tom12010's picture

I'm looking to create a basic "secure" appliance to which Windows users can do the following:

1. Do something to log in to it

2. Run a web browser

Could I do this with the basic 'core' appliance and installing Firefox to it??
Is there an appliance that fits what I need??

Thank you, Tom

Jeremy Davis's picture

So let me get you straight. You have a user sitting at a Windows machine logged in already and you want them to click something and log into a new window. When the user is logged into this new window they may use a web browser within it?

Firstly why not just install Ubuntu or another Linux distro on the desktop and be done with it? (Sorry I know that wasn't all that helpful but I had to say it!)

Back to your question - If this is what you are looking for I would suggest you install a compact distro such as Puppy Linux (or DSL - Damn Small Linux) as a VM using something like VirtualBox or VMware. You could then use remote desktop connection software (eg VNC) to log into Puppy (or whatever). I think there may even be a way to actually install DSL within Windows (run as an app type situation, but don't quote me on that)!

If you only wanted a web browser available, you could uninstall all the other applications and make it basically a browser only OS.

Perhaps even more suited to your idea is an OS aimed at cloud computing such as xPUD which basicaly boots to a browser.

tom12010's picture

All good points.

As stated, I wanted the equivalent of Windows 'remote desktop' to a Linux box.

Most of your proposed solutions are clunky and time-consuming for technically non-literate staff, though they are all fine for Linux geeks. :)

I have decided to create an Xubuntu VM, install xrdp, then teach people to use Windows RDP to connect, then start Firefox, then do their business. If xrdp does not work, then FreeNX if I must.

The solution has to work for multiple users, any time...therefore 'remote desktop.'

The first problem to solve was/is secure browsing (to the best extent possible, easier to do on Linux than Windows), then remote access.

Thank you, Tom

Liraz Siri's picture

I think creating a remote "thin desktop" appliance to serve as a sort of secure sandbox is a very interesting idea. In fact I've just created a blueprint for it.

The details still need to be worked out of course. What kind of desktop environment do we provide? Enough just to run a browser?

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