taskManeage - Tasks: task #16228, Guix-Maneage synergy


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task #16228: Guix-Maneage synergy

Submitter:  Boud Roukema <boud>
Submitted:  Tue 12 Jul 2022 11:56:23 PM UTC
Should Start On:  Tue 12 Jul 2022 12:00:00 AM UTC Should be Finished on:  Tue 12 Jul 2022 12:00:00 AM UTC
Category:  None Priority:  5 - Normal
Status:  None Privacy:  Public
Assigned to:  None Percent Complete:  0%
Open/Closed:  Open Effort:  0.00

Wed 13 Jul 2022 10:19:25 PM UTC, comment #2: 

(1.a) blog by Ludovic Courtès on this point — 22 September 2017 https://hpc.guix.info/blog/2017/09/reproducibility-and-root-privileges

Boud Roukema <boud>
Group Member
Wed 13 Jul 2022 12:25:38 AM UTC, comment #1: 

(3) The use of the language 'guile' would arguably be a violation of criterion 3 'minimal complexity', since beyond bash/make/git and the user's own preferred language(s), it would require knowledge of a fourth language.

Boud Roukema <boud>
Group Member
Tue 12 Jul 2022 11:56:23 PM UTC, original submission:  

How can Guix structure or tools be useful to Maneage?

Comments about GNU Guix (and Nix) are currently in Appendix A.B.3 'Nix or GNU Guix' (p3, [1]) of Akhlaghi+2021. The two main concerns are:

(1) Guix needs root privileges (violating our 'completeness' criterion). This is related to the differing aims of the reproducibility of software binaries versus the reproducibility of scientific results.

(2) With Guix, the user has to remember to store the Guix commit ID (and names and versions and commit IDs of the various scientific software packages?), as per Konrad Hinsen's 2020-01-14 blog [2] that we put as our footnote 11, while in Maneage, this is built-in to the whole structure, and the user would have to opt out from version IDs and sha512sums rather than opt in.

Initial discussions among speakers at the upcoming Sep 2022 Guix meeting [3] suggest that:

(1.a) This is a problem of the host GNU/Linux OS, not of Guix itself, which in principle could become user-level only, especially on GNU/Hurd.
(1.b) Guix could be used to produce a container or pack that satisfies our eight criteria [4].

(2) Konrad will present more details in September.

My responses:

(1.a) This appears to be a long-term possibility, not practical currently on many real OSes.

(1.b) If the container or pack does not contain the Guix system itself, then it would seem to violate criterion 1 of being self-contained; a user of the container or pack would not have the full knowledge of how the original authors chose/patched/developed the software and designed/implemented/debugged/revised the scientific analysis of the research project.

(2) It would be best to see some working examples (preferably peer-reviewed) and then see if they satisfy the eight criteria (apart from (1) needing root access). These could be compared with recent Maneage papers listed under 'Published works using Maneage' in the README-hacking.md [5].

[1] https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/ielx7/5992/9459454/9403875/supp1-3072860.pdf
[2] https://guix.gnu.org/en/blog/2020/reproducible-computations-with-guix
[3] https://10years.guix.gnu.org/program
[4] https://doi.org/10.1109/MCSE.2021.3072860
[5] https://git.maneage.org/project.git/tree/README-hacking.md%23n172
    or clickable: https://codeberg.org/boud/maneage_dev/src/branch/maneage/README-hacking.md

Boud Roukema <boud>
Group Member


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