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System related tutorials

OSX

Mac OS X Server Administrator's Guide

Post date: June 8, 2005, 05:06 Category: System Views: 7123 Comments
Tutorial quote: Includes information on how Mac OS X Server software works
and strategies for using it with your network
OSX

Mac OS X Server Migration Guide

Post date: June 8, 2005, 05:06 Category: System Views: 4014 Comments
Tutorial quote: This guide contains the following chapters:

Chapter 1, “Migrating the Previous Version of Mac OS X Server,” details the steps to follow if you have the previous version of Mac OS X Server and want to migrate to the new
version.

Chapter 2, “Migrating Macintosh Manager or At Ease for Workgroups,” explains the steps involved in migrating existing Macintosh Manager or At Ease for Workgroups users,
workgroups, and documents to Mac OS X Server.

Chapter 3, “Migrating AppleShare IP,” provides information about migrating existing information from an AppleShare IP server to Mac OS X Server.
RedHat

Getting started with RHEL4's built-in LVM tools

Post date: June 3, 2005, 16:06 Category: System Views: 6691 Comments
Tutorial quote: Many Unix administrators I know (you know who you are), always used to smirk when I talked about Linux. They could always point to the fact that regardless of whatever I could say, they had journaling file systems, which they could manage using various Logical Volume Management (LVM) tools, and I couldn't touch that.

Well, not any more! Not only does Red Hat offer ext3 as their default file system, but they offer great management tools to boot. As we know, ext2 had a great lifespan, but it was not an enterprise-ready file system that could handle large disk partitions, fast recovery from systems crashes, or large amounts of files. Journaling file systems give you the ability to recover almost instantly from a crash, as you do not need to run fsck after a restart. Similar to how databases recover from crashes, a journaling file system tracks changes to file system metadata and pretty much guarantees that either all or no updates have completed. Of course, these file systems also need elaborate tools to help better configure and manage them accordingly.
Linux

Compiling Your Own Kernel

Post date: May 1, 2005, 17:05 Category: System Views: 2972 Comments
Tutorial quote: Once I decided to take the plunge and go for it, I realised it's not too hard at all. As long as you have a bootable floppy or CD to boot from if your new kernel doesn't work, you'll be OK.

For this simple guide, I'll assume that you use LILO as your boot manager.
OpenBSD

Rebuilding the OpenBSD kernel

Post date: April 24, 2005, 20:04 Category: System Views: 4790 Comments
Tutorial quote: Users who want their OpenBSD machine to perform specific functions or need additional device drivers might want to customize their kernel. In other OS's, like some types of Linux, it is very popular to rebuild the kernel because the default is so bloated. For most users, the default OpenBSD kernel is sufficient; however, you should still apply kernel patches, which will require rebuilding and installing a fresh kernel.
BSD

Managing Filesystems : fstab

Post date: April 15, 2005, 23:04 Category: System Views: 7707 Comments
Tutorial quote: Understanding how the BSD filesystem manages disk space is critical to successfully managing a BSD server or workstation. However, this topic is generally overlooked since it is rarely used outside of installation and upgrades. It is also a very simple topic and most people assume you understand how it all works.

This article gives a quick synopsis on filesystem layout and tries to briefly explain how to understand /etc/fstab. The fstab(5) man pages, while good, do little to teach the basics to new sysadmins.
Linux

Monitoring and Managing Linux Software RAID

Post date: April 15, 2005, 23:04 Category: System Views: 3349 Comments
Tutorial quote: Systems administrators managing a data center face numerous challenges to achieve required availability and uptime. Two of the main challenges are shrinking budgets (for hardware, software, and staffing) and short deadlines in which to deliver solutions. The Linux community has developed kernel support for software RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks) to help meet those challenges. Software RAID, properly implemented, can eliminate system downtime caused by disk drive errors. The source code to the Linux kernel, the RAID modules, and the raidtools package are available at minimal cost under the GNU Public License. The interface is well documented and comprehensible to a moderately experienced Linux systems administrator.

In this article, I'll provide an overview of the software RAID implementation in the Linux 2.4.X kernel. I will describe the creation and activation of software RAID devices as well as the management of active RAID devices. Finally, I will discuss some procedures for recovering from a failed disk unit.
Debian

Creating an initrd image

Post date: April 15, 2005, 23:04 Category: System Views: 3858 Comments
Tutorial quote: When I started booting a box with multiple SCSI adapters, I wanted to keep the device ordering sane. I find it’s best when the boot ordering matches the order in which Linux initializes the drivers for each controller. One effective way to handle this under Debian GNU/Linux with one of the stock kernels is to create a custom initrd image.
Linux

Linux 2.6: Compiling and Installing

Post date: April 15, 2005, 22:04 Category: System Views: 3401 Comments
Tutorial quote: We'll look at the process of compiling and installing a new kernel safely, without overwriting the existing kernel.

You can install as many kernels as you like on a Linux system, and select the one you want to run at boot time. This makes it easy to test different kernels, and different kernel configurations, with particular sets of hardware or applications. The wise network admin always tests new kernels before running them on production machines.
Unix+clones

The lost art of named pipes

Post date: April 15, 2005, 21:04 Category: System Views: 3321 Comments
Tutorial quote: A "named pipe" -- also known as a FIFO (First In, First Out) or just fifo -- is an inter-process communication mechanism that makes use of the filesystem to allow two processes to communicate with each other. In particular, it allows one of these to open one end of the pipe as a reader, and the other to open it as a writer. Let's take a look at the FIFO and how you can use it.
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