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WebYaST Terminal Plugin

November 16th, 2011 by

During the SUSE Hackweek Vladislav Lewin (member of the YaST team) has had the nice idea writing a WebYaST plugin which provides a console terminal witch which the user has the opportunity to login on a console on the target machine. He sould be able to start any console based application there ( of course even YaST :-))

So the benefit is to login on a target linux machine from a computer which

  • has not to be a unix machine and
  • is without any VPN configuration stuff.

Just a simple Web browser is needed to get a login via the Web on another linux machine:

Mainly the architecture is based on shellinabox which we have packaged together with the WebYaST Terminal Plugin. These RPMs are now available for download.

BTW: You will be surprised that the source code of the WebYaST Terminal Plugin has about 100 lines only !!!

How to get:

  • All needed packages can be downloaded from OBS
  • The source code can be found in Github

WebYaST 0.3 is out

November 7th, 2011 by

WebYaST 0.3 is out

“We have doubled the speed and have halved the memory usage”

The latest version of WebYaST has many improvements regarding speed, memory usage, usability and developing environment:

  • Speed
    Due a new caching mechanism the startup time of each module has been decreased to a maximum of 1-2 seconds. So the user is able now to click through WebYaST without any notable waiting time.
    We have made a video which shows the speed improvement: WebYaST Comparison VideoFor more technical information have a look to: WebYaST Caching Howto
  • Memory Usage
    Former versions of WebYaST were split into a service and into an UI part. Each part has run in a own HTTP server. We have decided to bring these parts together in order to save one HTTP server which halves the memory usage.
    One additional benefit is that the architecture of WebYaST has simplified a lot:
  • Simplifying WebYaST architecture
    Due the use of one HTTP WebYaST server only the development environment has been simplified very much:

    1. Setup an environment system is much more easier now. Even a setup based on the GIT repository is quite easy.
      For more information have a look to : WebYaST Installation
    2. Writing an own WebYaST plugin has been reduced to a minimum effort. Everyone who has read a Ruby on Rails tutorial is now able to write a plugin.
      You do not believe ? Then have a look to the Example plugin .

How to get:

  • All needed packages can be downloaded from OBS
  • The source code can be found in Github

Available for…

.Sadly it is too late for 12.1 but you can install the packages from the repository described above for 11.4 and 12.1

Easy use of WebYaST for OpenSuSE 11.3

December 21st, 2010 by

Have you ever tried WebYaST ? No ? Then it is time for. 🙂

We have noticed that WebYaST is not really known in the OpenSuSE community. One reason for is that WebYaST is not really user friendly regarding the installation.

So we have investigate here some effort. Lets  see….


The simplest way is the one-click installation which is already installed on your OpenSuSE 11.3.

Just use a web browser (like firefox) with the url:


The browser will ask you to start the installation via the one-click installation. Start the installation and go through the installation workflow.

Starting and managing WebYaST

WebYaST is a web application which runs on two http servers on your system. For starting and managing these servers Thomas Goettlicher has written a nice Qt-applet which can be started e.g. in KDE:

After starting the WebYaST applet the WebYaST icon appears on the right edge of the frame :

WebYaST is disabled

WebYaST enabled

With the right mouse click you can manage WebYaST:

With this applet you can start WebYaST in your browser too. After accepting the GPG-key please login with your “root” account.

And that’s WebYaST:

That’s all.

(Yes, I know that sentence is written almost in every post here. Even in posts where problems just starting after the sentence has been read. :-))

But I think that should be really all. If not, please use bugzilla and blame us !

Have fun !

(Yes, I know that’s the second sentence which should be in every blog :-))

WebYaST Status Module

December 15th, 2009 by

After releasing WebYaST 1.0 last week we have had a look to the status module again and have come to the conclusion that we can do it better. 🙂

The current version looks more like a medical monitoring system that no one understand:

current status page

Technical background

The system data will be collected by a service called collectd (www.collectd.org). This data will be stored in a rrd-database which is located in


An own file/database will for each value will be generated.

The upper screen shot shows that an own graphic will be shown for each value. This is not really user friendly. We would like to show only values which provides “really” interesting information for the sysadmin or user. These values should also be grouped in order to reduce the amount of graphs.

Another lack of information is the labeling of the graphs. There is no description what the values mean and in which period they have been evaluated.

The aim

would be to give the user a nice overview about the system status. Additional, there should be an alarm system available if system values are exceeded. E.g. there should be sent an email to the system administrator if no disk space is available anymore.
The Administrator should also be able to configure “his” needed system values in a nice way.

Suggestion for configuration


There are three parts:

  • General
    General setting like period time of shown data, email address in the case of occurred errors and the color of displayed limits.
  • Graphics
    Defining graphs with

    • labels
    • scales
    • flag for cumulate values
      This means that the values in the graph are added. E.g. the component df of collectd returns two values of a partition (free, used). These values will be cumulated in the graph like this:
      collecdtd disk status
  • Enable Values/Limits
    • Defining which data of collectd will be shown in the graphics described above. This enable us to group data in one graph, defining color and label of each collectd value:
      collecdtd cpu2
    • Defining limits and send an email if the value is overstepped longer than the defined period (Alarm after (min.))

The Result

should be an amount of view graphs which include interesting data only. These values are checked periodically and an email will be sent if they exceed a defined limit.

I am asking for

your opinion about:

  • Do you know a much more fancy way for displaying system status data ?
  • Which kind of Data would be interesting for you (CPU, memory, disk-space,….)?
  • When and for which kind of data would you like to get an email if limits have been exceeded?

So, before changing this module we would like to ask you what you would like to see. 🙂

Thanks in advance.

New YaST-Web released 1.0.1

April 1st, 2009 by

We have released a new version of Web-YaST with following changes:

  • Added translation support on the client side.
  • Added ruby-gettext
  • Split off ruby-rpam and ruby-polkit in single packages.
  • Switch off IPv6 in lighttpd cause it has produced some undefined errors. (esp. on 64bit)
  • Added package dependencies concerning rails. The last few weeks have shown that RAILS versions are not really compatible. So many problems have been happened due different RAILS versions on the systems where YaST-Web has been installed. Please use RAILS 2.1
  • Cleanup code.

The newest packages can be found here:



It would be nice to get some feedback. Bugzilla would be a nice option  🙂

Thank you !


February 3rd, 2009 by


First of all we want to provide an general web based interface with the
functionality which is already provided by the YaST command line interface.

This API is based on the REST (Representational state transfer) architecture. This is a
simple interface which transmits domain-specific data over HTTP.
Please have a look to


for more information about REST.

The second aim is to provide a YaST Web UI which can be used by every
web browser.

The current state of the project is an existing YaST-Webservice on the
host side which provides the REST based interface.
On the client side we have the concerning YaST-Webclient which can be
used be any web browser.

YaST-Webservice and YaST-Webclient are running as a webserver
(currently lighttpd) on different or even the same computer.

So the aim is to configure a host via the internet in a simple and
safety way.

How does it work ?

YaST Web

The YaST Webclient communicate via HTTP(s) with the YaST Webservice. The
user has to authenticate ( username, password ) to the host via PAM
(Pluggable Authentication Modules) which is available on every linux system.

The YaST Webclient sends requests ( e.g. create a user, install patch) to
the YaST Webservice. This service checks if the user has the right to
execute this request via PolicyKit. For each kind of request there is
PolicyKit rule defined. These rights has to be granted to the concerning user.

After permission check the request will be send via DBUS to the SCR agent of
YaST. The return value will be given back to YaST-Webclient in XML or JSON

Patches will be handled by PackageKit. These requests will also be sent from
the YaST Webservice to PackageKit via DBUS.

How to get it ?

Have a look the openSUSE buildservice project

YaST Webservice (home:schubi2)

There are all needed packages for version openSuSE 11.1 and above.

As some additional packages (e.g. lighttpd) are needed which are not on openSuSE 11.1 you should add a
repositories ( e.g. factory ) in order to provide these packages.
The simplest way for installation would be to use zypper:

zypper in yast2-core-2*.rpm
zypper in ruby-dbus-*.rpm
zypper in yast2-webservice-*.rpm
zypper in yast2-webclient-*.rpm

How to use the YaST-Webservice

After you have installed these packages you can start the YaST-Webservice-Server with

rcyastws start

The server is running as “localhost:8080” with which you can connect with a web browser:



This “pure” web page shows the available modules which can be used via the REST interface.

This REST API is described under


Additional configuration stuff like

– setup Hostname and Port
– setup HTTPS connection
– granting permissions for an single user
– AVAHI support

can be found here:

How to use the YaST-Webclient

After you have started the YaST-Webservice-Server you also can start the YaST-Webclient:

rcyastwc start

Now you can use any browser and connect with http://<name of your computer> to your
The default rights of the YaST Webservice are set to root only. So you can login with the root password
of that machine.

Following features are implemented:

– setting languages
– setting system time
– setting user permissions
– installing patches
– managing local users
– export user SSH-keys
– starting,stopping,status,… of services
– configuration of ntp server

Have a look to the following screen shot it order to give an overview how it looks like:

System Services

Available Patches

User Permissions

Known Bugs
-The first call of an menue entry will be slow cause an additional process will be started.
The second one should be much more faster 🙂
-Permissions will sometime not be shown correctly (just click “search” again) Bug 470645

Showing package dependencies

June 27th, 2008 by

In order to give an answer about “Why this package will be installed and who needs it?” I have added a new Dialog in the QT single package selector:

Select one item (pattern, package) in the single selection frame, use the right mouse button and select “Show solver information”. A solverrun will be made for this item and the result will be shown with this dialog.

  • Black arrow : This item will be required by….
  • Green arrow: This item will be recommended by…
  • Green boxes: This package is already installed
  • Grey boxes: This package will be installed
  • Blue boxes: Patterns

You can navigate through the tree via the overview frame:

After you have selected one item in the tree you can see more information about:

e.G. this item will install two further patterns due to the shown dependencies.

In order to decrease the complexity of the tree you can blind out:

  • already installed packages
  • recommended packages/patterns

So you will get a shrinked tree:

Technical Background:

This is a simple Qt Dialog widget which can be used in other programs too. ( Package libqdialogsolver1)

YaST uses this widget as a YaST plugin. So if this package is not available you will get a popup in single selection only.