Debian perfect work environment

Working in a big company, my work laptop came with MS-Windows7 Enterprise installed.
But as you imagine, Unix is my preferred desktop environment. So let’s how to configure a perfect Debian Linux for a old wolf consultant like me. You will be able to install commercial software mubmo jumbo like Oracle Express and IBM Websphere in a snap, and have a 64 rock solid system, easy to bring in a USB stick if you like.

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Managing Cluster of Unix Machines Part3: Speed setup

Setting up a bunch of Linux machines is easier now, thank to company like

At we have the need to setup a tiny box with PHP Mysql and a bunch of unix utilities, to automate common tasks.

We took one of the TurnKey iso, and then we customized it via the apt-* utilities. Let’s see the steps

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Mastering clusters of Unix machines part2: the right tools

After working with unix for years, we noticed it is difficult to get a very uniform approach to unix management.

Often different Linux distributions share very little, configuration is different every time. Worst, some good unix tools (like cron, syslog, etc) can be used in a distributed environment, but are very difficult to configure, very user unfriendly and so on.

OpenPKG is a very clever stuff, because enable you to  install multiple copies of the same software with minimal effort.

CFEngine is  “an automated suite of programs for configuring and maintaining Unix-like computers.”

One of the strong ideas, is the cfengine ability to “self-repair” configuration, which brings with it the idea of “live” system.

On the FAQ we also read:

Cfengine does not inflict a model on you like most other tools for configuration. But it does inflict a security principle on you. Computers running cfengine never have to give up their autonomy to be part of a configuration collective. Pushing information to cfengine is strictly disallowed. Most users agree that this has kept cfengine users secure over the years.

Looking at “Automating UNIX and Linux Administration” you can find a deep description of these tools.

An older tool is kanif.

Mastering clusters of Unix machines part1: the right VM

One day, we have the need to create a fast cluster of linux machine, specialized and easy to segragate in different networks (for better security). We need web servers, integration servers (running java hudson), huge developer machines (running for instance eclispe) and so on.

It was not easy to find a good environment. This research lead us also to consider a very huge set of different and complex management software. In this series of article, we will show what we discovered.

Or final goal is to have a way to define a set of linux virutal machines, connect them and manage all using open source software. We also want tools easy to understand. We do not want super-optimized stuff, we have the “just it works well” approach.

We thinked about these types of virtual machine: super light LAMP servers, medim sized java tomcat servers (or udson servers), big database machines and super big development machines.

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