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Charlie Schluting

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Build an IPSEC VPN Without Losing Your Mind
With latency-sensitive or high bandwidth requirements, often we find OpenVPN unable to perform. IPSEC is the solution, but the barrier to using IPSEC is great. It is potentially difficult to configure, and one’s first exposure to VPN concepts is often...
OpenVPN Is Too Slow? Time to Consider IPSEC
Often we need to secure communication channels, not for remote workers, but for server-to-server communication. Backups, for example, come to mind. It may be fine to use SSH or stunnel to ship data securely, but when performance is required and encryption...
Are SANs Still Relevant?
During difficult economic times, firms are often looking to cut costs, and a SAN infrastructure can compose an overwhelming portion of the IT budget. The question is, is it worth it? We weigh the benefits of the SAN with the alternatives in a SAN-less world....
vpnc Connects Linux and Cisco VPNs
The Cisco VPN client, vpnc, enables your Linux workstation to connect to a Cisco 3000 series VPN concentrator PIX firewall. Until vpnc existed, corporate employees were often relegated to connecting to their company’s network via a Windows machine or...
High Availability for MySQL: Considering the Options
Running a basic MySQL setup is quite simple, but as soon as you begin thinking about the best way to provide redundancy, things quickly get complex. There are many layers to consider when it comes to databases, and the variety of solutions is difficult to...
Manage iSCSI Sprawl With iSNS Servers
We all agree that iSCSI is extremely flexible and useful, but a big pain point in enterprises these days is the management of iSCSI devices. You manually configure each storage device, and then manually configure all your iSCSI initiators to connect. There...
Share iSCSI Volumes With Linux Clients via ZFS
The Sun x4500 series storage servers have been a big hit. You get 48 disks, and ZFS takes advantage of the large number of disk spindles to achieve amazing throughput. Here’s another great use for the x4500: host all your virtual machines on it and...
Is It Time to Outsource Your Web Hosting?
Whether you are running a small business, a Fortune 500 enterprise, or something in between, Web hosting providers may have something to offer. Once you decide you need Web hosting services, you need to do some research to determine whether a specific hosting...
Cisco AutoQoS: VoIP QoS for Mere Mortals
WANs often need Quality of Service (QoS) configured to ensure that certain traffic is classified as “more important” than other traffic. Until now, it took a serious Cisco guru to configure a network properly for VoIP if the network was at all bandwidth...
Cacti: SNMP Monitoring Without All the Prickles
As our fetish for monitoring tools begins to subside, we realize that one of the neatest monitoring tools available has nearly been forgotten. Cacti is “a complete frontend to RRDTool,” as they say, which makes SNMP and script-based monitoring...