[CentOS] looking for cool, post-install things to do on a centos 5.5 system

Kwan Lowe kwan.lowe at gmail.com
Fri Sep 17 15:00:19 EDT 2010

On Fri, Sep 17, 2010 at 11:14 AM, Paul Heinlein <heinlein at madboa.com> wrote:
> I know the OP asked for "cool" things to do, but I'll add my vote to
> those who suggested highlighting configuration management. I'm not
> sure how much puppet or cfengine you teach in a half-day, but I'm
> fairly confident you could cover:

Yes!  If there's anything I wish were taught to new system
administrators, it's that your configuration is your code.

>  1. considering configuration files to be code -- it needs to be in
>     a repository
>  2. setting up a Subversion or git repository and some possible ways
>     of laying out a configuration repository (per host, per service,
>     etc)
>  3. committing changes, recovering older configs when newer ones
>     introduce regressions

My general method is to keep a CVS committed directory somewhere on
the root filesystem with all configurations. Then I symlink the
tracked files back to that repository.  For example:

  /etc/hosts  --> /configs/HOSTNAME/etc/hosts
  /etc/syslog.conf --> /configs/HOSTNAME/etc/syslog.conf

Restoring a machine's "identity" is just a simple matter of checking
out that host's configuration directory then running a script to
create the symlink.s

> Personally, I like Subversion for configuration repositories because
> (imo) sysadmins usually like having an authoritative repo rather than
> a widely branched one -- but git is on the rise and is certainly worth
> considering.
> Other, slightly related, suggestions include setting up a
> documentation wiki and/or a ticketing system. Trac can do both, but
> there are plenty of worthwhile alternatives.
> --
> Paul Heinlein <> heinlein at madboa.com <> http://www.madboa.com/
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