Deep dive into Docker storage drivers 39 / 59
  40. 40. Other details 40 / 59
  41. 41. Orthogonality All those things can be used independently Use a few cgroups if you just need resource isolation Simulate a network of routers with network namespaces Put the debugger in a container's namespaces, but not its cgroups (to not use its resource quotas) Setup a network interface in an isolated environment, then move it to another etc. 41 / 59
  42. 42. One word about overhead Even when you don't run containers ... ... you are in a container Your host processes still execute in the root namespaces and cgroups Remember: there are three kind of lies 42 / 59
  43. 43. One word about overhead Even when you don't run containers ... ... you are in a container Your host processes still execute in the root namespaces and cgroups Remember: there are three kind of lies Lies, damn lies, and benchmarks 43 / 59
  44. 44. Some missing bits Capabilities break down "root / non-root" into fine-grained rights allow to keep root, but without the dangerous bits however: CAP_SYS_ADMINremains a big catchall SELinux / AppArmor ... containers that actually contain deserve a whole talk on their own 44 / 59
  45. 45. Container runtimes 45 / 59
  46. 46. LXC Set of userland tools A container is a directory in /var/lib/lxc Small config file + root filesystem Early versions had no support for CoW Early versions had no support to move images around Requires significant amount of elbow grease (easy for sysadmins/ops, hard for devs) 46 / 59
  47. 47. systemd-nspawn From its manpage: "For debugging, testing and building" "Similar to chroot, but more powerful" "Implements the Container Interface" Seems to position itself as plumbing 47 / 59
  48. 48. systemd-nspawn From its manpage: "For debugging, testing and building" "Similar to chroot, but more powerful" "Implements the Container Interface" Seems to position itself as plumbing Recently added support for ɹǝʞɔop images 48 / 59
  49. 49. systemd-nspawn From its manpage: "For debugging, testing and building" "Similar to chroot, but more powerful" "Implements the Container Interface" Seems to position itself as plumbing Recently added support for ɹǝʞɔop images #defineINDEX_HOST"index.do"/*theURLwegetthedatafrom*/"cker.io" #defineHEADER_TOKEN"X-Do"/*theHTTPheaderfortheauthtoken*/"cker-Token:" #defineHEADER_REGISTRY"X-Do"/*theHTTPheaderfortheregistry*/"cker-Endpoints:" 49 / 59
  50. 50. Docker Engine Daemon controlled by REST(ish) API First versions shelled out to LXC, now uses its own libcontainerruntime Manages containers, images, builds, and more Some people think it does too many things 50 / 59
  51. 51. rkt, runC Back to the basics! Focus on container execution (no API, no image management, no build, etc.) They implement different specifications: rkt implements appc (App Container) runC implements OCP (Open Container Project), leverages Docker's libcontainer 51 / 59
  52. 52. Which one is best? They all use the same kernel features Performance will be exactly the same Look at: features design ecosystem 52 / 59
  53. 53. Other containers 53 / 59
  54. 54. OpenVZ Also Linux Older, but battle-tested (e.g. Travis CI gives you root in OpenVZ) Tons of neat features too ploop (efficient block device for containers) checkpoint/restore, live migration venet (~more efficient veth) Still developed 54 / 59
  55. 55. Jails / Zones FreeBSD / Solaris Coarser granularity than namespaces and cgroups Strong emphasis on security Great for hosting providers Not so much for developers (where's the equivalent of dockerrun-tiubuntu?) Note: Solaris branded zones can run Linux binaries 55 / 59
  56. 56. Build your own 56 / 59
  57. 57. FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY 57 / 59
  58. 58. 58 / 59
  59. 59. Thanks! Questions? @jpetazzo @docker 59 / 59

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