Questions and answers

1. System Maintenance

1.1.

Which GNU tar parameter supports processing a bzip2 compressed file?

The parameter j is used for processing bzip2 compressed files.

Uncompress tarballs

1.2.

What is most often the reason for a configure command to exit prematurely?

In case a required dependency is missing. However, in case only an optional dependency is missing, it will just disable compilation of that particular dependency.

Check for optional and mandatory dependencies

1.3.

According to GNU standards, an application will install by default into which directory?

Without optional arguments passed to the configure or the make install commands, the application will install into the /usr/local/ directory.

Default install directory

1.4.

In general you would rather back up more than less. Which filesystems are major exceptions and can be skipped all together?

The /proc and /sys filesystems contain information about the state of the kernel and can therefore be skipped.

What not to back-up

1.5.

How often should you back up your system?

The frequency of your backup should be in pace with the amount of new data you create within a given timespan. If it is a lot, or very hard to recreate, consider a brief interval between backups.

When to back-up?

1.6.

Why is network attached storage not preferred for long term backup and archives?

Long term backups are hardly ever used and, if so, no instant recovery is expected. Knowing this, power costs should be taken into consideration as these systems are always up and running.

Networked storage as backup medium

1.7.

Why would rsync be a backup utility to be considered if bandwidth between the local and the remote destination is low?

rsync optimizes the use of bandwith by not only compressing traffic, but also to consider not copying files if not needed and to do this for parts of large files as well.

Keeping required bandwith low

1.8.

Why would you use AMANDA (Advanced Maryland Automatic Network Disk Archiver) when backing up a large number of systems running different versions of Linux and Unix?

AMANDA uses native utilities and formats and will most likely support multiple versions of Linux and Unix and be able to allow moving backup files across systems.

Backup solutions

1.9.

Does pinging a system furnish enough information in order to decide whether a system is on-line or not?

No, as a firewall might be blocking ICMP echo requests. The same could also be blocking the replies.

Ping can be blocked

1.10.

When will a message within the file named /etc/issue be presented to the user?

Before authentication occurs in case the command login is used for logging in. Most clients for logging in will not use login in the end, telnet , however, does.

Presenting /etc/issue

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