Web UI

The capabilities of browser based applications have exploded in recent years. (This is especially important for ZENworks – as we move the management console to the new ZENworks Control Center.)

There is a breaking set of new ‘Web 2.0’ applications that use AJAX to deliver a really rich UI; Google Maps is probably the most well known; but I also love these:


I remember some of the contortions that had to turned just a few years ago to get anything even looking like this in a browser.

I saw some of the Hula calendar work when I was last in Cambridge – it all looked very slick.

TechCrunch is a great resource for tracking some of these new concepts.

I predict that these UIs will become prevalent on the most sticky sites; I also hope that a lot of the ‘cool’ and ‘sexy’ comes across into the more mundane enterprise IT world.

New music

I finally spent some time (and parted with the hard earned) and got some new music:

Camera Obscura – Biggest Bluest Hifi
Camera Obscura – Underachievers Please Try Harder

I first heard this band on the John Peel 65th Birthday Party – it’s a lot like early Belle and Sebastian; mellow lyrics and guitar. Best served with a nice bottle of red.

Decemberists – Picaresque

This band is on tour this fall – nearest gig to SLC is in Boise, ID. Huh? Go figure. SLC truly is a live music backwater – my proof points are here and here.

Final hit was a couple of CDs from DJ Tiësto – a hot tip from Mark Schouls.

DJ Tiësto – In My Memory
DJ Tiësto – Parade of the Athletes

Nice – a couple of hours of European electronic music. Good for the drive into work.

ZENworks 7 imaging

ZENworks OS imaging has always been based on the Linux kernel – it’s fast, efficient, has a great networking stack and is also extensible. None of the problems of DOS and getting NDIS drivers etc.

Earlier versions of ZENworks – (ZfD 3.x, ZfD 4.0, ZENworks 6, ZENworks 6.5) – spawned a slew of sites dedicated to tweaking this Linux environment. Notable is the Novell Forge Project zfdimgdrv. The imaging environment has also been extended by the likes of ENGL.

ZENworks 7 changed to a SLES 9 SP2-based kernel; this provides extensive hardware support (and real support; things that have been tested).

For unsupported hardware – or to add updated drivers – life is now a lot simpler.

Matt Misbach – one of the ZENworks engineers – passed on this tip:

  1. Obtain the binary driver file, it has the extension of “.ko”, (If no binary driver is available, then the source needs to be obtained and built on a sles9 sp2 machine.)
  2. On your ZENworks server mount the /srv/tftp/boot/initrd file using a similar command:
    mount -o loop /srv/tftp/boot/initrd /mnt
  3. copy the new .ko file into the /mnt/lib/modules/2.6.5-override-default/initrd
  4. umount /mnt

ZENworks 7 Linux Management – more

As mentioned I’m working on a best practices guide for ZLM7.

I’m writing a discussion of the package universe concept; how it differs from previous versions of ZLM (ZLM 6.x and RCE) and some design recommendations.

I also wrote a nifty script to populate the package universe 🙂 I’ll share that when I’ve tested it to death – but here’s the output:

Right now I can build all of my package universe as well as SP2 updates for SLES 9 and NLD 9. It takes about 20 minutes and minimal prep work.
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ZLM7 ultimate how-to

I’ve been flooded with requests for a more detailed ZENworks 7 Linux Management document – something like what I wrote for ZLM 6.6.1

I’m on it now. I am installing to a fresh, new SLES 9 server – and hopefully I’ll get something out soon.

Current fun – documenting the server-side dependancies. XFree86-libs? wtf? Turns out some of the eDirectory management tools have funky requirements. Do people really build servers with X and a desktop on them?

La Sagrada Familia

I managed to get some time out from BrainShare last week. I spent a few hours with John Mahon from Dublin at the Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Familia. More simply the cathedral of La Sagrada Familia.

For anyone who has ever been to Barcelona – or even heard of Barcelona – it is one of the most striking sights in the city. Totally dominating the skyline from every part of the city. Add to this the story of how this massive cathedral has been under construction for over a century; with still decades to completion.

Continue reading “La Sagrada Familia”