I'm Ben, and I am the guy that currently spins, releases, and manages the Ubuntu Cloud images and I spend a lot of time working on improving the build process, working on build or cloud image bugs, work with new EC2 S3 mirrors and generally doing cloud-type stuff. I do a lot of engagement with Ubuntu users via direct IRC chatting, email and updating users via the cloud list. I've been actively involved with the Ubuntu Server Team and have done some bug triaging. The thing that I am most proud of, was my technical work to do get Ubuntu on the AWS Qucikstart (, which allows fellow Ubuntu users to find and launch the official Ubuntu images on AWS (previously only Red Hat, SuSE and Amazon Linux were there). The other bit is the new EC2 S3 mirrors. Once the new EC2 S3 mirrors are activated, users will be able to get packages from a very highly reliable source.

My reason for applying as a Ubuntu member, instead of a contributing developer, is because I don't do a lot of packaging work; the majority of my contributions are technical, but fail to meet the technical requirements of contributing developer.

Over the last 19 years, I've been an active open source user; its been a hobby that fortunately became my job. I am currenlty a Canonical employee tasked with the Ubuntu Cloud Image. I specialize in Cloud technoligies.

Previous Application

I previously applied at the 15 March meeting, but due to time, my application was not discussed nor acted on.

About Me





IRC nick:


Google +:



Spanish Fork, Utah, USA

Code Contributions



Ubuntu Cloud Images

  • During the Oneiric development cycle, I implemented Debian's Live-build to deprectate the old build system of VMBuilder.
  • Various changes to the Cloud Image publishing process ( ec2-publishing-scripts )

    • Implemented new Query2 format for discovery and mirroring of cloud image

  • Added ARM{hf,el} build process to produce ARM Cloud Images
  • Cloud Image Process
    • I manage the daily build process
    • I also handle release-day launches of the cloud images
  • Rebranded to use new styling

S3 Ubuntu Mirrors

  • Authored and setup syncronization process to mirror new S3 mirrors in EC2
    • Process took over two months to implement
    • Published code publiclly here

  • Working with Amazon to resolve bug 948461

    • Currnently planned as the replacement for current EC2 mirror
  • Unique distribution method of APT mirrors, which no other major distribution has implemented

Precise LXC

Contributed to the Ubuntu Cloud template

Contributed to Cloud-Init

Current Project

I'm currently developing a tool that utilizes the new Query2 data-format to allow users to consume and customize cloud-images at for arbitrary clouds. The source is here

In the near term, I will be putting up a public Glance server for openstack installations to consume images.

Bug Triaging

I have done a little bug triaging for the Ubuntu Server Team.

Future Goals

My biggest goal is to see Ubuntu be the best distribution in the cloud.


-- jorge 2012-03-14 19:15:19 - Ben has been a tremendous help keeping Ubuntu in shape on Amazon Web Services.

I helped test the work he did on putting the mirrors in EC2 and though it sounds simple it's a huge benefit; this is something that was previously only available to Amazon Linux users and is now available for Ubuntu users to use. If membership is granted I'd like to see your blog on Planet Ubuntu talking about some of these infrastructure-y cloud bits that we all take for granted.

Ben is great to work with. He's my contact for getting the cloud images coordinated with the rest of the images for our releases. When ever I ask, he's got things ready to go, and doesn't need reminders - which is awesome from my perspective. Smile :) Have also enjoyed brainstorming with him on ideas for making our release processes better, and looking forward to more brainstorming and improvements in the months to come. KateStewart

-- Ben has done a great job coming up to speed in Ubuntu development. He has more then earned Ubuntu Membership though his work on Ubuntu Cloud offerings. His contributions have largely been outside the packaging space at this point. I do not hesitate in the slightest to sponsor him for Ubuntu Membership.

Ben_Howard(utlemming) (last edited 2012-05-01 18:47:19 by smoser)