On Oct. 17th, 2015, Hortonworks Inc. and Pivotal Software Inc. sponsored¬†the first ever Apache Ambari hackfest at Pivotal’s offices in Palo Alto.¬†The goal of this all-day event was to encourage hackers to use the extensible Apache Ambari framework and develop new features and ideas for Ambari. The challenge for participants was to brainstorm and try to develop a working feature for Ambari that could be demonstrated at the end of the Hackathon. Several members of the IBM BigInsights team participated in the Hackathon.

The Hackfest began on a Saturday morning with an overview of Apache Ambari and its Extensible Framework. It included an outline of the Ambari architecture, stack inheritance, REST apis that facilitate the management and monitoring of the resources of a cluster and an introduction of Ambari views and the framework. During the hackathon, participants worked as teams on their projects, conferring with Hortonworks staff as they refined their ideas. Three teams from IBM submitted proposals at the end of the Hackfest.


The submissions included:

The contributions from the Hortonworks and Pivotal staff members included:

  • A new service for Solr and Logstash, and an Ambari Log Search view.
  • Ability to add a new repository from the Ambari Admin view in the UI.


First prize was won by the submission for adding a new service definition for Apache Cassandra within Ambari. Cassandra is a scalable, open source, distributed database management system that provides high availability. The developer demonstrated adding and starting the service successfully from the Ambari web user interface.

Two of the IBM submissions were tied for second place at the hackfest.  The first submission to win second prize, developed by Tuong Truong and Juanjo Marron, was for adding a catalog service for Ambari. The Catalog service is a common service for centralizing databases for Ambari components to facilitate database management.

Jesus Alvarez and Chandana Mirashi, also tied in second place with their submission of a service deployer for Ambari, which allows for installation of 3rd party services (for e.g., services hosted on GitHub) on Ambari, independent of the Ambari distribution.

The third submission by an IBM team (Anna Shaverdian, Debbani Kundu Naskar and Sangeeta Ravindran) was a proposal to develop a new feature that allows users to schedule summary reports based on the metrics of a service (for e.g. HDFS, Yarn, HBase etc.) from the Ambari web user interface.

The hackfest provided a great opportunity for developers to learn about Ambari and get involved with the community, and for community members to share ideas and visions for the future of Ambari. ¬†And we are particularly proud that IBM had both the largest representation of any participating company and garnered 2 out of 3 of the prizes!”






Winning submissions:


Other submissions by IBM:


Pictures from the hackfest:


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