In my last-but-one post, I explained how you could build a ‘Linux toolbox’: a server that acts as web server, DNS lookup server, NFS server and more. I also showed how you could do all of that with barely any manual intervention, thanks to the magic of Kickstart scripts.
Well, now I want to suggest a couple of additions to really round out your toolbox’s functionality. These can’t really be automated, because they involve agreeing to licences and export restrictions and so forth.
1. Add some useful binaries
Your toolbox server is lacking a GUI, so monitoring its CPU, disk I/O and memory usage might be tricky. Fortunately, nmon is a command-line utility that monitors all these things easily. So adding that to your toolbox server might be a good idea. It can be obtained as an rpm suitable for all of the from this site.6.x, 64-bit distros
You may also feel you need a graphical way of re-configuring things like hostnames, IP addresses, DNS settings and so on. A useful tool for that is webmin, which is a browser-based way of doing precisely that. There’s an rpm suitable for all available on this page.distros
Once you install it, just fire up a browser in a client PC and point it at your toolbox server’s IP address, specifying port 10000. In my case, that means typing into a browser’s URL bar something like http://192.168.8.250:10000
After that, it’s just a matter of logging on (as root) and then clicking around seeing what is available.
I’m going to suggest two additional binaries you might want to download and store in the toolbox’s /var/www/html directory -not because they are useful to the toolbox itself, but because they might prove useful later on. First, the public domain korn shell is largely redundant these days, but happens to be a prerequisite for Oracle installs on available for download as an . 64-bit compatible RPM from heredistros, If you don’t install it, you can therefore get annoying warning messages from the Oracle installer. Fortunately, a version of it is
The final binary I suggest you download is rlwrap. You can download it as a tarball, extract it and then compile it if you like, but there’s an RPM version available for download which is a bit simpler to get working, so I’m going to suggest you get that and store it in your toolbox server’s web document root directory instead.
Of course, if you’ve been following this series of posts, you’ll know that my toolbox server, by design, doesn’t have a network connection to the Internet, so downloading those things using the toolbox itself is not possible. That’s why I download them all on a different machine that does have an Internet connection and then burn them onto an ISO (a virtual DVD). (I use Brasero to do that, but any DVD burning software will do the job). Once the four binaries (nmon, webmin, pdksh and rlwrap) are stored on the virtual DVD, it’s trivial to get the toolbox server to mount the ISO and copy them all off to the /var/www/html directory. Once there, you can install nmon and webmin on the toolbox itself:
rpm -Uvh nmon-14f-1.el6.rf.x86_64.rpm rpm -Uvh webmin-1.620-1.noarch.rpm
The other two will come in handy later on. If you can’t burn your own ISOs, here’s one I prepared earlier…
2. Add some Oracle files
The other software which it would be useful to copy to the toolbox, so it can be served up to clients later on, is the Oracle database software itself. I can’t give you a handy link to those: you’ll have to get them from either Oracle’s own otn or edelivery sites.
If you have paid-for support, you could obtain the 22.214.171.124 version of the Oracle database: you’ll have files called things like “p10404530_112030_Linux-x86-64_1of7.zip” and “p10404530_112030_Linux-x86-64_2of7.zip”.
If you download the freebie versions from OTN, you’ll have to make do with the 126.96.36.199 version, and you’ll end up with file names like “linux.x64_11gR2_database_1of2.zip” and “linux.x64_11gR2_database_2of2.zip”.
If you do your downloads from edelivery without a paid-for support contract, you’ll again be limited to the 188.8.131.52 version of the database, but this time you’ll end up with file names such as “V17530-01_1of2.zip” and “V17530-0_2of2.zip”.
Since all the versions and file name variations can get confusing, I’m going to suggest that whatever files you download, you rename them to be in the form: oradb-1120x-1of2.zip, where “x” is the relevant bit of the version number. So, having paid-for support, I’m going to end up with oradb-11203-1of2.zip; if I were only able to access OTN freebies, I’d end up with oradb-11201-1of2.zip, and so on.
Once you’ve download and re-named your Oracle files, again burn them onto a virtual DVD iso file, get your toolbox server to mount it, and copy all the zips it contains to the /var/www/html directory. Once there, the zip files will be able to be used by other servers you build that need them.
Having done all of the above, when I list the contents of my toolbox server’s /var/www/html directory, here’s what I see:
The “sl” directory (in blue) is there because, you’ll remember, my Kickstart script causes the toolbox to copy its own installation media to disk -and this happens to be a Scientific Linux box.
The four files in red are the little utilities that the toolbox itself, and any server it’s later used to help build, might find useful. Obviously, there are no Oracle database files there yet, but a bit of downloading and renaming as described earlier results in this:
Now you see the 2 Oracle database zip files sitting there (these are the freebie versions, so they’re 184.108.40.206).
The significance of all this? Well, you’ve now got yourself a toolbox that is almost ready to do completely hands-free Oracle installations on otherservers. I’ll explain the extra ingredient needed next time…