Revision 251 as of 2020-12-10 15:37:32

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This page is intended as a guide to set up UCC machines in some sort of standard way. Please update this if you find any problems when installing things (especially if using newer versions than described here).

Steps marked with <!> require a wheel member, anything else can be done by a winadmin.

Before you start

Steps to do before installation

  • <!> Add forward and reverse DNS entries for the machine.

  • <!> Add the machine to DHCP.

  • <!> Make sure all licenses required are on hand (see /home/wheel/docs/software-license/ on a user server)

Steps to do after

  • Check everything works as expected
  • Email [email protected] with a summary of what was set up/re-installed

Dualboot Machines

These instructions relate to Dualbooting Windows 10 and Linux Mint. If installing a dualboot machine, always install Windows first where possible.

  1. Install Windows following the below. Make note of the following when setting up the disks:

    • Depending on the size of the disk, try to reserve up to 500GB or more for Windows.
    • Linux works fine on anything down to about 100GB but 200GB+ is preferable.
  2. Install Linux, making sure to use the previously reserved disk space.

    • Use a different hostname for the Linux installation (eg. catfish on Windows, and catfish-linux on Linux, or vice-versa)

    • This is necessary so that the machine accounts in AD don't have the same name, otherwise one OS's entry overwrites the other and things get broken.
  3. Set up a scheduled task on Windows to reboot into Linux each day.

Windows 10

All new Windows machines in UCC should be installed with Windows 10 by default. Previous versions are deprecated.

  1. Find a Windows install disk or make a new one. Make sure you select the Professional edition.
    • You can download the latest ISO image here and USB imaging tool here.

  2. Plug in the install disk and boot from it.
    • Select the US keyboard layout and Australian time/date format.
    • Agree to the license terms etc.
  3. Partition the disks.
    • Delete all existing partitions (if any) on the designated install disk.
    • Select the empty space and click "New" to create a new partition. Enter the desired size or use the whole disk (if not doing dualboot).
  4. Create a dummy user account (call it something like accmurph)

  5. Finish the installer. Once it has rebooted into the new Windows system and you have logged in you can continue.
  6. Install software.
    • Software in this list should either be free to download and install, or something that the UCC has a license for.
    • Open Powershell as Administrator and run the following:

      Set-ExecutionPolicy Bypass; iex ((New-Object System.Net.WebClient).DownloadString(''))
      choco install -y googlechrome firefox flashplayerplugin  microsoftsecurityessentials keepass.install notepadplusplus.install 7zip.install discord javaruntime vlc chocolateygui opera foxitreader hwmonitor gimp inkscape adobereader libreoffice winscp.install putty miktex texstudio windirstat lyx
    • Install Steam and to the games drive (if any).

    • Install the ocsinventory agent from

      • This software maintains a registry of all our hardware and is used to determine which machines need upgrading. The server to point it at is and turn off SSL cert verification. No auth is required.

  7. Set the Windows computer name - the installer picks a random one automatically and this is bad.
    • Right click on the Start button, select "System", then click "Rename this PC" and enter the desired name.
  8. Configure the system for the UCC network. (type any commands below into the Administrator Powershell window you just opened)

    • Delete the dummy user created during install, enable the local Administrator account and set the password:

      net user accmurph /delete
      net user Administrator /active:yes
      net user Administrator <Clubroom Password>
    • Join the machine to the domain UCCDOMAYNE as described in ActiveDirectory#Windows.

    • REBOOT.

    • You may need to manually set the time if it is out of sync, run Command Prompt (not powershell!) as administrator and use the command time HH:MM:SS

    • Force update group policy on the machine (now in the admin Command Prompt window):

      gpupdate /force
      • Once Group Policy has been successfully applied (or before the machine is joined to the domain at all) you can force an NTP time sync with w32tm /resync /force

    • Add static route for (This prevents a VPN connection from trying to steal the default route to users home directories.)

      route add -p MASK
    • Enable pings (alternatively, follow this guide):

    • netsh firewall set icmpsetting 8 enable
  9. Add the UCC printer blacklight and set it as the default.

Linux Desktops

Linux Mint x64 Cinnamon (not the LMDE / Debian version) is the only Linux installation we support.

These instructions have been updated and checked with Linux Mint 19.1 - please update them to be compatible with any newer versions if you choose to install them.

  1. Find or create an install USB.
    • Download the ISO from onto an existing Linux system.

    • Plug in the USB and get the device node with lsblk (look at the size of each drive)

    • Copy the image to the USB: (this will take a few minutes)

      sudo dd if=linuxmint-19.1-cinnamon-64bit.iso of=/dev/sde bs=1M; sync;
  2. Boot from the USB and run the installer.
  3. Partition the disks. Select "something else" rather than the automagic guided options.
    • If you are setting up dualboot, do NOT delete any Windows-related partitions.
    • Create a new partition for the Linux system. No swap partition is required - mint no longer creates a swap partition by default, and can use a swap file in the root partition if swap space is required.
      • Use as ext4 file system and use / as the mount point.

    • Configure a dummy user, for example accmurph.

    • Use sensible values for the other options.
  4. Boot into the newly installed system and configure it
    • Set up Active Directory

    • Ensure wheel group and sprocket group have sudo permission: sudo visudo

      %wheel ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL
      %sprocket ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL
    • Ensure wheel group and sprocket group have administrative rights in Polkit. Create the file /etc/polkit-1/localauthority.conf.d/90-ucc-desktops.conf with the following contents:

    • Modify /etc/fstab to mount /away. Use something like this (can differ with distro):     /home   nfs     nfsvers=3,auto,rw,tcp,nosuid,nodev,soft,x-systemd.automount,x-systemd.device-timeout=10,      0       1
      • is oddly insufficient, but x-systemd.automount is relatively robust, see systemd . According to mount , systemd-fstab-generator implicitly defeats retries and continues without "failing" by means of "x-systemd.mount-timeout=infinity,retry=10000,fg,nofail" , so try automounts

    • Network configuration is via DHCP and handled entirely by NetworkManager

    • Use a local package repository mirror with sudo mint-switch-to-local-mirror

  5. Install software.

    sudo add-apt-repository "deb stable main"
    wget -q -O - | sudo apt-key add -
    sudo apt update
    sudo apt -y install adobe-flashplugin arduino blender build-essential cvs chromium-browser eclipse etckeeper fish freecad freeglut3-dev geeqie gimp glew-utils gnucash google-chrome-stable gtk2-engines-oxygen hugin inkscape jhead keepassxc kicad ladvd libreoffice mlocate mplayer nasm nfs-common ocsinventory-agent openjdk-11-jdk openssh-server parallel pepperflashplugin-nonfree pidgin python remmina remmina-plugin-rdp rdesktop rssh subversion thunderbird tig unattended-upgrades vim-gtk vlc zsh lyx texlive xdotool
    • The server hostname for OCSInventory is

      • As off ocsinventory-agent version 2.4 which checks certificates, you will need to either add ssl=0 in /etc/ocsinventory/ocsinventory-agent.cfg to skip the check. Otherwise you need to tell ocs where to find the root cert with:

        ln -s /etc/ssl/certs/DST_Root_CA_X3.pem /etc/ocsinventory/cacert.pem

        and then add the following lines to /etc/ocsinventory/ocsinventory-agent.cfg

      • Check everything works by running ocsinventory-agent from the command line and then check for an entry

    • <!> Set the root password, then add the UCC root SSH keys: add the hostname to /home/wheel/bin/uccroot/, then run that script.

    • Install vivaldi browser (there's no repo package at the moment) - go to and install from there

  6. Set up the UCC printer blacklight

    • Open the Printers settings panel

    • Add printer directly (list its hostname in the insert field)
    • If the definition file cannot be located, download from the manufacturer's website (some googling may be required)
  7. Log in as your own user (reboot if necessary to do so) and go to login window preferences in the main menu

    • Set theme to elegance
    • Go to options and deselect "automatically select the last logged in user"
    • Also change the default session from "Automatically detected" to "cinnamon"
    • Delete the initial user:  sudo userdel -r accmurph  (ignore any errors)

  8. Enable automatic upgrades in the Update Manager (GUI)
    • Tick the box "Apply updates automatically" and ignore any warnings about system stability

    • Tick the box "Apply updates automatically" and ignore any warnings about system stability.

Proprietary NVidia Drivers

NOTE: nouveau is preferred if it works, as it integrates with the kernel.

  1. Locate the driver edition for the card (the major number of the driver version specified on

    • Remember to select "Linux x64" as the OS
  2. Install the relevant package sudo apt install nvidia-<VER>

    • E.g. nvidia-340 for the GeForce 9600

  3. Reboot
  4. If the graphics don't work (e.g. falls back to software rendering), sudo apt purge nvidia-<VER>

Graphics Don't Work?

If you get messages like "Hooray! GNOME3 won't work because your graphics hardware does not support it", or glxinfo segfaults, or glxgears does not show anything, then you have entered the wonderful world of troubleshooting graphics drivers!

NVidia should just work. If you have problems, remove the nouveau driver and replace it with the non-free nvidia driver.

If things seem totally fucked, you probably have an AMD graphics card. Eg:

  •     $ lspci | grep vga
        00:01.0 VGA compatible controller: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] nee ATI BeaverCreek [Radeon HD 6550D]

You have two options; if one doesn't work try the other.

  • Install the Debian non-free version of fglrx which may or may not explode

  • Install the official AMD fglrx which will definitely explode but may take longer to do so:

If none of this works you are doomed and need to try a different OS. However, Debian or Ubuntu are usually actually the best for fglrx, so you're probably still doomed.

Linux Servers

  • At installation:
    • Avoid setting package sources to the UWA mirror as they are frequently out of date. AARNET seems to be the most reliable mirror at this stage
    • Keep APT sources.list (or software repositories) as minimal as possible, but if you don't:
      • Beware of copying the apt sources.list from another server without copying the apt_preferences file too. You might suddenly find yourself with much newer versions of packages than you want.
    • The UCC standard install has all volumes in LVM on md raid. Generally var and home are put on a separate logical volume to root. You had better have a good reason if you're not following this guideline!
  • Add a root user and nuke the initial unprivileged user:
    • That's as simple as running passwd as a super user, re-logging in as root and running deluser on the original user

  • If the machine has an SSD (or several thereof), ensure that TRIM (aka discard) is enabled at all layers (lvm and disk layer)
  • Set up DNS on Mooneye:

    • Add an entry to /etc/bind/domains/primary/ucc.machines then close the file and run in the same directory
    • If zonemake has errors, go back and fix them before proceeding!
    • Use rndc reload to get bind to reload the zone files

  • Set up DHCP on Murasoi:

    • Add the ethernet (MAC) address /etc/dhcp/dhcpd.conf
    • Restart the DHCP server with service isc-dhcp-server restart

  • Set up NFS:
    • Only do this once you have DNS set up and working properlyChangeLog#preview
    • Add the machine to the /etc/exports files on the appropriate servers (Motsugo for /home, Molmol (or just host "away") for /away and nortel+onetel for /services). Reload the server config with exportfs -r (Linux) or service mountd reload (FreeBSD)

    • Remember that only machines on the machine room subnet and physically within the machine room should mount /home while pretty much every machine should mount /away
    • Add the fstab line (copy off Motsugo or something)

    • mount -av and hope

  • Configure the SSH server:
    • Copy the SSH banner (usually in /etc/ from another server and modify it to suit
    • Ensure the correct banner file is set in /etc/ssh/sshd_config
    • Enable root ssh logins and X11 forwarding in /etc/ssh/sshd_config
    • Restart the SSH server and confirm all working
  • Add the UCC root SSH keys:
    • Add the hostname to /home/wheel/bin/uccroot/ (this will add wheel keys to the machine when the script is run)
    • For adding non-wheelians to certain machines, add their public key to the <machine name>-extra in that same folder

    • Start an ssh-agent using eval `ssh-agent` and authenticate your root key using ssh-add ~<username>/.ssh/id_rsa, then run the updated script

  • Setup Active Directory. Follow the instructions at ActiveDirectory

  • Allow wheel members sudo access to the machine by running visudo and adding the following lines:

  • # Allow wheel members to execute any command
    %wheel  ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL
  • Install dispense: Go to /home/wheel/tpg/gitclones/opendispense2, run make -C src/client clean all and copy dispense to /usr/local/bin on the target server.

    • Add the machine's address as trusted in /etc/opendispense2/dispsrv.conf on merlo, and then restart dispsrv with systemctl restart dispsrv

    • For users to be able to dispense, you also need to install oidentd

  • Install postfix, set the mail host to

  • Packages to install:

  • alpine apache2 biff etckeeper finger fish joe ladvd logwatch mlocate molly-guard mosh ncurses-term ocsinventory-agent openbsd-inetd parallel rkhunter rssh screen subversion sudo strace sxid tig tmux tshark uptimed vim zsh
  • For file servers, you should also install:
  • acl clamav iotop nfs-common nfs-kernel-server
  • Drop the following file into /etc/sysctl.d/50-local-ucc.conf
    # [msh] 201910..
    # [NTU][BOB][MTL] 2020-04-25
    # enable Magic SysRequest key
  • Copy rkhunter.conf, mailname from another server
  • Install the UCC motd system on machines which mount /home:
    • Add the following line to /etc/inetd.conf:
    • motda   stream  tcp     nowait  root    /home/wheel/bin/ motda
    • Also add the following line to /etc/services (keeping things in order!):
    • motda           377/tcp                        # UCC MOTD update
    • Finally, run vimotd as root on mussel, add the appropriate information and save the file (which then triggers a global motd push to all servers)
  • Add the following line to the bottom of /etc/rsyslog.conf to enable central logging
  • *.* @
  • TODO: cron'ed weekly fstrim(8)