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Paper: System Administration Best Practices: An Astronomical Perspective
Volume: 394, Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems (ADASS) XVII
Page: 738
Authors: Shopbell, P.L.
Abstract: The literature contains numerous discussions of best practices concerning the administration of computing systems and networks. In this paper, we review some of these strategies and techniques, with a special emphasis on those which are particularly applicable in the field of Astronomy. We remind the reader of many common practices of importance, such as communication (both upward and downward) and documentation, but moreover emphasize a number of issues critical for the successful management of computer systems used in astronomy. As an example, the large, and rapidly increasing, data flows in astronomy today, as well as the increasing use of pipeline software on the desktop, are creating a much more dynamic environment with respect to data backups. We draw upon the experience of ourselves and others in this field over the past twenty years to suggest a few best practices for system and network administration which should be especially useful for those in the field of Astronomy.
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