Roger Whittaker <roger(a)suse-linux.co.uk> writes:
> I've just subscribed various people to the list - please post a
> message to say hello and introduce yourselves.
If you were at the meeting, I was wearing a Debian t-shirt (with a red
swirl logo on it) --- there's a photo at the top of this article,
where I'm wearing similar stuff (except for the penguin ;-)
I'm a Debian GNU/Linux developer, and run the UK Debian mirror, and am
responsible for producing the Debian official CD images:
I have only a peripheral interest in educational matters, in that I've
been frustrated in the past in my efforts to provide free computers
(which were otherwise destined for a skip), but I can certainly
contribute on a technical side, and having been involved in Debian
(which is completely voluntary, like OSIE is expected to be) since
1996 I may be able to make some suggestions about how to ``organise''
such a thing.
For those of you who've not come across Debian before, we're a
world-wide voluntary organisation (read, chaotic jumble of mailing
lists) that puts together a Linux distribution (and soon a HURD
distribution) and gives it away.
Debian doesn't pay people to do this, and doesn't sell what it
produces, and in most legal senses doesn't really exist (i.e. the
machines in the mirror network mostly belong to people like me, rather
than to Debian, and the bandwidth is donated rather than paid for).
This probably gives a pretty good feel for what Debian is all about:
which you will notice leads into the The Debian Free Software
Guidelines (DFSG), which is where the Open Source Definition came from.
My internet machine, that hosts the Debian UK mirror, may be of use to
OSIE, since it has about 30GB of spare disk, and a 20Mbit/s connection
at a well connected ISP. This machine could act as either a primary
host or mirror site for the web site, and could do DNS secondarying
etc. as well.
Something I'd be interested in working on (although perhaps a SuSE
list is not the right place to spend too much time discussing this ;-)
would be producing Debian CD images, tuned to the needs of educational
Debian has accumulated some funds in the UK, and have been looking for
a worthwhile cause to spend them on (we never really need to pay for
anything that actually makes Debian work, so don't have much use for
money), so we could probably afford to have a few thousand CDs
pressed, and send them out to schools that are interested.
Say no to software patents! http://petition.eurolinux.org/
Philip Hands. +44 (0)20 7744 6244 philip.hands(a)uk.alcove.com
Alcove UK --- Liberating Software --- http://www.alcove.com/http://www.hands.com/ phil(a)hands.com http://www.uk.debian.org/
> Can anyone point me to some good reference material on
> network design?
> Alternatively, thoughts on the matter are most welcome!
I don't know what precise grade of cabling you have installed, nor which
apps, but if your main switch works at 100 M, you may have a bottleneck.
We have done things a bit differently as we have lots of separate buildings,
we have fibre running at 1 Gb, and switches within buildings providing
100/10. Very little cat 5 at the server end.
If you use Office applications and store files on the network; if you load
bloatware from a server, if you allow media on the network, I think 100 M
will not be enough bandwidth. If the servers are connected to the main
switch at 1 Gb, the fibre at 1 Gb and the cat 5 at 10/100 for stations,
it'll probably work. 1 Gig switch modules still cost serious money compared
You can segment network traffic by using departmental switches, so if Mod
Lang want media onto their stations, none of that will hit the main switch
at all. I assume that's one reason why you're talking about a server for
them specifically. Their switch would logically reside at the departmental
end of the fibre segment, along with their server. If configured
appropriately, no-one outside Mod Land need know that their server is there.
I read the comment about SAMBA. It's pretty good at looking like an
NT/2000 server but it doesn't do everything a pukka Microsoft server will.
I guess if you are installing a specific product the suppliers may only wish
to support it if it's on the correct platform?
Do you have money to get a consultant in for a day? I would REALLY
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Can anyone point me to some good reference material on network design?
Alternatively, thoughts on the matter are most welcome!
The story so far (approximately) is that we have about 200 network points
wired with CAT 5 most of which come through to racks in the server room,
although a couple of remote areas (language lab and D&T dept.) have their own
racks with fibre to the server room. Broadband (well a 2Mb circuit anyway)
will arrive at the school RSN. Of the 200ish computers about 50 are Acorn on
10M network cards and the rest are PCs on 100M cards. There are essentially 5
IT suites including the language lab accounting for about 3/4 of the
machines, the remainder are in small groups (1 to 5ish) in classrooms. I hope
that we can persuade the powers that be to let us have the majority of the
PCs running Linux, although a language lab and a 'success maker' lab will
have to run Windoze.
You may remember from an earlier posting that we plan to have one Linux
server for each year group which will handle pupil storage and login. A
further machine will be a proxy, and separate NT/2000 servers are required
for the language lab and success maker room.
What yeargroup is using what set of machines at a given time can be
considered as random for the purpose of this exercise.
So the issues for us to resolve (since the wiring is already in and will not
be changed) are things like switch configurations, where to logically site
the servers and so on.
I am not sure if this is the right place for this but I found a place which
does the adverts for the backs of car park tickets,
what I was thinking was that someone like suse, red hat could advertise on
the backs of these as the rates seem very good. something like £12 for 1000
tickets (don't quot e me on this, the details are on the site).
I mentioned it on my local user group mailing list and they seem to thinks
it's a good idea, perhaps someone on this mailing list is working for suse,
or knows who I can e-mail at the promotion departments of suse, redhat etc
could get back to me and I will suggest it.
Hello to all,
can anyone advise where I can get a copy of VM ware to run MS programs on a
Linux box? I just need an evaluation copy for the time being- VMware's site
wants money up front.
ICT Admin @ John Kelly Technology College.
>From Paul Sutton,
I decided to join the group as I am interested in Linux and it's use in
schools, I am currently a classroom assistant and use Linux at home
currently this is Red Hat 7.1 on an AMD, so far it works ok, I have a dual
When I find the time I am slowly learning c and hopefully soon shell
scripting which will probably be more useful.
my website is at www.psutton.freeservers.com and has a few education links
and some Linux stuff on there which I have written.
Thanks, I hope I can be of some use to the group.
Just a couple of things to note/think about.
1). Packet sniffers will be undetectable if done 'properly' (i.e. external
network interface with TX wires cut).
2). If you can afford it, you're probably best using switches rather than
hubs. These mean that the info wanted to be sniffed is not present on
all strands of the network. This of course will improve you network's
performance as a side-effect ;-)
3). Attempt to remove the value of sniffing data by using encrypted
communications were possible, such as ssh rather than telnet.
4). There is some value (for sniffers) to not go into promiscuous mode and
just sniff packets for the 'local' machine.
> Is there any way to detect (from a Linux box) if someone is
> packet sniffing on a network.
Yes, as long as you can hack together raw packets (or
have some tools that can). There are some details in the
'packet sniffing FAQ' - I can't give you a URL as our
proxy will not let me see it - it thinks I am hacking ... :-(
The essence of it is that you have to send out packets
that the machine shouldn't usually be able to see, but
because it is running in 'promiscuous' mode, and seeing
all packets on the network, it responds.
Google should find it for you though.