Open engineer position: extending ConPaaS for heterogeneous clouds

IRISA and the University of Rennes 1 (France) have an open position for an Engineer in the domain of cloud computing.

Note: this position is now filled.


Title: extending ConPaaS for heterogeneous clouds.


Cloud computing systems are currently composed of large numbers of relatively inexpensive computers, interconnected by standard IP routers and supported by stock disk drives. However, many demanding applications have now reached a fundamental limit in their ability to scale out using traditional machines. Future performance improvements will derive from the use of high-end specialized equipment in addition to standard hardware: GPUs of course, but also FPGAs, programmable routers, and advanced storage technologies. In this context the HARNESS European project investigates: (i) how cloud providers may offer such extremely heterogeneous hardware to its users; and (ii) how cloud customers may make use of these heterogeneous resources to run their applications such that they exhibit the best possible price-performance tradeoff.

We are planning to base the HARNESS application execution runtime on ConPaaS, an open-source runtime environment for hosting applications in the cloud. ConPaaS aims at offering the full power of the cloud to application developers while shielding them from the associated complexity of the cloud. It is designed to host both high-performance scientific applications and online Web applications. It automates the entire life-cycle of an application, including collaborative development, deployment, performance monitoring, and automatic scaling. It runs on a variety of public and private clouds, and it is currently the only PaaS system capable of executing applications across multiple clouds simultaneously.

ConPaaS was initially developed in the Contrail European project. It is now a mature and stable platform, with new features being added on a regular basis. ConPaaS developers are distributed across several teams in Europe (France, Netherlands, Germany, U.K., etc.).

We are now looking for a full-time engineer who will design and implement the necessary modifications to adapt ConPaaS to the requirements of HARNESS applications. This job includes the following tasks:

  • Develop extensions to the current system. The planned extensions essentially consist in integrating ConPaaS with heterogeneous virtualized hardware resources such as FPGAs,  programmable routers, and advanced storage technologies. A number of structural changes in the ConPaaS architecture will also be necessary.
  • Coordinate developments with those realized by our partners in Rennes and in other European universities.
  • Participate in the ongoing software testing and documentation activities.
  • Provide user support to ConPaaS users within the HARNESS consortium.
  • Occasionally give presentations about ConPaaS and HARNESS at relevant technical conferences.


Required qualifications:

  • A Master degree in computer science or a closely related field.
  • Excellent knowledge of large-scale distributed systems and cloud computing.
  • Provable programming skills in Linux environments.
  • Good communication and writing skills.
  • Good command of English.
  • Knowledge of the following technologies is not mandatory but will be considered as a plus:
    • Python and shell scripting
    • Commercial cloud systems: Amazon EC2 and EBS, Heroku, etc.
    • Open-source cloud systems: OpenNebula, OpenStack.
    • Revision control systems: GIT, svn
    • Linux distributions: Debian, Ubuntu
    • Heterogeneous hardware (FPGAs, GPUs…)
  • Note that knowledge of French is not required for this position.


Start date: as soon as possible. The position is offered for a period of one year. The contract may be extended further, depending on funding availability.


Location: Rennes is the capital city of Britanny, in the western part of France. It is easy to reach thanks to the high-speed train line to Paris. Rennes is a lively city and a major center for higher education and research. The job will take place within the INRIA/IRISA research center, which is internationally recognized for its research in the domain of information and communication sciences. The job will take place within the MYRIADS team which is involved in many research projects in the domain of cloud computing: ConPaaSContrailDALHISGreenTouchHARNESSSnooze, etc.


Applications: A first selection of candidates will take place on  December 13th 2013. To maximize your chances of success, please send your application before this date. The position will however remain open until a suitable candidate is found. To apply, please send the following documents to Guillaume Pierre (

  • CV
  • Motivation letter highlighting your previous achievements in similar projects
  • Two recommendation letters


Contact:  For any additional information please contact  Guillaume Pierre (


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