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+ - Which way do I turn if I want a zero-fuss VM setup on Linux?

Submitted by Qbertino
Qbertino writes: Out of professional need I’ve started to dabble with VM Setups last week — mostly KVM/qemu and VirtManager as a Hypervisor GUI. It’s all very open-sourcy“ — a bit flaky, convoluted and some CLI stuff thrown in. It worked, but needed caretaking and expert knowledge for the basics and there are some features that I missed or couldn’t get running. I was wondering how I could get a solid and disaster-safe VM setup up and running on Linux. Here are my requirements:

1.) Base-OS: Linux (Debian, Ubuntu, whatever)

2.) Hypervisor with stable Click-UI and following features:

2.a.) One-click Copy/Backup of VMs, preferably ones that are actually still running; reasonable disaster recovery behavior (the Hypervisor and VM shouldn’t wet their pants if not all virtual/real Hardwarefeatures are present — it should be possible for a VM to run with a standard base set of features provided by the Hypervisor — in a pinch I want to be able to Launch a backuped VM on a Laptop to rescue data and such)

2.b.) zero-fuss virtual-to-real NIC configuration and zero-fuss NIC/bridging configuration on the base OS/Hypervisor, all with a click-UI — preferably with neat network diagrams (in a pinch the system should be operateable by part-time student admins)

2.c.) copy/paste/instancing of preconfectioned VMs. Launching a fresh extra Linux or Windows installation shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes or so and be as idiot-safe as possible

2.d.) Zero-fuss dynamic storage management across all running VMs. (see below)

3.) Storage abstraction: I know this issue is separate from CPU virtualisation, but none-the-less the same scenario camp: I’d like to be able to virtualize storage. That is, be able to allocate storage as I wish to any VM in any size I want, with dynamic storage assignment options (max. expansion parameters and such). This probably involves two stages: combining all storage from a storage rack into one monolithic storage block with dublication across HDDs for safety and then a Hypervisor with the ability to dynamically assign virtual storage to each VM as configured. Is this sort of correct?

What experience do you guys have with storage virtualisation? As I mentioned, I have no problem with the base OS doing the first stage on its own, without some killer NAS setup that costs as much as a Ferrari, but I do prefer some Click-UI solution that provides zero-fuss storage management.

4.) Nice to have: Dynamic CPU assignment based on time and/or usage. I’d like a render VM to get extra CPUs at night and would like to time that — for example, a VM gets extra CPUs between 1 and 7 o’clock for extra rendering power while the other VMs get to share CPUs.

I’m thinking two *big* failover Linux PC setups (dublicate setup), 2-3 storage racks and one or two professional applications that do Hypervisor/VM stuff and storage as mentioned above and can also cost a little (500 — 3000 Euros).

OK, so that’s a broad overview. For perspective: The setup is for an agency with digitial and print production pipelines and the only web-consultant/web-dev as the single non-intern IT person. That would be me. I know my way around the Linux CLI and have been doing Linux since the 90ies, but do my deving and daily work on OS X and, as you can image, have no time for "scripting-masturbation“ or any setups that come to a grinding halt if I’m not around when a VM runs out of space or memory. We also have no time for downtime longer than 2-3 hours if disaster strikes.

What do you suggest? What are your experiences with FOSS setups and perhaps with proprietary pointy-clicky apps? Hoping for some educated input on this. Thanks.

Comment: Re:why not a web page? (Score 1) 157

by pla (#49563203) Attached to: Has the Native Vs. HTML5 Mobile Debate Changed?
So if you need a framework so you can pretend to have a native version of the application

No, you need a framework so you don't need to reinvent the wheel for every project you work on. With Sencha's frameworks, I can write a pretty slick-looking responsive site in a few hours (or days, for something larger) that would take literally months to roll on my own (and for the record, yes, I can and have rolled my own, back in the dark ages).

why not just focus on having a webpage instead of a shitty application which is just a web page?

Two reasons. First, it increasingly doesn't make sense to force your end users to download and install potentially untrusted code - never mind needing to maintain separate versions for every major platform you target (oh, you want this on iOS and Android and Windows and Linux and OS X, etc?), when you can accomplish the same result in one nice tidy webapp. Second (and you can fairly call this a matter of personal preference), IMO just about everything looks like crap in a browser on a phone, and even that assumes the browser handles it correctly (yeah, like I want to support Chrome and FireFox and *shudder* MSIE and Dolphin and Safari and Opera, etc - Going right back to all the joys of supporting multiple OSs, woo hoo!).

The concept of a "webpage" hasn't limited itself to some statically published version of a document-with-markup in over 20 years; that model lost so thoroughly that pining for it doesn't even count as beating a dead horse anymore, more like trying to clone a mammoth from frozen DNA.

This sounds like lazy people who want to claim they have an app, when all they're doing is pointing to a web page.

It really doesn't matter to me what you want to call it, whether an app or a webpage or a widget or a three-handled family gredunza, if it accomplishes the intended goal... All just a matter of using the right tool in your box for each task - Sure, you can hammer in a screw, but sometimes a plain ol' nail will do the job just as well.

Comment: Those not bloated with crapware (Score 1) 474

by Qbertino (#49554269) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Are the Most Stable Smartphones These Days?

Modern phones and tablets have thge same problem as PCs - they fall victim to loads of crap and bloatware. Don't burden your smartphone with shit and it will stay stable. If you're having trouble doing that use one with a smaller softewaremarket such as the Jolla. If you're unsure about which phone to take I'd actually recommend that one.

Comment: Re:F Mark Rowley (Score 4, Insightful) 230

by pla (#49528643) Attached to: UK Police Chief: Some Tech Companies Are 'Friendly To Terrorists'
They're just trying to shoot the messenger but they created the problem by circumventing or ignoring the law.

The real problem here - And finish reading this post before you start shooting at me - Rowley has it absolutely correct. Tech companies do behave in ways friendly to terrorists.

Except, he has committed a fundamental attribution error by assuming they do in support of actual terrorism. Tech companies don't support terrorism - They support fairness, they support security, they support usability, for everyone. Unfortunately, "safe" and "secure" includes "from government tampering", and "fair" and "everyone" includes terrorists.

If the encryption software I use doesn't block all attempts to intercept my data, whether by flaw or by design, I will use something that does. Simple as that. Tech companies behave in ways friendly to terrorists because tech companies can't readily discriminate between the actions of crackers and governments, between privacy advocates and terrorists, between a legal court-ordered wiretap and an NSA hijacking - Nor should they.

Comment: On Drugs, Performance and ADHD (Score 1) 401

by Qbertino (#49526455) Attached to: Using Adderall In the Office To Get Ahead

What a load of shit. Luckily there are other MD's posting in the comments on just how biased this writer is. He's basically claiming ADHD is a kid's only issue, and all adults are just abusers. People like him must HATE people like myself...a doctor-monitored adderall prescription for several years now. With it, I'm able to more fully use my capabilities. Without it, people would always comment "your really smart, but..." due to all the random and chaotic things I would do and say. Honestly, without my prescription I'd probably either be dead or in jail. Even so, being unmedicated has already lead to the accidental death of someone VERY close to me...if I had been on it then I probably would have thought the situation through further. So this guy can go fuck himself, and I'd tell that to his face is ever given the chance.

My uncle tells me ADHD runs in our family. However, I consider the frictions in our family to be normal or based on psychological heritage brought down from a grandmother incapable of handling 4 children and having an immoral stance on her responsiblities. Plus living in an ending WW2 in Germany, including carpet bombings, fleeing Koenigsberg and Stetin to the Rhine area and being fugitives and 3rd class citizens as a result. Such things are passed down, no doubt.
I also think of my uncles ADHD fixation as an excuse for his alcoholism - he like to rag on how ADHD people work better with drugs. I would allot his problems to the regular beatings his generation received.

However, I do have character traits that some people would consider "ADHD".
I wouldn't. Or at least I would consider them to be a disability. I would appreciate the theory that my brain works differently due to me moving around roughly once a year during most of my childhood and said psychological heritage.

I'm basically a hunter-gatherer in a farmer-settlers world, or should I say: I'm adapted to hunter-gatherer mode in a world that is currently mostly adapted to farmer-settler mode. Yes, I'm one of those pretty much down with that theory.

While others have spent their entire childhood at one place, I had to move around a lot. I intimately and intuitively know things about this world and the people in them that others have to learn in hard lessons. I smell a con from 10 miles away, I can handle myself in a fight and I spot financial risks or flaws in complex systems (such as software architecture) in an instant. I find the usual vanity that comes with societies living in abundance strange, bizar, pointless, silly and sometimes flat-out repulsive. I recently re-read Paul Grahams Why Nerds are unpopular and I have to say the man once again pretty much hits home - read it if you can relate to what I am saying. That essay pretty much sums up my youth and the way I feel about the world and the people around me a lot of times. If I'm having ADHD it is not a disease, but a natural reaction to the at times bizar and backwords world around me.

However, there are things I struggle with that others have no problem dealing with. Regular chores or maintaining a home with more that two rooms. And who wouldn't? I'm just this week picking up Scala and starting a new company internal software project. A the side I'm keeping my mood by going out or doing some sort of contrast programm. I don't have *time* to do the laundry regularly.

I run up to speed when shit hits the fan. Basically I consider any other situation boring. Which, let's face it, it usually is.

I also see absolutely no point what so ever in performing in a job that is basically 90% pointless. I'm the lead developer in an agency and 90% of my work is politics and explaining to customers the difference between a client and a server and what the internet is and how it works. And the difference between Google and the Web - which very many people do not know or are aware of. And setting up WordPress and repairing the junkpile the last plugin-testing frenzy my project people left behind.

I do 25 hours a week for a feasible salary and that is just the right amount. In my spare time I help out my daughter, do to evening school, cook, dance (I'm big into Tango and the cute girls that come with it). The point is: I see no point in taking drugs so I can sit at the desk longer. I think its a healthy reaction when I get a headache after 5 hours of diving into LimeSurvey and its inner workings.

Note: This is my take on *my* situation. You may very well have a condition that requires drugs to function. However, I challenge you to question that assumption and perhaps try an alternate career or something. We are not built to sit at desks, and frankly, computers aren't built to be sat in front of. They are built to do the dirty work while humans do the stuff they enjoy and are good at.

Bottom line: I wouldn't want to take drugs to perform on my job. That's not a job for me and it shouldn't be for you either.
I'd rather switch the job or go on a world trip.

They are called computers simply because computation is the only significant job that has so far been given to them.