[Ubuntu-US-CA] REVIEW: Quick Assessment of Canonical's Landscape Management tool for Ubuntu Infrastructures

Hasan Hasanov hassanidin at gmail.com
Thu Oct 11 23:23:38 UTC 2007

Are there any plans to release to the public? There is a package for it
in the repositories:

Placeholder for the Landscape client 
This package is currently empty, but will be updated to contain a client
the Landscape system.  Landscape is a web-based tool for managing Ubuntu

On Wed, 2007-10-10 at 11:52 -0700, Kristian Erik Hermansen wrote:
> Although a very young product, Landscape will be a great tool for any
> administrator managing a slew of Ubuntu machines.  This is exactly the
> tool I wish I had when I was running a small Linux lab for IBM while a
> student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst a few years ago.
> Rather than this great tool, I was forced to write custom scripts to
> manage all the machines.  Well, I did have fun with it.  One time, I
> was able to make the 30+ machines perform a symphony using the beep
> command :-)  One LUG member and I even went so far as to create a
> mapping in Python to allow basic music composition, and to assign
> which hosts would play what part.  It was really cool, and just like
> being a conductor.  It was even cooler when we piped logs through
> festival to warn users when something bad was happening.  Anyways,
> that was just one of the things that kept us busy.  If we have
> Landscape, we could have actually been doing our homework instead!
> So, what's nice about Landscape is that it allows and admin access to
> all the machines in the group.  You can queue up tasks, and they will
> run on the hosts you assign.  You have the power.  You can even kill
> processes remotely.  For instance, just to test it out, I ran
> gnome-calculator, then went to the web interface, and queued it to end
> the process.  A few moments later, and my client received the request
> and the process died.  Very cool.
> Additionally, the client sends out info about the hardware.  So, if
> you need to keep track of inventory, this would be a very useful
> feature.  I mean, who wants to go around and physically gather serial
> numbers anyways, right?!?!
> And just to mention the infrastructure, we all know that Mark
> Shuttleworth is addicted to Python.  So, it is true that Landscape is
> also built this way, just as Launchpad presumably has tons of Python
> code within.  The web service runs on top of the Python Twisted
> framework, which is a wonderful platform to build on and allow rapid
> development.  I myself have fallen in love with Python and Twisted
> allows developers to create applications with a amazing number of
> features in very little time.  I used Twisted when I worked at Cisco
> to build some cool networking tools.  These days, hellanzb is a past
> time of mine, and hellanzb is built on top of Twisted as well.  Many
> good things from such a simple tool.  Go Python!!!
> So, this is my very naive review of Landscape.  It is still in the
> early stages (beta), but I think it is safe to say that we can expect
> great things in the future from this offering by Canonical.  Saving
> administrators time and energy will mean they are happier and more
> productive.  Maybe I wouldn't have gotten in so much trouble during my
> college years had I utilized Landscape :-)
> -- 
> Kristian Erik Hermansen

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