Servers

Ubuntu Server 8.10

Even thought it hasn't reached that level of security found in Red Hat Enterprise Linux or SuSE Linux Enterprise Server, Ubuntu Server 8.10 is an outstanding enterprise-ready server Linux-based operating system for SMB organizations.

Even thought it hasn't reached that level of security found in Red Hat Enterprise Linux or SuSE Linux Enterprise Server, Ubuntu Server 8.10 is an outstanding enterprise-ready server Linux-based operating system for SMB organizations.

Specifications

  • CPU at least 300MHz (x86)
  • Memory at least 128MB
  • Hard Drive at least 500MB
  • Video Card VGA @ 640x480
  • License: GPL
  • Cost: Free
  • Additional information

Who's it for?

The best clients for Ubuntu Server 8.10 are small to mid-size enterprises that need reliable and available data centers up and running fast. Larger enterprises might want to look towards the Red Hat or Novell offerings as they bring a much higher level of security to the table.

What problem does it solve?

Ubuntu Server 8.10 serves as a perfect mid-level server for businesses that are not looking for the ability to scale to large enterprise requirements. Ubuntu Server 8.10 gives server administrators a sensible solution that is easy to install, requires little-to-no babysitting, is secure, and is scalable, at least to a degree.

When considering Ubuntu 8.10 as a server one can not overlook the cost. What Ubuntu server 8.10 does is empower an IT department who is short on budget, but long on needs.

Standout features

  • Kernels: 2.6.27 tickless/no preemption/deadline I/O/PAE/100Hz, JeOS 2.6.27 stripped for virtualization
  • Web: Apache 2.2 with event/prefork/worker/dev, Tomcat 6
  • Database: MySQL 5 and PostgreSQL 8.3
  • E-mail: Dovecot 1.1, Postfix 2.5, Exim 4.69, SpamAssasin 3.2, ClamAV 0.94, amavisd-new 2.6
  • Languages: PHP 5.2, Perl 5.10, Python 2.5, Gcc 4.3, Ruby 4.2
  • Networking: LTSP 5.1, Samba 3.2, OpenLDAP 2.4, OpenVPN 2.1, FreeRadius 1.1
  • Monitoring: Munin 1.2, Nagios 3
  • Backup: Bacula 2.4, BackupPC 3.1
  • Package Management: Aptitude 0.4, APT 0.7, Dpkg 1.14
  • Security: AppArmor 2.3, iptables 1.4, ufw 0.23
  • Clustering: Ocfs 2, Gfs 2, RH-Cluster 2, DRDB 8
  • Virtualization: KVM 72, Libvirt 0.4, Virt-Manager 0.5
  • Storage: Lvm 2, aoetools 26, openiscsi 2.0

What's wrong?

One of the issues plaguing Ubuntu on the enterprise level is high availability. The reason this is often considered a problem is, out of the box, Ubuntu Server doesn't include some of the tools necessary for redundancy or high availability. However, this really doesn't have to be an issue.

Installing the heartbeat package is as simple as issuing sudo apt-get install heartbeat. All dependencies will be installed and heartbeat will be ready to configure. Of course heartbeat is a cluster-aware package so more than one server will need to be up and running for this to work.

So the myth that Ubuntu server can not do high availability is just that -- a myth. To state that "out of the box Ubuntu Server 8.10 can not handle high availability" would be closer to the truth. It requires some further installation and configuration.

Competitive products

Bottom line for business

There are many alternatives for a server operating system, but few of them are as reliable at such low initial cost. If your business is looking for a solid server OS, but doesn't need to scale to large numbers, Ubuntu Server 8.10 will serve you just fine.

User rating

Have you deployed Ubuntu Server 8.10? If so, how would you rate your experience? Rate this operating system below and compare your results to what other TechRepublic members think.

About

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website getjackd.net.

20 comments
raju.rawat@burrenegypt.
raju.rawat@burrenegypt.

Thanks Friends. I have installed UBUNTU 8.10 and glad I did so. BUT Now whats this post about server edition 8.04.2. is this the server side edition? Thankyou guys.

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

can it be secure but the other offerings bring a higher level of security to the table. It is secure or not then?

Photogenic Memory
Photogenic Memory

I'm just kidding man. Ubuntu server looks really cool! I'll give it a try. You articles are always the bomb-bucha! Thanks for posting.

jhoward
jhoward

Out of the box could mean a few things with Ubuntu Server editions however I chose Ubuntu mainly because it is a lightweight OS out of the box. Even with a LAMP install, Webmin and Postifx a P4 with 1GB of RAM never misses a beat. At home you can have a web server running dynamic web sites up in 20 minutes with the LAMP install. In the office you can't beat the TCO of Ubuntu because it is easy to install and maintain and works on lower hardware requirements than many others which all save me time and money. The community offers awesome support and feedback however in all honesty the few issues I have come across were with third party software which the community also has input on. All in all Ubuntu has had 2 thumbs up from me for a few years now and it just keeps getting better.

dlevine
dlevine

Is the assertion on the relative security of Ubuntu vs. Red Hat or SUSE this author's opinion? It seems presented as fact. Citations please!

pgit
pgit

A better direct "competitor" than MS 2008.

butubuntuedIbun2tu
butubuntuedIbun2tu

hope this is on topic... I am still quite the noob, but I have been laboring over the set up for my (future) home server. I do computational chemistry research, and so I need it to handle a decent sized database, probably RAID but major backup req's, support my aircard modem, provide a wireless access point for when I get home, share computing loads, and allow me to access it from the lab. I've got tons of ideas hw/sw alike, but advice would be golden. I have been using 8.04 on my little laptop for a few months now and am proud to say that XPsp2 will be the last When.Doh!$ I ever own. I'm ditching dell's 8.04(lpia) for regular 8.10 soon as well. That would make syncing pretty nice I would think, at least I think it would be more stable underneath me 0,o Tips? Thanks in advance, able's elba

NaotaKunBr
NaotaKunBr

I've started using it at home, as a home server (firewall, dhcp, file and printer sharing, ddns) in a old PIII box and it works fine. I achieve all this at one weekend and most of time was spent tuning the firewall. In fact i've transformed this "home project" into a workbench for testing it. Now, at work, i've one contingency firewall based on Ubuntu Server 8.10 and it performs flawlessly. Here Ubuntu it's getting space from the Slackware and Debian guys (and that's why this box is a "contingency" and not production: the persistance from these guys).

cliff
cliff

Had a look at this a few months ago and tried to get it integrated into a MS SBS 2003 Active directory environment. Although it's possible, it's not straightforward and I failed to get it properly integrated for all AD users. I was trying to run it as a second server with MS Access databases mounted on the server and accessed from MS windows workstations, some worked, some didn't. That being said, I really liked it. I used Webmin to configure and manage it from a Windows workstation and soon found my way around. But you do need a little linux knowledge if you intend to base your enterprise network around it.

Grayson Peddie
Grayson Peddie

I do use Ubuntu Server at home as a home server. I use Ubuntu Server 8.10 with all of those mentioned above (I don't care for GUI for being an unnecessary security risk, but that's up for a debate). I use my virtual machine as a home automation server (running Windows XP). If Mono-Project supports ASP.net 3.5 with LINQ and AJAX right out of the box, I can move my website over to my Ubuntu Server. I could use PHP (not meant to be closed-minded), but I'm more comfortable with ASP.net/C#. Heh... that's what I get for being in the leading-edge, but I needed asynchronous postbacks for a keypad to input numbers into a textbox, which is great when using a touchscreen. For networking, I've learned how to setup my home network with trial-and-error, like setting up reverse/forward zones in bind9, setting up dhcp3-server, etc. EDIT: Oops! I did not realize I posted in somebody else's message.

butubuntuedIbun2tu
butubuntuedIbun2tu

tell me about '3rd' party stuff... rebuilt 8.04 lpia (noting quoted 3rd) on mini many times now... still here thanks for postings... anyway, getting the hang of 8.04 lpia, would 8.04 i386 server be better os for my remote access to home? Or intrepid about the same interface just better setup? I have both, read about 8.10 being dynamite with PHP...? forget where I read that... any tips?

daboochmeister
daboochmeister

Since you're talking laptop, might want to wait till Apr, and get 9.04. 8.04 -> 8.10 definitely has enhancements ... but 8.04 -> 9.04 will bring more enhancements, and since 8.04 is a Long-Term Stability release, you can be assured there will be support for a straight upgrade to 9.04.

Vortex69
Vortex69

You could inform the Slackware Debian guys that Ubuntu is Debian based. Then you would only have to deal with the Slackware guys :)...

mickeypf
mickeypf

We are a small (SMB) financial services company which is IT intensive. We had been 100% Windows until about a year ago when we needed a new file server due to the old hardware failing, and legally we could not move the old OEM Windows 2003. So we tried Ubuntu on the basis it was an easy to install and manage solution. It took a bit longer than expected to sort out how to join the Windows AD domain, and directory security etc, but once over that hurdle Ubuntu has been a star. 9 months later we have 3 Ubuntu 8.04 servers, and are looking at putting the intranet site on a 4th, and later this year maybe replacing a SQL Server 2000 system with PostGreSQL on Ubuntu. From an accounting perspective it's not free because there is an initial investment in time in getting familiar with Ubuntu (for we who have hardly touched linux previously in our careers). But 12 months on we feel we are getting a good return on the investment in terms of not having to spend any of our very tight budget on licence costs, and - more importantly - increased flexibility in terms of the solutions we can implement in the future.

Photogenic Memory
Photogenic Memory

Insanity is never far from the PC literate especially when working the night-shift.

Photogenic Memory
Photogenic Memory

You see....back in dem dere old days; Debians used to travel up the old trial looking fer stuff. Once day, some Debians decided to look in the ground( files system ) making tunnels and whatnot, right? After man years of this; The town of Linux was formed. It was founded by a Kernal who was in the Armed Processes. It was a shanty town of directories containing files that where actually files because what isn't in Linux town, right? Then some immigrants from far away came to live in this nice town. They were called Ubuntus! In a short time the town grew and grew. The town prospered enormously. But then some Debians felt they weren't getting their fair share when the Ubuntus opened up their own mines. After a while; bad blood drew up between the two and then A WAR STARTED! SUID's and GUID's errected fences on all sides. To this very day; sticky bits can be seen being shot over the fences. It's a sad state of affairs. Hopefully the GNU states will solve the issue and ratify the sacred copy-left-agreements forming a more perfect and free union of bits

midnightriderz
midnightriderz

How is Ubuntu undermining Debian? I am interested to hear your thoughts.

Vortex69
Vortex69

On the contrary, I think it is broadening the market share of Debian and also providing a much easier to use/learn interface (which will also widen it's market share)...

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