The BabyDragon & vSphere musingsā€¦..

$1500 for a new ESXi server for vSphere 4.1 is a bit high. Unlike this guy, I have a lab in the basement so decibles aren’t as important as capex and opex costs. Plus, to have a lab in the basement where I can do things with a cluster would require two of these beasties. Running a second on the iMac i7 probably won’t cut it. Last time I needed a lab for something it was because a network change crapped out 1⁄4 of my primary vSwitch.


So a few months ago I started thinking about virtualization and the future of my profession (System Administration). So much of the hassle we have involves software compatibility issues with libraries and the code that runs on it. My thoughts were that is would be much easier if, instead of big OSes with lots of services running on it, we had a micro-distribution running just a single application. A DNS or Mail server could be shipped as a virtual appliance with some form of hooks for shared storage via NFS or MySQL for its configuration information.

Mailman performance issues

So I run the Atlanta Linux Enthuisasts’ list on mailman. Recently the server has been running loads between 5 and 8 – way more than it should be. Doing a top showed python using most of my CPU. I tracked it back to mailman and the config.pck file which as 50M. The problem came about due to spam sent to the ale-* administrative addresses. Each time a spammer sent an email to that list, it would add an entry to the hold_and_cmd_autoresponses variable in the config.