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Re: Hardware recommendations for Debian server

On Thu, Jun 29, 2006 at 11:42:48AM +0100, John Kelly wrote:
> Andy Smith wrote:
> >buy a motherboard that has serial console redirect in the BIOS
> >It's really worth the premium.
> I've not found any colo providing a serial port connection with the colo 
> service.  Any who do, surely want extra $$$ for it.

it's useful if you have two or more machines in the co-lo. with 2
machines, cross-connect them with null-modem cables. with more machines,
designate one as the "serial console server" and put a multi-port serial
card in it and connect all the others to it. also set up one of the
other machines as the remote console for the serial server.

> Instead, I use:
> /dev/hda1      dedicated grub partition (very small)
> /dev/hda2      swap
> /dev/hda3      system
> /dev/hda4      rescue
> with grub fallback, and also grub-set-default in a startup script.  If 
> "system" does not boot, then "rescue" does on the next try, and I can 
> fix things remotely.  Using nfs, I can even load a whole new distro into 
> "system."

having a rescue partition is a good thing, but it doesn't help if the
disk dies completely or if the MBR gets trashed. and it doesn't give you
access to the BIOS setup.

with those failures, you still need someone to replace the disk for you,
but then you can install/restore the system remotely yourself - and
swapping a drive is a lot simpler for the co-lo "tech" (if you're lucky,
they're a real tech) to do. a lot cheaper too, even if you can get them
to agree to install debian rather than RH or whatever.

> Remote management, cheapo motherboard style.

a real remote console is a useful thing.


craig sanders <cas@taz.net.au>           (part time cyborg)

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