Russell McOrmond, Consultant: Network Implementation
As an Open Systems consultant I make use of TCP/IP client/server
technology and open software protocol standards in order to impliment the
services that I offers. The use of TCP/IP and open standards ensures
the members of the community that the services are both interoperable and
- One problem often seen with other software solutions is the lack of
support for this software in the large variety of computing resources
available to the members of the community. One problem that any person
that has used many different computer systems quickly learns is that
there are many things from software to word processor files on a disk that
are not easily moved from one computer system to another. One of the
features of TCP/IP is that it provide a common set of standards that can
be made available on all computer systems, whether it be the smallest
IBM-XT computer, to a Macintosh or MS-Windows system, to a supercomputer.
- It is quite possible that the information created and shared by a
community will out-live any single community service or any software
technology. By using open document standards, we are ensured that the
archival qualities of this type of information will be available
regardless of the changes that occur within community networking in the
I make use of CopyLefted
software whenever possible. There are many
software, and I make use of the most liberated software possible to keep
my customers as liberated in their technology use as possible.
The services offered by FLORA involve a number of different software
The FLORA servers run on open computing platforms, currently running the
GNU Licenced LINUX
Operating System. Details on other installed software is documented
in the FLORA Server
- Protocol servers
- FLORA runs a number of programs that offer information to the user
via a standard protocol. Some of these services include:
- World Wide WEB publishing, using the HTTP protocol.
- Document maintenance, using the FTP protocol.
- Electronic mail, using the SMTP and POP/IMAP protocols.
- Newsgroups, using the NNTP protocol.
- Mailing lists, using the Majordomo list management software.
- Protocol clients
- Most of the users of the services on FLORA are accessing these
services using software running on their own home computer. Software
- Web Browsers, such as Netscape, Mosaic, Internet Explorer, and Lynx.
- FTP tools, such as ws_FTP, and Fetch.
- Email tools such as Eudora, and Pegasis.
- Protocol gateways
- A number of services exist that will offer a translation between the
communication mechenism used by FLORA (TCP/IP based protocols such as HTTP
for WEB) and the much simpler VT100 interface used by programs such as
TELIX for a smaller PC. These services often make use of tools such as
Lynx for WEB browsing, and PINE for Email and News reading. Examples of
such services are the National Capital Freenet
using the Freeport software, Carleton University's CHAT,
and the software offered by the Chebucto Suite
Hardware LAN/WAN configuration
When FLORA first started, the Hardware configuration of the service was as
- Network services offered by a Pentium 90 computer
- ISDN adaptor connects Internet provider at 64Kbps.
This configuration was an upgrade from a 28.8Kbps modem connection, and was later upgraded to a 128Kbps ISDN connection with the addition of a router between the host computer and the Internet.
Since the launch of FLORA the network has expanded since
considerably. A message was posted June 2002 that provided details of the current network
$Date: 2002/06/23 08:11:59 $