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New Linux Network

gharveyz28 asked
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-16
I need to create  Linux servers that will handle DNS, Mail, Intranet, DHCP, File, Print, etc.  These all need to be accessible from Windows XP clients.

My question is:

Should this all be done on one big server or a bunch of smaller ones?

Keep in mind that I need to be able to access files from the XP clients.  I don't want the clients to have to enter username/password everytime they connect to a different server.  I know Samba will be used, should it be installed on every server or just the one that handles logins?  

As you have probably guessed, I need to completely remove my Windows servers and go with a complete Linux backend.  Suggestions and/or How To's would be greatly appreciated.

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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process Advisor
Most Valuable Expert 2013

So is this a misguided attempt at cost reductions?  Figuring that you can cut out the licensing costs by going with Linux since Linux has no licensing costs?  Problem being your staff is not well versed in linux (guessing, am I right?) and so the costs your saving on licensing will be easily outspent on training for linux.

As for whether these should be run on one server or multiple servers, that depends on how reliable the services and server(s) are as well as how powerful...  Though unless "etc" is something like a database server, a moderately configured linux server should do nicely for 25-50 people... so how big is your business?  And why are you getting rid of Windows?

(Hey, Linux is great, but in my opinion, it's not a wise idea to replace your systems with a linux system or systems unless you have SKILLED Linux people on staff).  This recommendation will hopefully change in the years to come... but for now...


Cost reduction and reliability.

As far as the staff being well versed, they are but I'm not.  Our comapny size is at 30 and will not grow anymore then 50 in the next 5 years.  I have a Dual Xeon Server with 8 GB RAM and a little over 1 TB of space.  The plan is to do this all using VMware.

Windows is no longer an option, while I agree with you the cost savings aren't that much if you take into account the time and energy I am using on this project, but the choice isn't mine.  I'd much rather go with a Windows environment, but that won't be the case here.

Why Vmware?
A 50 user Linux box should run those apps just fine as a standalone.
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process Advisor
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Actually, a properly implemented Windows network would be far less expensive using Small Business Server - which handles 75 users or less easily and for a VERY reasonable cost.  

But I agree... what's the point to VMWare?

30-50 users should be EASILY handled on the hardware you have (running Linux or Windows).
the server spec that you have given is MORE than adequate as a standalone which can support all your requirements, plus add ons like ftp, web etc.  but that would mean all your eggs are in one single basket.  my suggestion would be to have a lesser machine even a desktop loaded with linux and with dual NIC for your mail, dhcp, dns, web requiremnets. and one (current machine) more for samba file sharing and printing.  users can always do with two passwords (which i think everyone has). one for file sharing and one for email. atleast it gives you the liberty to seggregate the intranet and internet as two separate entities.


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SBS is out of the question.  Completely useless.

VMware is for not having all my eggs in one basket.  I can have the images and can move them around between VM servers.


So you're running ESX?

If you want hassle free all in one Linux with nice management features,I'd do Novell OES.
Choice of Linux or Netware kernal and Edir so that you can manage all of your users and passwords from a single point of management.
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