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ZDNet: DigitalDevices: From old PC to powerful server [review of NetMAX Suite]

Sep 18, 2000, 19:32 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by James E. Gaskin)

"The new trend? Internet appliances without the appliance. The recipe is simple: Mix new software with an old, retired PC for a new Linux-powered Internet server."

"One such piece of software is the NetMAX Professional Suite, Linux 2.2 version, from Cybernet Systems (www.netmax.com). The software comes on a bootable CD-ROM disc that does the installation honors. For PCs too old to have a bootable CD-ROM drive, a boot disk image is included for easy copying to a diskette. Installation literally consists of booting the PC -- in this case, a Gateway -- with NetMAX and watching."

"The tested version uses Red Hat Linux version 2.2 as the base. Several warning screens appear, all screaming that NetMAX will completely take over your PC, deleting everything currently on the hard disk. The software automatically discovered the contents of the five-year-old Gateway Pentium I system running at 120 megahertz with 128 megabytes of RAM, a 1.6-gigabyte hard disk, and 3Com EtherLink III 16-bit Industry Standard Architecture network interface card."

"What is the salvage or disposal cost of a Pentium II 200-MHz system with 64MB of RAM and a 4GB hard disk? Certainly no employee would be happy with this level of machine today, yet that box loaded with NetMAX software could support hundreds of e-mail users and a fair amount of Web traffic without breathing hard."

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