LISA '03 Abstract
The Realities of Deploying Desktop Linux
Bevis R. W. King, Prof. Roger Webb, and Dr. Graeme Wilford, University of Surrey
The School of Electronics and Physical Sciences has developed and
deployed a Linux-based Desktop solution with thousands of users across
many hundreds of machines. We have successfully delivered this
solution across the whole range of staff and students within a large
organization. It has reduced per-desktop support issues to a minimum
and given a stable, reliable, up-to-date and flexible environment to
our user community. What's more, it also provides Windows.
Our second generation variant is now deployed, and a third
generation is in development. We've based our work on standard
distributions and software tools and achieved a number of key
Zero intervention network-based installation
Full Remote Administration including complete unattended re-install
Dataless clients with no need to back them up
Extremely configurable: extensive support for different peripherals,
varying software installations, and diverse hardware
Automatic updating of all software: multiple simultaneous technologies
providing a flexible solution
Centralized authentication and authorization
Exceptional levels of user choice: Linux, Windows and Hybrid
Our environment is based upon RedHat Linux 7.3, Ximian GNOME 1.4
and VMware 3.2 providing Windows NT 4.0. Our first generation
environment was based upon RedHat Linux 6.2, Ximian GNOME 1.2 and
VMware 2.0 providing Windows NT 4.0. This paper discusses those
technologies we have have deployed with particular focus on the
implications of each choice made. All of the scripts mentioned will be
available as a tarball from our web site to aid others.
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