Philippine Weather Service Finds Forecasting Cheaper with Debian Linux Cluster

Posted on in Categories Debian Linux, GNU/Open source, Hardware, High performance computing, Linux, Save money with FOSS last updated March 14, 2008

Yet another Linux success story; From the article:

The Philippine government’s official weather service, PAGASA, has replaced its SGI supercomputer with a clustered Debian Linux system that can process information vital to protection against typhoons, floods, droughts, tsunamis and other wild weather conditions at a fraction of the cost.

The cluster includes eight PCs running as a single node, connected via a gigabit switch, each with dual 64-bit Intel Xeon processors running the Debian Linux OS.

=> Debian Linux cluster beats supercomputer in tsunami warnings (via ./)

Get Free Interactive Shell Access to Linux / BSD and UNIX Like Operating Systems

Posted on in Categories Links, Linux, Shell scripting, UNIX last updated January 1, 2008

From my mail bag:

Where can I get free interactive access to HP-UX or Linux distro or UNIX shell access?

You can simply grab and try out any Linux / BSD / Solaris Live CD. However, some time you cannot install and use particular UNIX like os. So, if you want to try the latest technologies over the Internet? Try HP TestDrive program:

This program allows you to testdrive some of the hottest hardware and operating systems available today. Have you ever wanted to try out HP’s exciting 64-bit Integrity and PA-RISC technology? Get time on SMP x86 and Opteron ProLiant servers? Try out a Blade server. Try different Open Source operating systems such as FreeBSD, Suse, Redhat, Debian and other Linux distributions.

This program is perfect for students and new users to try out and learn basis of UNIX. You can also try and test your C/C++ programs using latest Intel compilers. It is intended for those users who want to sample the 32- and 64-bit servers running a variety of HP, UNIX, Linux and third-party operating systems and applications.

=> HP Test Drive Program []

Download of the day: Ubuntu Linux Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 CD / DVD ISO

Posted on in Categories Download of the day, Ubuntu Linux last updated October 18, 2007

Ubuntu Linux Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 has been released and available for download. The desktop CD allows you to try Ubuntu without changing your computer at all, and at your option to install it permanently later. Ubuntu 7.10 Adds Enhanced User Interface, Integrated Desktop search, Plug and Play Printing. Canonical Ltd. today announced the upcoming availability of Ubuntu 7.10 Desktop Edition, further improving the desktop Linux experience. Ubuntu 7.10 will be available for free download on Thursday 18 October. Canonical is the commercial sponsor of Ubuntu.

Ubuntu is the award-winning Linux distribution for the desktop, laptop and server which delivers the best of open source software every 6 months. Ubuntu 7.10 Desktop Edition includes advanced plug and play printing, enhanced browsing and the option of a smooth new user interface built on top of the latest enhancements to GNOME.

Ubuntu 7.10 fast mirror (2Gbps pipe)

  • Main site is under load so I recommend the Argonne National Laboratory Public Software Mirror (2Gbps speed)

Download link – ( Download Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 )

=> Visit mirror to download Ubuntu Linux 7.10 CD ISO (32 bit 499M)
=> Visit mirror to download Ubuntu Linux 7.10 CD ISO (64 bit for AMD64 or EM64T – Core 2 Duo / Core 2 Quad and Xeon etc architecture ~ 510M)

Ubuntu Linux 7.10 Torrent

=> Download Ubuntu Linux 7.10 using your favorite torrent client.

Ubuntu Gutsy DVD / CD mirrors

=> Try a location near you to see a full list of download options, including download links for all supported cd images.

How do I burn CD ISO Image under MS – Windows 95 / 98 / ME / 2000 / XP / Server 2003 / Vista?

  1. Please download and install Infra Recorder, a free and open source image burning program.
  2. Open Infra Recorder, and select the ‘Actions’ menu, then ‘Burn image’.

How do I burn CD / DVD under any Linux distribution?

See following tutorials, if you would like to burn from the command line:

Upgrade information

Please note that if you have Ubuntu Linux 7.04, just follow these upgrade instructions.

Here is my updated version:
$ cat /etc/lsb-release


Updated for accuracy!

Red Hat enterprise Linux Install lighttpd and Fastcgi PHP

Posted on in Categories Howto, lighttpd, RedHat/Fedora Linux last updated August 29, 2007
Lighttpd logo

I have received many queries regarding how to configure and install Lighttpd web server under Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 4.0. Mark asks:

RHEL 64 bit v4.0 does not support PHP as FastCGI. Lighttpd is not available from RHN (up2date command). How do I configure and install lighttpd with FastCGI?

Ok let me answer these questions and other queries systematically. I have installed Lighttpd under both RHEL v4.0 32/64 bit version couple of times. In all cases, you need to compile both PHP and Lightttpd. Do not worry steps are quite easy.

Install and configure Lighttpd under RHEL

RedHat Linux use RHN to provide stable version of all software(s) including PHP/Apache and for some weird reasons it does not come with lighttpd web server. However, I have tested RHEL v.5.0 (beta) which comes with lots of goodies such as caching software, fastcgi etc.

Step #1: Install and configure Lighttpd under RHEL 64 bit v4.0

First, you need to remove installed PHP version. Use rpm -qa | grep php command to find out list of all installed PHP rpm files:
# rpm -qa | grep phpRemove all PHP files:# rpm -e php php-devel php-imap php-ldap php-pear

Step #2: Download lighttpd source code

There is no official RPM file available from Red Hat itself for 64/32 bit version. You can download and compile Lighttpd as follows:
# wget
# tar -zxvf lighttpd-1.4.16.tar.gz
# cd lighttpd-1.4.16

Step #3: Compile and install lighttpd:

Following commands will compile lighttpd with OpenSSL support. First, configure lighttpd:
# ./configure --program-prefix= --prefix=/usr --exec-prefix=/usr --bindir=/usr/bin --sbindir=/usr/sbin --sysconfdir=/etc --datadir=/usr/share --includedir=/usr/include --libdir=/usr/lib --libexecdir=/usr/libexec --localstatedir=/var --sharedstatedir=/usr/com --mandir=/usr/share/man --infodir=/usr/share/info --with-openssl

Now compile lighttpd
# make

Install lighttpd:
# make install

Step #4: Build PHP RPM as FastCGI

Now recompile PHP and build PHP RPM as FastCGI. Download PHP SRPM from official Red Hat Site or use following command to download PHP source RPM (recommended):
# cd /opt
# up2date -d --src php

Now install downloaded source RPM file:
# rpm -ivh php-4.3.9-3.1.src.rpm

First, install all necessary development libraries:
# up2date aspell-devel libjpeg-devel libpng-devel libc-client-devel mysql-devel postgresql-devel unixODBC-devel net-snmp-devel elfutils-devel libxslt-devel freetype-devel

Open php rpm configuration file:
# cd /usr/src/redhat/SPECS/
Open php.spec file:
# vi php.spec
Find out line, which read as follows:

Before that line add:
--enable-fastcgi \
Save and close the file.

Compile and build RPM file:
# rpmbuild -bb php.spec

Now install all newly rebuild RPM files. Go to /usr/src/redhat/RPMS/x86_64 directory, where all newly build RPMs are stored:
# cd /usr/src/redhat/RPMS/x86_64
# rpm -ivh php-4.3.9-3.18.x86_64.rpm php-gd-4.3.9-3.18.x86_64.rpm php-imap-4.3.9-3.18.x86_64.rpm php-mysql-4.3.9-3.18.x86_64.rpm php-mbstring-4.3.9-3.18.x86_64.rpm php-pear-4.3.9-3.18.x86_64.rpm

Make sure php is installed with fastcgi:
# php -vOutput:

PHP 4.3.9 (cgi-fcgi) (built: Oct  2 2006 15:31:07)
Copyright (c) 1997-2004 The PHP Group
Zend Engine v1.3.0, Copyright (c) 1998-2004 Zend Technologies

If you do not have development environment installed or if you are too lazy to compile download AMD x86_64 RPM files. Please note that these files are provided as it is.

Basic Lighttpd configuration

a) Add a lighttpd user
# adduser -s /sbin/nologin lighttpd

b) Create a lighttpd.conf file
# mkdir /etc/lighttpd
# cd /etc/lighttpd
# vi lighttpd.conf
Add following config code:
server.modules = (
"mod_accesslog" )
index-file.names = ( "index.php", "index.html",
"index.htm", "default.htm" )
mimetype.assign = (
".rpm" => "application/x-rpm",
".pdf" => "application/pdf",
".sig" => "application/pgp-signature",
".spl" => "application/futuresplash",
".class" => "application/octet-stream",
".ps" => "application/postscript",
".torrent" => "application/x-bittorrent",
".dvi" => "application/x-dvi",
".gz" => "application/x-gzip",
".pac" => "application/x-ns-proxy-autoconfig",
".swf" => "application/x-shockwave-flash",
".tar.gz" => "application/x-tgz",
".tgz" => "application/x-tgz",
".tar" => "application/x-tar",
".zip" => "application/zip",
".mp3" => "audio/mpeg",
".m3u" => "audio/x-mpegurl",
".wma" => "audio/x-ms-wma",
".wax" => "audio/x-ms-wax",
".ogg" => "application/ogg",
".wav" => "audio/x-wav",
".gif" => "image/gif",
".jpg" => "image/jpeg",
".jpeg" => "image/jpeg",
".png" => "image/png",
".xbm" => "image/x-xbitmap",
".xpm" => "image/x-xpixmap",
".xwd" => "image/x-xwindowdump",
".css" => "text/css",
".html" => "text/html",
".htm" => "text/html",
".js" => "text/javascript",
".asc" => "text/plain",
".c" => "text/plain",
".cpp" => "text/plain",
".log" => "text/plain",
".conf" => "text/plain",
".text" => "text/plain",
".txt" => "text/plain",
".dtd" => "text/xml",
".xml" => "text/xml",
".mpeg" => "video/mpeg",
".mpg" => "video/mpeg",
".mov" => "video/quicktime",
".qt" => "video/quicktime",
".avi" => "video/x-msvideo",
".asf" => "video/x-ms-asf",
".asx" => "video/x-ms-asf",
".wmv" => "video/x-ms-wmv",
".bz2" => "application/x-bzip",
".tbz" => "application/x-bzip-compressed-tar",
".tar.bz2" => "application/x-bzip-compressed-tar"
########## BASE CONFIG - EDIT BELOW #########################
server.tag = "lighttpd (RedHat)"
accesslog.filename = "/var/log/lighttpd/access_log"
server.errorlog = "/var/log/lighttpd/error_log"
server.document-root = "/var/www/html/"
url.access-deny = ( "~", ".inc" )
static-file.exclude-extensions = ( ".php", ".pl", ".fcgi" )
server.port = 80
server.bind = ""
server.error-handler-404 = "/errorr404.php" = "/var/run/"
server.username = "lighttpd"
server.groupname = "lighttpd"
compress.cache-dir = "/tmp/lighttpd/cache/compress/"
compress.filetype = ("text/plain", "text/html")
$HTTP["url"] =~ "\.pdf$" {
server.range-requests = "disable"
fastcgi.server = ( ".php" =>
( "localhost" =>
"socket" => "/tmp/php-fastcgi.socket",
"bin-path" => "/usr/bin/php",
"max-procs" => 2,

c) Create a lighttpd sysconfig file:
# vi /etc/sysconfig/lighttpd
Add following line:
Save and close the file.

d) Create a lighttpd startup file (init.d script)
# vi /etc/init.d/lighttpd
Append following line:
# lighttpd Startup script for the lighttpd server
# chkconfig: - 85 15
# description: Lighttpd web server
# processname: lighttpd
# config: /etc/lighttpd/lighttpd.conf
# config: /etc/sysconfig/lighttpd
# pidfile: /var/run/
# Source function library
. /etc/rc.d/init.d/functions
if [ -f /etc/sysconfig/lighttpd ]; then
. /etc/sysconfig/lighttpd
if [ -z "$LIGHTTPD_CONF_PATH" ]; then
start() {
echo -n $"Starting $prog: "
daemon $lighttpd -f $LIGHTTPD_CONF_PATH
[ $RETVAL -eq 0 ] && touch /var/lock/subsys/$prog
return $RETVAL
stop() {
echo -n $"Stopping $prog: "
killproc $lighttpd
[ $RETVAL -eq 0 ] && rm -f /var/lock/subsys/$prog
return $RETVAL
reload() {
echo -n $"Reloading $prog: "
killproc $lighttpd -HUP
return $RETVAL
case "$1" in
if [ -f /var/lock/subsys/$prog ]; then
status $lighttpd
echo $"Usage: $0 {start|stop|restart|condrestart|reload|status}"
exit $RETVAL

Save and close the file.

e) Create necessary directories and set correct permissions:
# mkdir -p /var/log/lighttpd
# mkdir -p /tmp/lighttpd/cache/compress/
# chown lighttpd:lighttpd /var/log/lighttpd
# chown lighttpd:lighttpd /tmp/lighttpd/cache/compress/

f) Start the lighttpd, but first stop Apache if running:
# chkconfig httpd off
# /etc/init.d/httpd stop
# chkconfig --add lighttpd
# chkconfig lighttpd on
# /etc/init.d/lighttpd start

Verify that Lighttpd is running:
# netstat -tulpn | grep :80

Update: See how to use lighttpd and FastCGI configuration under RHEL 5.0 / CentOS 5.0.

What you should (and shouldn’t) expect from 64-bit Linux?

Posted on in Categories Linux, News last updated April 1, 2008

Update: Many issues mentioned in linked articles are no longer true. This post was originally written way back in 2006.

Nathan Willis has some good information on this topic.

From the article:

So you just bought and assembled a brand-new AMD64 workstation. The only decision that remains is whether to install a 64-bit Linux distribution, or stick with comfortable, tried-and-true IA-32. If you are seeking an easy answer to that question, I can’t help you. Running 64-bit Linux has its pros and cons. Unfortunately, a lot of the cons are out of your hands — but they’re not really Linux’s fault, either.

For starters, you should know that there are essentially no proprietary applications for a 64-bit Linux desktop. Google, Adobe, iD, Skype, and the rest of the independent software vendors (ISV) who release Linux binaries of their apps by and large do so solely for 32-bit Intel architecture only.

Read more at…

How do I find out if my Linux server CPU can run a 64 bit kernel version (apps) or not?

Posted on in Categories CentOS, Debian Linux, Gentoo Linux, Howto, Linux, Linux desktop, RedHat/Fedora Linux, Sys admin, Tips, Troubleshooting last updated September 7, 2007

It happens many times. Often new Linux system administrators and user(s) get confused. They are not able to determine if Linux system can run a 64 bit kernel version (and application) or not. There is simple way to find out:

(a) Ask your hardware vendor

(b) Find out yourself by reading manuals

(c) Or run the following commands:
Here is output from one of my production Dual Opteron server:
$ less /proc/cpuinfo

processor       : 0
vendor_id       : AuthenticAMD
cpu family      : 15
model           : 5
model name      : AMD Opteron (tm) Processor 848
stepping        : 10
cpu MHz         : 2197.161
cache size      : 1024 KB
fpu             : yes
fpu_exception   : yes
cpuid level     : 1
wp              : yes
flags           : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush mmx fxsr sse sse2 syscall
nx mmxext lm 3dnowext 3dnow
bogomips        : 4308.99
TLB size        : 1088 4K pages
clflush size    : 64
cache_alignment : 64
address sizes   : 40 bits physical, 48 bits virtual
power management: ts fid vid ttp

processor       : 1
vendor_id       : AuthenticAMD
cpu family      : 15
model           : 5
model name      : AMD Opteron (tm) Processor 848
*** Output truncated ***

Look for flag entry in above output. If you see lm flags then you will able to run 64 bit kernel and applications. Now consider output from my Workstation (32 bit system you will not able to find out lm [long mode] flag):

$ less /proc/cpuinfo


processor       : 0
vendor_id       : GenuineIntel
cpu family      : 15
model           : 1
model name      : Intel(R) Celeron(R) CPU 1.70GHz
stepping        : 3
cpu MHz         : 1717.118
cache size      : 128 KB
fdiv_bug        : no
hlt_bug         : no
f00f_bug        : no
coma_bug        : no
fpu             : yes
fpu_exception   : yes
cpuid level     : 2
wp              : yes
flags           : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss ht tm
bogomips        : 3437.80

You can also type command uname command to find out this info:

$ uname -a


Linux ora100 2.6.5-7.252-smp #1 SMP Tue Feb 14 11:11:04 UTC 2006 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

The x86_64 confirms you can run 64 bit apps. You can also use live CD such as Knoppix to boot and find out this info.