Latest LQ Deal: Complete CCNA, CCNP & Red Hat Certification Training Bundle
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - General
User Name
Linux - General This Linux forum is for general Linux questions and discussion.
If it is Linux Related and doesn't seem to fit in any other forum then this is the place.


  Search this Thread
Old 09-13-2005, 09:30 AM   #1
Registered: Sep 2004
Location: London, UK
Distribution: Fedora Core 4
Posts: 59

Rep: Reputation: 15
Tips for managing multiple linux servers

I used to consider myself a linux newbie. But now it's 3 years later and I find myself in charge of 4 dedicated linux web server machines in full production use, plus my own development box.

Managing all the patching, security monitoring, configuration changes, log files, logwatch reports, crontabs etc is starting to become a bit of a chore.

Does anyone have any tips as to how I can more effectively manage multiple linux machines? These machines are all on different networks and in different locations around the world.

EXAMPLE 1: Are there any tools for combined reporting?

EXAMPLE 2: Is it wise to set up systems that rsync's configuration file changes around and deploy software automatically across all machines, or is this more likely to make a maintenance headache?

Any suggestions appreciated.

Last edited by benr77; 09-13-2005 at 09:33 AM.
Old 09-13-2005, 05:20 PM   #2
Registered: Apr 2005
Location: Canada
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 496

Rep: Reputation: 31
Bash scripting is your friend of friends. It will combine your log files, do checksumming and global updates, and clean your shoes.
Look at everything you would want to do automatically. Then break it down into logical steps. Then convert those steps into bash scripts.
A little "hard work" is always necessary, but the more you can script, the more free time you'll have to kick back and relax.
Old 09-13-2005, 08:22 PM   #3
LQ Guru
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Sydney
Distribution: Centos 6.9, Centos 7.3
Posts: 17,406

Rep: Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396Reputation: 2396
Actually, it was to solve almost exactly this kind of prob that Perl was invented
If the systems are pretty std/common layout, then yes, having a central server push out (via rsync) new configs does work. Seen it myself at a major intl merchant bank.
Old 09-14-2005, 04:32 AM   #4
Registered: Sep 2004
Location: London, UK
Distribution: Fedora Core 4
Posts: 59

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
Thanks. All sounds reasonable.

So what kind of thing is it common to automate, or is this really bespoke to every individual setup? What are the prime candidates? Things I'm thinking of include:
  • Software updating via package management (my systems are Fedora boxes so cron'ing yum would be a start) - or is it best to do these manually so you know exactly what is changing on your system? Or perhaps to exclude certain packages from yum update's and be forced to do them manually as required ??
  • Backup routines - creating tarballs of each user's home dir and saving it off to a central backup location, plus backing up all the databases schemas and data
  • Rsyncing backup data off to other servers for safe keeping

For server to server communication, I presume rsync is the tool of choice? Main benefits of using rsync as far as I know are that it tunnels through a secure connection such as SSH so there's no need to open additional ports on your firewalls etc, and that it only transfers the data that has changed etc, so that it massively conserves bandwidth. However, are there any security related or other concerns I should worry about if taking this approach?

Also, any ideas as to how it's possible to securely backup user information (and preferably passwords too) to another server without creating a big security hole, or is trying to do this a big no no ?? And what are the risks of storing backup data from server A on server B, if any?



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
managing multiple isp yenonn Linux - Networking 1 11-01-2005 05:07 AM
How do I Managing multiple X configurations using GDM AntWarrior Linux - Software 2 04-22-2005 06:41 PM
Managing Multiple Partitions and OS's Echo Kilo Linux - Software 0 10-22-2004 11:28 AM
Linking to multiple linux servers with SSH rwalkerphl Linux - Newbie 2 07-05-2004 12:37 PM
mutt - managing multiple accounts nic_d Linux - Newbie 0 02-14-2002 04:52 PM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - General

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:55 PM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration