When speaking of virtualization, VMware is a solution that can't be ignored. While the true power of virtualization lives in the datacenters, we live in the age where anyone can run a virtual machine or two on a desktop or a laptop, given it is equipped with enough resources. These virtual machines are computers running inside a computer, and this setup has countless benefits and use cases. For instance, if you have a new software you'd like to test, you can do so in a virtual machine before installing it directly on a device you use for everyday work.

To work with these virtual machines with ease, we can integrate them with our Hypervisor - in this case, VMware - to enable the operating system running as guest to use the capabilities of the virtualization software. In this tutorial we will install the integration software, called VMware Tools on a virtual machine running RHEL 8 / CentOS 8, that is hosted in VMware Player. The same in-guest steps apply on the datacenter version of VMware regarding the tools installation. Note however, that Red Hat ships the open-vm-tools with the distribution, which is what VMware also recommends to use instead of the tools we'll now install. Why are the tools shipped with the distribution recommended? They can be updated along with the distribution within the regular update process, while VMware's tools need to be updated by hand (or automation, but unneeded effort anyway).

While the following steps will result in a working integration, please consider the above when you setting up your virtual systems. Outdated virtualization integration tools are a bad thing, which you will experience when you upgrade your hosts, and hundreds of alerts will appear on the vCenter consoles.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to download VMware tools using VMware Player
  • How to present installation source to the virtual machine
  • How to remove open-vm-tools
  • How to install and configure VMware Tools

Disk and space management is an essential knowledge of a sysadmin. It is his or her everyday job to handle disk issues. As part of the RHCSA exam preparation, we will learn how to add new space of various types to the system, using the tools provided by RHEL8. We already covered many of these tasks, and in this tutorial we will focus on adding new space without harming the data contained in the system.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to add new partitions to RHEL8
  • How to add new logical volumes to RHEL8
  • How to add swap to RHEL8

Kickstart installations let us easily script and replicate unattended or semi-unattended installations of Fedora, Red Hat Enterprise Linux or CentOS. The instructions needed to install the operating system are specified, with a dedicated syntax, inside a Kickstart file which is passed to the Anaconda installer. In this tutorial we will see how to reuse an already existing LUKS (Linux Unified Keys Setup) container when performing a Kickstart installation: this is something that cannot be achieved just with Kickstart instructions and requires some extra steps.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to use an existing LUKS container when performing a Kickstart installation of Fedora, RHEL or CentOS
  • How to create and use an updates.img file to be used with the Anaconda installer.

Apache ActiveMQ is a widely used messaging server written in Java. As messaging services commonly do, it creates a bridge between heterogeneous systems for reliable data exchange in the form of messages pushed into queues by producer clients, where they wait to be "read", or consumed by consumer clients.

Naturally a system that is client to ActiveMQ can be both producer and consumer, and more than one systems can subscribe to a queue or topic, thus enabling flexible communication between these client systems. Many different platforms and protocols can be used to connect to ActiveMQ, increasing it's usefulness even more.

In this tutorial we will install Apache ActiveMQ on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 from tarball, add the systemd unit files for ease of use, and access the admin page of our new service to create a queue.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install ActiveMQ from tarball
  • How to set up environment from the command line
  • How to add systemd unit files for ActiveMQ
  • How to access the admin page

RHEL 8 is the latest release of the popular enterprise distribution. Whether you're installing RHEL for the first time, or you're installing the latest version, the process is going to be fairly new to you. This guide walks you through the steps in the latest Red Hat Anaconda installer.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to Set Your Language
  • How to Set Your Localization
  • How to Select Your Software
  • How to Configure Your Storage
  • How to Configure Your Network
  • How to Set Your Security Policy

Apache Spark is a distributed computing system. It consists of a master and one or more slaves, where the master distributes the work among the slaves, thus giving the ability to use our many computers to work on one task. One could guess that this is indeed a powerful tool where tasks need large computations to complete, but can be split into smaller chunks of steps that can be pushed to the slaves to work on. Once our cluster is up and running, we can write programs to run on it in Python, Java, and Scala.

In this tutorial we will work on a single machine running Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, and will install the Spark master and slave to the same machine, but keep in mind that the steps describing the slave setup can be applied to any number of computers, thus creating a real cluster that can process heavy workloads. We'll also add the necessary unit files for management, and run a simple example against the cluster shipped with the distributed package to ensure our system is operational.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install Spark master and slave
  • How to add systemd unit files
  • How to verify successful master-slave connection
  • How to run a simple example job on the cluster

OTRS is an open source service management solution used by many companies around the world. It's extensibility and ability to integrate with other systems no doubt add to it's popularity. Written in perl, this software will run on mostly anything, and it's low requirement on resources makes it ideal even for a small business to start ticketing, or standardize their internal processes.

In this tutorial we will install OTRS on a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8. Keep in mind that the steps described below are only apply to version 6.0.14, Community Edition. For example, version 6.0.15 will not work when the below steps are performed on the same environment.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install OTRS from tarball
  • How to solve dependencies
  • How to configure the environment
  • How to run the web installer
  • How to login to the service

Composer is a dependency management tool for php, much like cpan for perl. If you have read the tutorial about installing cpan, the architecture will be somewhat familiar. Composer, as a command line tool is the client that can fetch and update the php libraries we mark as needed, as well as the libraries these depend on, etc.

The source of these libraries is packagist.org, a large public php package repository. We can browse the repository with a browser to find the packages we'd like to use, then include them in our projects with the help of Composer. And by solving the dependencies itself, Composer can make our lives much easier if we depend on external packages. In turn we can also share our libraries, so the community can access them trough Composer as well.

In this tutorial we will install Composer on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, and mark a package as needed dependency for our project, to see the tool working.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install Composer
  • How to define package as dependency
  • How to install dependencies with Composer

Apache Bench is a useful little tool for testing the response time of a webservice, and thus the performance of the webserver. We can specify the number of requests to send, the target URL, set up concurrency, just to name a few of this tool's settings.

While such simulated workloads will not result exactly the same data that real world traffic will do, it is always a good idea to test before going to production. Maybe before deploying a new version of the application, we could run the tests on the new version, and compare the results with the previous test data to see if our application will serve slower, or faster than the last version. With well-planned testing, this tool can show the possible bottlenecks of the application, and may provide points of interest where we should look into our code for possible optimization.

In this tutorial we will install Apache Bench on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, as well as an Apache Webserver to run some tests against.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install Apache Bench
  • How to install httpd webserver, and add some basic content
  • How to run simple tests against the webserver

Apache Cassandra is an open-source NoSQL database. One of it's main features is it's decentralized nature that gives unique fault tolerance. Having our data replicated across datacenters means our production will not suffer from the loss of one of our sites, something all sysadmins dream of (or really happy to have such setup).

In this tutorial we will install Cassandra on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 by adding the Cassandra repository, install the software, and set up all else needed to have our service up and running and easy to manage.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to add Cassandra repository
  • How to install needed packages
  • How to repair systemd unit file
  • How to test Cassandra with cqlsh

Apache Kafka is a distributed streaming platform. With it's rich API (Application Programming Interface) set, we can connect mostly anything to Kafka as source of data, and on the other end, we can set up a large number of consumers that will receive the steam of records for processing. Kafka is highly scaleable, and stores the streams of data in a reliable and fault-tolerant way. From the connectivity perspective, Kafka can serve as a bridge between many heterogeneous systems, which in turn can rely on it's capabilities to transfer and persist the data provided.

In this tutorial we will install Apache Kafka on a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, create the systemd unit files for ease of management, and test the functionality with the shipped command line tools.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install Apache Kafka
  • How to create systemd services for Kafka and Zookeeper
  • How to test Kafka with command line clients

Deleting user on RHEL 8 / CentOS 8 Linux system can be accomplished using the userdel command.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to delete user on RHEL 8 / CentOS 8.
  • How to force user deletion.
  • How to delete user as well as its home directory.

Gdb or GNU Project Debugger is a great tool when you need to debug a program. You can set breakpoints, watch for value change of a variable, or even change a value for the program while it is halted at a point of it's state, then continue, just to pick some of the features of gdb.

In this tutorial we will install gdb on RHEL 8, and test how it is working with a simple C application.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install gdb
  • How to compile a simple C application with debug symbols
  • How to set breakpoints in the running application with gdb
  • How to print actual values of given variables within the application

This article covers an installation of Matomo (Piwik), an all-in-one premium web analytics platform, on RHEL 8 Linux Server. In this instance the installation is based on the well-know LAMP stack comprising the RHEL 8, MariaDB, PHP and Apache webserver.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to Install LAMP Stack on RHEL 8.
  • How to configure MariaDB database.
  • How to install Matomo (Piwik) on RHEL 8.
  • How to open HTTP and HTTPS firewall ports.

The RHEL 8 ISO can be transferred to the USB flash drive using the ddrescue command hence creating a bootable RHEL 8 USB flashdrive.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to create bootable RHEL 8 USB flash drive.
  • How to access boot menu.
  • How to access BIOS/UEFI.

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