ArchivistaBox Community

DMS couldn't be simpler

Wallis, 1 September 2012: With ArchivistaBox Community 2012/IX, another milestone in the development of ArchivistaBox has been achieved, as the complete RAM-based DMS solution is now ready for download. Likewise, ArchivistaMini, the RAM-based KVM virtualisation solution, is now also available for download.

Higher speed and performance for the Community.

An open source solution only makes sense if it is simple. This is why for almost 8 years we have been offering completely ready-to-use ISO files for download. These can be installed easily on any commercially available computer. The first version (32 bit) required around 30 minutes for the installation of the ArchivistaBox.

With the 64-bit solution, the installation time has been reduced to 1 or 2 minutes and the setup has been greatly simplified. However, the first generation of the 64-bit version didn't have a demo mode (previously included in the 32-bit version). About a year ago, we presented the first purely RAM-based ArchivistaBox. In May of this year, at our LinuxTag2012 talk, we demonstrated the entire assembly of a cluster in RAM. But because we first wanted to extensively test and refine the new RAM-based CDs, we made both the conventional and the RAM-based versions available for download. Thus, the original ISO file eventually turned into four separate versions, which meant that choosing the right one for download almost became a pain.

We hope to remedy this with the Community versions 2012/IX. Now there are only two versions: the actual ArchivistaBox Community with approx. 338 MB, which unites DMS, ERP and virtualisation, and the ArchivistaBox Mini with approx 100 MB, which includes 'just' the virtualisation. For the ArchivistaBox Community, this means that the CD with approx. 338 MB is less than half of its previous size (just a year ago, it was still 690 MB). We don't think there will be any objections to smaller ISO files.

ArchivistaBox Community: zero-install for all

Both ArchivistaBox Community CDs run exclusively in RAM mode. All the user has to do is insert the CD or USB stick. Then ArchivistaBox can be started directly. The system sets up independently and after approx. 1 minute (the current record lies at 30 seconds, see here), the ArchivistaBox is up and running and ready for productive work. In other words, installation and the subsequent obligatory reboot are no longer necessary, and ArchivistaBox can be put into operation directly as it is.

During this time, the entire Document Management System (DMS) is set up in RAM (operating system, MySQL database server, web browser, Apache server, KVM virtualisation (web-based), all necessary tools such as Perl, PHP, Cuneiform and Tesseract (OCR), drivers for scanners, the complete OpenOffice and other tools). For technologically inclined people it should be added that in these 30 seconds, a total of 1.5 GB of software are deployed and that with the installed Debian Squeeze, it is no problem at all to load additional packages with 'apt-get update' and 'apt-get install xyz'.

Demo mode with 'ram ramonly'

Of course, all data (documents, virtualised guests) are stored on a hard drive, unless the ArchivistaBox is started up in the demo mode with the option 'ram ramonly'. The demo mode operates exclusively in RAM and data is therefore lost on reboot or shutting down ArchivistaBox. On the other hand, the demo mode does not require a hard drive, so any available computer can be used for the test at any time.

If no additional settings are made when starting up the system, the IP data are queried when the system is first run. This query is not repeated later as the correct data can be read directly from the hard drive. To ensure that the system settings are permanently stored on the hard drive, ArchivistaBox must be shut down correctly via the system menu or WebConfig.

Apart from that, the ArchivistaBox Community remains an entirely normal ArchivistaBox; it just runs must faster thanks to RAM, both in terms of the setup and operation. It is important to know that for the ArchivistaBox Mini, a minimum of 1 GB of RAM, and for the ArchivistaBox Community a minimum of 2 GB of RAM is required. For both CDs, we recommend 4 GB (and more is always good, of course). You can download the CDs here. Have fun!