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Re: [K12OSN] Improve loading time for OOo

David Trask wrote:
OK....several questions....see below

Answers attempted inline....

Samps <samps redjocks com> on Tuesday, October 12, 2004 at 9:21 PM +0000 wrote:

The E-Smith is set up as a Domain Controller and we're using roaming profiles for the Windows clients.
The LTSP servers have one NIC each and are all on the same switched subnet, along with 240 clients and some 10-11 other servers, mostly E-smiths.

On the E-smith DC:

Installed PORTMAP
Installed NFS (older version, newer one refused to install)

Created a folder, /home/e-smith/users/LTSPhomes
exported /home/e-smith/files/users/LTSPhomes over NFS to our LTSP servers

how do you....or is it possible...to simply export the home directory and
have it show up as the "home" directory on the K12LTSP desktop. My users
are used to saving to their home folder on the K12LTSP desktop OR in
Windows...to their home folder which is mapped to drive Z in "My
Computer". The only hurdle I see, and it may not be one as I've not tried
it ...is the fact that the SME user directories contain both "maildir" and

You hit the nail on the head, the problem is that E-smith doesn't export the same folder that gets mapped as 'home-dir' in Windows, at least I haven't found a way to achieve this.

Did you create "LTSPhomes" prior to creating the users....

Yes, the LTSP-homes folder is created first, exported through NFS and when users are created on the LTSP server I tick the option "create /home/username" which gets created as a folder on the E-smiths LTSP-homes folder

did the
permissions set right?

Yes, I use the parameters RW, no_root_squash in the line in EXPORTS that defines the exporting of LTSP-homes. I think I can recall that NFS relies on UID and GID to allow access to folders and files and only the folder with the users name has the right UID/GID and gets shared read/write.

How about this scenario? Could I create
/home/e-smith/files/users/LTSPhomes export and mount via NFS as the users
home directory on K12LTSP (no desktop mapping or anything like that...I
simply want the "home folder" to be the default simply mapped to the
LTSPhome on SME server....I use SAMBA/LDAP now and I export and mount
"home" from one server to another...on the desktop it's transparent) Then in Windows..simply mount "LTSPhome" as a drive?

I don't know if that's possible, haven't tried. My guess is that it is possible. The users will then see a list of all users folders and will have to find their own..? Better hope permissions are okay. I'll give it a go tomorrow, I still have a week 'till I have to get 'airborne'.

(having trouble making PORTMAP and NFS start up at start-up, still starting them manually)

I have given up on getting LDAP to work for authentication, at least for now, I've spent too much time on it, compared to the expected outcome. Samba will have to do for now.

On LTSPs (4.1.0):

Set authentication to SMB, entered IP-addy of DC (just in case DNS ain't working), used the GUI 'Authentication Tool' for this.

Added an entry /etc/fstab like:
server-ip://home/e-smith/files/users/LTSPhomes /home nfs rw,udp 0 0
this ensures that /home is in one spot (the e-smith DC), regardless of which LTSP the user is currently using.

Our internal IP-range has been split between our four LTSP servers, with about 500 addresses each, no overlap. The idea being that whichever server is fastest to answer a DHCP request is also the one best suited to serve the client asking. Not 'real' load balancing but it seems to work okay with the few clients that I have tried it with.

Added a folder in /etc/skel, called H-Drive (our users are in the habit of saving their stuff to a drive representation... it's a Windows thing, don't ask ;-) and a hidden file called .creds.txt which is, initially, empty.

Users data, residing on the e-smith DC, is mounted to their /home/H-Drive folder by a line added to GDM:
the contents of which is:

smbmount //DC-name/$USER /home/$USER/H-Drive -o uid=$USER,gid=$USER,credentials=./.creds.txt

Assuming that I mount the export of LTSPhome as "home" on the K12LTSP
server....since I'm authenticating to the SME server anyway...I shouldn't
need or be bothered by a password at all right?  Especially when dealing
with my "own" home directory.

That is a fair assumption. Since you're logged in, your credentials are known to the E-smith. Is there a variable in Linux like $PASSWORD or $SMBPASSWORD? If so, replace the crdentials=./.creds.txt with username=$USER,password=$PASSWORD and it should mount during login... Another thing I'll have to try tomorrow.

a launcher is added to /etc/skel/Desktop which points to connect.sh. When the launcher is called, smbmount will ask for the password for the users home-directory on the Samba e-smith DC and mount it on the /home/H-Drive folder.
If the user adds a line like: password=users-samba-password in the .creds.txt file, the home directory will be added by GDM during logon, no questions asked. Tip from Mike Rambo, thanks Mike.

The reason we are mounting stuff from other servers, using descriptors like 'H-Drive', is, that all our client computers are running Windows 2000 at the moment and we want to make it as transparent as possible for the users to switch between Windows and Linux, as all our PCs (bar a handful specialised Windows ones) will PXE-boot into K12LTSP unless the users interrupt this process, in which case they get a Windows 2000 loaded from the local disk.

The beauty of this setup is:
a)That we don't have to rush out and re-image a Windows installation, they can do most work on the K12LTSP
b) Even as hardware fails (disks) the PC is still usable
c) The K12LTSP is always 'fresh' (or can be made 'fresh' by the users themselves
d) As the size and complexity of applications increase, the locally installed Windows suffers from hardware restrictions and the K12LTSP scales to suit
e) In some areas, where the most unruly kids hang out, there won't be a possibility of booting to anything BUT K12LTSP
f) We are able to use quite old hardware, which we actually buy as 'good second hand', so we get twice as many 'bums on seats' as we would if we had to constantly cater for the latest and greatest in locally installed Windows programmes.


David N. Trask

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