[Focus on] The TurnKey Linux Project

Turnkey Linux is an open source project that’s developing a family of free, Ubuntu-based software appliances which are optimized for ease of use in server-type usage scenarios and can be deployed in just a few minutes on bare metal, a virtual machine and in the cloud.

Packaging a solution as a software appliance can be incredibly useful because it allows you to leverage guru integration skills to build ready to use systems (I.e., turn key solutions) that just work out of the box with little to no setup.

Unlike a traditional software application, you don’t have to worry about complex OS compatibility issues, library dependencies or undesirable interactions with other applications because a software appliance is a self contained unit that runs directly on top of hardware or inside a virtual machine.

Software appliances reduce unnecessary friction, but for us that means more than just streamlining deployment for an ISV or reducing costs in the IT department.

The appliances features :

A software appliance / virtual appliance is a pre-integrated, self contained system that is made by combining a software application (e.g., server software) with just enough operating system for it to run optimally on industry standard hardware or a virtual machine (e.g., VMWare, VirtualBox, Xen HVM, KVM).

  • Auto-updated daily with latest security patches.
  • Easy to use configuration console and web management interface
  • Minimal footprint (typically around 150MB) - each software appliance is carefully built from the ground up with the minimum components needed to serve its role with maximum efficiency and security.
  • Packaged as an installable Live CD (I.e., bootable ISO) that can run on real hardware in addition to most types of virtual machines (e.g., VMWare, VirtualBox, Parallels, Xen HVM, KVM).
    Packaging a software appliance as a live installable ISO allows us to avoid the complexities involved in supporting half a dozen incompatible VM image formats and focus on the lowest common denominator instead.
    After booting the machine from the ISO the software appliance can either run live in non-persistent demo mode or quickly install itself (in about one minute) to an available storage device.
  • Based on Ubuntu 8.04.2 LTS (Hardy).
  • With minor exceptions, software appliances are built from unmodified Ubuntu binaries straight from Ubuntu’s package repositories.
    Creating new packages or branching from existing packages is a last resort and if we have to do that we publish the source code to our changes on Launchpad and/or code.turnkeylinux.org.
  • Our software appliances are all offered under the same open source licensing as Ubuntu itself.
    In other words, you are free to download, use and redistribute them for any purpose. You are also free to modify a TurnKey software appliance, but we ask that you do not redistribute the modified appliance under the TurnKey Linux name without our explicit permission (for reasons that should be obvious).
  • The software appliances are currently built from 32-bit binaries, but 64-bit appliances are in the works.

List of available appliances

  • AppEngine
  • Tomcat
  • WordPress
  • phpBB
  • LAMP
  • Rails
  • Joomla
  • MediaWiki
  • Drupal 6
  • Drupal 5
  • LAPP
  • Django
  • MySQL
  • PostgreSQL
  • Core
  • Bootstrap

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