Friday, August 07, 2009

OS X xserve review

Work this week was kind of hellish. I had a 16 hour day on monday. About 2 weeks ago we got 2 brand new xserves which are mac osx servers.

Now I am many things ("a sure thing" says the red deer boys) but I am no server expert. While they certainly were not as simple to set up as apple advertises. Now that I am in the groove and have had a few long nights configuring them (it is amazing what one checkmark on a preference pane can fuck up) I am enjoying the experience. Before we were running everything on a fedora server that had to be managed by an outside contractor who's availability was sketchy at best.

Now I can control my whole server room from my laptop anywhere in the world. It really is fantastic. They are so powerful.

There are some limitations that make me rather frustrated. Apple advertises its server admin app as a one stop location to control your entire server. This is definitely not the case. The server apps feel a little half baked and flakey. Kind of slow to respond and crash often they are definitely not what what I expect from my apple experience.

The other major limitation is the lack of a php customization GUI built in. It would be so great if they included one like they do with apache. Maybe now that they are no longer pushing webobjects they can push for some increased support for php and mysql in the next version of server.

So I was a little disappointed with the xserve experience but now that things are up and running I am loving it.

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