The Ubuntu Server

is now up and running. At the moment it’s just a file server; no web or ftp yet.

It’s bizarre. It’s just a shuttle box with a power cord plugged in the back.

It doesn’t need a network cable, because it’s got a wireless ethernet card.
It doesn’t need a monitor, because I can use SSH for remote administration.
It doesn’t need a keyboard, because it’s so quiet and cool that it’s hardly ever going to get rebooted.
It doesn’t need a CD reader or floppy drive, because I can apt-get everything I need off the web.
It doesn’t need a zip disk, because I’m running RAID 1 so everything’s automatically backed up.

It’s the most stripped-down little machine I’ve ever had, beating even my Palm T3 for minimal functionality. It’s wonderful to be able to access my documents, code and music from both Ubuntu (PC) and Windows partitions. I love it. I am in newbie Linux heaven.

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8 Responses to The Ubuntu Server

  1. icklemichael says:

    It doesn’t need a keyboard, because it’s so quiet and cool that it’s hardly ever going to get rebooted.

    Am not following the ‘because’, why would rebooting require a keyboard?

  2. anonymous says:

    Most PC BIOS’s require a keyboard plugged in at boot time. If they don’t detect one, you get the infamous ‘Keyboard Error. Press F1 to continue’ message.

    Server BIOS’s don’t have this “feature”.

  3. icklemichael says:

    Ahh, haven’t seen that error in years, assumed they’d realised the insanity of it and removed it from all bioses. Probably been using the wrong machines. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. sirenian says:

    I get a “Floppy drive not detected, press F1 to continue” too. Have to work out how to get rid of that next time I reboot. Which won’t be any time soon. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. glyndwr says:

    Long-time reader, first-time poster :o)

    Almost every PC BIOS has the ability to turn this, and the keyboard detection, off these days. In the BIOS, usually in the first screen, there is a “Halt On” setting which defaults to “All Errors”. Turn that to “no errors” and the PC will then happily boot without keyboard, without floppy drive, and without VGA card too if necessary. Not that the last one is on a Shuttle with integrated VGA, but you know what I mean.

    You should also turn “Drive A” from “3.5 inch floppy” to “none” if you have no floppy drive. It’ll stop some hardware detection routines thinking there is a drive present.

    Oh, and I should also mention; RAID-1 ain’t a backup, and I’ve got scars to prove it :o)

  6. sirenian says:

    Sweet, thanks.

    I know Raid-1 isn’t a backup, but it _will_ backup in the event of one of the drives failing. I am still doing my regular CD backups and off-site backups to friends. I certainly don’t feel the need to image the hard disk, though.

  7. glyndwr says:

    No worries, glad I could help :o)

    I figured you proably were going to be mildly patronised by the RAID comment, but I couldn’t help myself. The “RAID == no backup” mantra I regularly hear idiots on slashdot espouse irritates me beyond reason, if only because it reminds me of the time I accidentally deleted my undergraduate dissertation an hour before it was due to be handed in on a RAID-1 filesystem. In the end, all I had left was a PDF I dug out of the print spooler directory; if it wasn’t for that, I’d have been toast. So it’s a matter very personal to me!

    BTW, I discovered your blog via your employer’s feed a few months ago and I’ve been finding the various discussions on there and in here very interesting indeed. It’s been instrumental in revealing to me that I actually know very little about software engineering, which was a bit of a blow to me ego. At least it’s also providing me with a map of where I should be heading at the same time. Anyway, it sounds like a hell of a place to work!

  8. sirenian says:

    Most of the people I meet are destined to grow old and die without ever even suspecting the extent of their ignorance.

    Welcome to the few.

    I don’t think anyone who works here falls into the category above. Perhaps our shared amazement at the size and complexity of the universe is one of the things which makes this company so cool to work for.

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