[CentOS] School Server Setup

Frank Cox theatre at sasktel.net
Tue Jun 10 05:32:04 UTC 2008

On Tue, 10 Jun 2008 15:03:50 +1000
Harry Sukumar <hsukumar at bond.edu.au> wrote:

> I am not sure where to start with this project

Could you possibly be a bit more vague with regard to  your requirements?

What tasks, exactly, do you wish to accomplish?

Since you mention Apache and Squirrelmail, I assume you want to set up a web
server and email server.  For what purpose?  Internal use only?  Public
access?  Do you really need a webserver to accomplish your purpose, or is
Apache just a handy buzzword that you've heard about in the past?  If, for
example, the school has only dial-up Internet access, or if they pay by the
megabyte for data transfer, then you might want to restrict external traffic in
some way and setting up a public webserver isn't the way.

Is the webserver for student projects?  Of what nature?  Teacher use?  Online
test administration?  Student records?  Posting report cards or attendance
records? Something else completely?

What else do you want to do?  What are the specifications of the 25 computers
that you have to do this job with?  If they are low-powered machines, you may
want to look at ltsp -- there is even a special "for schools" version of ltsp
called k12-ltsp that may meet your needs right out-of-the-box.

Are all of these computers intended to go into one or two rooms, i.e. a
"computer lab"?  Or is it one or two per classroom?  What are the teachers
going to do with the computers once they are in place?  Is someone available to
show them how to use them?  (Don't just tell the teachers "here's a computer,
have a nice day".)

Please try to provide more specific information about your exact requirements,
what you wish to accomplish, what tasks are going to be automated, and what
hardware and connectivity you have available.  Have you thought about the
actual hardware outside of the computers themselves?   Do you have routers and
ethernet switches available? Can you get them if you require them? What about
wiring between classrooms or desks? Can you run your own ethernet cable?  Do you
know where to get some connectors and a roll or two or three of cat 5?  Got a
crimper?  Know where to buy or borrow one?

That should give you some things to consider and look into -- it's the product
of two minutes of thought on my part and I'm sure you can come up with a lot
more than this if you give it some consideration of your own.

Simply stated, don't start a journey until you know what your destination is.

MELVILLE THEATRE ~ Melville Sask ~ http://www.melvilletheatre.com

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