[eagle] adding stuff to amsat.org

Phil Karn karn at ka9q.net
Sun Feb 18 05:14:22 PST 2007

I had pizza with Brian Kantor WB6CYT Saturday night. He said somebody in 
  AMSAT, possibly Rick, had asked for root access for the amsat.org 
machine so that various new functions could be added.

I wasn't sure (and neither was Brian) of the specific new functions to 
be added, but they seemed to be various forms of engineering support.

Brian is concerned, and I agree with him, that these additions might 
risk the stability and security of a stable machine already relied upon 
very heavily by everyone in AMSAT for email reflector and web services. 
Problems might come from the new services themselves, or from the much 
larger set of administrators with root access that would surely result.

For example, counter to the assumptions of some, the amsat.org machine 
doesn't run Linux; it runs BSD Unix. They're similar in many ways, but 
there are crucial differences that anyone with root access must be aware of.

Computers, even rackmount servers, just aren't so expensive or hard to 
come by that we have to cram everything on a single box. If there's need 
for another new server to handle AMSAT engineering-related services, I'm 
sure we could come up with a new box and host it at either UCSD (where 
Brian would manage it) or Qualcomm (where I would manage it.)

Just let me know what's really needed, and we can make it happen.


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