<<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.22 - 15 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 32 to 32

    • ... with limited time
    • ... with different opinions on things
    • ... who are strong *nix and FOSS enthusiasts
Added:
>
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  • We're looking for a server platform to run various services

Non-negotiable

Line: 58 to 59

    • Why: We want to avoid frequent major upheaval
    • Problem: This contradicts the "reasonably current" preference
      • Not contradicts but conflicts with: Requirements are all about identifying and optimizing conflicting needs. These two, in particular form a dynamic tension that's a good thing. -- TedRoche
Added:
>
>
        • Conflicts and contradicts = synonymous. That said, you make a good point about the dynamic tension. "Good thing"? Well, unavoidable, and thus best identified and incorporated. I'd prefer to have my cake and eat it too, though; too bad that's impossible. wink

  • Reasonably current
    • Why: The older something is, the less useful it will be as a platform for a Linux group
    • Problem: This contradicts the "long lifecycle" preference
  • A good selection of server packages we are likely to be interested in
    • Why: The less we have to "build ourselves", the less time it costs us
Deleted:
<
<
    • The primary purpose of the GNHLUG server is to provide an infrastructure upon which projects can be hung: web sites, wikis, mailing lists, calendars, schedules, car pool lists, and stuff we haven't thought of yet. -- TedRoche

  • Reasonably good quality
    • Why: Bugs cost time
    • Problem: Quality tends to be very subjective
 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.21 - 15 Feb 2006 - TedRoche)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 15 to 15

  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ... I prefer not to use FC4 or RHEL.
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. ...
  • MikeLedoux - Prefer RHEL or RHEL clone. Too much experience with those, Fedora and Debian. HATE SuSE.
Added:
>
>
  • TedRoche - 3 years administering several low-volume RH8/RH9/Fedora servers. "I refuse to have anything to do with" Windows 2003 or Vista. Here to learn and to help.


Criteria

See also: ServerSecurity

Line: 55 to 57

  • Long lifecycle
    • Why: We want to avoid frequent major upheaval
    • Problem: This contradicts the "reasonably current" preference
Added:
>
>
      • Not contradicts but conflicts with: Requirements are all about identifying and optimizing conflicting needs. These two, in particular form a dynamic tension that's a good thing. -- TedRoche

  • Reasonably current
    • Why: The older something is, the less useful it will be as a platform for a Linux group
    • Problem: This contradicts the "long lifecycle" preference
  • A good selection of server packages we are likely to be interested in
    • Why: The less we have to "build ourselves", the less time it costs us
Added:
>
>
    • The primary purpose of the GNHLUG server is to provide an infrastructure upon which projects can be hung: web sites, wikis, mailing lists, calendars, schedules, car pool lists, and stuff we haven't thought of yet. -- TedRoche

  • Reasonably good quality
    • Why: Bugs cost time
    • Problem: Quality tends to be very subjective
 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.20 - 14 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 44 to 44

  • Automatic updates (with yum, apt-get, up2date, etc.)
    • Why: We will not have a staff of pros for caretaking
  • Must be kept current with security fixes
Changed:
<
<
    • Why: We will depend on the distro for fixes, as we do not have time to install fixes ourselves, and security holes are usually time-critical
    • Why2: It is connected directly to the internet.
>
>
    • Why: We will depend on the distro for fixes, as we do not have time to install fixes ourselves, security holes are usually time-critical, and this server will be connected directly to the internet.

Preferred

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.19 - 14 Feb 2006 - BruceDawson)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 45 to 45

    • Why: We will not have a staff of pros for caretaking
  • Must be kept current with security fixes
    • Why: We will depend on the distro for fixes, as we do not have time to install fixes ourselves, and security holes are usually time-critical
Added:
>
>
    • Why2: It is connected directly to the internet.

Preferred

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.18 - 13 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 15 to 15

  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ... I prefer not to use FC4 or RHEL.
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. ...
  • MikeLedoux - Prefer RHEL or RHEL clone. Too much experience with those, Fedora and Debian. HATE SuSE.
Changed:
<
<

Requirements

>
>

Criteria


See also: ServerSecurity

The following items outline some of the requirements of the distribution. These exist in light of this system being managed by a (probably) disjoint set of people. For the sake of sanity, let's try to avoid arguing how or why a particular distro fits these criteria at this point. smile

Added:
>
>

Our situation

For the following, it helps to keep our situation in mind:

  • No money
  • Staff made up entirely of volunteers
    • ... with limited time
    • ... with different opinions on things
    • ... who are strong *nix and FOSS enthusiasts

Non-negotiable

Changed:
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We more-or-less can't live without these.
>
>
We cannot live without these, for reasons outside of our control.

Deleted:
<
<
  • Free/Open Source Software (free as in speech)
    • Why: The "Live free or die!" spirit of NH aligns perfectly with FOSS

  • No capital acquisition cost (free as in beer)
    • Why: We have no money
  • Support for our ServerHardware
Added:
>
>
    • Why: If it doesn't run, there isn't much point

  • Experience within our community of sysadmin volunteers
Added:
>
>
    • Why: We cannot afford the time to retrain volunteers or money to pay experts

  • Automatic updates (with yum, apt-get, up2date, etc.)
Changed:
<
<
    • Why: We do not have a staff of pros for caretaking
>
>
    • Why: We will not have a staff of pros for caretaking

  • Must be kept current with security fixes
Added:
>
>
    • Why: We will depend on the distro for fixes, as we do not have time to install fixes ourselves, and security holes are usually time-critical

Preferred

Changed:
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<
We want these, but can be more flexible.
>
>
These are things we want -- perhaps really want -- but which are ultimate generated internally, rather then externally.

Changed:
<
<
  • Long lifecycle - We want to avoid frequent major upheaval
  • Package selection
    • Good selection of server stuff we are likely to be interested in
>
>
  • Free/Open Source Software (free as in speech)
    • Why: The "Live free or die!" spirit of NH aligns perfectly with FOSS
  • Long lifecycle
    • Why: We want to avoid frequent major upheaval
    • Problem: This contradicts the "reasonably current" preference

    • Reasonably current
Added:
>
>
    • Why: The older something is, the less useful it will be as a platform for a Linux group
    • Problem: This contradicts the "long lifecycle" preference
  • A good selection of server packages we are likely to be interested in
    • Why: The less we have to "build ourselves", the less time it costs us

    • Reasonably good quality
Added:
>
>
    • Why: Bugs cost time
    • Problem: Quality tends to be very subjective

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.17 - 12 Feb 2006 - MikeLedoux)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 14 to 14

  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with...
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ... I prefer not to use FC4 or RHEL.
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. ...
Added:
>
>
  • MikeLedoux - Prefer RHEL or RHEL clone. Too much experience with those, Fedora and Debian. HATE SuSE.

Requirements

See also: ServerSecurity

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.16 - 12 Feb 2006 - DrewVanZandt)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 12 to 12

  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation ...
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support ... If not, CentOS ... Fedora Core might be worth looking at ... My server is currently RH9 ... I run FC2-4 at several client sites ...
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with...
Changed:
<
<
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ... I do not recommend FC4 or RHEL.
>
>
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ... I prefer not to use FC4 or RHEL.

Requirements

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.15 - 12 Feb 2006 - DrewVanZandt)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 12 to 12

  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation ...
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support ... If not, CentOS ... Fedora Core might be worth looking at ... My server is currently RH9 ... I run FC2-4 at several client sites ...
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with...
Changed:
<
<
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ...
>
>
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ... I do not recommend FC4 or RHEL.

Requirements

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.14 - 11 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 9 to 9

Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field. Comments about why will be moved to ServerDistroDebate.

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
Changed:
<
<
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL [...]. I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation [...].
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. Nice long lifecycle, and long support after it is no longer the "stable" version. Lots more software available in apt than in standard yum repositories. Apticron is a great program for letting folks know that updates are available, without actually doing them. Doesn't get much more F/OS than Debian.
>
>
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation ...
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support ... If not, CentOS ... Fedora Core might be worth looking at ... My server is currently RH9 ... I run FC2-4 at several client sites ...
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with...
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. ... Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. ...
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. ...

Requirements

See also: ServerSecurity

Line: 45 to 44

    • Reasonably current
    • Reasonably good quality
Deleted:
<
<

Premature Debate

It appears people are unable to cope with the concept of simply stating a preference without also getting into why they hold that preferece. Those comments will be moved here.

  • BruceDawson - Maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy [of RHEL]... [With Debian,] too much customization is required.
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.13 - 11 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 6 to 6

Let's start by registering our own preferences on distribution, as well as our experience level with any distro (preferred or otherwise). If you have any "I refuse to have anything to do with" opinions, note those too.

Changed:
<
<
Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field. Comments about why will be struck-out then deleted.
>
>
Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field. Comments about why will be moved to ServerDistroDebate.

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
Changed:
<
<
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
>
>
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL [...]. I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation [...].

  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)
Line: 45 to 45

    • Reasonably current
    • Reasonably good quality
Added:
>
>

Premature Debate

It appears people are unable to cope with the concept of simply stating a preference without also getting into why they hold that preferece. Those comments will be moved here.

  • BruceDawson - Maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy [of RHEL]... [With Debian,] too much customization is required.
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.12 - 10 Feb 2006 - DrewVanZandt)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 9 to 9

Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field. Comments about why will be struck-out then deleted.

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
Changed:
<
<
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
>
>
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.

  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)
 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.11 - 10 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.

Registration

Changed:
<
<
Let's start by registering our own preferences on distribution, as well as our experience level with any distro (preferred or otherwise). If you have any "I refuse to have anything to do with" opinions, note those too. Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field.
>
>
Let's start by registering our own preferences on distribution, as well as our experience level with any distro (preferred or otherwise). If you have any "I refuse to have anything to do with" opinions, note those too.

Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field. Comments about why will be struck-out then deleted.


  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
Changed:
<
<
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
>
>
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.

  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
Changed:
<
<
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. Nice long lifecycle, and long support after it is no longer the "stable" version. Lots more software available in apt than in standard yum repositories. Apticron is a great program for letting folks know that updates are available, without actually doing them. Doesn't get much more F/OS than Debian.
>
>
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. Nice long lifecycle, and long support after it is no longer the "stable" version. Lots more software available in apt than in standard yum repositories. Apticron is a great program for letting folks know that updates are available, without actually doing them. Doesn't get much more F/OS than Debian.

Requirements

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.10 - 10 Feb 2006 - ColeTuininga)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 11 to 11

  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)
Added:
>
>
  • ColeTuininga - Another vote for Debian. Nice long lifecycle, and long support after it is no longer the "stable" version. Lots more software available in apt than in standard yum repositories. Apticron is a great program for letting folks know that updates are available, without actually doing them. Doesn't get much more F/OS than Debian.

Requirements

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.9 - 10 Feb 2006 - DrewVanZandt)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 10 to 10

  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.
Added:
>
>
  • DrewVanZandt - Suggest Debian. I currently admin an FC4 server and three Debian servers. yum is painfully slow for package management, requiring more of my valuable time than the three Debian (apt) servers combined. Experience: 3 years RH admin, 2 FC(2-4), 5 Debian. (I note that others have started the "why" debate already.)

Requirements

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.8 - 09 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 13 to 13

Requirements

Changed:
<
<
The following items outline some of the requirements of the distribution. These exist in light of this system being managed by a (probably) disjoint set of people.
>
>
See also: ServerSecurity

Changed:
<
<
  • Automatic updates (ala yum, up2date, ...) Especially security updates!
  • Experience within our community of sysadmin volunteers.
>
>
The following items outline some of the requirements of the distribution. These exist in light of this system being managed by a (probably) disjoint set of people. For the sake of sanity, let's try to avoid arguing how or why a particular distro fits these criteria at this point. smile

Changed:
<
<
See also: ServerSecurity
>
>

Non-negotiable

We more-or-less can't live without these.

  • Free/Open Source Software (free as in speech)
    • Why: The "Live free or die!" spirit of NH aligns perfectly with FOSS
  • No capital acquisition cost (free as in beer)
    • Why: We have no money
  • Support for our ServerHardware
  • Experience within our community of sysadmin volunteers
  • Automatic updates (with yum, apt-get, up2date, etc.)
    • Why: We do not have a staff of pros for caretaking
  • Must be kept current with security fixes

Preferred

We want these, but can be more flexible.

  • Long lifecycle - We want to avoid frequent major upheaval
  • Package selection
    • Good selection of server stuff we are likely to be interested in
    • Reasonably current
    • Reasonably good quality

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.7 - 09 Feb 2006 - BenScott)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 18 to 18

  • Automatic updates (ala yum, up2date, ...) Especially security updates!
  • Experience within our community of sysadmin volunteers.
Changed:
<
<

Recommended packages, policies and procedures

  • sudo

  • All admins have their own account on the system.
  • Disallow root access, except via sudo.
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used.
    • Some things that require shell redirection don't work without this - however those can be put into a script and run 'sudo script'. But then the script is fungable after the run, so what's been gained is worth debating. -- BillMcGonigle - 08 Feb 2006
  • SSH - Require public key authentication, require entries in AllowedUsers in sshd_config. Inconvenient for adding new accounts, but the number of accounts will be very low and we don't have time to deal with getting cracked.
  • iptables - unless there is some other level of firewalling available to us.
    • even if there is a hardware firewall, don't trust it. To expound, only allow incoming access on the minimum number of ports to get us going. We should restrict ssh access to a limited number of IP's to avoid being DDOS'ed with ssh scans. -- BillMcGonigle - 09 Feb 2006
    • Allowed Ports From Anywhere
      • 25/tcp
      • 80/tcp
      • 443/tcp
      • 53/udp
    • Allowed IP's for port 22 ssh
    • Allowed Ports for our backup DNS, currenly LINUX.CODEMETA.COM (199.125.76.10)
      • 53/tcp
>
>
See also: ServerSecurity

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.6 - 09 Feb 2006 - BillMcGonigle)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 24 to 24

  • All admins have their own account on the system.
  • Disallow root access, except via sudo.
Changed:
<
<
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used. [note from Bill - some things that require shell redirection don't work without this - however those can be put into a script and run 'sudo script'. But then the script is fungable after the run, so what's been gained is worth debating]
>
>
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used.
    • Some things that require shell redirection don't work without this - however those can be put into a script and run 'sudo script'. But then the script is fungable after the run, so what's been gained is worth debating. -- BillMcGonigle - 08 Feb 2006

  • SSH - Require public key authentication, require entries in AllowedUsers in sshd_config. Inconvenient for adding new accounts, but the number of accounts will be very low and we don't have time to deal with getting cracked.
  • iptables - unless there is some other level of firewalling available to us.
Added:
>
>
    • even if there is a hardware firewall, don't trust it. To expound, only allow incoming access on the minimum number of ports to get us going. We should restrict ssh access to a limited number of IP's to avoid being DDOS'ed with ssh scans. -- BillMcGonigle - 09 Feb 2006
    • Allowed Ports From Anywhere
      • 25/tcp
      • 80/tcp
      • 443/tcp
      • 53/udp
    • Allowed IP's for port 22 ssh
    • Allowed Ports for our backup DNS, currenly LINUX.CODEMETA.COM (199.125.76.10)
      • 53/tcp

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.5 - 08 Feb 2006 - ToddWarfield)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 9 to 9

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
Added:
>
>
  • ToddWarfield - Suggest RHEL or RHEL clone (CentOS) as that is what I am most familiar with. Concern would be throwing something 'cool' on it (Ubuntu) that none of the admins have worked with enough.

Requirements

Line: 25 to 26

  • Disallow root access, except via sudo.
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used. [note from Bill - some things that require shell redirection don't work without this - however those can be put into a script and run 'sudo script'. But then the script is fungable after the run, so what's been gained is worth debating]
  • SSH - Require public key authentication, require entries in AllowedUsers in sshd_config. Inconvenient for adding new accounts, but the number of accounts will be very low and we don't have time to deal with getting cracked.
Added:
>
>
  • iptables - unless there is some other level of firewalling available to us.

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.4 - 08 Feb 2006 - BillMcGonigle)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 8 to 8

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
Changed:
<
<
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great. CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks features fastest, if we want this to be the 'linux showcase' server. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.
>
>
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great (make sure that includes support since RHEL support is less community-based). If not, CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance releases? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks new features the fastest, if we want this to be the 'shining city' server. My server is currently RH9 - it works just fine but it's the old dusty city. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems and the community support is great. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.

Requirements

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.3 - 08 Feb 2006 - BillMcGonigle)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 8 to 8

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.
Added:
>
>
  • BillMcGonigle - If we can get a RHEL license, great. CentOS would avoid costs we can't afford - how's it's track record on maintenance? Fedora Core might be worth looking at since it tracks features fastest, if we want this to be the 'linux showcase' server. I run FC2-4 at several client sites without any distro-specific problems. Anyway, the goals should be to minimise cost, sysadmin requirements, and roadblocks, in that order.

Requirements

Line: 22 to 23

  • All admins have their own account on the system.
  • Disallow root access, except via sudo.
Changed:
<
<
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used.
>
>
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used. [note from Bill - some things that require shell redirection don't work without this - however those can be put into a script and run 'sudo script'. But then the script is fungable after the run, so what's been gained is worth debating]
  • SSH - Require public key authentication, require entries in AllowedUsers in sshd_config. Inconvenient for adding new accounts, but the number of accounts will be very low and we don't have time to deal with getting cracked.

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.2 - 08 Feb 2006 - BruceDawson)

META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.
Line: 7 to 7

Let's start by registering our own preferences on distribution, as well as our experience level with any distro (preferred or otherwise). If you have any "I refuse to have anything to do with" opinions, note those too. Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field.

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
Added:
>
>
  • BruceDawson - Suggest either RHEL (maybe we can get a company in Westford to donate a copy). I also have experience running Ubuntu servers. I do not recommend a plain Debian server installation - too much customization is required.

Requirements

The following items outline some of the requirements of the distribution. These exist in light of this system being managed by a (probably) disjoint set of people.

  • Automatic updates (ala yum, up2date, ...) Especially security updates!
  • Experience within our community of sysadmin volunteers.

Recommended packages, policies and procedures

  • sudo

  • All admins have their own account on the system.
  • Disallow root access, except via sudo.
  • Disallow sudo access. Yes, this make things more difficult, but traceability is needed when there are multiple admins. Note: I could be coaxed off this requirement if sudo would fire up a capture program (like script) when 'sudo ' is used.

 <<O>>  Difference Topic ServerDistro (r1.1 - 07 Feb 2006 - BenScott)
Line: 1 to 1
Added:
>
>
META TOPICPARENT InternetServer
When it comes to our InternetServer, there will be some unavoidable discussion on choice of distro, even if we avoid a prolonged debate. This page gives that discussion a home.

Registration

Let's start by registering our own preferences on distribution, as well as our experience level with any distro (preferred or otherwise). If you have any "I refuse to have anything to do with" opinions, note those too. Avoid explaining why at this point; let's just survey the field.

  • BenScott - Prefer a RHEL clone like CentOS. Most experienced with Red Hat Linux, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux clones. I've tried SuSE, Mandrake, and Debian in the past. I'm willing to work with just about anything.
Revision r1.1 - 07 Feb 2006 - 20:20 - BenScott
Revision r1.22 - 15 Feb 2006 - 22:11 - BenScott