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Fedora Newb - Remote Admin of V-Server

Posted on 2007-03-27
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We have a virtual server that I would like to use more effectively. Up until now I have used the Plesk web interface and SecureCRT to do what we need.

I am a Linux newb and stuggle with command line but have learned what I've needed to date.

Could I get suggestions on how, and with what, I should look at for administrating the v-server?

I find Plesk useful for doing most things but I need to go outside of it in order to improve/maintain spam/anti-virus and upgrade/install a few applications.

If my initial approach is correct, could you suggest a free or less expensive SSH Terminal than SecureCRT?

Fedora Core 4 - Plesk 8.1.0
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Question by:Van_G
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by:mihaimm
ID: 18806583
If you're looking for a simple, all command line ssh client and you can live with what's on your remote machine, I believe putty can satisfy your needs. It's open source.

For easy file transfers I would suggest WinSCP. Free and with an interface much like Total Commander.

There is also a free (non-commercial) licence for SSH Tectia client from www.ssh.com but it's a bit difficult to find on the site so... here's the link: http://www.ssh.com/support/downloads/secureshellwks/non-commercial.html
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by:Van_G
ID: 18808221
Thanks mihaimm. I've started using WinSCP and SSH Secure 3.2

Are there any GUI approaches to administrating the box? I mean can I config/admin the box with a mouse & key approach?
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mihaimm earned 50 total points
ID: 18808848
There are 2 aproaches for graphical administration/working on a linux machine.

1. VNC - server on FC4 and client on the host.
2. Install an X server on the host and start the remote graphical session (like Gnome session) on the local X server instead of the remote X server (for instance http://sourceforge.net/projects/xming - see the screen shots to understand what I'm talking about). You will use the remote server for running any calculation but the local machine for the display.

Both solutions are non-secure by default but 1 is very easy to secure by creating an ssh tunnel between you and the server and passing all VNC communication via that tunnel.
Solution 2 may be easier to install as you don't really need to modify anything on the server machine (unless there are firewall rules that prevent communication on the specific ports). But it is more difficult to secure.
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Author Comment

by:Van_G
ID: 18808912
Are there any limitations to graphical administration?

Would you suggest a newb go this route or keep learning command line?
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by:mihaimm
ID: 18809067
The only limitation is that many of the graphical configuration programs are unstable or don't give you all the options. Most of the time, at one point you'll *need* to open the terminal (on my local machine I'm regularly using 4 text mode terminals to display top, to tail -f /var/log/messages, to monitor the network and for some quick command line).

And if you want to get into the administration of *nix boxes, there's really no way arround the command line. You have to realize that an old P2 with 64Mb of RAM makes for a decent static web server, small samba server or any non-cpu intensive kind of server. But not if it has a graphical environment started on it.
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