Anybody running Clear Linux on a server?

GeckoLinux

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Hi there, I'm working on a project that requires selecting a bunch of rows with (slow) LEFT JOIN calls from a large database and importing them into a different database. I'm running it on a very powerful VPS, but it's still taking longer than I expected. So I've been looking at improving the raw performance.

I'm used to the traditional server administration model of carefully configuring and tuning each and every aspect of the underlying OS and the server application stack, and for that usage scenario I preferred openSUSE Leap or Debian. But the application I need to deploy now mainly supports Docker deployments, so the versions and selection of available packages for the host OS aren't really important. It just needs to have Docker and docker-compose available in the main repos, as I don't want to depend on Docker's add-on repos. That means that anything RHEL or Fedora based is not an option, and I prefer not to use Ubuntu for several reasons.

I've been testing this project with a Debian 11 host OS, and it basically just works and performance is acceptable, but still feels like it could be improved as I mentioned. So based on some of the Phoronix reviews that show Clear Linux pulling way ahead of other distros in pure raw computational speed I decided to give it a shot, and sure enough it's running between 5% - 10% faster for the same tasks, which should shave off several hours from the time it will take to do a complete production run of this database migration. I like that the Clear Linux core is small and focused, it uses a clean "stateless" system design with the only files in /etc/ being what the administrator has changed from the defaults in /usr . The Clear Linux project seems to be serious about security, and automatic updates can be enabled. It has a sane and secure SSH policy out-of-the-box. Reboots are amazingly fast, taking just seconds. I like it well enough to consider using Clear Linux as the host OS for a production server that will host a Dockerized web app. Does anybody here have experience with Clear Linux in a server workload? Any major pros and/or cons? Thanks!
 


I need to deploy now mainly supports Docker deployments, so the versions and selection of available packages for the host OS aren't really important. It just needs to have Docker and docker-compose available in the main repos, as I don't want to depend on Docker's add-on repos. That means that anything RHEL or Fedora based is not an option, and I prefer not to use Ubuntu for several reasons.
Why is Rhel/Fedora not an option, Rhel/Fedora have podman available which is for 90% a dropin replacement for Docker and is designed to be more secure. That is why Rhel moved from Docker to Podman and you can use podman-compose as a replacement for docker-compose. I run quite a few containers on my personal systems and all of them are official docker images but they all run with Podman without any issues.
 
Are they custom made apps or opensource apps? Why don't you want to enable the third-party Official Docker repo if a distribution doesn't have it in the official repos? I have no experience with Clear Linux so can't advice on that, all the stuff I host runs on Rhel.
 
They're both open source. I'm sure they could be adapted to work with Podman, but as I mentioned I'm a very traditional system admin and I don't feel comfortable deviating from the officially support defaults when it comes to containerized apps.

As for the third-party official Docker repo, I always prefer the version that the distro ships by default. I recently read a Debian post about an update from the Docker repo that broke containers, which wouldn't have happened if using the Debian versions of those packages.

Also the aforementioned raw throughput advantage of Clear Linux is attractive for applications that need top performance for things like SQL and Redis. But that's all moot if the host OS is unreliable, so I wanted to get some ideas of how well it works (or doesn't) in practice.
 
I run quite a few third-party repos and I've never had anything break unless in the third party repo a package stops being maintained. Which I doubt will happen with any packages in the official Docker. Also not a surprise for something like that to happen on Debian since all the software in Debian stable is old compared to anything in the Official Docker repos and when mixing old with new software chances are higher of something breaking. You may also want to look at the successor of CoreOS, Talos, it's designed for running containers.
 
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I run quite a few third-party repos and I've never had anything break unless in the third party repo a package stops being maintained which I doubt will happen with any packages in the official Docker repo. You may also want to look at the successor of CoreOS, Talos, it's designed for running containers.
Interesting option, thanks.

Talos is a Linux distribution built specifically for Kubernetes. The short version is that we have stripped out absolutely everything that is not required to make a machine a Kubernetes node, including SSH and console access
Pretty hardcore! :)
 


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