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Old 05-10-2010, 06:12 PM
JohnS
 
Default measuring kernel speed

On Mon, 2010-05-10 at 13:37 -0400, Ross Walker wrote:
> On Mon, May 10, 2010 at 1:15 PM, Les Mikesell <lesmikesell@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> If I am setting up an ESXi infrastructure the first thing I would do
> is setup a Cobbler server and a Windows deployment server (maybe a
> Solaris Jump Start server) and integrate it with the VMware vCenter
> templates. Then it's all point-n-click server deployment from there.
---
What happens when your in a non ESX environment? Like me. I am creating
and tearing down virt machines on user request. Sounds like a lot of bs
doing that but we have to for certain client machines.

I guess my question to Ross is ESX capable of doing this? Just
wondering as I'm looking onto rebuildiong oVirt in house.

John

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Old 05-10-2010, 06:23 PM
Ross Walker
 
Default measuring kernel speed

On Mon, May 10, 2010 at 2:12 PM, JohnS <jses27@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> On Mon, 2010-05-10 at 13:37 -0400, Ross Walker wrote:
>> On Mon, May 10, 2010 at 1:15 PM, Les Mikesell <lesmikesell@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>>
>> If I am setting up an ESXi infrastructure the first thing I would do
>> is setup a Cobbler server and a Windows deployment server (maybe a
>> Solaris Jump Start server) and integrate it with the VMware vCenter
>> templates. Then it's all point-n-click server deployment from there.
> ---
> What happens when your in a non ESX environment? Like me. *I am creating
> and tearing down virt machines on user request. *Sounds like a lot of bs
> doing that but we have to for certain client machines.
>
> I guess my question to Ross is ESX capable of doing this? *Just
> wondering as I'm looking onto rebuildiong oVirt in house.

The Cobbler and Windows deployment servers should work equally well in
a Xen environment as they do in an ESX environment.

You don't need vCenter or some other virtualization management
platform, of course it centralizes deployment if you do which makes
things easier, but the same could be accomplished via scripting on the
command line, maybe setup a "management VM" guest domain and locate
your domain deployment scripts there, maybe the same domain that runs
Cobbler and use XMLRPC to communicate with the Xen servers in the
enterprise.

-Ross
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Old 05-10-2010, 06:30 PM
Ross Walker
 
Default measuring kernel speed

On Mon, May 10, 2010 at 2:05 PM, Les Mikesell <lesmikesell@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 5/10/2010 12:37 PM, Ross Walker wrote:
>>
>>> I think it is unfortunate how difficult it is to back up a working linux
>>> machine and restore it onto different hardware, given that the system
>>> really is very hardware independent. *But, detecting the hardware and
>>> mapping it to device drivers seems to be a black art hidden inside of
>>> anaconda and then the local hardware related settings are fairly
>>> hopelessly intertwined with application and user preferences in your
>>> backup copies. *I always thought that this would be a common enough
>>> problem that some distribution would address it, but so far it hasn't
>>> happened.
>>
>> That's why God invented the systems administrator!
>
> Well, yeah - I suppose you could say the design is good for the job
> security of sysadmins and for requiring support subscriptions from the
> distribution vendors, but it's something that the computer really should
> be able to handle by itself just like it does during the initial install.

Computers are dumb, and if we give too much power to the OS vendors
they'll enslave us.

>> Here I use kickstart scripts for baseline server types that perform
>> all the basic configurations on install.
>
> Have you totaled up the hours you've spend on these tasks that would be
> unnecessary in a better-designed system? *And even if that sort-of makes
> sense for servers that have a basic "type", what about ones that have
> application developers as users and end up accumulating all kinds of
> cruft that you don't know about?

After the initial time to research and setup the system the time to
maintain and extend was minimal, and these were setup a long, long,
long time ago (circa Windows 2000), use rsync or DFSR to replicate the
config to other deployment servers in remote offices.

I definitely recommend it.

Just need to setup clear policies with the developers, save your work
here and it will be recoverable, save your work there and you are SoL.

>> If I am setting up an ESXi infrastructure the first thing I would do
>> is setup a Cobbler server and a Windows deployment server (maybe a
>> Solaris Jump Start server) and integrate it with the VMware vCenter
>> templates. Then it's all point-n-click server deployment from there.
>
> Don't forget that you can use ESXi for free, but not vCenter. *But,
> there's really no problem in just copying/cloning VMware images around -
> you don't have to go through any extra contortions to be able to
> reproduce them (with variations for every OS), you just need to save a
> baseline copy before adding specialized applications.

Sure, I just mentioned vCenter as I use it here, but as in the email
to John, it could easily be scripted from a VM.

No need to clone or image either, I can have a server deployed over
the network in much quicker time then if I imaged it and a whole lot
easier to maintian long-term then a clone.

-Ross
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Old 05-10-2010, 06:56 PM
Les Mikesell
 
Default measuring kernel speed

On 5/10/2010 1:30 PM, Ross Walker wrote:
>
>> Well, yeah - I suppose you could say the design is good for the job
>> security of sysadmins and for requiring support subscriptions from the
>> distribution vendors, but it's something that the computer really should
>> be able to handle by itself just like it does during the initial install.
>
> Computers are dumb, and if we give too much power to the OS vendors
> they'll enslave us.

If it is smart enough to create the initial install it should be smart
enough to adjust the file entries it created to what it would have done
on different hardware. It is creating a lot of work for you to turn
everything into a new install just because that's all it knows how to do.

>> Have you totaled up the hours you've spend on these tasks that would be
>> unnecessary in a better-designed system? And even if that sort-of makes
>> sense for servers that have a basic "type", what about ones that have
>> application developers as users and end up accumulating all kinds of
>> cruft that you don't know about?
>
> After the initial time to research and setup the system the time to
> maintain and extend was minimal, and these were setup a long, long,
> long time ago (circa Windows 2000), use rsync or DFSR to replicate the
> config to other deployment servers in remote offices.
>
> I definitely recommend it.

How many different OS's do you handle this way?

> Just need to setup clear policies with the developers, save your work
> here and it will be recoverable, save your work there and you are SoL.

Getting developers to follow instructions has been described as "herding
cats" - and if you lose developer work or time, everyone is sol, not
just them.

> No need to clone or image either, I can have a server deployed over
> the network in much quicker time then if I imaged it and a whole lot
> easier to maintian long-term then a clone.

That's assuming you've wrapped everything local in an installable
package in a private repository for every OS version you use, which
doesn't sound at all quicker to me. Especially if you start with hosts
that are expected to be one-off types but have to be moved to new
hardware once in a while.

--
Les Mikesell
lesmikesell@gmail.com

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Old 05-10-2010, 07:15 PM
Ross Walker
 
Default measuring kernel speed

On Mon, May 10, 2010 at 2:56 PM, Les Mikesell <lesmikesell@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 5/10/2010 1:30 PM, Ross Walker wrote:
>>
>>> Well, yeah - I suppose you could say the design is good for the job
>>> security of sysadmins and for requiring support subscriptions from the
>>> distribution vendors, but it's something that the computer really should
>>> be able to handle by itself just like it does during the initial install.
>>
>> Computers are dumb, and if we give too much power to the OS vendors
>> they'll enslave us.
>
> If it is smart enough to create the initial install it should be smart
> enough to adjust the file entries it created to what it would have done
> on different hardware. *It is creating a lot of work for you to turn
> everything into a new install just because that's all it knows how to do.

I'm sure a vendor will come up with a complete solution, but you will
be forced into the vendor's idea of what that solution will be and
typically it is everything that that vendor provides and only that
vendor.

>>> Have you totaled up the hours you've spend on these tasks that would be
>>> unnecessary in a better-designed system? *And even if that sort-of makes
>>> sense for servers that have a basic "type", what about ones that have
>>> application developers as users and end up accumulating all kinds of
>>> cruft that you don't know about?
>>
>> After the initial time to research and setup the system the time to
>> maintain and extend was minimal, and these were setup a long, long,
>> long time ago (circa Windows 2000), use rsync or DFSR to replicate the
>> config to other deployment servers in remote offices.
>>
>> I definitely recommend it.
>
> How many different OS's do you handle this way?

I had Windows 2000/2003, CentOS 4/5, Fedora, Debian, Xen Server and
ESXi itself off our deployment servers at one time, now I just do
Windows 2003, CentOS and ESXi.

>> Just need to setup clear policies with the developers, save your work
>> here and it will be recoverable, save your work there and you are SoL.
>
> Getting developers to follow instructions has been described as "herding
> cats" - and if you lose developer work or time, everyone is sol, not
> just them.

I have heard that, so like users you have to make it more
appealing/easier to go the supported way then the unsupported way.

Make it so they have to sudo anything off an unsupported path, and
they will hopefully stick with the path of least resistance.

>> No need to clone or image either, I can have a server deployed over
>> the network in much quicker time then if I imaged it and a whole lot
>> easier to maintian long-term then a clone.
>
> That's assuming you've wrapped everything local in an installable
> package in a private repository for every OS version you use, which
> doesn't sound at all quicker to me. *Especially if you start with hosts
> that are expected to be one-off types but have to be moved to new
> hardware once in a while.

Actually it is very little we need to privately support, most distro
supplied tools work for us, so not a problem. Supporting Fedora/Ubuntu
as a choice will allow those who need bleeding edge to get it through
those channels.

Since we are almost 100% virtualized, there is no real problem rolling
from testing/development into production, the virtual hardware is the
same.

-Ross
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