I fixed Lion Server !!!

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by goncaloproenca, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    #1
    I did, I really did.

    I reinstalled SL Server.

    Make no mistakes : SL Server costed me what it did ( and to everyone that bought it ) and Lion Server costs as much as gazzilions times less.

    For a really small business, home server, etc, its fine. For that I utterly recommend Lion Server : its simple, very easy to setup and works like a charm.

    If you want a full production server, firewalling, vpn, multiple hosts, etc etc : forget it. SL Server costed me as much as 15x than Lion Server and its really not surprising why.

    I tinkered with Lion Server for 3 days. For me ? Sucks. Can't configure what I want, virtual hosting doesnt work, mysql doesnt come with the package, worpress server is incompatible, mail server doesnt work properly and the list goes on.

    Quick background : I bought SL Server while back and I never had a server before and I'm not an IT guy. I pulled my hairs out 23872834 times because I activated a service but forgot to open a port. Then to write the firewall rule. If things didnt work was beacuse I didnt do something correctly.

    After a few months I'm hosting several sites, a wordpress community, dozens of emails and my home network that has 6 laptops and everything works like a charm. I'm really proud of it and its a champ

    With Lion things dont work because it does have the genuine feeling to have been rushed out the door with things not being totally and fully tested.

    I just reinstalled SL Server and everything is slowly getting back up as they were.

    If you are considering Lion Server, be VERY aware of what are you getting yourself into.
     
  2. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    #2
    You've just helped me a make a decision. I was considering purchasing Lion for our client computers at work (A college with 100 Macs run from Open Directory on a few Snow Leopard Servers) and i've read so many stories from people that say Lion Server is terrible. After yet another one from you, i'm sticking with Snow Leopard Server.

    This leave us Mac administrators with a conundrum. In the new era of Apple preferring to sell toys than decent server operating systems, how long can I run a Mac network like this? We've just bought an extra 15 iMacs, and luckily the new iMacs ran Snow Leopard too so we can keep our current setup for now, but next time we won't be so lucky. Next time the machines will come with Lion, and every Mac admin knows that different OS X versions don't play nicely with each other, and i imagine Snow Leopard Server won't manage Lion client machines very well because of all the changes.

    Having dropped the server qualifications, i don't think Apple has any intention of really developing Lion Server, in fact i think it will be dropped entirely. So what do us Mac admins do? Those of us who want Open Directory with AFP home directories and enterprise capable Mac servers to handle all our Macs, those of us who have invested a great deal of money in Apple servers who really cannot afford to start from scratch. Where do we go now??
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    #3
    honestly you will thank me later.

    I'm currently thinking of getting one of the 4 mac minis in the house and putting Lion Server to tinker with it.

    But to my main server, good Lord, no way jose.

    Again, for 72 hours I couldnt get a single decent crap thing working out of Lion Server.

    Its a Server Edition, dumbed down. You are frustrating trying to tinker under the hood, to get more "power" to configure things but things go horribly wrong.

    Example : the GUI frontend for the webserver is r-i-d-i-c-u-l-u-s. Got a start top, a edit path for the document folder and a add for virtual hosts. And a PHP on and off. Thats it.

    Zero other options.

    You can add more virtual sites, but they dont work ( wide documented problem )

    So you want to create aliases for your website. Your dead on options

    You want to create custom 404. Dead

    You want to whatever. No option.

    So you start to think - ok , its all unix based , its apache under the hood so you start to open the httpd.conf file and start tinkering on what you want.

    Problems arise AGAIN.

    The GUI front end messes up and start saying " ERROR READING CONFIGURATION FILES ".

    Honestly, its deeply frustrating.

    I have no problems that they made things easier for newcomers. Heck I didnt understood a crap's arse about IT when I deployed my SL Server. I read and read and read manuals and web pages, talked to other IT and learned.

    But cutting all the power off by "going under the hood" is just plain dumb.

    Today I reinstalled SL Server.

    Timeframe of things :

    30 seconds : all hosts configured
    45 seconds : php and other relevant extensions loaded
    2 minutes : mySQL databased restored and users configured
    5 minutes : all websites copied and configured on server admin

    so 5 minutes to get 12 websites with 14 hosts configured and up and running

    and I wasnt rushing

    in next 30 minutes I sucessfully configured :

    VPN
    Firewall
    OpenDirectory
    PlexMedia Server
    AFP fileshare points

    In the next hour I got my full Mail server for 4 different domains with over 30 rules for several accounts

    Honestly, I didnt get past the bloody 2 websites in Lion Server. And its supposedly to be easy.

    Like you, I'm worried about the future. In all mac history ( im a user since 10-12 years ago ) different mac versions never played along nicely.

    We shall see.

    But SL Server is from a VERY different breed : its elegant, atheletic, a true power cat.

    Lion is just a big house dumb cat. Fine for my Macbook Pro's.

    Very not fine for a server....
     
  4. macrumors 65816

    RafaelT

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    Location:
    Lakeland, FL
    #4
    It took me a day and a half but I finally got Lion Server working. I am hosting multiple web sited and multiple domains for my email. With that being said it was not easy, extremely frustrating and most of that time was spent finding solutions for working around bugs.

    Hopefully enough people complain that Apple will put a little more work into it...

    For anyone that does use lion server.. one little hint ... create you accounts through system preferences not workgroup manager. You can edit them with workgroup manager afterwords but if you want to be able to login to retrieve email workgroup manager is buggy.
     
  5. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2011
    #5
    Would you mind sharing how you got multiple sites to work in lion server?
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #6
    If you did a bit of reading the admin manual, and then Googling, you would have found the download link to Lion Server Admin Tools. This would have made your life a whole lot easier and give you a lot more flexibility in configuring services through the GUI.

    That said, Lion server does work for all you want to do, but it is buggy, and setup is a pain since you need multiple GUI tools and the CLI to get it working. Whatever happened to user-friendly and ease of use? I mean, manually having to add "NameVirtualHost *:80" to httpd.conf to get virtual hosts working, come on Apple, what were you thinking? Makes me wonder about their testing procedures.
     
  7. macrumors 65816

    RafaelT

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    Location:
    Lakeland, FL
    #7
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #8
    I actually think that discussion is bad advice; if you do it like that, you have to do it for every virtual host that you create. If you put it in /etc/apache/httpd.conf, you only have to do it once and it will work for every virtual host you create before or after.

    EDIT: they actually say that near the end of the thread. I generally don't get that for on multipage replies ;)
     
  9. macrumors 65816

    RafaelT

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    Location:
    Lakeland, FL
    #9
    Either way would work, but just FYI you do not have to do that for every host.

    I typed "sudo echo NameVirtualHost\ \*:80 > /etc/apache2/sites/00000_MoreTestingRequired.conf" one time and all my hosts work now.
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    mainstay

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2011
    Location:
    BC
    #10
    I'm reading mixed results on the big issue for me:

    CAN the new mac-mini's (2011, i5/i7) be wiped and reinstalled with Snow Leopard Server?

    Anything funky need to be done?

    Also, I was told by Apple that my new mini would have a reinstall disc, is this true?
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #11
    Mine was delivered with no such thing.
     
  12. macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #12
    No. Its been tested by the people at Mac Mini Colo and they couldn't get it to boot.
     
  13. macrumors 6502

    mainstay

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2011
    Location:
    BC
    #13
    hmmm - this is not very nice of Apple.

    Could you imagine having a client with a down server that you are waiting on downloading 10 GB of install information (all while in some sort of Safe Mode, crossing your fingers that something doesn't fail during the transfer)?

    I called Apple specifically for this issue and was assured the new mini server ships with a disk.

    My unit hasn't arrived yet, but am now holding my breath.

    *sigh* Apple, why do you always give candy with one hand and bitch slap the **** out of us with the other?
     
  14. macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #14
    They don't come with a disc and the download is only 4.3Gb for the 2011 Mini.
     
  15. mainstay, Jul 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2011

    macrumors 6502

    mainstay

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2011
    Location:
    BC
    #15
    laugh at "only 4.3 GB". And with the major networks pushing for usage based billing, this could get pricey. In the middle of a server crash I don't want to be waiting one second longer than I have to in order to be up and running again (oh yes, I know, make your backups etc., but I still want the safety net of having a disk).

    Who knows, maybe the internet is down at the same time and we can't connect to the Apple servers. Or maybe the Apple servers are swamped... maybe iCloud is hosted on the same network and you get crap speeds downloading. I DON'T KNOW. Just saying.

    And 4.3 GB downloaded at a pretty reasonable 1 MB/s is still going to take 72 minutes.

    Don't forget to add in +200 MB for the admin tools + x GB's for updates and patches (which I know you will argue will need to be downloaded regardless of having a disk, but still) + who knows how much other software in order to get the functionality of SL (sounds like MAMP and some others will be a necessity).

    I just want a disk. And was told I would get one. For $1500 I expect one.

    Sometimes I feel that Microsoft is desperately trying to mimic Apple in look and feel, and Apple is sneaking towards the business model of Microsoft (I see anti-trust suit in the future).

    This feels too much like the Dell and HP deal pc's where you have to make your own recovery disks and you are hosed if you don't.

    Maybe the torrents can help in this arena.
     
  16. macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #16
    The version of Lion on 2011 Mini's and Air's is not the same as the version from the App Store. The App Store version will not boot or install on a 2011 Mini or Air.
     
  17. macrumors newbie

    Gfive

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    Location:
    Amsterdam
    #17
    The solution I use is webmin/virtualmin.

    Configuration of lion is easy this way.
     
  18. macrumors 65816

    Xenomorph

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    Location:
    St. Louis
    #18
    I just installed Mac OS X Server 10.7 ... and wow, is this bad.

    We use Mac OS X Server 10.5 for SMB, AFP, and NFS file management, and as a Domain Controller - all options seem to be missing from 10.7.
     
  19. macrumors 65816

    RafaelT

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2010
    Location:
    Lakeland, FL
    #19
    Hopefully you and everyone else will share their feedback with Apple. Lion Server is barely a server anymore.
     
  20. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Location:
    Lomita, CA
    #20
    Its called download everything once. Restore the Lion installer to USB then put everything else on another USB. Done. Running it all from USB will install faster than a disk as well.
     
  21. mainstay, Jul 27, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2011

    macrumors 6502

    mainstay

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2011
    Location:
    BC
    #21
    yeah, I was going to post this last night but it's been covered in other topics:

    http://mashable.com/2011/07/20/lion-clean-install-guide/

    Presumably this holds true for the server add-on.

    But come on, even you must admit this is far more work than simply using the factory supplied DVD that accompanies your system. DVD's too unreliable? Fine, charge me $10 for a USB key that is built to last.

    I get the push to online distribution but to make users make their own [inferior] install discs is not something to be applauded.

    I have been disgusted with HP, Dell, Sony, and Toshiba for shipping with restore partitions and requiring users to make their own DVD's (sometimes requiring several DVD's and quite a bit of time) before they can replace the HD (usually they forget and by the time they bring it to me I can't create the recovery disks from a damaged drive so then we have to call a clueless Dell rep who tells us that there is no such thing as a Media Recovery Kit, 20 minutes later, oh, THIS media kit?, sure, that will be $40 and will take a week to get to you).

    Now I guess I have to add Apple to this TERRIBLE practice. But what's worse, is that at least the PC's are prompting you to make a recovery disk while Apple self deletes the install!

    Next Apple will pre-load their OS with all sorts of ****** promotional Apps (oh wait, isn't the App Store App already sneaking in there with their "Amy Winehouse Dead!, Buy Her Albums Now!" nonsense).


    (Do an online distribution for your Apps, but NOT the OS).
     
  22. macrumors 68000

    squeakr

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #22
    I think they should give the USB drive with OS loaded. They used to do it with the Airs (as they had no OD),but for some reason they released the Mac Mini Server edition without the OD yet felt the need to include a disk and not a USB drive. I would have welcomed the USB drive and it would have made things so much easier than trying to find the disk and then either targeting the disk or trying to install one the network (both were a pain). I agree, come on Apple!!
     
  23. macrumors 6502

    mainstay

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2011
    Location:
    BC
    #23
    are you saying you received a disk with your mac mini server?
     
  24. macrumors 68000

    squeakr

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #24
    Yes, I did. I forgot to clarify that i have Late 2009 Mac Mini Server. It is the first time they released the server edition. SO I received Snow Kitty with mine. Sorry for the confusion this may have caused (it was just during that time period the Airs got the usb as they had no drive, yet the mini Server was in the same boat and got a disk).
     

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