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some questions

post #1 of 7
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Well guys it has been a long time since I posted anything on OCN and even longer since I posted anything under the linux section. So here are my questions.

1) Im looking for a light distro but that is easy to use. It will go on servers and desktop computers. Im thinking ubuntu or xubuntu maybe open suse. Do you guys have any other suggestions?

on the server side I want no gui to show up on the server. Just a text login screen that will then load the gui when I enter a admin user. Or a basic user can log in with there user and just see one program.

2) is there a gui interface for configuring a custom kernal. probably have 2 or 3 server configurations.


3) also i tried to get a program running in wine but it will not work correctly. Is there a way to fix this without a ton of programing knowledge? Lol im sure i know the answer.

4) i also need a program to check hard drives. like the western digital program that as soon as it starts will tell you the SMART status of the drive (pass or fail) then you can run a through scan if desired.

also i know that ubuntu has a server edition. what is the difference between the server edition and desktop edition.
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Black Sunshine :)
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post #2 of 7
1) Im looking for a light distro but that is easy to use. It will go on servers and desktop computers. Im thinking ubuntu or xubuntu maybe open suse. Do you guys have any other suggestions?

Answer: Ubuntu is pretty user friendly and has quite a bit of support in its community. I personally prefer Debian, CentOS, or RedHat for server use because they are designed for enterprise use rather than for desktop use. However this is not to say that these cannot be used for a desktop. I have used both Debian and CentOS in the past for use as a desktop OS. Both work fine but require a little bit more effort to fine tune.

on the server side I want no gui to show up on the server. Just a text login screen that will then load the gui when I enter a admin user. Or a basic user can log in with there user and just see one program.

Answer: You can configure different shells or even script one of your own to only allow them to execute the one application. If its command line based it would be best to stay away from the GUI all together. CentOS or Debian would be best for this.


2) is there a gui interface for configuring a custom kernal. probably have 2 or 3 server configurations.

Answer: Sorta.. if you install CentOS, or RedHat you can use system-config-kernel but it may not be able to give you the functionality you need.


3) also i tried to get a program running in wine but it will not work correctly. Is there a way to fix this without a ton of programing knowledge? Lol im sure i know the answer.

Answer: eh it depends on the application. If it requires .NET framework you are pretty much screwed.

4) i also need a program to check hard drives. like the western digital program that as soon as it starts will tell you the SMART status of the drive (pass or fail) then you can run a through scan if desired.

Answer: smarttools will work for this. Or again you can script your own to pull the information you need.

also i know that ubuntu has a server edition. what is the difference between the server edition and desktop edition.

Answer: Nothing other than the default packages. They are the exact same OS.

Hope this helps!
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post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
1) Im looking for a light distro but that is easy to use. It will go on servers and desktop computers. Im thinking ubuntu or xubuntu maybe open suse. Do you guys have any other suggestions?
For servers I use CentOS almost exclusively. This may change if they don't get their act together and get version 6 out soon. I also admin some Ubuntu servers, though as a server it just doesn't feel as well put together.

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
on the server side I want no gui to show up on the server. Just a text login screen that will then load the gui when I enter a admin user. Or a basic user can log in with there user and just see one program.
This doesn't sound like a server at all. Why exactly do you want "no gui" on your server, and then a moment later, you want a gui? What are you trying to accomplish? Now explain it in more detail.

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
2) is there a gui interface for configuring a custom kernal. probably have 2 or 3 server configurations.
Why do you want a custom kernel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
3) also i tried to get a program running in wine but it will not work correctly. Is there a way to fix this without a ton of programing knowledge? Lol im sure i know the answer.
It depends on the program, but you didn't provide enough detail to go any further.

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
4) i also need a program to check hard drives. like the western digital program that as soon as it starts will tell you the SMART status of the drive (pass or fail) then you can run a through scan if desired.
The command line smartmontools package or GUI tool Disk Utility will do this. See the link in my sig for a detailed explanation of both of these.

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
also i know that ubuntu has a server edition. what is the difference between the server edition and desktop edition.
As far as I can tell, the big difference is that the server edition omits the GUI (by default). Again, I don't really recommend Ubuntu for a server.
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post #4 of 7
id go for centos for servers its about the best you can get for servers honestly... BUT a debian server would help you keep things the same between your server and your desktop... i dont really suggest ubuntu if you want a "light" desktop, so you can go for #! which is still fairly easy to use but its much lighter and debian based so it would even work as your server i run crunchbang as a desktop and its pretty nice imo

to boot something with sysv scripts into only command line, A. you have to boot into single user only command line mode... or B. set up one of your runlevels to have gdm/kdm/xdm disabled by default its not that hard... the readme's in your rc*.d folders or your init.d folder in /etc will tell yo how to do that. i believe that redhat based stuff has multi-user command line only by default on runlevel 3 you can change your default runlevel in the inittab file in /etc
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Kinda meh now...
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post #5 of 7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
For servers I use CentOS almost exclusively. This may change if they don't get their act together and get version 6 out soon. I also admin some Ubuntu servers, though as a server it just doesn't feel as well put together.



This doesn't sound like a server at all. Why exactly do you want "no gui" on your server, and then a moment later, you want a gui? What are you trying to accomplish? Now explain it in more detail.
the application that I will be running is for surveillance. So the less resources that the os is using to run itself the more that i have to run the program. essentially i want the server to boot in command line but instead of having to run commands to launch the gui you just enter a user name and password.

the gui will be for techs to use to trouble shoot issues with the server. or use other programs but not have to work with command line. because you cant always get people to learn command line.

and on the same thinking sometimes you have a customer that is having problems where they cant see the cameras they would get a log in so they can see the software and make sure the cameras are working on the server which would tell me that they may have a network problem but its not urgent because at least the server is recording cameras.


Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
Why do you want a custom kernel?
to use hardware more efficiently. to get the most performance possible.




Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
It depends on the program, but you didn't provide enough detail to go any further.
I am pretty sure the program uses .net and that is probably the problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
The command line smartmontools package or GUI tool Disk Utility will do this. See the link in my sig for a detailed explanation of both of these.
ill check them out.
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post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
the application that I will be running is for surveillance. So the less resources that the os is using to run itself the more that i have to run the program. essentially i want the server to boot in command line but instead of having to run commands to launch the gui you just enter a user name and password.

the gui will be for techs to use to trouble shoot issues with the server. or use other programs but not have to work with command line. because you cant always get people to learn command line.

and on the same thinking sometimes you have a customer that is having problems where they cant see the cameras they would get a log in so they can see the software and make sure the cameras are working on the server which would tell me that they may have a network problem but its not urgent because at least the server is recording cameras.
If you're going to have a GUI and use it from time to time, then the resources are going to have to be accounted for when you decide what sort of server to buy. There's then no reason to start and stop it on demand.

The other issue is, aside from your customers, do you really want incompetent moron "techs" who can't find their own head working on the server?

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
to use hardware more efficiently. to get the most performance possible.
Are you planning to be the permanent admin for this server, then? There's a good reason we DO NOT generally use custom kernels. They're a maintenance nightmare, and the tiny percentage of potential performance gain isn't worth it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by endo View Post
I am pretty sure the program uses .net and that is probably the problem.
OK, well there's nothing we can do if you're unwilling to provide any information.
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post #7 of 7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
If you're going to have a GUI and use it from time to time, then the resources are going to have to be accounted for when you decide what sort of server to buy. There's then no reason to start and stop it on demand.

The other issue is, aside from your customers, do you really want incompetent moron "techs" who can't find their own head working on the server?



Are you planning to be the permanent admin for this server, then? There's a good reason we DO NOT generally use custom kernels. They're a maintenance nightmare, and the tiny percentage of potential performance gain isn't worth it.



OK, well there's nothing we can do if you're unwilling to provide any information.
so a custom kernel is not a good idea. makes sense.

and as for techs we are a company of guys that install cameras. or you can have guys that can tweak software and run programs. i can do both and it is hard to find guys that can do that. and having a bunch of computer guys is useless if you cant get the equipment installed. so sometimes you have to let the non computer savy trouble shoot.


so next question. how friendly is cent os for a desktop? i now plan on checking it out.

why use debian over ubuntu. can you explain further.

im going to try to start implementing raid cards. any recomendations. will use either raid 5 or 6.

any other suggestions?
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