Red Hat/Fedora Meetup for May

We had our second Red Hat/Fedora Meetup, here in Melbourne. This time it was spiced up by the fact that Richard Keech, the CTA at Red Hat, talked about the Red Hat Network Satellite, afterwhich we all went for some dinner at an expensive restaurant! Some interesting facts (no slides, so just read my notes):

  • The largest amount of hosts for the RHN Satellite network would be around 10,000 hosts – a reference points to AOL, among others.
  • The Red Hat Network itself has over a million hosts.
  • The provisioning feature allows kickstart styled installs – this means that details can be kept on the satellite server. You’re also allowed to compare systems – say between the reference system and many unknown systems (aside: we’ve done this manually with SystemImager, for a golden child, and about 20 clients before). There is support for revision control too, so rolling back an entire system to a totally different state is allowed.
  • It allows you to have your own rolled RPMs too, so you don’t only have to pull from RH. Oracle is embedded with this, in one 230MB RPM – yes, you need the database to work with the Satellite network.
  • It only runs on RH AS 2.1, and not the newer releases. The product being: “RHN Management Satellite (3.2) for AS 2.1”.

Then there was a bit about the RH Desktop (RHD) solution. The fact that there’s licensed Agfa fonts, with one nearly equivalent to the MS font Arial, providing easy migration. Citrix client, Acrobat Reader, Flash, Real Media, IBM Java2/SDK as well. RHD is basically RHEL3 version 2.

All this got me thinking however. Since the API’s for this are published (mostly?), and it does make use of XMLRPC, and the system is defintely a nice looking one, why haven’t the bored folk out there looking for a project, write another RHN?

Update: There’s NRH-up2date which seems to already do basically this…


  1. Kaj says:

    There used to be a piece of software called Current by Hunter Matthews (and a few others). Development on it has stagnated however and it does lack a bunch of neat features. I believe it is still available at

  2. Kaj says:

    It’s available at Must have fscked the last entry somehow.