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Re: clusters, infrastructures, and package tools

I agree with all of the below.  I use debian in a beowulf and for seperate
servers that are administered jointly with inhomogeneous systems.  My boss is
developing a system he calls KerDap that combines Kerberos5 with an LDAP
database to generate service categories that then provide single login access to
services such as login, mail, samba, and news.  These are already implemented.
They also work in conjunction with shell scripts for creating user accounts
where necessary.  This requires some changes to the daemons and distribution
must deal with the export restriction problems.  I think that a system of
patches to apply to the various daemons after the user has downloaded the
kerberos code (something like debian's pine packages) would allow the
distribution and use of this system.  With Windows 2K and their Directory
Service I think that something like this for GNU/Linux is essential.  We are
hampered by the lack of knowledgable people and time for the development of this
system.  A debian effort to develop this or something like it would be an
invaluable asset to GNU/Linux.


"Bud P. Bruegger" wrote:

> [Already posted on debian-devel]
> [I'm currently not on the list; please cc replies to <bud@sistema.it>]
> I'm interested in the administration of clusters and infrastructures (i.e.,
> very large, dishomogeneous installations) and in related debian package and
> administration tools.  I searched on debian-devel and found some mention of
> the need to create a dedicated list/project, but couldn't find anything.
> Is there such a discussion group?  (I found some interesting issues on
> debian-beowulf).
> In case there isn't yet, are enough people interested in this issue to
> justify the creation of such a list?
> Some issues that come to mind that may be relevant include the following:
> * debian's stability and well-done package tools are great for professional
> use--but the package system is too much geared towards single machines.  It
> would be a petty not to add cluster features to make Debian more used in
> larger environments!
> * Administration of large clusters or infrastructures usually brings the
> need for techniques that work for multiple kinds of platform (Debian,
> Solaris, AIX, etc.)  The only homogenous clusters out there are possibly
> Beowulfs.
> * I've seen considerable interest and activity to port Debian tools to
> other platforms (See debian-scala HOWTO and some reports on ports of
> package tools to different architectures).  This seems to fit well on a
> cluster/infrastructure list.
> * I believe that the debian package system and tools can be made more
> modular and flexible in order to adapt to situation different from single
> machine installation.  Some of my ideas are reported at
> http://www.sistema.it/univSrcPkg/.  While this is not written for Debian,
> the Debian source package would be a great starting point.  The essence of
> the idea is that a single source package supports the creation of various
> binary packages/installation methods for different purposes:  single
> machine installation, installation on non-debian platforms w/ debian tools,
> cluster installation with central configuration management, and even
> creation of non-debian packages from debian source packages.  The
> difference to current source packages would be a consistent use of APIs
> that encapsulate OS, platform, and configuration management specific issues.
> * There has been significant work on infrastructures management.  A lot of
> it is reported on www.infrastructures.org that also has an interesting
> mailing list. There is the "founding paper" of the infrastructures site by
> Steve Traugott that is a great introduction.  I've started to collect
> interesting links at
> http://www.sistema.it/twiki/bin/view/Main/infrastructures.  These and some
> discussion papers on (Debian) infrastructures can be found at my site:
> http://www.sistema.it/infrastructure/
> Anyways, these are just some ideas to make the issue more concrete.
> hope this is of interest
> --bud
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