Applications for Your Enterprise
I'm continually surprised at the folks who (with an air of authority) declare Linux is not ready for the enterprise. These are people who should know better. I told you several months ago that Linux was, in fact, ready for the desktop. True, there are some areas where Linux is still weak. But I think some folks are judging Linux from a whole different set of standards than they use for other operating systems. I submit that the Burlington Coat Factory, McDonald's and Largo City success stories prove that Linux is ready. And with over 400 Largo City desktops running Linux, with a savings of over $3,000,000 US, and the secretaries loving it, folks need to start examining why they're fighting it so fiercely. Linux in the enterprise is alive and well and growing, with many happy users. The absurd claim that when those who put it together are gone no one will understand, it is wishful thinking. I will bet most anyone reading this, given one or two hours (or less) going over the configuration files in /etc, would understand everything going on. So don't ask why, ask why not.
MySQL Navigator sql.kldp.org/mysql
If you find you need a powerful graphical tool to do serious MySQL work, then MySQL Navigator may be just what you need. This application rivals, and maybe even betters, PHPMySQL. And if you don't have access to Apache with PHP and MySQL support, then this is definitely what you need. Requires: libmysqlui (included), libqt2, libXext, libX11, libstdc++, libm, glibc, libmysqlclient, libSM, libICE, libpng, libz, libjpeg, libmng, licvrypt, libnsl.
A number of recovery CDs have been appearing, but this one is created from your running system. While Mindi is comparable to several other offerings, it is quick, easy to use and worth a look. Its minimal requirements make it perfect for almost any system, including one that doesn't have its own CD burner—just transfer the ISO image to a system that does. Requires: sh.
If you need more than just a boot CD-ROM, Mondo extends Mindi and creates a backup of your entire system. It first creates a Mindi ISO, then calculates and creates a backup of your entire system that is easy to restore. Those of you comfortable with afio will probably like this backup system, which is another good tool to consider for your backups if you use a CD burner rather than tapes. Requires: Mindi, afio.
Ever had a problem where you needed to trace all the way to a server but that server was behind a firewall that dropped standard traceroute packets? Well, if that server is running services accessible from the Internet, you can use tcptraceroute to go right through the firewall to the server. Just specify the port (by default, tcptraceroute uses port 80), and the firewall won't know the difference. Requires: libpcap, libnet, glibc.
iCE Breakers Log Monitor sourceforge.net/projects/iblm
I've tried a number of different tools to keep an eye on certain logs as events happen, but this one is by far the best one I've seen. Just tell the dotrc file which logs to watch for you (you'll obviously need permissions to read these files), and you can watch any one by selecting its tab. As messages come in, if they don't come in to the tabbed box on top, the lettering on the tab changes to bold to alert you of a new message. A great tool for troubleshooting. Requires: libgtk, libgdk, libgmodule, libglib, libdl, libXext, libX11, libm, glibc.
WebHost Billing System www.tolchz.net
Granted, not many will have a need for this, but if you bill a lot of customers monthly, you might want to give this a try. It's particularly good if billings go out on a daily basis. Just select the customers to bill and off it goes, tracking who's been billed what and when. Requires: MySQL, PHP4 with MySQL, web server, web browser.
I don't know if you've ever tried to manage a FAQ, but it can be a challenge. Well, the FAQ-O-Matic won't do it for you, but it does make it easier to maintain. It's all done from a web interface, so it's relatively painless and easy. Installation is a breeze. In true Perl fashion, this little utility runs you through the entire process, checking off boxes for you as you go. Requires: Perl.
I realize that only a very few of you out there run the Blackbox window manager. But for those of you that do, toolbox can help you customize your Blackbox setup easily. While I'm sure Blackbox users are more comfortable with ASCII configuration files than the average KDE user, the styles are more easily modified via a graphical interface. At least, that's how I see it. Requires: libqt (v2), libXext, libX11, libstdc++, libm, libSM, libICE, libpng, libz, libjpeg, libmng, glibc.
Until next month.
David A. Bandel (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a Linux/UNIX consultant currently living in the Republic of Panama. He is coauthor of Que Special Edition: Using Caldera OpenLinux.