If you are running a small to medium distributed business and are not inclined to spend a fortune on commercial software, you can find industry standard impressive Linux based alternatives those come free of cost. We have selected 3 such distros those are diverse in the problems they solve and might be the perfect solution for you too. The mail I received with these suggestions read “a monkey could install, run and maintain them” and fortunately it’s absolutely true! All administration can be done using the simple web interfaces that these distros offer.
Zentyal is a Business Server and is a great alternative to the Microsoft Server platforms. Zentyal can be your gateway, Network Infrastructure Manager, Unified Threat Manager, office server, webmail, web server or communications server. For a full list of features and capabilities head here.
ClearOS is a cloud-connected Server, Network and Gateway operating system. ClearOS can be highly extended with ready to install apps that come in the Marketplace. Some apps (which are adequate to meet common requirements) are free and some are paid. ClearOS comes in two flavours – community edition and professional edition. The community edition is free. Check the overview of ClearOS here.
NAS4Free serves your shared storage needs. It is a Network-Attached Storage (NAS) distro. NAS4Free includes ZFS v5000 , Software RAID (0,1,5), disk encryption, S.M.A.R.T / email reports etc. along with CIFS (samba), FTP, NFS, TFTP, AFP, RSYNC, Unison, iSCSI (initiator and target), HAST, CARP, Bridge, UPnP, and Bittorent protocol support. It can be installed on Compact Flash/USB/SSD key, Hard disk or can be booted from a LiveCD with a small usbkey for storing the configuration across boots. Check the key features here.
Delivers essential business tools in one pack: calendar, address book, email, file manager, timesheet, project manager, site manager and many other applications. It also features data access control, data exchange and interlinking between applications. The community edition is free.
A 4MLinux based tiny distro if all you need is a secure server. Supports FTP, HTTP, SFTP, SSH, and Telnet servers. A proxy server (Polipo) with the Tor anonymizer is also included. The main security components are a 4MLinux Firewall (based on iptables) and Clam AntiVirus.
[Courtesy: Jester Raiin]