Re: Fedora on the server

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> On Thu, Nov 13, 2003 at 07:58:29PM -0800, Nathan G. Grennan wrote:
>> On Thu, 2003-11-13 at 17:50, Dave Oxley wrote:
>> > My company is buying a new Dell server (2x2.4GHz P4 Xeon, 2Gb RAM,
>> 73Gb  RAID 1 SCSI) for our production customer facing web site and I
>> have been  trying to decide on which Linux distribution to use. It
>> needs to run  Apache, tomcat, sendmail, mysql, php and bind and have
>> minimum downtime.  We normally have about 25Gb of HTTP traffic a
>> month, but is likely to  double over the next 12 months. I am not
>> fussed about having paid for  support (that's my job!)
>> >
>> > I was going to choose RH9 (after deciding against Debian), but I
>> just  found out about Fedora. Is Core 1 suitable for this type of
>> environment?  Or would you recommend I go with RH9 or Debian.
>> >
>> > Cheers.
>> Unlike other replies, I would recommend Fedora Core 1 for servers. I
>> recently upgraded 10(4 dns, 1 web, 1 mail, 1 backup, 1 monitoring, 1
>> misc, 1 dns/web/mail/backup/monitoring) servers from Red Hat 9 to
>> Fedora Core 1. Did I have problems? Of course. Could it be a little
>> better? Yes. Did it have bugs similar to those seen with a Red Hat 8.0
>> to Red Hat 9 upgrade? Very much so. Is it stable after you get the
>> details worked out? Yes. Are there quite a few important package
>> upgrades? Yes. Overall it didn't go as well as I would have liked, but
>> better than I expected.

I'll second this, having completed 12 Dell & 4 Compaq 3.2 GHz P4's, 2 gig
RAM, SCSI & IDE RAID 1, Samba 3.0 PDC's, print-file-DNS-DHCP servers,
MPPE/MPPC kernel patch & rebuild, ppp + pptpd for ppp tunnels (2000
workstations encrypted tunneling), phprojekt (time card management + group
project administration) Fedora Core 1 servers this week.

So far, all are very solid, and perform ~ 6 * faster than the 2000 - 2003
MS 2 GHz servers they've replaced, getting at least your expected load
(~50 clients per server) with the difference being on a LAN while
providing PPTP tunneling.

> Very well said.
>> My only concern so far is how much of a mess are updates going to
>> become. Between security updates currently sitting in testing,
>> potential messy forced package upgrades, and less than a guarantee
>> from Red Hat that they will make updated packages available for Fedora
>> Core in a timely fashion, I am a little worried.
> I am in the same boat.  This is one of the reasons why Redhat made the
> switch; to put all that branding they've done behind a name you can now
> only get by paying for it.
> I like Fedora/Redhat and I will continue to push it and use it wherever
> I can.  But Fedora has a lot to show in terms of how great (i.e. stable
> and reliable) of a "product" it can be.  Through dedicated community
> support, I know Fedora can be lifted to the same level and above that
> which Redhat Linux sat on.
> I know several clusters that are "Redhat" clusters.  I just hope in the
> future, they can be "Fedora" clusters. :-)

I've found apt-get irreplaceable on the update front for RH 9 servers, and
will continue to use it & | yum on Fedora. (I maintain test servers in the
lab and test updates before deployment, then deploy from local

>> My analysis of distributions that leaves me with Fedora Core:
>> Debian: stable - too old, testing - some packages too old, unstable -
>> rawhide and still some packages too old
>> SuSE: Pay for box set, no isos, ftp install a few months after
>> release, and hence a No Go.
>> Mandrake: Too buggy, seems like complete lack of QA(Sadly RH9 and FC1
>> are a little closer to Mandrake than RH7.3 than I would like)
>> Gentoo: Shows great promise, install process needs a lot of work,
>> compiling Everything from source isn't what it is cracked up to be,
>> and still needs a little more security infrastructure.
>> Red Hat 9: Pretty good, but now out of date and updates going away
>> soon
>> Red Hat Enterprise 3: Too expensive, too restrictive of a license, and
>> will in the not too distant future be too out of date.

I couldn't agree more with this analysis. We were tempted to shift to
Debian or Suse, but after testing found them to be far from easy to adapt
our extensive needs and specs. Fedora is a known quantity (obviously
RedHat hasn't just dumped the project on a raft and set it adrift, you
folks are doing a great job) and outperformed our expectations from the

Two suggestions:
  1) Can't we just compile ext3 file support into the kernel by default? I
know the early tests made it look like a poor stepchild in comparison to
JFS and XFS, but I'll bet 95% of your base is using the default ext3
install, and I've certainly found it to be robust.
  2) I'm seeing a lot of advice on kernel modifications that say to 'make
oldconfig' when you can 'make xconfig' and Load the original kernel
config from /usr/src/linux-2.4/configs/kernel-2.4.22-MY-ARCH.config
using the X config tool.

Help welcomed: I'd appreciate it if anyone can get the kernel-mppe mod
patch for 2.4.22-1.2115.nptl compiled and drop me a note. We suspect we're
seeing better much better performance by tweaking the kernel (probably due
to compiling the BSD compress, MD5, SHA 1 & 2, etc. in the kernel), but
with 25 more sites opening before spring, I'm losing a lot of time there.

> --
> Scott Gose
> gose@xxxxxxxxxxx
> --
> fedora-list mailing list
> fedora-list@xxxxxxxxxx

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