Xandros and other Linux companies.
Apr 11, 2007
4:44 AM EDT
|I love Xandros server, I think it's a REALLY great step in the right direction. But the problem I am having with Xandros and other Linux companies is the rush to add the next great feature and the lack of focus on getting the good features you already have to work right.
I spent 2 days last week testing Xandros server version one. It was easy to install, it was very easy to set up a managed community (Which allows you to add multiple servers into a domain like structure and manage them from the new Xandros tool Xmc)
Xmc is really cool, it really helps you manage your servers like the Windows MMC (Actually better then the MMC) I like their approach to service management.
Adding a Xandros business workstation to your Xandros server domain is really easy. And it's easy to log in with your network user accounts, map file shares. Grab your home directory etc.
Xandros server version on is really good. But I have a list of issues that I ran into that I hope Xandros will address. Some of them are show stoppers which is why I am using OSX server instead of Xandros (Even though Xandros is much lower in cost)
1. Lack of MySQL server support in Xmc. Xmc can manage apache, FTP, SSH, Backup software, File sharing (NFS and SMB) etc. But the one thing that it does not have and also Xandros does not install by default is MySQL.
2. Replication in Managed Communities. When you install Xandros server you feel like you are setting up an NT or Active Directory like set up. When you install the second and 3rd servers It's like you are adding BDC's to your domain. But this is not the case at all. The managed community information is only on the first server. So if the primary server goes down your managed community is dead.
3. Windows filesharing replication. Windows file sharing is simple to set up in Xmc. It's easy to set up what they call in Xmc "Network Users" And it's simple to go in and also make a "Network" computer account in your managed community and then add a Xandros workstation to the Managed community and log in with a Network User account. The issue is that these account are ONLY on the primary server. So if the primary server ever goes off line you loose access to those users.
Also those users and machines do not get access to other machines in the managed community. User permissions do not extend to the other servers you add. (Like you would get in NT domains or Active Directory)
4. Access to Network user accounts. Not sure what method Xandros is using to store the user accounts that you add into the network users area. It would be great if they used LDAP and Kerberos (Like Apple does with Open Directory and Workgroup manager, which are based on Open Ldap, Kerberos and Samba)
5. Make it more easy to add Windows 2000, XP and Vista machines to the managed community.
6. Boot up speed. Need to improve on that.
7. Making it easy to add a Xandros server to a Windows domain on install. Right now on Xandros server version 1 you can not add a Xandros server to a Windows domain during the install process. It asks you if you want to be the first server in a managed community or a secondary server. It would be cool if there was an option to say "Do you want to add this server to a Windows 2000 - 2003 domain"
8. Make it easy to tell when you have mapped a network directory. As it stands now, when you mount a Samba share from another machine. In Xandros it makes you create a local folder to mount it in and then you can access the share. To the user it just looks like any other folder. Because of this you can't tell which are normal and which are network shares. Also you can't tell when the network mount is actually mounted in the folder. When you mount a Samba in the Mac OS it doesn't require you to make a local folder, it also looks different, they give the mount an icon that looks like you have a network resource attached. Xandros may want to make it so that network shares automatically mount into a area called Network Shares that shows up in the Xandros file manager. Also another issue is that you can not tell the amount of space, space left etc the mounted share has. In Mac OS and Windows you can for Samba shares and Windows shares. (This is an issue in the Xandros desktop OS and not the server)
Items 2 - 5 are show stoppers for me. I could sell Xandros to my clients (And I would use it also at my office) if these things worked and you could make a NT domain, Active Directory style layout with Xandros servers and have redundant services. Apple has done this with their Mac Server using the same open source tools available to Xandros.
As it stands now I can't sell any version of Linux to my customers for file and print services because they don't have the ability to do this (Besides Novell Open Enterprise server) Be redundant, provide directory services to all OS's. To integrate that with Samba. The only company to get it right is Apple. If the Apple OS could run on non Mac hardware it would be an easy sell (We will see what happens when Leopard server comes out. It will be the first version to run on Intel processors. ) The reason I keep mentioning Apple, is that the tools they are using are all open source and could be put together the same way on a Linux distro.
My fear is that Xandros will add new features like Xen etc and will not fix the things that are already there. :-(
Apr 11, 2007
9:20 AM EDT
Quoting:1. Lack of MySQL server support in Xmc. Xmc can manage apache, FTP, SSH, Backup software, File sharing (NFS and SMB) etc. But the one thing that it does not have and also Xandros does not install by default is MySQL.
For Apache, MySQL, PHP, FTP, SSL, etc... I use XAMPP. It takes 5 minutes to get everything installed and secured. give it a try. I use all the time.
Apr 11, 2007
2:03 PM EDT
|I'm with ya, Abe. I've used xampp for web development on Linux, OS X and XP...even flying at 40,000 feet. I also use it for an Intranet. The coolest thing is having the entire stack encapsulated in one directory and isolated from the rest of your system (Linux /Mac, anyway). It makes it super easy to have multiple installations with different configurations.
Now what did this have to do with Xandros...???
Apr 11, 2007
6:32 PM EDT
Quoting:Now what did this have to do with Xandros...???
Quoting:But the one thing that it does not have and also Xandros does not install by default is MySQL.
It sounded like he wished Xandros would have MySQL installed by default. That is really not necessary since XAMPP makes it so easy.
I personally wanted to give XAMPP a little of exposure. I hope you don't mind!
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