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Monitor Magazine: The e-smith server and gateway

Jan 14, 2001, 17:42 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by David F. Skoll)

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"Many companies see a market for so-called 'Internet appliances'. An Internet appliance is a box which plugs in and provides you with Internet access, a firewall, file and print services, e-mail access and so on. While most Internet appliances include hardware (for example, Sun's Qube and Rebel .com's Netwinder), an Ottawa company called e-smith Inc. provides a software-only In-ternet appliance."

"E-smith's software is based on Red Hat Linux 6.1 (as of e-smith version 4.0). It installs on a standard PC and turns it into an Internet appliance. I recently visited e-smith and saw a demo of the software, as well as a peek into the internals of the design. Here's how it went...."

"The e-smith architecture is very well thought-out and maintainable. All of the configuration files (like Samba's smb.conf, Apache's httpd.conf, and so on) have been analyzed by the e-smith programmers and broken down into small chunks. These chunks are then stored in separate template files, with a numbering scheme similar to many Linux distributions' System-V 'init' scheme. In essence, file names begin with two-digit numbers so that, when files are concatenated in sorted order, they yield a correct configuration file."

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