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Author Topic: Hepl setting up thin client net
Chesty
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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 12:08      Profile for Chesty         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I am currently rennovating and old beachfront motel and would like to
include internet access in each room to lure customers from the bigger
resorts (none of which at this writing provide in-room internet). I
would like people to be able to use a box mounted in the room but be
able to keep them from erasing hard drives from PC's and such.

From what i have read thinclient seems to fit the bill. Yet I have no
experience with it and am on a tight budget.

What would I need to set up the network? Assume that I have cat five
from all rooms to my office, roadrunner and nothing else.

What hardware would i need?
What OS could I use that my staff could easily learn and use.

Posts: 416 | From: The Beach | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged
magefile
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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 13:18      Profile for magefile     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I suggest NoCat. It requires, I believe, just a wireless router. Maybe a desktop, too, I'm not sure. You install it either on the router or the desktop, and anytime someone connects to it (which is dirt simple), it gives 'em a password page. Or you can just leave it open, or have it open a "hi, we're XYZ, go ahead & surf now". Whatever.

I haven't used it in a long time, but it was very nice when I did use it, and there's a good user community. If you even need it, that is - it's really simple to set up.

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magefile
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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 13:20      Profile for magefile     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Oops, I assumed you wanted in room internet, not computers, too. Assuming you only want to give 'em web and maybe word processing, google for "Linux kiosk". Should be simple to set up; if anyone is knowledgable to get out of kiosk mode, they're probably knowledgable enough to take care of themselves. If not, it should be simple to set it up so you just pop a CD in, press a few buttons, and it'll reinstall itself.

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Let them be stupid - the market will sort it out.

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 13:28      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So many people have laptops these days it might be easier and cheaper to just install dataports and/or a wireless network. Just a thought.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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Chesty
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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 19:29      Profile for Chesty         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I already have Dragnfly for wireless connectivity but most people don't bring laptops to the beach with them (we rent primarily to college and high school students that tend to leave the place kind of sticky - not really the best environment for electronic components) we do a pretty good business with people walking into our office and paying $9.75/hr to use our leftover G3's. So I'm pretty sure I could get guests to add $15 a day for internet when they can sit in the privacy of their room and surf with their buds. It would be a nice benefit for the guests and add a little scratch to our bottom line as well. I just don't have the time to keep emptying all the mess of the drives.

I've seen these and thought they'd be pretty indestructible (clear covers) but have no idea what it would take to get the whole thing running.

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 19:37      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Diskless PC and a Knoppix boot CD ?

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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Chesty
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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 19:58      Profile for Chesty         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
Diskless PC and a Knoppix boot CD ?

Can I control access to that? I guess i could rent them a cd for a week at the retail purchase price.

interesting!

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 20:24      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Chesty:
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
Diskless PC and a Knoppix boot CD ?

Can I control access to that? I guess i could rent them a cd for a week at the retail purchase price.

interesting!

Knoppix is free, you could sell them a CD for the price of a blank disk. It can use a USB key as the users 'home directory', so if they want to save their stuff (and if they have a USB key .. possible retail opportunity for you there) they can, without stepping on the next users toes.

You could control access to the network by plugging/unplugging the ethernet cable from the hub in your office.

What I don't know is how well several knoppix machines would play together on the same network, never tried it.

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 20:29      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
What I don't know is how well several knoppix machines would play together on the same network, never tried it.

Hmm, if the DHCP server told them the host name they should be fine and not clash, one would think. But that would pretty much require a dedicated DHCP server, as the ones built in to basic hubs/routers/etc don't do that, AFAIK

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6 weeks to go!

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 20:51      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Knoppix goes *poof* when they reboot - what other kind of control do you wish to exercise? Give them computers without hard drives. [Smile] I've run a computer without any hard drives and just on Knoppix, and love how perfectly it works. [Smile] You can make a custom Knoppix disc, if you wish to tweak it a bit - and maybe include some custom-branded artwork. There's a boot option to prevent it from ejecting the disc on reboot - you'd probably want to make that the default.

W.r.t. conflicts amongst many Knoppix machines - there's no problem there at all - it doesn't run any services.

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 20:56      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by dragonman97:
Knoppix goes *poof* when they reboot

Not that there's anything wrong with that [Wink]

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6 weeks to go!

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TMBWITW,PB

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 21:03      Profile for TMBWITW,PB     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
FYI, in the US "poof" is only used onomatopoetically, not as a synonym for homosexual.

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"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye."
—Miss Piggy

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 21:10      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks, Peebs.

I didn't feel like making a footnote when I typed the frist psot, but that'll teach me...*sigh*

Edit:
Links:
http://everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=1140497

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poof

And no, dict & Google's define: are not in my favor in this case. :-/

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 21:13      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Yes, I know that, but do I ever turn down the opportunity for a joke [Wink]

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6 weeks to go!

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 21:27      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by csk:
Yes, I know that, but do I ever turn down the opportunity for a joke [Wink]

It'd be a sad day around here if you did that.

Thinking about it for a second, I must say I'd have a hard time figuring out how software could become homosexual. I mean, what would that mean? Oh, crud, I do know what it means, and I've seen a related picture now that I think about it (think Tux & Beastie). Ignoring that vile thought, I guess it might be more like GNU software compiling itself and throwing away the source or something. Maybe it'd lead to your computer getting the Prawnikova virus or summat like that.

This also comes to mind... [Razz]

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 21:39      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by dragonman97:
Oh, crud, I do know what it means, and I've seen a related picture now that I think about it (think Tux & Beastie).

The scary part is I know exactly what picture you mean, and it was the first thought in my head as soon as you posed your question.

On a related note, far too few geeks of the female persuasion don the red latex devil suit and become BSD Babes. If you want to know how to meet geek guys, I'd say that will have you meeting more guys than you can imagine (oh, but at least a passing knowledge of BSD could help).

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6 weeks to go!

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 09, 2005 22:27      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by csk:

On a related note, far too few geeks of the female persuasion don the red latex devil suit and become BSD Babes. If you want to know how to meet geek guys, I'd say that will have you meeting more guys than you can imagine (oh, but at least a passing knowledge of BSD could help).

*sigh*

I know I can't be the only person who misses the BSD Chicks @ LWE*. That was a time when the Linux and BSD camps could just come together and have a great time...but all good things must come to an end. :-/

*Pic tweaked in Gimp ever so slightly. /me doesn't feel like catching more smartass comments from Xanthine, or letting Rhonwyyn see my chin. [Razz] The things you have to do for a critical audience. *shrug* (And the colors are still a wee bit messed up - those pictures were run off at LWE, and suffice it to say, that printer got highly used - probably was low on ink.)

Edit: A quick Google search turned up the above girls, plus the person that csk's referring to. [Razz] Plus, there was the beastie for the girls. [Wink]

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted January 10, 2005 08:10      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
On to the topic at hand.

You could always set up a server that will remmotely load Linux. That way there would be no issue with CD's and such.

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Does he know our big secret?
Has one of us confessed?
'Bout the wires circuits and motors
Buried in our chest

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Chesty
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Icon 1 posted January 10, 2005 21:08      Profile for Chesty         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I think i'll try setting up a few machines in my office this week on knotpix and seeing - then i can get machines for $50 (plus flatpanels for $200 each and be all set)

Yeah they gotta have them flatpanels.
weren those chicks from the Lye Company booth or did they represent the comic?
 -

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 10, 2005 22:52      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Dang dman. If it weren't for the horns I'd say you look like you'd died and gone to heaven.

Er, do the cryptic comments mean you were really beardless in that pic? Please tell me it's an old picture and you haven't started going clean-shaven. [Razz]

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted January 10, 2005 22:56      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Have you talked with your local library about how they run their public-access machines? At my public library, they run Internet and offer M$ Office for free use, but with restricted controls (no "shut down" or access to hard drives). They look Windows-based, so if you didn't want to provide tutorials for kids who've grown up without Knoppix or Linux, the library's way of doing it might be your best option.

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Change the way you SEE, not the way you LOOK!

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csk

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Icon 1 posted January 10, 2005 23:07      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Or possibly the local internet cafe might have some ideas, too, since they're faced with similar problems. Presuming one exists, of course.

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6 weeks to go!

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Chesty
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Icon 1 posted January 13, 2005 07:46      Profile for Chesty         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I am the local internet cafe, But I'm usaully there to devirusize and defrag and restart and show people how to connect and tell them why when they open Outlook it doesn't have there account already loaded and a whole host of other things. I won't be in the rooms at the new place to do this and am looking for an alternative. I think this weekend I'll link a few machines up and boot 'em with knoppix and see what happens. I think that may be easiest, and I have a ton of old machines laying around.

Thanks for all the Ideas!

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