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LTSP Definition LTSP Concept Requirements Server requirements clients requirements Other solutions Installation Installing the LTSP utilities Installing the LTSP client packages Configuring the services needed by LTSP Workstation specific configuration Booting technologies Advantages FUTURE SCOPE Conclusion References
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What Is LTSP?
LTSP stands for Linux Terminal Server Project. LTSP is an package for Linux that allows you to connect lots of low-powered thin client terminals to a Linux server. Applications typically run on the server, and accept input and display their output on the thin client display.
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SERVER
Executes the process of all workstations
DISKLESS CLIENT

DISKLESS CLIENT

SWITCH

DISKLESS CLIENT

DISKLESS CLIENT
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A powerful

server. A few low-power clients. PCs or workstations. Network equipment. The server software (the client software is contained in the server) The server is running his own operating system (Fedora, for example).

Disk space
Besides the OS you need about 100 MB for the LTSP software. HDD. Example: 25 users, 5 GB per user => 125 GB

RAM
4GB of RAM, 50 workstations.

Processors
Pentium 4, 2.4 GHZ, 50 workstations.

Ethernet NIC
Linux compatibility.

Other hardware attached to the server


Printers, CD/DVDs writers.
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Low-powered computers.
Processor 533 MHz 32 MB RAM PCI Video Card 16Mb memory Network Card (PXE network boot loader) PS/2 mouse, keyboard

Traditional Windows PC
PCs are too expensive. Expensive to maintain. 35 workstations would require at least 1 full-time

system administrator. License management problems. Proprietary solution depending on vendor. Future software upgrades mean upgrading ALL desktops.

Windows Based Terminal


Based on Microsoft Windows Proprietary solution depending on vendor Expensive Per-User licensing

Full PC based on Linux


Lower initial cost than option the options above Too much hardware at each desktop. No need for the Hard drive, CDRom

or Floppy. Expensive to maintain. A workstation failure would result in downtime for the user.

Cost comparison for 35 computers


30000

Windows PCs

25000

20000

15000

10000

Workstation

5000 Old used PCs 0

$28,000

$7,875

$1,750

There are three phases to building an LTSP server:

Installing the LTSP utilities


Installing the LTSP client packages

Configuring the services needed by

LTSP

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Includes utilities for installing and managing the LTSP client packages, and for configuring the services on the LTSP server. The last version is LTSP 5.2. Availability in several formats

About 40KB. You can download the rpm version from


Other formats can be found in: Install the package:
rpm -ivh ltsp-utils-0.25-0.noarch.rpm
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tgz, rpm.

Run the ltspadmin command in a shell. You will see the administration window. Choose "Install/Update" option to install the packages.

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The LTSP Installer configuration window will appear.

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The options that you have are:


Select the source of the packages.
If your computer is connected to Internet type
Else you have to download the files and save them in a file. For the LTSP 4-1 version and below you can download the ISO file and burn it into a CD

Directory of the client tree.


Accept the default value

Http proxy URL.


If your connections go through one, specify the URL. Otherwise accept the default options

FTP proxy.
The same than before.
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Press a to select all components and q to install them.

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LTSP relys on 4 services:


DHCP [Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol]: used

to lease IPs to clients. TFTP [Trivial Transfer File Protocol]: to transfer files to clients, like the client software. NFS [Network File System]: used to mount remote directories. XDMCP [X Display Manager Controller Protocol]: used to implement graphical login displays.
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Type ltspcfg. That are the options you have to configure:

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Runlevel
Select runlevel 5 to indicate that your system is in graphical mode in a

network.

Interface selection
Select the current NIC

DHCP
It will create a default dhcpd.conf file and run the service.

TFTP
Enable the service

Portmapper
Used by RPC services, such as NFS

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NFS

XDMCP Allow graphical logins in the client. Enable it. Create /etc/hosts entries Some services like NFS need to be able to map the IP of a workstation to a host name. Create the entries. Create /etc/host.allow entries This file provides security. Create it. Create the /etc/exports file This file is used by NFS to determine which directories are allowed to be mounted by remote machines. Create it.

It will create the default configuration file and start the service.

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Create the lts.conf file


The configuration of each workstation is in this file.

Type ltspcfg and s to check the configuration.

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For your specific network there are 3 files you need to edit.
/etc/dhcpd.conf

For the DHCP service. /etc/hosts For the name/IP address mapping. /opt/ltsp/i386/etc/lts.conf Specific configuration of the workstation.

The explanation of how to edit /etc/dhcpd.conf and /etc/hosts goes beyond this paper.

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PXE [Pre-boot eXecution Environment]


Allows you to boot a computer without hard disk or floppy disk or CD. It boots from network.

You need a NIC. It is a feature available in most NICs. You have to enable PXE in the BIOS setup This is the process: Send DHCP requests. Get IP. Get the boot file.

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Reduces the

load on the server. In large work with memory intensive application such as netscape, running the application on the work station can provide better performance as long as the work station is powerful enough to handle it.
Sound support

is much easier to configure when the application that plays the sound is running on the work station.

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CLUSTERING the clients are going for a free ride and were going to put them to work. Well have the RAM and CPU of the client do some work for the server so that the server looks like it has unlimited power in an itty bitty space- takes some of the load off the server. We might even start creating server farms for large classes (2 or 3 servers sharing the load) JAVA working on the server and running my LEGO robots on the clients via infra-red through the USB port Getting our Pringle Can broadband wireless project running from a Linux Thin Client environment (7km range with antennas)

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Remote execution of process is an interesting concept with a lot of applications in the real life. You can save money in hardware and in licenses. Linux configuration can be tough but documentation is provided by www.ltsp.org. Other solutions are either inefficient or more expensive. The LTSP software provides an administrator tool for `installing/monitoring the software. Computers without hard disk can be booted from a server using either PXE .

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1.ONLINE REFERENCES:

2. Print Publications I. Managing NFS and NIS Hal Stern OReily & Associates,Inc. 1991 ISBN 0-937175-75-7 II. TCP/IP Illustratred,Volume 1 W.Richard Stevens Addison-Wesly 1994 ISBN 0-201-63346-9
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