TurnKey Linux Virtual Appliance Library

Finding the closest data center using GeoIP and indexing

We are about to release the TurnKey Linux Backup and Migration (TKLBAM) mechanism, which boasts to be the simplest way, ever, to backup a TurnKey appliance across all deployments (VM, bare-metal, Amazon EC2, etc.), as well as provide the ability to restore a backup anywhere, essentially appliance migration or upgrade.

Note: We'll be posting more details really soon - In this post I just want to share an interesting issue we solved recently.

Ask us anything

We're going to be doing a series of interviews with prominent TurnKey community members so we figured it would make sense to do an interview with the founders of TurnKey (that's us!).

Interviewing ourselves is a bit weird, so instead we're inviting the TurnKey community to propose the questions which we'll answer in a separate blog post.

So... ask us anything!

Django settings.py for development and production

So you developed a Django web application and now need to deploy it into production, but still need to actively continue development (bugfixes, tweaks, adding and testing new features, etc.)

In your development environment you probably had debugging enabled, performance settings disabled, used SQLite as your database, and other settings that make development easier and faster. 

But in production you need to disable debugging, enable performance, and use a real database such as MySQL or PostgreSQL, etc.

GNU high school: teaching kids by contributing to open source

Today I'd like to spotlight TurnKey's unlikely relationship with Chelsea School, a high school in suburban Maryland. I'm going to try to tell this story on two levels:

  1. The straightforward who-what-why.
  2. Why you should care.

I'll start with the latter. If it works maybe you'll stick around for the full story.

Kids collaborate with NASA, discover cave on Mars

Recently, a 7th grade science class, using the raw data from a NASA satellite, made a remarkable discovery: a mysterious cave on Mars.

Tip: use custom search engines for efficiency

I don't need to tell you how search improves our efficiency on the web, but using custom search engines can make your day even more efficient.
 
Configuring your browser to use custom search engines is a massive time gain, and improves your work flow.

TurnKey Appliance Development Contest: An Open Source Summer Bonanza!

Over the last few months donations have been trickling in and gradually piling up. Since there's a limit to how much beer we can reasonably drink we've been brainstorming ideas for using that money to help the project.

Django navigation bar (active link highlighting)

Every web application needs a navigation bar. Common practice is to indicate to the user where he or she is, and is usually implemented by using a visual aid such as a bold type-face, different color or an icon.
 
I wanted an elegant, generic, extendable solution to "highlight" a link on the navigation bar without hardcoding URLs, using ifequals, or using template block inheritance by specifying a navbar block on each and every template (you'd be surprised, but the above mentioned are recommend often).

Beta of TurnKey Core on Debian Lenny (+ Ubuntu vs Debian)

We've just uploaded to SourceForge our first ever Debian-based virtual appliance: a beta of TurnKey Core on the rock stable Lenny release.

Beta of TurnKey Core on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS

Well, it took a little longer than expected, but we are pleased to announce that TurnKey Core - the common base for all appliances, has been released based on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS (Lucid Lynx).

Ubuntu 10.04 LTS will be supported for five years.

This is a beta release, so take it for a spin, let us know what you think. If you come across any issues, please report them. If you have ideas on how to make it better, let us know.

Reducing the load on a small VPS by 80% in 5 minutes

A few days ago I noticed the average load on a newly setup VPS was too high relative to its workload. The server was noticeably sluggish. Load was high and a page the wiki it was running would occasionally take 10 seconds to load.

I didn't have too much time to kill but I decided I would at least try picking off the lowest hanging fruit before upgrading to a beefier, more expensive plan which would cost a few hundred dollars extra a year.