Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

What Can System Administrators Learn from Programmers?

Filed under
Interviews

Although we often hear about program bugs and techniques to get rid of them, we seldom see a similar focus in the field of system administration. LinuxPlanet asked Diomidis Spinellis, the author of the book Code Quality: The Open Source Perspective, for tips on what system administrators can learn from programmers.

LinuxPlanet: How would you judge the quality of a system's setup?

Surprisingly, I would use the same attributes as those I employ for describing the quality of a software artifact: functionality, reliability, usability, efficiency, maintainability, and portability. I would ask questions like the following. What services does the system offer to its users? Has the system been setup in a way that it can run uninterrupted for months? How easy is it to manage its services, or to restore a file from a backup? Is there any waste in the utilization of the CPUs, the main memory, or the disk storage? How difficult would it be to upgrade the operating system or the installed applications? How difficult would it be to move the services to a different platform?

LP: So what can system administrators learn from programmers?

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

Firefox OS media-casting stick strikes Kickstarter gold

The first Firefox OS based media player has arrived on Kickstarter, in the form of a $25 open-spec HDMI stick that supports Chromecast-like content casting. The Matchstick, which has already zoomed past its Kickstarter campaign’s $100,000 funding goal, with 28 days still remaining, was teased back in June by Mozilla developer evangelist Christian Heilmann. The unnamed prototype was billed as an open source HDMI stick that runs Mozilla’s Linux-based Firefox OS and offers casting capabilities. Few details were revealed at the time except that the device used the same DIAL (DIscovery And Launch) media-casting protocol created by Netflix and popularized by Google’s Chromecast. Read more

Open source history, present day, and licensing

Looking at open source softwares particularly, this is a fact that is probably useful to you if you are thinking about business models, many people don't care about it anymore. We talk about FOSS, Free and Open Source Software, but if we really are strict there's a difference between free software and open source software. On the left, I have free software which most typically is GPL software. Software where the license insures freedom. It gives freedoms to you as a user, but it also requires that the freedoms are maintained. On the right-hand side, you have open source software which is open for all, but it also allows you to close it. So here we come back to the famous clause of the GPL license, the reciprocity requirement which says, "If I am open, you need to be open." So software that comes under the GPL license carries with it something that other people call a virus. I call it a blessing because I think it's great if all software becomes open. Read more

Leftovers: Software

Proprietary

today's howtos