Ubuntu Domain Server

Chan Chung Hang Christopher christopher.chan at bradbury.edu.hk
Mon Oct 26 10:37:53 UTC 2009

Remco wrote:
> Once upon a time, Linux was very hard to use on the desktop. If you
> wanted to do anything, you had to read manuals and get flamed on
> mailinglists. In recent years this has all been turned around. There
> were some detractors that would argue that Linux would become as
> insecure as Windows because any fool could now use it, but that didn't
> quite happen.
> I don't see why this would be different for server administration. An
> Apache server is very easy to set up, even now. Just install apache
> and you're done. Still, we're not getting complaints that Ubuntu blew
> up the Internet.

Way back when I was still learning and had a Redhat Linux 7.0 natbox, it 
got rooted and I only found out by chance when I saw a glibc 3.0 package 
listed as installed and just happened to be aware that glibc latest 
version was 2.2. For present desktops, you get this lovely software 
update reminders/alerts and of course apt/yum already preconfigured.

You suppose a mom and pop outfit will be constantly monitoring their 
server and will therefore remember to update the thing before it gets 
> Regardless of all these arguments, wouldn't it be great if Ubuntu made
> it easier for system administrators? A tool that makes it difficult to
> make mistakes would be a win for any user, whether they are a skilled
> system administrator or not. A system administrator can still make
> mistakes, and would benefit from a system that complains when this
> happens.

Sorry, that is just not possible. At best you can have certain simple 
set configurations and a gui that will put those in place. Anything else 
will require a competent administrator.

> As a computer science student, I know about Internet security. You
> need a firewall, updated software, strong passwords, a secure
> connection, limited permissions. Yet, I would have a hard time setting
> up a mail server. That should not be hard to do for me. I should just
> be able to install a package, run a nice configuration tool from the
> administration menu, make sure it is sane (and be told if it isn't),
> and fire it up. It's not that complicated. Yet, whenever I have to do
> something that involves server software, suddenly it's like I travel
> back 10 years in time, with endless console sessions, reading man
> pages, searching the Internet, and a lot of trial and error.

Why you get people to agree on a set configuration as a standard, then 
you can make a gui for just that. Anything else is way too complicated 
to be worth the effort to enable a clueless admin to setup.

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