Tip

Translating Linux for IBM i admins: Working with jobs and networking

This is the second part in a series of tips that aims to introduce IBM i administrators to Linux commands by "translating" the language. In part one of Translating Linux for IBM i admins the author introduced readers to how the Linux command line system works compared to IBM i, with specific focus on user profiles on Linux versus i.

Linux equivalent to WRKACTJOB on IBM i
As administrators we need to look at system performance and see what is going on when our servers are being utilized. On the IBM i, we use a command like WRKACTJOB. That command gives us a nice view into the system, and from the initial screen we can dig deeper.

It would be great to have that level of information from a Linux system, but in order to get it, we have to compromise a bit. The Linux command top can show you what is using your system's resources, and how they are being utilized.


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From top, the administrator can see the total number of CPUs the memory being used, and other percentages that will help you understand what is running and who is running it. There are more things you can do with top that change the way the data is displayed. Use this command to see all the options:

$ man top

Networking on Linux
While networking is complex in all operating systems, it's not something we can cover here in short order. Networking on Linux would take a few articles to explain. But what we can cover is what is going in and out of your networking device. On the IBM i we use NETSTAT (network statistics). The same "netstat" command is used on Linux. In fact, the command is UNIX based. But, while the command is the same, the output is much different. If you enter netstat on a command line in Linux chances are you are going to get a few pages of details. Again we have to take that command and pipe the data to "more" to see it all in a readable fashion. As you get better with commands you might want to use the grep command if you know what you are looking for.

Netstat command:

$ netstat  | more


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As you can see by the example we get some detail as to what is running. In this example, I used a fresh install of Linux, and there is not much going on.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: David Vasta is the Lotus Notes Administration Team Lead over North America at Atlas Copco.. He has 17 years of data center and iSeries experience working in companies such as IBM, REAL and Cingular. He writes a regular blog at System i blogger.

This was first published in May 2009

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