Integrated client/server solution

Role Play

The group view appears on the window's left side, the corresponding contents on the right side in an interface that looks a bit old-fashioned. You can now start setting up the server and the desired services. To do this, you can assign different roles to the server; Karoshi processes individual scripts for each role and sets up the services in just a few steps. Time-consuming manual configuration at the prompt is not needed.

To view a server's current roles, first click on the System group, and then on the Show server option on the left in the web interface. A list of all the servers available on the intranet with their respective roles now appears on the window's right side. In the Server roles column, the primary server is always the Domain controller, the server for Users and groups, and the File server.

When you click on the green monitor icon in the Add Role column to the right of each active server, a list of available server services appears. Clicking on the monitor icon lets you select from a list with more than 20 services. The choice extends from backup, print, or email servers through to CMS, e-learning, and project management services. If you mouse over the monitor icon, Karoshi displays a tool tip for each service.

The tool tips also show you which module dependencies exist and let you know if a service (such as the backup server) cannot be installed on the main system (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Install additional services with a mouse click.

To install a service, simply click on the monitor icon. Then Karoshi runs a script that sets up the service and configures it in a few interactive steps. After completing a dialog, click on the Submit button. When the procedure is complete, the system automatically adds the service to the list of Server roles.

If you then click on the dialog for adding a new server role again, the newly activated service is shown as Configured in the Status column. If the backup service cannot be set up on the main server, a link to the assigned backup server appears in the Backup column.

You can modify the configuration of the configured services in further dialogs. The Backup group in the main window offers you the option of setting up the backup parameters in the list view on the left. You can adjust printer queues in the Printers group on the left in the main window.

To disable services again, click the monitor icon in the Remove role column. Then all active and deletable services on the respective server are listed together with a message stating that existing data must be backed up before deletion. After pressing Delete, you have to confirm the deletion process by entering a numerical code; only then will the server role be removed.

Additional Packages

In addition to the application-dependent server services, Karoshi Linux can be kitted out with numerous other useful applications. These include the free SOGo [3] groupware, the Dovecot [4] email server, the Moodle [5] learning and course management software, the Joomla CMS [6], and the Xerte [7] e-learning development environment.

Xibo [8] also provides a digital signing solution. Karoshi Linux also integrates the ownCloud [9] storage platform and the GlusterFS [10] distributed filesystem. The latter combines mass storage capacities on several servers to create a single filesystem. The Squid proxy server [11] and E2guardian [12] provide security on the network.

Group Dynamics

As the next step, it makes sense to create groups and users in order to simplify administration, especially for larger infrastructures. In the main window on the left, look for the Users and Groups category; you will find the detailed settings in the corresponding submenu.

Start by creating new groups, or manage existing ones, via the Group Management dialog. After clicking on this, Karoshi displays a list of existing groups; this will primarily mean the system groups. A horizontal buttonbar at the top of the window lets you manage existing groups, create new ones, or delete ones you don't need (Figure 3).

Figure 3: You can also manage groups in the web interface.

After a click on New Primary Group, a small dialog for creating a new group appears. When you get there, enter a name, a description, and – if several servers are active on the intranet – the name of the server. Then press Submit to create the group.

Next, proceed to create new user accounts using Add Users in the Users and Groups category, and assign the users to individual groups. In the tabular Group Management view, you can then view all the associated users in the Members column of the respective group.

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