4-16 Installing a server

Gene, configuring a desktop.
So many computers!!

Out on the island, I barely have four working computers in my lab. Here in Santo, the volunteer I am visiting just got 17 desktops and a server donated. It continues to be interesting how different the two towns are compared to the islands. This has also been a reminder of how much I truly enjoy working with servers and networks as well as how much I wasn’t getting to do it on the island.

The installation has gone pretty well. There are still a few things to get taken care of like the server room, an air conditioner, and a UPS, but the network is functional. Gene will also be continuing to tweak settings on the client machines and maybe a few on the server before they really start using it. There will also be a lot of training to do. I, however, am done being the technical consultant and am leaving that to him.
Originally, I was going to be flying in on Wednesday. Then school got canceled for Tuesday (there was a death of an important person at the school) and Monday was a holiday anyway so I decided to get to Santo Monday. I didn’t have my ticket purchased yet. Fortunately, this isn’t really a problem here. I hiked down to the next school as one of the other volunteers had a brother visiting who would be getting on the same flight. Jumped on his truck, got a bit wet, and made it to the airport. At the airport, I bought the ticket with borrowed money and got on the plane. There are times when the looseness of traveling in Vanuatu is incredibly frustrating. This time it worked to my advantage.
Monday was spent mostly re-connecting to the internet. Tuesday is when we really started building the server. After straightening out the hard drives, we installed. I’ve always liked doing completely new networks, they’re so easy. You don’t have any settings to port over. Even re-doing my own network is more of a pain than starting from scratch. Throughout the next few days we configured the server, adding features and determining where all the data should go. Teachers wandered in and out to see what the new setup would look like. Some of them were impressed, others were more confused but will be when they understand it. Gene’s counterpart was here for most of it so that he can learn how it is set up.
As always, when in town there was shopping to do and people to see. To give Gene’s brain a break from all the new information I was stuffing into it, we went into town for lunches or out to drink kava at night. Wednesday we went to a curry buffet which was AMAZING. Seriously some of the best curry I’ve ever had and we were all STUFFED.
After getting the server installed, we started working on the desktops. We are starting with getting one well configured and then making a copy of it to deploy to all the others. This way, we don’t have to install the software separately on each computer and putting in new ones will be very easy. The work is not done yet but we have the process for making the copy down and Gene is perfectly capable of finishing the configuration. I just need to be sure to keep my phone on when possible.
Today, I head back to the island and my smaller network. My teaching is going well, but I am really looking forward to getting back to places where I have more technology available. It’s nice to know I can live without it so much but I also know now how important it is to me.

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