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Enhancing Xen Documentation: Insights from the Community

By October 27, 2023Announcements

Greetings Xen Community,

I’m thrilled to share the valuable insights gathered from our recent documentation survey. Your feedback is instrumental in steering the course for Xen’s documentation.

Let’s delve into the details provided by the dedicated participants who generously shared their perspectives.

Participants and Experience

Our participants encompass a diverse range of roles within the Xen community. From Principal Developers to Systems Administrators, their combined experience spans over a decade for many. This diverse blend of expertise provides invaluable context to our documentation efforts.

Preferred Documentation Channels

The Xen Project Wiki emerged as the preferred documentation resource, closely followed by Xenbits, mailing lists, IRC/Matrix, and distro documentation. However, an opportunity has been identified to improve newcomers’ introduction to our documentation resources.

Current Documentation: Strengths and Weaknesses

The community commends our existing documentation but acknowledges room for improvement. The Wiki’s accessibility, comprehensive command-line guides, and insightful system overviews received high praise. Special mention was made for the AMD/Xilinx documentation and the wealth of historical coverage we currently cover. However, there’s a shared concern about outdated information in some areas, notably the Wiki which is something we will be working towards.

Productivity Impact

For most, the current documentation moderately affects productivity, scoring an average of 5 on a scale of 0 to 10.

Frequency of Reference

Participants referred to the documentation on an ad hoc basis, with some indicating more frequent use due to their roles.

Liked and Desired Improvements

  • Liked: The Wiki’s easy searchability and the command-line documentation’s thoroughness were highly appreciated.
  • Desired Improvements: Participants voiced the need for updated, accurate, and extensive documentation. They specifically requested more tutorials, in-depth debugging resources, and practical XENAPI code examples.

Insights on Documentation Platforms

Suggestions for documentation platforms were diverse, ranging from Doxygen to Sphinx, GitLab to Docusaurus. The preference leaned towards platforms that facilitate collaboration, clarity, and ease of updates.


Enhancing Xen documentation is a collective endeavor. As your Community Manager, I am committed to working closely with each of you to bring these improvements to fruition. Together, we’ll not only refresh the content but also explore different platform enhancements, including finding a new home for documentation on our new future Xen Project website.

I’d like to thank our dear community members, for your invaluable contributions and thoughtful feedback. This journey is ongoing, and I appreciate your patience as we strive towards a more robust open-source project for all.

Kelly Choi
Community Manager, Xen Project