Letters to the Editor
I have read many articles about PPP connections. The descriptions were huge and targeted complex tasks. That's why I always delayed configuring my system for a simple PPP connection.
That was true until I read the article “A 10-Minute Guide for Using PPP” in the April issue of LJ. I followed the instructions (just changed the init-string for my modem) and...it worked at once. Wow! Thanks very much to Terry Dawson for his excellent article and to LJ for publishing it. —Andreas Zisowsky, Berlin email@example.com
In the March 1997 issue of LJ, E. Leibovitch wrote an article entitled “The Death of Xenix” about the opportunities offered by the near death of Xenix. Undoubtedly, LJ is in touch with its readers, or at least one of them.
I would like to tell you about my experience. A few years ago, the library of a high school (Lycee Victor Hugo, Colomiers, France) was computerized by means of an AT386PC with Xenix as OS and dedicated software. This system is now collapsing.
As a technical engineer working for the CRDP (Centre Regional de Documentation Pedagogique—a government organization acting in the area of educational services), I proposed that the existing system be replaced with an actual PC box with Linux as OS and the existing Wyse terminals should be reused. Our goal was to expand by installing an Intranet service to distribute the library databases into all the lycee (schools) using the existing Ethernet-based pedagogic network.
I encountered a few difficulties caused by:
lack of personal knowledge of the necessary setup,
inability to find not-too-new hardware (yesterday's software doesn't always work on today's hardware),
problems compiling the dedicated software: it worked first under IBCS, but I thought it would be better to get a genuine version. I am now in the test assembly stage.
Many thanks to LJ and its team for helping to sustain the Linux movement. —Jean Francois Bardou France firstname.lastname@example.org
I tried your C program as shown in LJ in the article “Safely Running Programs as root” by Phil Hughes in the May 1997 issue. It compiled and worked like a champ. Keep it up; that sort of program is very helpful to strugglers like myself. Looks to me as though I could simply add it to the root menu in FVWM to bring it up and take it down. I'll let you know if it works. Thanks. —Jim Smith email@example.com
On page 14 of May's LJ (From the Editor), you stated that Bristol Zoo is in Swansea. In fact, Bristol Zoo is in Bristol (75 miles from Swansea).
The confusion may have arisen because Alan Cox, at least at one point, had a Swansea University e-mail address and may still live in Swansea. I've never met Alan, so this is mere speculation. —Martin Radford M.P. Radford@exeter.ac.uk
Yes, the press release from Alan Cox originated from Swansea, and I assumed quite wrongly that the zoo was located there. Sorry —Ed.
I read your article “Linux—The Internet Appliance” in the April issue of Linux Journal. It is a subject I have also thought about and agree with your main points.
I think you missed one key point: the users you target probably don't want a floppy or a CD-ROM. A disposable small IDE hard disk would serve your machine much better. What do I mean by disposable? One that can be changed out without disrupting their service. One that is automatically backed up by the ISP. One that serves the following needs:
off-line letter writing
In short, performance. Changing out the hard disk (to one that has been freshly dd(1)'d from a master, followed by a 10-second transfer of the account's setup from the ISP database) will be almost transparent to the customer, except that all the caches are empty, and therefore, they will slog along for a while like everybody else at home. When the caches fill up (200MB is cheap), all the usual pages and images will work as we rich, ethernetted folk expect.
Besides, by dropping the CD-ROM and floppy, and going to a smaller case and power supply, I think the cost total (including $200 monitor) is closer to $600 today than the $800 you suggest.
80 Fast 486 motherboard w/CPU
50 8M RAM (we have swap, remember?)
50 1M Cirrus video card (intended 800x600 16-bit mode)
120 540M IDE drive (buy out a warehouse of discontinued models)
60 28.8 modem
40 Sound card “Hi, my name is Leenus Torrrvalds and I pronounce Leeenux as Leeenux”
50 Case, Power supply, Keyboard, Mouse, lousy speakers
200 14 inch 800x600ni monitor
50 Assembly and testing
Perilously close to the $500 target, right? In volume, you could probably get there now by contracting a custom motherboard, with embedded video, modem, sound, and power supply. It would then no longer be a PC-compatible (no ISA slots), but anyone who wanted that stuff could trade in for a “real” PC. The assumption of your article, which I support, is that there will be a large volume of people who don't want to fuss with it—just plug it in and use it. —Larry Doolittle firstname.lastname@example.org
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
July 20, 2016 12:00 pm CDT
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
Free to Linux Journal readers.Register Now!
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With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide