Ubuntu Ubuntu mirror in Mauritius

Operating system updates when fast and smooth, it is always a pleasure to see. No one ever wants a slow machine because updates are hogging resources. Thanks to cloud.mu who sponsored a server and bandwidth, we now have an Ubuntu mirror in Mauritius.

Ish Sookun

3 min read min read

Most of the university students that speak about Linux say that they have used Ubuntu or at least they started with Ubuntu and then experimented with other Linux distributions. Therefore, it made sense to have an Ubuntu mirror in Mauritius in order to improve the speed of updates.

A few weeks ago, David Venter of cloud.mu and I were chatting about just that. David gladly provisioned a VM with the specs needed for the mirror. I peeked into some Ubuntu documentation for building the mirror and had a chat on IRC #ubuntu-mirror channel with other mirror admins to understand the disk space requirements.

Once everything was set up, I submitted the mirror for reviewing. That process was not long. In less than 48 hours, the mirror was approved as an official Ubuntu mirror.

I also made an announcement on the Ubuntu mirrors announce list.

At the moment, cloud.mu is the only Ubuntu mirror in Mauritius. About less than a week after submission, the mirror was promoted to country mirror for Mauritius. It means that users do not have to modify their sources.list file to manually add the cloud.mu mirror. During installation, the installer will set the URL for the repo mirror as mu.archive.ubuntu.com. Previously, the sub-domain was pointing to other mirrors. Now, it is now a CNAME for ubuntu-mirror.cloud.mu. Therefore, all requests during Ubuntu updates are sent to the Mauritian mirror.

 <<>> DiG 9.18.1-1ubuntu1.1-Ubuntu <<>> @9.9.9.9 mu.archive.ubuntu.com
; (1 server found)
;; global options: +cmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 48158
;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 2, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 1

;; OPT PSEUDOSECTION:
; EDNS: version: 0, flags:; udp: 512
;; QUESTION SECTION:
;mu.archive.ubuntu.com.		IN	A

;; ANSWER SECTION:
mu.archive.ubuntu.com.	600	IN	CNAME	ubuntu-mirror.cloud.mu.
ubuntu-mirror.cloud.mu.	300	IN	A	102.222.106.237

;; Query time: 552 msec
;; SERVER: 9.9.9.9#53(9.9.9.9) (UDP)
;; WHEN: Mon Aug 29 10:52:45 +04 2022
;; MSG SIZE  rcvd: 102

The above dig query result shows the CNAME record in place.

Mauritius Internet Exchange Point (MIXP)

The cloud.mu servers benefit from a 10 Gbps link at the Mauritius Internet Exchange Point. All Internet Services Providers that peer at the MIXP, their clients will gain from this low latency Ubuntu mirror.

PING ubuntu-mirror.cloud.mu (102.222.106.237): 56 data bytes
64 bytes from 102.222.106.237: icmp_seq=0 ttl=57 time=5.544 ms
64 bytes from 102.222.106.237: icmp_seq=1 ttl=57 time=9.757 ms
64 bytes from 102.222.106.237: icmp_seq=2 ttl=57 time=6.407 ms
64 bytes from 102.222.106.237: icmp_seq=3 ttl=57 time=8.059 ms
64 bytes from 102.222.106.237: icmp_seq=4 ttl=57 time=9.482 ms

--- ubuntu-mirror.cloud.mu ping statistics ---
5 packets transmitted, 5 packets received, 0.0% packet loss
round-trip min/avg/max/stddev = 5.544/7.850/9.757/1.658 ms

What mirrors are available for Ubuntu?

Right now, we have archive and release mirrors. I am hoping that we can have a discussion with more Ubuntu users on the island to see whether we require additional mirrors for Ubuntu security and ports. I am experimenting with Ubuntu 22.04.1 LTS arm64 and will probably set up an update mirror for that.

How to join Ubuntu Mauritius?

Users can join the Ubuntu Mauritius team on Launchpad. The group exists since 2011 but most of the time has remained dormant, with maybe a few Ubuntu Jams organised at the University of Mauritius in the past. If you would like to help with organising regular meetings for the group, ping us via the mailing list: https://lists.launchpad.net/ubuntu-mu.