Issues/things to improve with NS8b1

So I installed a pre-made image (Rocky based) and here are the things I would change/improve/fix in a future version:

  1. Erm… No migration tool mentioned in documentation exists yet. :smiley:

  2. Documentation fix: No mention of default password in the section of install using a pre-built image.

  3. Documentation fix: Several other things that are in “install from scratch” possibly need to be copied to pre-built image section OR make a common section for what is… common.

  4. There is no clear explanation of why someone would need to install Cockpit or not and how it differs (what it manages) differently than cluster admin pages. If this gives a unified way of changing hostname and IP irrelevant of underlying distro, maybe this should become the preferred way to configure these, esp. for pre-built images instead of referring to distro documentation.

  5. Again a documentation thing, it needs to be made clear where is which user used. For example NS8 cluster has a default “admin” user, where for Cockpit, you need the root user (or some other user you add). Actually after “installation” section in documentation, there is no step that actually logs you in the cluster admin, it just expects you know how to do it.

  6. NS7 System Dashboard (I mean the main info page) has way more functionality and information than any details in Cluster Admin.

  7. Cluster config backup to a local provider? (NFS etc.)

  8. Not sure why smarthost deserves such a central setting spot (which was my question also in NS7… why was it not part of the mail configuration?).

  9. In migration from NS7, there should be cleaner notes on the state the migration leaves the existing NS7 server. Also for failed migration. It is a very sensitive and important matter and no details should be considered “implied” or “understood from context”.

That’s it for now. Keep up the great work.

(as for me, I am not sure I will try to migrate anything before beta2)


The migration tool has been installed in your NethServer 7x in the last updates…


That’s where the migration needs to be started!

→ At the moment I have No Idea where / how to start the migration, my own testing starts this weekend!
It seems installed, but nothing in Cockpit. Need to read more on migration, sorry, can’t help you more (yet)!

My 2 cents


See my other post: Can I safely move my simple setup to NS8 b1? - #11 by giacomo

I agree, we will try to make it better.

I thought it wasn’t necessary. Do you have a suggestion for it?

Same as for 4 :innocent:

Be patient!

This could be an idea.

See my answer on the post linked above.

How would you improve the inline doc inside the tool?
We are really happy to add more info and to refactor current labels!

Thanks! :heart:

:rotating_light: The tool is not automatically installed.
You need to install it from the Software Center or command line (if you prefer: yum install nethserver-ns8-migration)

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Irrelevant thing: I don’t know how you make those smart quotes in this forum software. :slight_smile: You do it manually?

So I have to revert to numbers (as I read all replies - so not referencing my original numbering):

  1. Migration tool indeed shows up today. Didn’t, when I posted yesterday (and after refreshing for possible updates).

  2. About the clarification you want on doc improvement.
    First of all, everything is necessary. No info is “too much info”, as you don’t know who reads it.
    My experience in my position has shown me this much. (I am 25+ years an IT pro and maybe half of them managing IT infrastructure and teams). I like to use the term “stupid proof”.

  3. So, if you ask me, Cockpit (that seems to manage the actual “backbone” OS, outside NS boundaries), has to be pre-installed and not be enabled manually AND used to manage actual basic setup for pre-built images at least. This because, ok if you add NS8 on an existing Linux setup, hostname, IP and such are already configured, but with prebuilt images an “elementary admin” way would be nice. OR make sure to have a “first-run” script, to force user to supply required information.

  4. I think for pre-built images, an admin user has to be pre-configured in OS level (NOT root) and share same password in shell login, Cockpit and Cluster Manager.
    IIRC in shell and Cockpit I needed to use root and Cluster Manager used admin.

  5. I am very patient. :smiley: I just wanted to know that a rich dashboard is indeed in the roadmap.

  6. Backup to local provider is hardly my idea. NS7 does it, so I expect to be available again. :stuck_out_tongue:

  7. Not sure where you answer in the other post about why smart-host needs its own “main” config section (also was like that in NS7), instead of being a tiny part of mail subsystem configuration. Is it because it is also needed, possibly for report emails? (even if no mail module is installed)

  8. I have no idea of the inline doc of the migration tool, as I haven’t run it yet. But whatever is in there, should be in the offline docs too and people know what to expect in all migration cases (and issues). It is vital, given the sensitivity of the process.

Love how things are starting to be more alive (for the rest of us - surely the dev team was already very active), keep strong as a public beta means a flood of new feedback on things you may have not thought/encountered in closed alpha.

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here you are :wink: How do I quote someone? - support - Discourse Meta

I agree, but I’m too inside the project: I hope someone less involved could help on it!

I do not want Cockpit on my installation! Too much unused deps: to do basi network stuff the CLI is enough for most sysadmin.
The problem here is: I fear that we add Cockpit we should also support stuff about the distro …

This is wrong from a security perspective: admin and root are different users and should remain the same. root manages the OS, admin manages the cluster.
You are still free to create an administrative user for the cluster called root, but IMHO it’s a bad practice.

Fair enough: we already have the card Trello, I just expanded it a bit.

It’s needed by the app. Example: you have a server with only Nextcloud installed, Nextcloud needs to deliver mail to user for share links.
The smart host config is propagated to all installed app (Nextcloud, Mattermost, etc).

You’re right, we have it: NethServer 7 migration — NS8 documentation
Still, we can expand it!

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WOW magic! :smiley:

Fair enough. I would volunteer, but I cannot commit right now (due to RL).

You are probably right. Yet there should be a method to FORCE the admin set what has to be set and generally the defaults shouldn’t be used (DHCP and default hostname - always talking about pre-built images). Most small business servers (and actually most of everything) come with an initial setup script.

This is very true. Yet it would help with the original setup.
Remember, I am talking about pre-built images. These are irrelevant for existing OS that install NS8 over it.
In the setup process mentioned above, it could be added to force the use of separate admins/passwords, but right now it is a bit confusing.
Since we talk about security, right now the prebuilt image forces you to edit (cluster) admin password, but never even mentions that somewhere back there (in the OS), is a root user with a known default password (and if you don’t login to a shell, you never even find out). This is a big yikes.

Yes I saw that page of course, but needs to be expanded indeed.

All good (actually great) for a first public beta.
I am sure by next beta, you will start getting more feedback on the actual use of the clusters and modules. This beta had to “take the hit” on install issues and how things “look” from the perspective of a sysadmin.


I have added a card to improve the doc: Trello

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