Linux Server Stuff

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JJW009
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Linux Server Stuff

Post by JJW009 » Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:39 am

A high percentage of the regulars here seem to be involved in Linux servers of some description. I thought I would list what I'm using. One day I might even list how I got them to work properly - if it ever happens!



Home Server:



HP mini-server which I absolutely love and still think was fantastic value. It came with a 250GB disk already in one of the 4 hot-swap bays so the OS is on there at the moment, but I think I might put it on the internal Flash memory stick when I next rebuild.



The OS is Xubuntu and I love it, although I still prefer XP <!--emo&:shame:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/4013/140/emo/shame.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='shame.gif' /><!--endemo-->



I've installed Apache, php and mySQL as a package. I can't remember which one! What I do remember is that it didn't come with CURL and it was a right pain to get working. However, now it's pretty easy to just edit the config files to set up a new website.



For remote access I use NX - or I did until the latest updates made it all go badly wrong, which was heart breaking after all the work I put in to getting it all nice. In the end I realised that you can't do any real work from the GUI anyway, so you may as well just stick to SSH and the command line. This realisation made me think I should install Ubuntu Server onto the flash drive instead. Memory is an issue, at only 1GB and it's proper server stuff so it's not cheap.



The only reason I still have Xubuntu on there is because I put a lot of hours into making it all nice! I could actually live with it as my main computer, if I didn't play any games ever. It's great for development (did my 'droid apps on it) and it does play Minecraft, but there's no Steam yet I think.



Anyway, it's main job is to hold lots of hard disks and act as a NAS - which it does way better than the old and noisy MyBook. 3TB of them and room for more <!--emo&:P--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/tongue.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='tongue.gif' /><!--endemo-->



Web Server:



This is a LAMP Virtual Appliance from Turnkey: <a href='http://www.turnkeylinux.org/lampstack' target='_blank' rel='nofollow'>http://www.turnkeylinux.org/lampstack</a>



It's based on Ubuntu Server. It comes with PHPMyAdmin, Postfix and various Webmin modules.



You know what? None of them work the way I expected. I ended up ignoring all the pretty fancy web interfaces and doing everything from the bloody command line again. However, it's ridiculously efficient using next to no memory or clock cycles.



It's running on our work's Windows Server in Telehouse with a 100Meg internet connection and it's own dedicated public IP. It really can has internetz lol <!--emo&:lol:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/laugh.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='laugh.gif' /><!--endemo-->



VoIP Server:



Another Virtual Appliance "PBX in a Flash", this time based on CentOS.



This build has absolutely nothing installed. Seriously, I had to install ifconfig FFS! It's because of security - if you don't need it, leave it out. It's very well thought out indeed and I'm hoping to build a high-value product around it using a custom php interface.



The VM is just proof of concept. For the real thing we'll actually get a real server, provided I can make some progress <!--emo&<_<--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/dry.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='dry.gif' /><!--endemo-->



Tips and Tricks



I don't really have any yet because it all still hurts my brain. However, if you're using a Windows PC to admin then there's two tools you need:



1. Putty - but you must already know that I imagine? It hasn't changed for so many years because it just works. If you want to look like an evil genius, get a free Android version for your phone and hack from your nearest hollowed out volcano:



Connectbot

<img src='http://connectbot.googlecode.com/svn/tr ... r-code.png' border='0' alt='user posted image'>



2. WinSCP - a remote file manager. It connects over SSH and you can manipulate files as if you were local using a Windows Explorer style file browser. You can also set permissions with a few clicks. It just makes life so easy if you don't like typing in long strings of weird looking characters, although it's obviously not as cool so only use it when no one is looking <!--emo&:lol:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/laugh.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='laugh.gif' /><!--endemo-->




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RedeyesUK
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Linux Server Stuff

Post by RedeyesUK » Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:26 am

I hadn't come across WinSCP before - downloaded now. Very cool! Just like using FTP but without the bother of setting up FTP server access. Nice! <!--emo&:good:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/4013/140/emo/good.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='good.gif' /><!--endemo-->



Now, let's see what I've got here:



Web Server

My main toy at the moment is a CentOS 6 server on a Linode VPS, I have until recently been running on Ubuntu server 8.04 until I tried upgrading to 10.04 (Don't ever do that, it will break *everything* <!--emo&:shame:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/4013/140/emo/shame.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='shame.gif' /><!--endemo--> ).

It's set up with Virtualmin as I'm planning on using it to run various websites through it, and knock all my various shared hosting accounts on the head.

There's still a bit to set up and get working properly (DNS server for one, also I've got an SSL certificate to figure out how to install), but it's basically up and running reasonably well for now.



Home Server

Running on an old Athlon 64 box, it's supposed to be dual boot Ubuntu Desktop/CentOS Server, but the CentOS install (planned as a mirror of the web server for testing purposes) borked everything and now it doesn't boot at all. <!--emo&<_<--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/dry.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='dry.gif' /><!--endemo--> .



Work Server

The baby of the bunch: an old P4 Dell SFF desktop machine that wasn't doing anything useful, I've got it set up with CentOS and virtualmin, I'm planning on using it as a mail server for some various extra email domains we have at work, to avoid cluttering up the main (MS Exchange) server. It should have an easy life as not too much goes on with those domains. Currently not set up properly as I haven't had time. <!--emo&:(--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/sad.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='sad.gif' /><!--endemo-->



Future plan

I've been looking at <a href='http://www.zimbra.com/products/zimbra-open-source.html' target='_blank' rel='nofollow'>Zimbra</a> as an alternative to MS Exchange, I just need some time and spare hardware to give it a go.



---------------------------



I know what you mean about the web interfaces - with Virtualmin (Basically webmin with some extra modules), there's plenty of web-based GUI goodness to be had, but I tend to go straight for the config files. The advantage is, the webface (did I just invent a word? <!--emo&:P--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/tongue.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='tongue.gif' /><!--endemo--> ) makes it easier to a) find the files in the first place, 2) edit them, and iii) restart the necessary daemons once you're done (rather than trying to remember all the various restart commands on the command line). So for me, it's worth having even if I don't use the GUI the way it's intended.
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JJW009
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Linux Server Stuff

Post by JJW009 » Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:42 am

RedeyesUK wrote:I hadn't come across WinSCP before - downloaded now. Very cool! Just like using FTP but without the bother of setting up FTP server access. Nice! <!--emo&:good:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/4013/140/emo/good.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='good.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Hooray, I was useful!



SSH is also much more secure than FTP, and I do love the Explorer interface. It's an option in View - Preferences - Environment - Interface. Technically it's inferior to the "Commander" interface, but I think it's really neat.



I even use it to move stuff around my Ubuntu machine, rather than pressing ScrLk to flip the KVM over and have to actually look at it <!--emo&:lol:--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/laugh.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='laugh.gif' /><!--endemo-->



Oh, and yes I've used the webface (TM Mr Red lol) to restart services. That's about the only bit that worked on mine, plus the status pages look pretty even if they're a lie <!--emo&:D--><img src='http://i2.ifrm.com/html/emoticons/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->




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