In a message dated: Mon, 29 Jul 2002 11:23:55 EDT
Michael O'Donnell said:

>I've so far had problems related to TFTP, DHCP
>and SSH.  I discovered (after some tortuous debugging)
>that the first two were the result of incompatibilities
>with the particular servers I was running, so in those
>cases I changed servers. 

For DHCP, it's a lot easier to use the older DHCP v2.x series server.
With the 3.x series server, they changed a bunch of the option-X 
options to be in the "vendor defined" options area instead.  It's 
definitely do-able with the 3.x series server, but a little more 
futzing is required to get it to work.

For tftp, it's definitely best to use the hpa-tftp server from H. 
Peter Anvin as recommended in the docs.

>The SSH problem turned out to be related to the recent
>"privilege separation" changes that have been pissing off a lot of people.

I got bit myself by this on Friday as I was trying to build a new 
"bldsvr" machine to go into production rather than my "sandbox" 
system I've been experimenting with.  It pissed me off, and I'm not 
even sure what I did to get around the problem, but it's working now.

>By the end of the weekend I had gotten to the point
>where the client boxes could boot using a floppy

I haven't had the chance to deal with the boot floppy at all, having 
to good fortune to be in possession of "spare" machines which all 
have PXE capability.

>looks like I'm now ready for the REALLY
>hard part: setting up classes and writing scripts that
>configure systems belonging to each of those classes.

This is actually really easy, as it's nothing more than writing
class/*  shell scripts which write a class name to STDOUT in order to 
define a class based upon whatever criteria you choose.  The scripts/*
can be shell, perl, or cfengine scripts.  Actually, I think the class/* 
scripts can be perl, shell, or cfengine as well.

        It may look like I'm just sitting here doing nothing,
   but I'm really actively waiting for all my problems to go away.

              Have you appreciated your SysAdmin today?

         If you're not having fun, you're not doing it right!

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