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Boffy 08-05-2004 05:56 PM

Home Network Similar to Work Network
I work in a government department and I would like to create a similar network system at home on a much smaller scale.

I have Four boxes dotted around the house. I have one that acts currently as a file and web server and it always on (in the loft somewhere). That is connected to a router, as are all the other computers in the house.

All the computers run mandrake 10 and have the same users profiled to them. It is however annoying that when, from time to time, I want to go onto another computer and I log in and it is different to my "home" work station.

I want to know how and if it is possible to make it so when I log in on any computer it is the same as when i last logged off. I presume this would involve storeing a lot more on the server computer but i have no idea how to go about it.

Can anyone help me.


Thoreau 08-05-2004 06:32 PM

What you are talking about is thin client tech. You login from anywhere on the lan and you get the same profile as on the terminal server. This is done via citrix in windows as well as natively.

But, if you are looking for performance in 3D games or the like, this ain't the answer. You are running your desktop and apps off of a central server. This is what large high bandwidth corporate lans do to manage many clients without wanting to kill themselves and their coworkers. Good luck.

keex 08-05-2004 06:52 PM

yes it is possible:

on your web / file server create home directories (after adding a huge hard drive) and EXPORT the /home directory with NFS... on all other machines mount the remote homedir as your home:

one thing though: you MUST make sure that all the "different" users have the same id on every single machine. this was once done with NIS/YP and is nowadays solved with LDAP. since your're running mandrake linux, using LDAP-PAM shouldn't be that big of a problem, it is actually fairly easy.

the LDAP server could be your web/file server. oh, and don't forget to backup frequently, because once the HDD on the file server dies, all home directories are gone banana... since you have multiple machines, you could write a simple backup mechanism that tar-gzips the homedir and copies it onto another machine to, e.g. /var/backup/ - frequently - daily - overwriting the odd days...

every day:
- tar.gz /home
- copy to machine2:/var/backup/`perl -e '@a=localtime; print $a[3]%2'` (odd, even day)

this way, the loss shouldn't be dramatic - two days of backup is sufficient (for home use - at least I think so)

there. possible.

HTH, alex

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