Archived/New Xen Website
I am finally able to build a new website for Xen.org. The aim of this work is to create an engaging and integrated community web site that invites participation and acts as a portal for Xen users, developers and companies in the eco-system. The site will have several main areas:
The home page, which mainly acts as an aggregator for news and activity happening in the community. This should make it easier for newcomers to Xen, to have a brief look and get a feeling of the vibrancy of the Xen community. There is actually a lot of activity today: it is merely obscured and hidden as the activity is dispersed to many places. The home page will also provide a window into the new Xen.org blog, as well as sections for Xen events, etc.
An area for users. This area will provide information about Xen and Xen projects, will help you learn about Xen, will point people to downloads and Linux/Unix distributions that contain Xen, will help you find documentation, will help you get help and support, etc. Xen has traditionally been a very developer focused community. As a consequence we have not supported our users that well. I have some open questions in this area, where I will be looking for your input. For example: is there a preference for mailing lists, forums, or stackoverflow like functionality? How should we best link to Linux distributions and other projects that distribute Xen?
An eco-system area: this is essentially a searchable directory of product and projects that use Xen, modify Xen, build on top of Xen, distribute Xen, etc. It is also a directory of research around Xen and services such as consultancy, training, hosting and cloud vendors that are built on top of Xen. This section will be fairly interactive: the intention is that if you are a vendor, you can add an entry to the directory which will be approved by a moderator moderator before publication. As a user of the directory, you can rate, recommend, comment on vendors, products, projects, etc.
An area for developers: this contains project descriptions, links to downloads, codelines, information about governance, mailing lists, etc.
Other changes: the site will have the capability to register users. Generally, all areas of the site will be accessible without any user account, except for areas where you need to write to the site and identification is thus necessary. We envisage that we will be able to implement single sign-on capability for the new site and at least the Xen wiki. There will be user profiles that allow you to provide information about how you use Xen, but ultimately you only have to provide what you are comfortable with. The idea is for example that I can implement functionality such as the old community spotlight section by just maintaining a list of profile names. Name, pictures, bio, etc. would be managed and maintained by you. I am also looking at capabilities, such as being able to send newsletters, to registered site users.
The new Xen.org will be a Joomla based website and we are thinking of using various plug-ins to implement the functionality above. Not all is decided yet, but we expect that we will follow a very agile and fast development cycle.
Where we need your input
We will consult you on questions such as look and feel, on a new or revamped Xen logo, on new panda's, on navigation, on some of the headlines and taglines.
In some areas we do not quite know what you want from Xen.org: e.g. should we have a user mailing list, user fora and/or support forum functionality similar to stackoverflow? Should we make the developer mailing lists accessible via the website?
I also wanted to get views on whether it is OK to require logging into the site before you download a Xen or XCP binary. My thinking is that this is not good, but that it is OK to ask you nicely to sign in and/or create an account before you download. Having some information about its users is important to maintain the long term health of an open source project: today Xen has very little information about its users. Mainly, because we never asked. Providing information is an easy way how you can give something back to the community.
Another area where we will consult you is on how we migrate you from existing systems to the new one. This will cover questions such as: is it OK, to migrate existing users to the new site (using some kind of opt-out or activation scheme)? Is it not, etc.?
Please give feedback here adding your name, the version you are commenting on and a comment.
Please give feedback here adding your name, the version you prefer and ideas on taglines.
Feedback: Mailings lists/fora/support functionality
In some areas we do not quite know what you want from Xen.org: one of these areas is what the best way to support users is. First we would like to know, what medium to get help you use today and what you prefer.
- Mailing Lists, maybe with a forum like front-end
- Forums: if so, how many and what type of categories
- Stackoverflow like support functionality
- All of these
Please give feedback here adding your name, your preferences and whatever else you may want to add.
Feedback: Migrating data
Another area where we would like your input is on data migration from old Xen systems to the new accounts: for example
- Assuming you are registered on a Xen Wiki or Mailing List, is it OK to migrate accounts to the new Xen.org? This would become essential, if for example we imported the user mailing list content into a forum, to provide continuity.
- An in between option, would be to sign you up provisionally but sign up is not complete until acknowledged by you. upn up. Like an e-mail invitation to sign up/
Please give feedback on data migration and privacy concerns here adding your name, your preferences and whatever else you may want to add.