Difficulty: Intermediate


2009/04/07 - 7:00pm
2009/04/07 - 8:30pm


Jason Cook

Ganglia is a scalable distributed monitoring system for high-performance computing systems such as clusters and Grids. It is based on a hierarchical design targeted at federations of clusters. It leverages widely used technologies such as XML for data representation, XDR for compact, portable data transport, and RRDtool for data storage and visualization. It uses carefully engineered data structures and algorithms to achieve very low per-node overheads and high concurrency. The implementation is robust, has been ported to an extensive set of operating systems and processor architectures, and is currently in use on thousands of clusters around the world. It has been used to link clusters across university campuses and around the world and can scale to handle clusters with 2000 nodes.

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Meeting: puppet

2007/08/07 - 7:00pm
2007/08/07 - 9:00pm


Eric Eisenhart

Eric will discuss the puppet configuration management system for automating many common system administration tasks on unix systems. He’ll be concentrating on the puppet language, but also include some of the other details about how it all works and why you might want to use it.

Slides: OpenOffice.org format: puppet-talk.odp
Slides: PDF: puppet-talk.pdf

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Meeting: Cricket

2007/11/06 - 7:00pm
2007/11/06 - 9:00pm


Don Forbes; System Administrator at Sonic.net

Don will talk about cricket.

Cricket is a high performance, extremely flexible system for monitoring trends in time-series data. In other words: it makes lots of pretty graphs that make it easier to understand what’s been going on with your servers and/or network. It’s really good at getting data via SNMP, but if you can get some number out of something automatically you can get cricket to graph it.

Here’s an example graph; Sonoma State’s primary internet connection traffic over the past year:

Can you tell which week’s classes were in session?

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Meeting: PowerDNS

2007/01/03 - 6:00pm
2007/01/03 - 8:15pm


August Schwer

The PowerDNS Nameserver is a modern, advanced and high performance authoritative-only nameserver. It is written from scratch and conforms to all relevant DNS standards documents. Furthermore, PowerDNS interfaces with almost any database.

In this talk August will discuss how PowerDNS can serve your Name Serving needs, some of its advantages and disadvantages, how it can play well with other Name Servers and how you can migrate to it.

August is the Senior System Administrator at Sonic.net; more information about him can be found at his personal website: www.schwer.us .

Note: The time has been adjusted slightly for this meeting to accomodate the Sebastopol fireworks.

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Meeting: Ruby on Rails

2007/03/06 - 7:00pm
2007/03/06 - 9:00pm


Rob Orsini, author of the Rails Cookbook

Rob will give a 1 hour overview of Rails including server setup, admin issues and templating.

What is Ruby on Rails? "Rails is a full-stack framework for developing database-backed web applications according to the Model-View-Control pattern." What that means, basically, is that it lets programmers write applications without needing to worry too much about the boring details. Alternately, it's a a new, very popular way to create dynamic websites quickly and easily. Even if you're not a programmer you'll eventually want to deploy some cool new Rails application, and maybe even customize it a little for your site's needs.

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Meeting: Xen

2007/02/06 - 7:00pm
2007/02/06 - 9:00pm


Luke S. Crawford and Neal K.

Join Luke and Neal to hear about Xen, the exciting new technology that will make your life happier and more productive. (Don't believe anything they say to the contrary -- they're just old and cynical.)

Xen is a virtualization technology that offers nearly all the traditional advantages of virtualization with near-native speeds. Using Xen, administrators can partition users into separate virtual machines, developers can rapidly test network applications, home users can enjoy robust checkpoints and configuration management. Right now it's all hackerware, but the revolution is coming.

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Meeting: MySQL Backup

2006/10/04 - 7:00pm
2006/10/04 - 8:30pm

Backup and Recovery manager for MySQL

Food starts at 6pm.
Speaker starts at 7pm.
Show up by 6:10 if you want in on a pizza (or other food) order.

As MySQL gets used in increasingly critical and 24/7 applications, its live backup has become increasingly important for administrators. Zmanda Recovery Manager for MySQL is a simple to use tool to do MySQL backups and recovery. It provides enterprise level backup features such as scheduling, reporting and notification. The talk will cover the details of project (code is available under GPL), product features and roadmap. We will also talk about choices and challenges while backing up a MySQL based environment.

Paddy Sreenivasan of zmanda.

Paddy has worked on multiple open source projects in areas of system availability, backup and recovery. Currently he’s focussed on database as well as system backup and recovery projects.

Meeting: System Recovery with Knoppix

2006/09/06 - 6:00pm
2006/09/06 - 8:30pm

Food at 6pm; talk starts at 7pm.

Knoppix is a complete Linux distribution that runs directly from CD. One of its most popular uses is as a rescue and recovery CD since it includes a wide range of incredibly flexible tools to fix a computer that won’t boot.

In this talk Kyle will discuss a number of different system recovery scenarios and how to use Knoppix (or another live CD) to restore both Linux and Windows systems. Among the recovery scenarios, Kyle will cover:

  • Restoring the Linux boot loader

  • Recreating the partition table from scratch

Kyle Rankin

Kyle is the author of Knoppix Hacks, a member of the SoCoSA board and NBLUG’s president.

Meeting: WAFS

2006/08/02 - 6:00pm
2006/08/02 - 8:30pm

Wide Area File Services

As more and more businesses implement new technology and applications requiring more bandwidth, they increase congestion on the WAN networks connecting branch offices with their data center. There are several approaches to dealing with this congestion:

Upgrading WAN links to prohibitively expensive T3 and OC3 links to maintain “local speed” access at the branch office, implementing file services at each location, software-based solutions that do real-time file replication, or a WAFS (Wide Area File Services) appliance.

Chris Wagner

Chris is SoCoSA’s vice-president and a systems administrator for Amy’s Kitchen.

Meeting: Patch Management

2006/07/05 - 6:00pm
2006/07/05 - 8:30pm

Today's Technology vs. Dynamic Threats

The topic will be Today’s Technology vs. Dynamic Threats. The Threatscape has expanded to new heights. What was once thought to be a silver bullet approach, with encryption and firewalls, today’s cyber criminals have surpassed by volumes. Learn about the information that US CERT and The Secret Service do not publicly talk about when it comes to cyber crime.

Pizza will be provided by the presenter. Food and unstructured discussion starts at 6pm, presentation at 7pm.

Darren Nicholson, Autonomic Software