Scott Dowdle's blog

An OpenVZ Experiment - How many containers?

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I was wondering just how many OpenVZ containers I could create on a beefy machine and how many processes the Linux kernel would be happy running so I decided to do an experiment.

I have two OpenVZ hosts... one is the primary and the other is a backup machine. Both of them are HP Proliant DL380 Gen5 machines with dual, quad-core Xeon processors, 32GB of RAM, 32GB of swap, and a 600GB /vz partition. I decided to use the backup OpenVZ machine for the experiment.


The Linux Link Tech Show Archive

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Wow, being a guest on The Linux Link Tech Show... with fantastic hosts Dann, Linc, Allan, and Pat... was great. I had a lot of fun. Yes, there were some technical problems at the beginning of the show that caused it to start a little late... and unfortunately I didn't have a way to boost my volume... and I don't know how it sounded live because I wasn't tuned into the live stream... but the archive recording isn't too bad. I'm guessing Dann cranked up the volume whenever I was talking.

For those who missed the live show, here are links to the .ogg and .mp3 archives:

tllts_278-12-17-08.ogg
tllts_278-12-17-08.mp3


Screencast: How to Build a Fedora 10 Remix

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I made a two-part screencast on how to build a Fedora Linux remix. The first video has some slides at the beginning that explains the process and then walks through it with a live demo. The second video boots the LiveDVD that was created, shows an "Install to Hard Drive" and then shows some of the features of the remix.

Why would you want to make a remix? Two common reasons:

1) You want updated install media that has all of the updates already applied. Given the fact that Fedora has a lot of package churn and a constant stream of security fixes, bug fixes and feature enhancement updates, their install media gets out of date pretty quickly. That is especially the case if you want to use an .iso image of the LiveCD media to make a LiveUSB out of.

2) You want more software included on the Live media than Fedora provides. The Fedora folks usually fill up a single CD but how about a LiveDVD with additional desktop environments, a slew of window managers, a ton of application software, and multimedia apps that Fedora won't include in the distro? That's what I make during the screencast... a custom LiveDVD with all of the updates applied and all of the additional software I want in a LiveDVD with a painless, quick install-to-hard-drive if desired.

Here is the end result. I boot the the LiveDVD image and even do an install.

You can find the full-quality Ogg Theora videos here (Right-click, Save Link As..):
fedora-10-remix.ogv (130MB)
fedora-10-remix-boot.ogv (65MB)

Screencast: A Brief Introduction to OpenVZ

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The first "Introduction to OpenVZ" screencast that I did was over 1.5 years ago and it has become somewhat outdated... so I decided to make a new one.

If desired, you may download the full-quality Ogg Theora video:
openvz-brief-intro.ogv (114MB) (Right-click, Save Link As...)

BozemanLUG Video Profiles - NOT

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The meeting went well last night but as expected, no one wanted to do any member profile videos... but I did shoot the following video. You should be able to root through our member list and the pictures that are posted and identify most everyone. If you want the high quality Ogg Theora video, right-click and "Save Link As..." the following: bozemanlug-20081204.ogv

Review: Fedora 10

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Fedora 10Fedora 10Fedora 10 was officially released on Tuesday November 25, 2008. Since its release I have installed it on a number of machines and been running it as my full-time desktop. I added screenshots for the Syslinux boot screen, Plymouth in text mode, GDM, GNOME Desktop, GNOME Window Decorations, KDM, KDE Startup, KDE Desktop and KDE Window Decorations.

The Daemon, the GNU, and the Penguin

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In March of 2005 Dr. Peter H. Salus started writing a book which he posted a chapter at a time on Groklaw. You may recall that Groklaw is a website that sprang into prominence after SCO filed suite against IBM. Part of Groklaw's goals were to analyse and report on the case and to help gather up historical information about the development of Unix and Linux (and everything related) such that it could be used to dispute the claims of SCO.

It appears that the SCO vs. Novell case has come to an end today.

Getting back to Dr. Salus' book, it is entitled, The Daemon, the GNU, and the Penguin: A History of Free and Open Source. A while ago I discovered the book on Groklaw and since it is licensed under a Creative Commons Atrribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License I gathered up the web pages and assembled them into a nice printable format (PDF) which you can find as an attachment to this blog entry.

Some years ago I purchased Dr. Salus' A Quarter Century of UNIX and really enjoyed it. Unfortunately I loaned it out to a student at Rocky Mountain College who was doing a report and don't think I ever got it back. Oh well, there are plenty of used copies for sale.

Give The Daemon, the GNU, and the Penguin a read. It is worth your time.

Screencast: vzpkg2 & pkg-cacher

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Robert Nelson released an updated version of vzpkg2, pkg-cacher as well as OS Template Metadata packages for Fedora, CentOS, Debian and Ubuntu. In all there are 48 different OS Templates that can easily be made using this software and I'm wanting to get more people in the community interested so I made a screencast.

If you want the full-quality version, right-click on the following URL and save as. It is an Ogg Theora video and recorded with gtk-recordMyDesktop:

vzpkg2-screencast.ogv (69MB) (Right-click, Save Link As...)

Interview: vzpkg2 and pkg-cacher creator Robert Nelson

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Robert Nelson seems to have come out of nowhere with an update to vzpkg. Before we get started let me briefly review what vzpkg is.

An OS Template is what OpenVZ uses as install media so you may install a Linux distribution into a container... since you cannot use a traditional CD-ROM / DVD nor .iso disk image. An OS Template is a .tar.gz file that represents a somewhat stripped down version of an installed Linux distribution as you would find it installed on a disk filesystem. So, if you want to create a CentOS 5.2 i386 container, you need to find an CentOS 5.2 i386 OS Template.

There are a number of recipes on the OpenVZ wiki for building OS Templates for various Linux distributions but the general process takes several steps and is quite a bit of work. Any tool that can simplify the creation (and updating) of an OS Template is a welcome addition. OpenVZ comes with vzpkgcache (part of the vzpkg package) which is designed to facilitate OS Template creation for Red Hat based distributions.

Bryan takes care of a baby?

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I think this video speaks for itself.

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