[K12OSN] Experience at Glenburn this week.

Dennis Daniels ddaniels at magic.fr
Thu Sep 2 00:31:06 UTC 2004

Can I post the keys bits of this conversation to a couple of wikis? 
Searching the Redhat archives is a lesson in futility unfortunately, so 
I'm trying to capture what I can in documentation.

David Trask wrote:
> "Support list for opensource software in schools." <k12osn at redhat.com>
> writes:
>>Thanks, I will try a different session type.  So, are you finding a
>>noticeable speed increase with IceVM?  We had a good time this week.  But,
>>now I think I need to get better a tweaking the process.
>>Our server is 2 xeon processors, somewhere over 2.5 gig,  and 4 Gig of
>>memory., we had a lab of 28, a lab of 14, and a lab of 7 this week.  Most
>>times we had about around 35-40 teachers on at the same time.  For the
>>most part we go good performance.  A couple of the major issues
>>1) Occassional Lockups -- some of the orphan process variety, where if I
>>logged on as root, I could see the user's process, using the ps -u
>>username command and I could kill processes to get them unlocked   
>>But the problem lockup was when I did a ps -u username command and nothing
>>showed, yet the user's station was locked up.  At that point we did reboot
>>the specific client.  But, while it wasn't terrible, we did get a couple
>>to 3 per 1 1/2 class session.  And then sometimes we got a person who just
>>seemed to lock them up several machines in a row, and that was after I
>>check to see if they had active processes before they logged in again.
> Have you enabled "purge-users"?  Go to /opt/ltsp/templates/k12linux  and
> run the gdm-kdm purge user script....also open it in a text editor and it
> will tell you that you need to go to /etc/sysconfig/k12ltsp and change the
> line about purging users from "no" to "yes".  It kills any remaining
> processes when a user logs off or when they do a terminal reboot.  Very
> cool.  We had a lengthy discussion about it and the list basically came up
> with it (with Eric's help of course) after trying several other
> "not-so-nice" methods.
>>2) Some slowdowns.  We hit a wall today when we were teaching First Class,
>>I couldn't even log on the main server as root it go so slow.  I had to
>>have one lab log off and just watch the instructor demonstrate.  I wish
>>they would upgrade the Linux First Class beta client, wow is it buggy, but
>>our staff lives and dies by first class.  And the web version is still
> The web version of 8.0 is awesome...looks just like the client...you
> gotta' check it out!  I agree...in 7.1 the web interface is clunky, but in
> 8.0 it's very slick.  You have a desktop and everything!  PS.  Version 16
> beta is less crash prone than version 17.
>>Maybe we should switch to icevm.  I hate to switch the faculty after this
>>great week of work, but I guess they mostly use the education menu, Open
>>Office, mozilla and First class, so if I modify the IceVM menu to reflect
>>those, we would be in good shape.
> You can modify IceWM to your hearts content....use IceMC  'icemc"  already
> should be installed.  Disregard the first error message and navigate to
> /usr/share/icewm  and edit the menu file.  Very cool.  I also like IceCC 
> or icecc   google and download it....it too is slick.
>>other "best practices" tips to improve server performance.
> Use gigabit!  Do you have gigabit cards in the server?  If not you NEED
> them.  Are you coming out of the server and into a gigabit switch?  If not
> you NEED to!  The difference is astronomical!  Amer.com has great deals on
> gig switches and gig uplink switches.....I use several of the SR24G2 
> switches.
> David N. Trask
> Technology Teacher/Coordinator
> Vassalboro Community School
> dtrask at vcs.u52.k12.me.us
> (207)923-3100
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