How to manage hundreds of Debian server ?

CLR Benjamin
CLR Benjamin used Ask the Experts™
on
Hi everyone,

I'm searching for a tool to manage and monitor hundreds of Unix servers.
90% are on Debian but from Debian 7 to Debian 9.

I tried Cockpit and I really liked it but it is limited to 20 servers.
Webmin is not good enough.
I tried to install a CentOS server with SpaceWalk on it but I can't take the control of Debian's servers.

So I would like to know if you have some advice for me.

Tank you all.
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David FavorFractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
No really great turnkey software exists for this. There are many tools which can be used for specific types of monitoring + managing.

Start by describing exactly what you'll be monitoring + managing.

Tip: If you have 100s of Debian servers, likely most or all barely use any resource.

A likely intermediate step will be to convert many of your machines to LXD containers.

LXD allows slicing up physical machines into other physical machines, meaning LXD containers run at bare metal speed.

Once I switched to LXD (back when it was LXC) my daily task load dropped greatly.
I tried Cockpit and I really liked it but it is limited to 20 servers.

Is it running up against a physical limit on the server that you're running it on?  It's free open source, so it should be able to handle as many as you code or config it to run.
David FavorFractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Maybe you installed cockpit from some odd source.

Best to install cockpit from the actual Debian repository...

apt-get install cockpit

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Fractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
Note: cockpit features on RedHat are more advanced + stable since development occurs on RedHat.

The Debian version may be missing features you require.

Author

Commented:
Ok, I will try to install it on a CentOS server.

Thank you very much to both of you.
David FavorFractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
You're welcome!

Good luck!
Nick UpsonPrincipal Operations Engineer

Commented:
to manage them all use ansible https://www.ansible.com/
to monitor use zabbix https://www.zabbix.com/
David FavorFractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
@CLR, be sure to update this question with what your determine is best tool to use.

Your update may help out someone down the road.

Thanks!

Author

Commented:
I think I will stay with Cockpit on a CentOS server. It is way better than running it on Debian.

In the future, if I have the chance to start the infrastructure from the beginning, I will go on a container solution.

Thank you for your help.

Benjamin.

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