Brussels / 1 & 2 February 2014


BibOS Admin - a web-based, easy to use admin system for Ubuntu

Because Landscape is too expensive

The public libraries in Denmark wanted an admin system for their new BibOS-system, which is an Ubuntu-based GNU/Linux distribution for audience PCs. To achieve this, we built a completely new and completely free administration system for Debian-based PCs.

The public libraries in several Danish municipalities are in the process of switching their audience PCs from Windows to Ubuntu.

They needed a central administration system to manage it, and Canonical's Landscape product was unacceptable for them; they needed the system to be completely free/open source, and Canonical's licensing when running Landscape as software-as-a-service was too expensive. The available free alternatives are either too technical for library staff, or they don't support Debian-based systems well.

In response, we created "BibOS Admin", a completely new administration system for all Debian-like systems. It enables users to remotely manage, maintain and upgrade PCs and run arbitrary, centrally defined scripts on them. The system is designed to be easy to use for non-technical staff who can rely on a set of pre-defined scripts, which should be set up as part of the setup for each organization (source code available here:

In the talk, I will discuss the technical and organizational challenges of building a new management from scratch in collaboration with the public libraries in Aarhus and Silkeborg, who kindly funded the effort.


Carsten Agger