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Creating Linux Web Farms
(Linux High Availability and Scalability)

Horms (Simon Horman)

November 2000

The world is full of questions, they fill me with fear
What of our beginnings? Why are we here?
Is there a purpose? Is there a God?
But one question troubles me
Far more than this lot

What nationality is Les Murray?
TISM, ``What Nationality is Les Murray?''


I would like to acknowledge my employer VA Linux Systems, without whose help this paper would not have been possible. In particular, my colleague John Goebel has helped me enormously. I would like to acknowledge the support of the the people involved in Linux High Availability and The Linux Virtual Server Project, in particular Alan Robertson, Wensong Zhang, Julian Anastasov and Joseph Mack who have provided excellent software and support. Finally, I would like to thank Felicity for always being there.


This paper is copyright 2000 Simon Horman and is released under the terms of the GNU General Public Licence, a copy of which is distributed with the source for this document.

All trademarks and software are the property of their respective owners.

Version Information

Version Date Description
0.0.0 2nd February 2000 Initial release
0.0.1 6th February 2000 Minor Corrections
0.0.2 3rd May 2000 Minor Changes
0.0.3 10th May 2000 Updated to include Ultra Monkey
0.0.4 24th May 2000 Minor Changes
0.0.5 13th August 2000 Updated for release of Linux Fail Safe
0.0.6 7th October 2000 Minor Changes
0.0.7 14th November 2000 Minor Changes


Linux Open Source Expo and Conference
7th - 10th March 2000
Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Linux Expo China
2nd - 5th June 2000
Shanghai Exhibition Centre
Shanghai, China

Silicon Valley Linux Users' Group
5th July 2000
Building 9, Cisco Systems, Inc.
San Jose, California, United States of America

O'Reilly Open Source Software Convention
17th - 20th July 2000
Monterey Convention Center
Monterey, California, United States of America

Linux World Conrerence and Expo
14th - 17th August 2000
San Jose Exhibition Center
San Jose, California, United States of America

Linux Expo Canada
30th October - 1st November 2000
Metro Tronto Convention Centre
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

New York Linux Users' Group
15th November 2000
IBM Building
New York, New York, United States of America


Since the release of fake much work has been done to realise a High Availability solution under Linux. In this time significant gains have also been made towards scaling services using Linux. This session will look at the state of play of Linux in these areas and the problems that need to be addressed.

This paper will focus heavily on high availability and scalability technologies used to build a web farm. Web farms provide an interesting application of these technologies and is an area where Linux is becoming more and more accepted.

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Horms 2001-11-23