Reduce Number Of Dashboard panels

https://blueprints.launchpad.net/sahara/+spec/reduce-number-of-panels

The sahara UI currently consists of 10 panels. That is more than any other Openstack service. Additionally, the way that the panels are meant to interact with each other is not intuitively obvious and can lead to confusion for users. The purpose of this spec is to propose reorganizing the sahara UI into a more logical layout that will give both a cleaner look and a more intuitive set of tools to the users.

Problem description

The sahara dashboard has too many panels without enough context provided to convey how each panel relates to the others. They are currently grouped vertically so that each appears close to the related panels in the list, but there is no other visual cue given. Given that, learning how to use the dashboard can often be a frustrating exercise of trial and error.

Proposed change

In the 10 panels that are currently in the dashboard, 4 of them (Clusters, Cluster Templates, Node Group Templates, Image Registry) are focused around cluster creation. Given that, it makes sense to fold them into a single panel which will be called “Clusters”. This will make it very obvious where to go for all things cluster-related. Each of the current cluster-centric panels will have their own tab within the newly created panel. There are 5 panels (Jobs, Job Templates, Job Binaries, Data Sources and Plugins) that are focused around job creation and execution.

In addition to the conversion from panels to tabs, I’m proposing that the code also gets reorganized to reflect the new layout (ie: moving code to be a subdir of the panel that it will reside in – there will be a top level “clusters” panel that will contain subdirectories for each of the tabs in that panel (clusters, cluster templates, node group templates, image registry). That reorganization will result in the changing of the URL definitions and will also change how we reference template names (Instead of “project/data_processing.nodegroup-templates/whatever.html”, the “/project” part can be dropped, resulting in “data_processing.nodegroup-templates/whatever.html”, which is a slight improvement in brevity. Additionally, we can also elect to drop the “data_processing.” portion by renaming the template folders. The oddity that forced us to use that as a workaround has since been solved in the horizon “enabled” mechanism.

Here is a quick ascii diagram showing the proposed UI layout: +————+—————————————————+ | | | | Clusters | Clusters|Cluster Templates|Node Group Templates | | Jobs | +——————————————–+ | | | | | | | | | Usual table for chosen object | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | +——————————————–+ | | | | +————+—————————————————+

Addionally, the current “Guide” panel will be split to fit more readily into the job and cluster spaces. It currently occupies a separate tab and is linked to from buttons in the other panels. The buttons will remain the same, but the code will be moved into subdirectories under clusters for the clusters guide and jobs for the job guide.

Alternatives

We could choose to leave the current panels alone and rely on stronger, more verbose documentation and possibly provide links to that documentation from within the dashboard itself. After multiple discussions with the sahara team, it is clear that this approach is not as desirable as reorganizing the layout.

We could possibly avoid some of the code reorganization, but in my opinion, it is important to have the code accurately reflect the layout. It makes it easier to design future changes and easier to debug.

Data model impact

No data model impact

REST API impact

No REST API impact

Other end user impact

End users will see a different layout in the sahara dashboard. While the difference in moving to tabs is significant, once an experienced user gets into the tabs, the functionality there will be unchanged from how it currently works. Some of the URLs used will also change a bit to remove any ambiguity (for instance the “details” URLs for each object type will be renamed to become something like “ds-details” for the data source details URLs).

Deployer impact

No deployer impact

Developer impact

No developer impact

Sahara-image-elements impact

No sahara-image-elements impact

Sahara-dashboard / Horizon impact

There will be changes to the “enabled” files in the sahara-dashboard project, but the process for installation and running will remain the same. If you are upgrading an existing installation, there will be some “enabled” files that are no longer required (in addition to updated files). We will need to be sure to document (and script wherever possible) which files should be removed.

Implementation

Assignee(s)

Primary assignee:
croberts
Other contributors:
None

Work Items

Reorganize sahara UI code to convert multiple panels into 2 panels that contain multiple tabs. This will likely be spread into multiple patches in order to try to minimize the review effort of each chunk. Each chunk is still going to be somewhat large though since it will involve moving entire directories of code around.

Dependencies

None

Testing

Each of the existing unit tests will still apply. They will all need to be passing in order to accept this change. It is likely that the (few) existing integration tests will need to be rewritten or adapted to expect the proposed set of changes.

Documentation Impact

The sahara-dashboard documentation is written and maintained by the sahara team. There will be several documentation updates required as a result of the changes described in this spec.

References

None