Its been long time that I blogged here. The reason for this post is to share my experience of an interview. If you people think this is irrelevant, please feel free to comment at comment section, depending on your comments I will keep or remove this post. Because it’s just a general post not related to admin work much. OK let us come to actual point.

A couple of weeks back i got a call from a company, they asked me to come down to the interview with all the media required. The media which i have taken includes.
1.) RHEL5.4 which is 64bit version
2.) Oracle 10g
3.) JBOSS (For those who don’t know about Jboss. Its a application server like TOMCAT, Web-sphear etc.          used to serve the content through web).

In the same call they informed it’s totally a practical interview. I have to configure and show all the configuration on a given Blade Center which contain six blade servers in it.
Some background about that Blade-center.
1.) It costs nearly 46 Lacks. Yes you read properly it costs 46 lacks INR(Rs 4600000)
2.) Its having 6 blades(nothing but 6 blade servers)
3.) SAN box attached to it(total capacity of 4.5TB)
4.) A seven layer switch(I don’t know much about this. I have to explore on this)
5.) A backup tape-drive for this SAN backups.
6.) A common DVD ROM, Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor for all the six blade servers

7.)Four to six USB devices(i did not observed properly)
8.) Eight LAN ports

So all these are included/integrated in to a box which be like big TV box(search for blade-center in Google for exact look).

Why we require this blade server why cant we use separate six high end servers?

Ans : Let me put it in this way. In most of the DC(Data Center) space, power, cooling are always concerns. So IBM came with a solution to resolve all these problems by implementing Blade canter/server.

Each blade server looks like a closed laptop when we take it out from Blade center box(it’s very much easy to insert/remove blade-server from blade center)

What this each blade server contains?

Ans : 1.) HDD with hardware RAID 1 on implemented with 132GB(so total space without RAID will be                      132*2=264GB).

2.)RAM of 16B(There are four sa lots, each contains 4gb. These RAMS are placed on the mother board in such a way that it will consume less space and good for cooling).

3.) A fiber converter is there which have high capacity data transfers.

4.) Two NIC/LAN cards(These are integrated on to board it self).

5.) A switch/button for getting display.(Here we have to remember one thing. As there is only single display, mouse, keyboard which are to be shared). So if you press this switch on blade server one all these devices are now part of blade server one.

6.) A switch/button for getting DVD ROM for this blade server.

7.) A power switch to switch of this single blade server
That’s it.

OK, I think this introduction is enough for those people who don’t know what is a blade center or server. Please feel free to ask any queries on this. If you still not clear.

The test/Interview goal is to :

1.) Install OS(RHEL5.4 64 bit).
2.) Yum Server(on one of the blade server so that remaining servers will take yum repo from that server).
3.) Network configuration(like IP addressing and host-name).
4.) Jboss to be installed/configure on all the servers.
5.) FATware to be install/configure on all the servers.
6.) Oracle on two blade servers.
7.) High availability cluster for this Oracle.

That’s the end of the Interview.

They have assigned an Experienced Network/Hardware engineer to me who really assisted me in all hardware related stuff. He is really having good knowledge on all the server hardware and he is a nice guy.. 🙂

His work is to initialize all the blade servers, configuration of hardware RAID 1 and other network related stuff.

We started with Redhat installation on one machine. We did successfully. I thought we no need to install OS on remaining blade servers because I thought of replicating this HDD on remaining HDD(Because all the servers are HDD are hardware RAID 1) but bad luck that IBM blade-center model will not support this. So we installed OS on each server one by one. I thought/show him how to create partitions and install OS after second server installation. He only taken care of installing OS on remaining blade servers. Mean that time I have started configuring Yum on blade server 1, Configured network related stuff, installed some software required by oracle, Jboss etc. By using Yum server. Once these things are done I did the same thing for reaming servers. All these tasks taken most of my time 🙁

Then we installed Oracle on server one and two, after that Jboss on all the 6 blade server. Once all the main configurations are done at last we tried to implement cluster for the oracle(we implemented Heartbeat cluster for this one..)

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Mr Surendra Anne is from Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, India. He is a Linux/Open source supporter who believes in Hard work, A down to earth person, Likes to share knowledge with others, Loves dogs, Likes photography. He works as Devops Engineer with Taggle systems, an IOT automatic water metering company, Sydney . You can contact him at surendra (@) linuxnix dot com.