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Old 06-29-2008, 05:38 AM
"James Dinkel"
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

On Sat, Jun 28, 2008 at 7:13 PM, Luke L <lukehasnoname@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I've often wondered if IT types wish to keep things complex in order
> to maintain job security, heh.
>

I must admit, one of my favorite things about my linux servers is the
desktop techs can't figure out how to mess things up like they
eventually do on the Windows servers (yes, techs having admin access
on servers is a whole 'nother problem - a problem brought down from
management).

James

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Old 06-29-2008, 06:09 AM
Nicolas Valcarcel
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

After reading the mails i think i have some things to add to what you
said and to clear some things.

First of all i think that Scott has said something really true: most of
the sysadmins run more than one server at a time which need to be
maintained and almost none of them have a monitor attached, they are
just connected to the network and sysadmins use ssh to do their work,
that's the first thing we need to keep in mind. So my goal (in the early
states at least) is to have a tool that can be used with an ssh
connection, that's why i choose ncurses and in the future to manage more
than one server at a time in the same tool (more on this later).

Also i think a GUI interface will be useful in some use cases, but less
than the previous one, so i'm going to develop it in a way that more UIs
can be easy developed (gtk, qt, web, etc..) so if you want to add
another UI that's ok with me, but the firsts releases won't include it
since i will focus my efforts on having the first use case well covered.

The case in which i find more useful to have a GUI will be to have a
client/server model in which i can have the GUI on my desktop (the
client) and manage all my servers (with ucsa-server installed and
previously added to the client) from it, then a GUI will be really cool,
but as i said before this isn't the goal on the early states of the
project. If you want to contribute on the UI side i will be really
grateful if you design some forms to be used in the tool (i don't mind
if you draw it and scan or use any other way to design it) since i have
not much creativity fur such things.

On Sun, 2008-06-29 at 00:38 -0500, James Dinkel wrote:
> On Sat, Jun 28, 2008 at 7:13 PM, Luke L <lukehasnoname@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > I've often wondered if IT types wish to keep things complex in order
> > to maintain job security, heh.
> >
>
> I must admit, one of my favorite things about my linux servers is the
> desktop techs can't figure out how to mess things up like they
> eventually do on the Windows servers (yes, techs having admin access
> on servers is a whole 'nother problem - a problem brought down from
> management).
>
> James

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Old 06-29-2008, 07:51 AM
"Neil Wilson"
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

On 28/06/2008, Scott Kitterman <ubuntu@kitterman.com> wrote:

> I think both of you have your points, but are rather missing what nxvl is
> trying to accomplish. Personally I have about half a dozen servers that I
> manage related to my business. I can, and do, ssh into each one and
> do "stuff" to administer them. This is a good and right way to do
> Linux 'stuff'. I encourage admins to know how to do this and not be
> dependent on a GUI even if one is available. This is not the problem that
> (as I understand it) nxvl is trying to work on.

Any adminstration GUI should not be on the server. The best way to do
admin on a Linux machine is to issue commands to it.

However that is not to say that the commands have to be typed in by
hand at the # prompt.

The best way to do server admin via GUI is to use a management station
that has the GUI on it and then issues commands to the server via some
interface - libvirt style, HTTP REST style, or just good old ssh.

That way there is no guff on your server getting in the way of its
primary function - in complete contrast to Windows servers.

It is a myth that GUIs are productive for complex tasks. They are not.
What they provide is an aide-memoir, and potted tasks (good for
newbies). Where they really excel is providing an overview picture
(workflows and dashboards).

As for high level tools that manage lots of servers, I'm very fond of
Capistrano - a ruby tool that can parallel ssh into hundreds of
machines and run potted 'tasks'. With it I can security patch my
entire estate or hundreds of VMs as easily as I can patch one.

If you're looking for something to leg up on and wrap a menu interface
around then Capistrano tasks would be my first thought.

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Old 06-29-2008, 12:16 PM
Ken Hansen
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

On Jun 29, 2008, at 3:51 AM, Neil Wilson wrote:

<snip>

> The best way to do server admin via GUI is to use a management station
> that has the GUI on it and then issues commands to the server via some
> interface - libvirt style, HTTP REST style, or just good old ssh.
>
> That way there is no guff on your server getting in the way of its
> primary function - in complete contrast to Windows servers.

Actually, Windows Server 2008 now has a "flavor" of server called
"core" that strips off the local GUI and has an expanded suite of
local command line commands available. In addition, it can be remotely
managed by a "traditional" WIndows Server 2008 machine management
console for admins that prefer GUI admin tools.

The Windows Server 2008 "Core" installations offer limited
functionality (mainly network functions, file server, domain
controllers, etc.) and seem to be intended for remote deployment, to
reduce server surface area (security), and increase performance of
server.

More information can be found here: http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver2008/en/library/47a23a74-e13c-46de-8d30-ad0afb1eaffc1033.mspx?mfr=true

Ken Hansen

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Old 06-29-2008, 02:52 PM
Neal McBurnett
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

On Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 08:51:54AM +0100, Neil Wilson wrote:
> As for high level tools that manage lots of servers, I'm very fond of
> Capistrano - a ruby tool that can parallel ssh into hundreds of
> machines and run potted 'tasks'. With it I can security patch my
> entire estate or hundreds of VMs as easily as I can patch one.
>
> If you're looking for something to leg up on and wrap a menu interface
> around then Capistrano tasks would be my first thought.

I think contributions to this conversation will have more impact if
they are supported and summarized by the wiki page.

I've added a link to Capistrano at
https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbuntuCentralizedServiceAdministrator

Others have recently added other links and comments there, e.g. to

http://www.ocsinventory-ng.org/

http://config-model.wiki.sourceforge.net/

I continue to hope that we get a conversation together between folks
like Nicolas, the eBox folks, Dan Shearer, the Augeas folks, etc. to
explore visions and ways to cooperate or combine efforts.

Neal McBurnett http://mcburnett.org/neal/

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Old 06-29-2008, 06:33 PM
Nicolas Valcarcel
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

On Sun, 2008-06-29 at 08:52 -0600, Neal McBurnett wrote:
> I continue to hope that we get a conversation together between folks
> like Nicolas, the eBox folks, Dan Shearer, the Augeas folks, etc. to
> explore visions and ways to cooperate or combine efforts.

I'm in close contact with the augeas people, since at this state my work
is being focused on augeas and it will be that way until i have a good
number of lenses. Also mathiaz started a conversation on the eBox-devel
list [0] (where i participate) and they are going to try augeas, but the
migration is somehow hard and it lack on support on the services we
need.

So the state now is:
* eBox will give augeas a try when they are more lenses and a
perl-binding
* i will write a document on how to write lenses (because the one in
the official page isn't complete) and then start writing them with the
augeas team.

0. https://lists.warp.es/pipermail/ebox-devel/2008-June/000376.html


--
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Old 06-29-2008, 07:52 PM
"Greg Wallace"
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

Hi all,

I want to add one more option to the list - www.netdirector.org

release 3.2 which went on SourceForge last week moves the project to GPL, fixes some bugs, adds some features and, importantly for folks here, offers a deb package for easily installing NetDirector's server manager.* Here's the release notes for 3.2.


quick note on what's different between NetDirector and ucsa, webmin, ebox

NetDirector is explicitly designed for centrally managing medium to large (5-10 and up) server environments in a many-as-one fashion.* This means that an Administrator using NetDirector can use a GUI to make changes to multiple servers at the same time.* NetDirector also has other "enterprise" features such as role-based access control, automated revision control, change rollback, change scheduling using built in calendar...


So, you may be thinking - why would I use NetDIrector instead of puppet?* The answer is that, with NetDirector, you CAN use a GUI to administer packages if you want, but you don't have to - with NetDirector, you can also edit config files manually, and still benefit from change scheduling, rollback, etc..In addition, one of the most frequently asked for features in NetDirector is the ability to run one's own scripts through it, which would take roughly 1 man month to do. And, since NetDirector is a client/server system (1 Server Manager, 1xN Server Agents, where N is the number of nodes you want to manage), and since Server Agents are written in Python, NetDirector can be easily extended to manage non-posix systems, like Windows.


I created this blueprint about NetDirector during last year's UDS in Boston.

Thoughts from this group?


Best,

--
Greg

Greg Wallace
SkypeID: gregwallaceemu

On Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 2:33 PM, Nicolas Valcarcel <nvalcarcel@ubuntu-pe.org> wrote:

On Sun, 2008-06-29 at 08:52 -0600, Neal McBurnett wrote:

> I continue to hope that we get a conversation together between folks

> like Nicolas, the eBox folks, Dan Shearer, the Augeas folks, etc. to

> explore visions and ways to cooperate or combine efforts.



I'm in close contact with the augeas people, since at this state my work

is being focused on augeas and it will be that way until i have a good

number of lenses. Also mathiaz started a conversation on the eBox-devel

list [0] (where i participate) and they are going to try augeas, but the

migration is somehow hard and it lack on support on the services we

need.



So the state now is:

** eBox will give augeas a try when they are more lenses and a

perl-binding

** i will write a document on how to write lenses (because the one in

the official page isn't complete) and then start writing them with the

augeas team.



0. https://lists.warp.es/pipermail/ebox-devel/2008-June/000376.html





--

aka nxvl

Peruvian LoCo Team

Key fingerprint = BCE4 27A0 D03E 55DE DA2D *BE06 891D 8DEE 6545 97FE

gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys 654597FE




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Old 06-29-2008, 08:10 PM
Scott Kitterman
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

On Sun, 29 Jun 2008 15:52:09 -0400 "Greg Wallace" <gtewallace@gmail.com>
wrote:
>Hi all,
>
>I want to add one more option to the list - www.netdirector.org
>
>release 3.2 which went on SourceForge last week moves the project to GPL,
>fixes some bugs, adds some features and, importantly for folks here, offers
>a deb package for easily installing NetDirector's server manager. Here's
>the release notes for
>3.2<http://sourceforge.net/project/shownotes.php?release_id=609239>
In my experience upstream Debian packaging ranges from poor to very poor.
Do they provide a source package that we can review?

How do they manage other package's config files?
Scott K

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Old 06-29-2008, 08:46 PM
Nicolas Valcarcel
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

Are you sure you can edit config files by hand without breaking
anything?

On Sun, 2008-06-29 at 15:52 -0400, Greg Wallace wrote:
> Hi all,
>
> I want to add one more option to the list - www.netdirector.org
>
> release 3.2 which went on SourceForge last week moves the project to
> GPL, fixes some bugs, adds some features and, importantly for folks
> here, offers a deb package for easily installing NetDirector's server
> manager. Here's the release notes for 3.2.
>
> quick note on what's different between NetDirector and ucsa, webmin,
> ebox
>
> NetDirector is explicitly designed for centrally managing medium to
> large (5-10 and up) server environments in a many-as-one fashion.
> This means that an Administrator using NetDirector can use a GUI to
> make changes to multiple servers at the same time. NetDirector also
> has other "enterprise" features such as role-based access control,
> automated revision control, change rollback, change scheduling using
> built in calendar...
>
> So, you may be thinking - why would I use NetDIrector instead of
> puppet? The answer is that, with NetDirector, you CAN use a GUI to
> administer packages if you want, but you don't have to - with
> NetDirector, you can also edit config files manually, and still
> benefit from change scheduling, rollback, etc..In addition, one of the
> most frequently asked for features in NetDirector is the ability to
> run one's own scripts through it, which would take roughly 1 man month
> to do. And, since NetDirector is a client/server system (1 Server
> Manager, 1xN Server Agents, where N is the number of nodes you want to
> manage), and since Server Agents are written in Python, NetDirector
> can be easily extended to manage non-posix systems, like Windows.
>
> I created this blueprint about NetDirector during last year's UDS in
> Boston.
>
> Thoughts from this group?
>
> Best,
>
> --
> Greg
>
> Greg Wallace
> SkypeID: gregwallaceemu
>
> On Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 2:33 PM, Nicolas Valcarcel
> <nvalcarcel@ubuntu-pe.org> wrote:
> On Sun, 2008-06-29 at 08:52 -0600, Neal McBurnett wrote:
> > I continue to hope that we get a conversation together
> between folks
> > like Nicolas, the eBox folks, Dan Shearer, the Augeas folks,
> etc. to
> > explore visions and ways to cooperate or combine efforts.
>
> I'm in close contact with the augeas people, since at this
> state my work
> is being focused on augeas and it will be that way until i
> have a good
> number of lenses. Also mathiaz started a conversation on the
> eBox-devel
> list [0] (where i participate) and they are going to try
> augeas, but the
> migration is somehow hard and it lack on support on the
> services we
> need.
>
> So the state now is:
> * eBox will give augeas a try when they are more lenses and a
> perl-binding
> * i will write a document on how to write lenses (because the
> one in
> the official page isn't complete) and then start writing them
> with the
> augeas team.
>
> 0.
> https://lists.warp.es/pipermail/ebox-devel/2008-June/000376.html
>
>
> --
> aka nxvl
> Peruvian LoCo Team
> Key fingerprint = BCE4 27A0 D03E 55DE DA2D BE06 891D 8DEE
> 6545 97FE
> gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys 654597FE
>
>
> --
> ubuntu-server mailing list
> ubuntu-server@lists.ubuntu.com
> https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-server
> More info: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ServerTeam
--
aka nxvl
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gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys 654597FE

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Old 06-29-2008, 08:53 PM
"Greg Wallace"
 
Default Ubuntu server GUI

Yes - The source for 3.2 is also available on SourceForge.

NetDirector manages the following services or packages across the major linux distros as well as solaris:

httpDNSDHCPvs-ftpNFSSambaSendmailPostfixIn addition to these services which you can manage with the base NetDirector install, there are also the following plugins that can be installed into a live NetDirector deployment.* All future service modules will be added as plugins.

KerberosLDAPRHN Satellite (rls 4)
SSH Plugin - allows secure ssh that uses NetDirector's role-based permissions so admins can manually configure anything running on a NetDirector managed server
I hope that answers the question.*

Greg

On Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 4:10 PM, Scott Kitterman <ubuntu@kitterman.com> wrote:

On Sun, 29 Jun 2008 15:52:09 -0400 "Greg Wallace" <gtewallace@gmail.com>

wrote:

>Hi all,

>

>I want to add one more option to the list - www.netdirector.org

>

>release 3.2 which went on SourceForge last week moves the project to GPL,

>fixes some bugs, adds some features and, importantly for folks here, offers

>a deb package for easily installing NetDirector's server manager. *Here's

>the release notes for

>3.2<http://sourceforge.net/project/shownotes.php?release_id=609239>

In my experience upstream Debian packaging ranges from poor to very poor.

Do they provide a source package that we can review?



How do they manage other package's config files?

Scott K



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--
Greg

Greg Wallace
SkypeID: gregwallaceemu
M: 919.247.3165
Profile: www.linkedin.com/in/gtewallace
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