Tag Archives: SQL

Best Open Source Tools Perfect for Linux Administrators

System administrators rely on particular set of tools to meet their requirements. In Linux environment, there are many open source tools that are used to achieve desired set of goals. Some of these tools are as follows:

Linux administrators often act as database administrators. Adminer tool is used to make management of data effective and stress-free. Adminer is user friendly tool that improves performance and gives more security than other similar tools. Another factor that has made Adminer first choice of administrators’ is its compatibility with PostgreSQL and MySQL, SQL server, and Oracle Database.

Admins are required to keep sensitive data secure and confidential at all times. BleachBit is also known as CCleaner and is a valuable open source tool for Linux that has gained reputation for its easy to use format. It helps system administrators to increase disk space by taking out sensitive data. BleachBit has ability to search files, folders, web browsers, databases and registry thoroughly without removing important files that are required to perform various functions.

It is the job of Linux administrators to use web server for uploading as well as downloading files. When it is your day to day duty to download and upload files, you must have a dependable tool for transferring files. As compared to other applications, FileZilla is lightweight, robust and reliable app that supports protocols such as IPv6, HTTP, SFTP and FTP. FileZilla supports administrators by making file management trouble-free using built-in file management capabilities. Built-in system allows administrators to systematize files in line, resume transfer, pause and revise files.

Open Source Puppet
This tool has given support to Linux administrators in performing all jobs. For instance, it is easy to arrange cron jobs to work across different Linux systems without setting them manually. Open Source Puppet is able to execute checks to make certain that system services, such as Apache are in working mode. Moreover, it helps in taking the initiative to begin services that are currently discontinued. Centralized aptitude of Open Source Puppet is really useful when administrators need to perform some mind-numbing actions, such as running commands on various systems. Instead of mentioning the same command on multiple systems again and again, Open Source Puppet allows you to run command once and it will keep on executing it on all other systems. As a result, administrators save loads of time and get rid of monotonous actions as well.

Administrators need to use Webmin while managing Linux distro in web sphere. Webmin was designed to support UNIX; however, it is used in BSD and Linux systems to simplify management processes. Streamline interface is available to make everything convenient starting from accounts of users to domains management. Webmin is used as an alternative to Plesk and cPanels.

Though there are a number of other open source tools which are great for Linux administrators, the above five Linux open source tools are indomitable. Do you have a favourite Linux tool? If so, please share with us in the comment below.

Things to Consider While Re-purposing Workstations

You might be interested to re-purpose your workstations from time to time to get more RAM, up to date CPU, and more storage capacity. Is it logical to replace a few years old workstation even if it is working without hardware problems? Most of customers do not know exactly when they should re-purpose workstation. Here are some guidelines to check what type of computers can be used in a company and how to boost up performance.

In order to perform particular jobs, servers are usually configured with various components. NAS requires enough space for storage, whereas database server requires more RAM. These are tailored to perform particular tasks, therefore, it is complicated to re-purpose workstations.

If you have changed old SQL database server and selected new model for high performance, old database server can be used for finance or marketing department by making some minor changes. Storage and RAM are the two upgrades that are based on simple procedure, but can improve performance level.

Less valuable upgrades are related to RAID card and CPU. A few servers may have system for CPU upgrade; however, most of them need new motherboards, which means to upgrade PSU and RAM as well. If you need to boost up performance, instead of upgrading the motherboard, buy new system to meet your needs.

It is simple to install new RAID card; however, old servers do not offer sufficient cooling to keep this hot-running RAID cool. It is important to match RAID card with hard drives to get required performance. Many customers prefer to re-purpose server without changing hardware. They get required results by using software (like FreeNAS).

Just like servers, workstations need to configure to carry on various tasks. Case capacity of workstations gives great benefit when these are selected for re-purposing. Unlike rack server, it is much easier to improve performance of components in tower case. Increasing storage capacity through controller cards is much faster.

If you are interested to have more storage (for mechanical drives), make certain that there is enough cool air through the case. Usually heat is unnoticed as it is difficult to measure, but it damages computer hardware more frequently. Sensors are used in a lot of workstation boards to check level of heat.

Nowadays, laptops are used as preferable system to work in most departments. Laptops do not offer re-purposing like desktops due to various reasons. First of all, laptops cannot work just like desktop computers. These are good to be used for designing PowerPoint slides, web browsing and email. You might be able to upgrade the laptop’s RAM and hard drive, otherwise, laptops are not easy to upgrade.

It is good to evaluate risks as well as benefits associated with re-purposing of computers. If your company has replaced old systems and you need to use them in other departments to save some money, keep in mind that IT experts will need time to arrange old these systems to work. Conversely, a new system can start working as soon as it is deployed. In addition, warranty is a compelling factor which leads to buying new systems, as laptops need frequent repair services.

High Traffic Environments: Backing up your Server in the Cloud

Server backup can be tricky. The backup cloud must support all kinds of operating systems and applications. It should be remembered that servers operate in a high traffic environments. They are always connected to the remote backup server in the cloud via the Internet and continuously service the data requirements of the end user. The server platform can include all flavours of Windows, Linux, Unix, Mac OS X, AS-400, Solaris or all kinds of applications such as Exchange/ Outlook, Lotus Notes/Domino, Groupwise, SQL, MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracle, IBM DB2, Sharepoint or more.

Agentless server backup is preferable. The agentless software requires only a single instance installation of the agent on a network. All servers connected to the network can then be identified and the agent can be configured to accept backup requests from the servers. The entire backup process can be managed and controlled from a single console.

IT Administrators can schedule backups and decide on the granularity of the backup. For instance the IT Administrator can decide that Windows and Linux systems must be backed up continuously and other systems may be backed up as per a fixed schedule. A single backup can be the backup of all data in a server, a share or volume or directory. The backup may also be of a single file or registry. Backups can also be scheduled to start and stop within a specific backup window.

Multiple servers can be backed up in parallel. The multi threaded backup application ensures that the software can process large volumes of data and support concurrent backup and restore requests. The only limiting factor would be the amount of bandwidth that is available with your organization.

The data being backed up to the server can be compressed or deduplicated using compression algorithms that have been tested and proven. The lossless algorithms can reduce the size of the raw data being transmitted from the server and common file elimination protocols can ensure that the same file is not transmitted twice. Versions of files may be stored with appropriate version numbers for ease of discovery. Retention policies can be specified to ensure that only relevant and active files continue to be stored in expensive storage media and other files are relegated to cheaper storage systems to save on costs.

Backup Technology’s Backup for Servers is high performance software that is designed to operate efficiently in high traffic environments with many of the features that have been discussed above. For more information please visit, http://www.backup-technology.com

Is Virtualisation / Agile IT Exposing Businesses to Data Loss?

Virtualisation is fast becoming the standard in IT infrastructures, giving IT managers decreased deployment time, and increased flexibility.  Regardless of where that virtual environment resides, the cloud or onsite, IT professionals now have the ability to spin up new servers in minutes.  With all the positives that Virtualisation brings (there are numerous), is this new ease of deployment leading to careless planning and deployment which is leaving business exposed to data loss?

For example, if a new SQL server was required for testing or development of a new business application, traditionally a new server would be required.  This process includes an application for the expense to management or the finance department, there was then the waiting time for delivery, deployment and configuration.  Standard practice would then be to add the new server to the backup routine during the deployment or configuration stage.

In a virtual environment,  that new SQL server can now be agreed, spec’d and deployed in a morning through the Hypervisor GUI or Cloud provider’s interface.  All to often backups are not included in that process, or everything is backed up including elements that shouldn’t.  This careless or blasé attitude to deployment and backups could be costing business money, in more ways than one. Let’s not forget that this scenario only deals with a test server. In virtual environments, business critical servers, such as exchanges or live database servers are often hosted, meaning that backing up that virtual server (or preferably the entire environment) becomes a necessity.

Consider the company is using a capacity based backup model, being billed on a per GB or per TB basis.  The new server has 2Tb of data residing on it, some needed some irrelevant.  The addition of the whole server would see a dramatic increase in the business’s backup costs.

Now consider that the server wasn’t added to the backup cycle and 4 months of development work for the new application all resides on said server.  However the day before deployment of this application, the underlying storage fails, and 4 months work is gone forever, or at the very least is difficult to recover, costing more time and ultimately money.  

With the importance of IT systems growing each day, it has never been as important to ensure that effective and efficient backup systems are in place that give your business the protection and recovery capabilities that are needed to minimise impact and cost to the company. Company networks and infrastructures are becoming increasingly diverse, as more products become available. Having a backup product in place that can manage all important aspects of a business’s IT infrastructure is a vital part of good business practice.

Hacks In Sweden Compromise More Than 400,000 User Account Details.

Over 400,000 user account details have been leaked onto the internet in Sweden after 60 websites have been attacked.

The hacks first became known to have happened on Tuesday when Swedish politician William Petzll’s Twitter account was used to publish passwords to email accounts belonging to some well-known journalists.  Petzll has claimed that his Twitter account was hijacked and that he had no involvement in the posts. As a result of this, his Twitter account has been closed.

It has been revealed that the passwords had been taken from the blogging site Bloggtoppen.se which has been vulnerable to SQL injection attacks. Its user database was compromised and published in September on a website called Flashback. Following this, the data was then distributed on Twitter.

The blogging site has now been closed and founder Jimmy Holmlund told Computer Sweden that he was completely unaware of any attacks until the data was published on Twitter.

Computer Sweden has stated that on Wednesday, account details from another 57 websites were published, compromising user account details of over 400,000 people.

This is one of the largest hacks to ever take place in Sweden due to the amount of user account information that has been compromised.

A previous hack that compromised user account details in Sweden occurred in January 2008. 235,000 accounts details were compromised. Computer Sweden believe that the repercussions of this latest hack will be far greater due to more and more people using the same password for several different accounts and therefore making it far easier for intruders to access email accounts and accessing sensitive data.

Social networking software implicated in data loss lawsuit

A new lawsuit filed in the US claims that a hacker was able to steal the personal information of over 32 million social networking users after exploiting flaws in the security of software produced by the development firm RockYou.

RockYou is behind popular applications used on both Facebook and MySpace and since its creation 4 years ago it has become a major force involved in many of the biggest social networking sites, including Bebo.

The RockYou data vaults hold the personal information and profile passwords of many millions of people from around the globe and a hack which exploited an SQL injection vulnerability could have given the attackers the chance to steal all of this data for their own use, according to the plaintiffs in the suit.

It has been alleged that the breach is particularly severe because the personal data could also be used to access other online accounts held by the same users, including webmail services, which could have serious consequences.

The lawsuit has been filed by Alan Claridge, who allegedly had his data stolen after he used a RockYou photo sharing application online. Mr Claridge claims that his credit card details are amongst the compromised information which has been taken from his online accounts and the notification of the loss was only received by him last week.

Mr Claridge believes that RockYou has neglected its responsibility to ensure the security and integrity of the personal data relating to its many customers. It is also accused of exercising less than adequate care when storing data in unencrypted formats.

The final issue raised in the lawsuit is the disparity between the date upon which RockYou was made aware of the hack and the two week period during which it allegedly chose to conceal this fact from its customers.

At this time RockYou has not commented on the legal action which has been brought against it, but whatever the outcome of the case it is likely to have a significant impact on social networking websites and their customers on a global scale.

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