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Project Idea: "IT Department In A Box"

It's dawned on me that a great many small sites (and possibly big sites too) would be greatly helped if someone made a single box that included:

  • RequestTracker
  • Some kind of up/down monitoring system like Nagios or BigBrother
  • Some kind of capacity planning monitor like Cricket or MRTG
  • TWiki or other Wiki, with a pre-built set of pages
  • A serial console system like
  • Bacula or other free backup system

While none of those are difficult to install for an experienced Linux person, the goal would be a system that the common "Mr. Fixit" kind of sysadmin that serves small sites would be able to load a CD-ROM and have the entire machine working very quickly. Each application would be pre-installed, and pre-customized. For example, the install procedure would ask for the IP address of a few key servers, and Nagios would default to monitoring it. The Wiki would have pre-configured pages that include add/remove/change procedures the above items (how to add/remove/change a server that Nagios monitors, add/remove/change a file system that Bacula is backing up, etc.).

Sadly I do not have the time to run such a project but I hope someone else steals this idea. I have many other tips and ideas for such a project.

Posted by Tom Limoncelli

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IT Department in a Box from life - listed chronologically on August 25, 2004 6:28 PM

I like the idea of this a lot. It would be so handy to have a CD I could bring with me for setting up a machine with this stuff in one step. Commentary: Project Idea: "IT Department In A... Read More


That's almost exactly what I do when I set up shop, and a great idea. I don't think I would have time to execute such a plan on my own, but if someone else picked up the torch, I would be willing to contribute.

A vmware appliance wouldn't be a bad idea. I bet many of these thing have already been created.

The image could be converted for qemu, parallels, MS Virtual PC, etc.

Then you just need to install VMware Player at the site on a machine running windows or linux. They should all be able to run virtualized with the possible exception of backups to tape.