Steve McIntyre visited the LiMux team in Munich and has posted a small report about the visit on his blog. LiMux is the specially tailored Debian distribution City of Munich deploys.
Read the report including a couple of pictures here
Jan-Marek and Florian talked us through their setup. They're using FAI to automate installation of systems, along with LDAP to store lots of configuration information and GOsa as a user-friendly front-end to that configuration. They've integrated these to enable some very clever management features so that all aspects of the city-wide system can be maintained from one central point. As new machines are introduced onto the network, they can be configured into one class or another: simple desktop clients up to so-called “depot” servers, used as seeds for further clients. Individual user profiles can be tweaked, giving users access to new applications as they are needed. Shared resources like network storage and printers are set up automatically from the LDAP database. Access to USB storage devices can be controlled on a per-device, per-user basis for security.
That's quite an impressive feature list.
Read more about how they are goint to use it in Munich here
The story is also covered here on techworld