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 Post subject: So I have this idea.....
PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 7:29 pm 
Monkey Fed [PC]
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...about doing something more with my Linux nodes than just folding. Only problem is, I have no idea where to start. Here's the scoop.

Boss mentioned something about having a webserver to store some of our work info on, like pictures of upcoming jobs, current bids, etc. I've got 500 GB of HD space being pretty much unused except for folding. One box is Arch Linux, the other is Ubuntu Server 8.04. I'm going to assume this will be easier to set up on the Ubuntu box. Don't worry about the hardware specs, they are plenty well off.

So, I want to set one up as a webserver for ONLY our company. Something with a web-page like interface for uploading and viewing text and pic files. This needs to be very user friendly, because my employer's aren't too computer literate. It needs to be simple to use.

Security is a must, of course. I don't have a router, currently. I have my DSL modem, and behind that an 8-port D-Link switch. Am I going to need a router for a VPN or something? Where do I begin to look for something like this? Is it a safe idea, or should we just get some space on a server and pay some monthly rent? I have no bandwidth caps for my ISP, either, so that's not a concern.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 7:59 pm 
Bitchin' Fast 3D Z8000
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Sounds like you're looking for a sharepoint equivelent in linux.

I believe there's a few commercial options there, but nothing freely available that I can think of. Setting up open-exchange might be an option, but that's still $$$ too.

VPN would be a decent and easy barebones solution, but your web-base graphics would be limited to naming folders by project and thumbnails.

Admittedly dude...this isn't exactly a light project by any stretch.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:07 pm 
Monkey Fed [PC]
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Actually, naming folders by projects would be ideal. By thumbnails, do you mean the pics are thumbnails, or just the menu interface? Something like those simple FTP websites you go to that are running Apache on them. I suppose for something like this you'd need an FTP program though, instead of a web interface.

What about doing something like this in Windows? I suppose the options are greater, but probably cost more bucks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:19 pm 
Bitchin' Fast 3D Z8000
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yea..you could do a LAMP server or a setup a simple FTP service too. Either case, you'll be setting up a firewall, be it on another linux box or something else.

with VPN, you'll just be browsing a network share like you're at the office, so yea, thumbnails like you'd see when browsing my documents or something.

I don't think you'd get the same effect from an FTP service. A LAMP server would, but to me, this is a) a lot of work to setup, b) a lot of work to write your code to get it to do what you want it to do, and c) a lot of work to keep it going. It'd be good learning, but I tend to lean towards the idea that there's plenty of outside options (say google docs) where you could accomplish the same with 1/100th of the effort IMO.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:04 am 
TravBv2.0
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This will be no small project. I'll just start by throwing that out there.

Firstly, if you're on a residential internet connection, for get about. They incoming connections to Web, Secure Web, FTP, and SMTP services. You'll have to up your personal connection to a business-grade account to do any hosting. This here is the very reason I have a blog instead of a website.

Also, how many people would be connecting to this server?

Secondly, you'll be responsible for making sure everything is air-tight as far as security goes. Firewalls, user accounts, passwords, possibly even putting Apache or your desired FTP service in a chroot jail. Not to mention your coding to get your interface and such running the way you want/need it do. My web skills go as far as HTML. I can party with DIY websites like it's 1995!

Furball, I see what you're saying about the difficulty of setting up a LAMP server, but I disagree that it's a lot of work to keep it going. Most servers set it and forget it. Configuring is the only difficult part. Once he gets it the way he wants it, as long as he nor anyone else screws around with it, he's good. Same holds true for any server.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:21 am 
SON OF A GUN
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Knowledge Tree?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:09 am 
Bitchin' Fast 3D Z8000
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that Linux guy wrote:
I see what you're saying about the difficulty of setting up a LAMP server, but I disagree that it's a lot of work to keep it going. Most servers set it and forget it. Configuring is the only difficult part. Once he gets it the way he wants it, as long as he nor anyone else screws around with it, he's good. Same holds true for any server.


I hear ya. That last comment goes on the idea of a service level and everything that goes into doing that (backups, new content, security update that hoses something else..)


Last edited by furball146 on Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:34 am 
Java Junkie
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CrashTECH wrote:
Knowledge Tree?


Seconded! linky

Alternatively, you could set up a wiki on your box and let users update their own pages .. this is common for dev teams and not terribly difficult to set up.

As for protecting your box from the outside ... we need to know the network configuration that you're working with. Is this PC on the same network as those accessing it? How is the network controlled? etcetc


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:52 am 
SON OF A GUN
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I haven't used knowledge tree for any production thing. We did evaluated it and decided for what we were trying to do that it was a little overkill.

I think a good media wiki would be a good way to go. It has good versioning built in, you can see who changed what. Attach files etc. It worked very well for our applications.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:05 am 
Monkey Fed [PC]
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that Linux guy wrote:
This will be no small project. I'll just start by throwing that out there.

Firstly, if you're on a residential internet connection, for get about. They incoming connections to Web, Secure Web, FTP, and SMTP services. You'll have to up your personal connection to a business-grade account to do any hosting. This here is the very reason I have a blog instead of a website.

Also, how many people would be connecting to this server?

Secondly, you'll be responsible for making sure everything is air-tight as far as security goes. Firewalls, user accounts, passwords, possibly even putting Apache or your desired FTP service in a chroot jail. Not to mention your coding to get your interface and such running the way you want/need it do. My web skills go as far as HTML. I can party with DIY websites like it's 1995!

Furball, I see what you're saying about the difficulty of setting up a LAMP server, but I disagree that it's a lot of work to keep it going. Most servers set it and forget it. Configuring is the only difficult part. Once he gets it the way he wants it, as long as he nor anyone else screws around with it, he's good. Same holds true for any server.


There would only be 3 or 4 other people connecting to this machine. Shouldn't be that much traffic.

Also, I don't want to host a website, per say, but I want the interface to look website-ish to make it easy for the PC-illiterate people I work with to use it.

However, Furball and I were talking on IRC last night, and we figured it might be easier to just get a NAS box and make a VPN to it that everyone could access. We could have different folders for all the different jobs, etc, etc. Thoughts?


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