The Roaming Computing System (Windows Edition)

The Roaming Computing System (Windows Edition) is a complete, unified, organisation-wide, computing system.

Original implementation by Pete Boyd. Continued development by Pete Boyd and Matt Fawcett.

The system includes a server (running Debian, a Linux operating system); as many workstations as you want (running Windows XP and a wide range of free software applications); and a firewall. The server provides a domain for people to login to no matter which workstation they're using, file sharing, a print server and a mail server.

Here you'll find details of what this system comprises and guides to setting one up. The system has been developed since 1999 and continues to be developed now in 2011.

Main changelog | WPKG packages.xml changelog | todo list (plain text format)

Version 5 Series

Version 5.0 - Released 7 November 2014. Windows 7 replaces Windows XP on the workstations and Debian 7.7 replaces Debian 4 on the server. Firefox 31, Thunderbird 31, LibreOffice 4.2. Windows and software application configuration is very much simplified; WPKG-GP 0.17 replaces WPKG Client.

This version is currently receiving security support, in the form of regular updates to software that fix security vulnerabilities, see the changelog for details.

Version 4 Series

Version 4.2 - Released 5 December 2013. This is an upgrade of Windows workstation software and the firewall, there is no new software, and no server upgrade involved. Notable updates: Firefox 24 and LibreOffice 4.1.
As of 15 October 2014 this version is no longer receiving security updates.

Version 4.1 - Released 16 May 2013. This is an upgrade of Windows workstation software, there is no new software and no server or firewall upgrade involved. Notable updates: LibreOffice 4, Firefox 17, Thunderbird 17, Foxit Reader 6, BlueGriffon 1.7, Skype 6.3, Lightning 1.9 and Zotero 4.
As of 5 December 2013 this version is no longer receiving security updates.

Version 4.0 - Released 17 October 2012. This is an update to Windows desktop and firewall router software only. Almost all desktop software has been updated, issues have been fixed and processes streamlined. Notable additions: Skype and Recuva; notable updates: Audacity 2, Firefox and Thunderbird 10, Foxit Reader 5.4, GIMP 2.8, Inkscape 0.48, Lightning 1.2, LibreOffice 3.5, Picasa 3.9, Scribus 1.4 and Zotero 3.0; notable replacements: KompoZer with BlueGriffon, OpenOffice with LibreOffice, and UltraVNC with TightVNC.
As of 15 May 2013 this version is no longer receiving security updates.

Version 3 Series

Version 3.6 - Released August 2010. Most software has been updated. Lots of security vulnerabilities patched. Notable updates: replaced and updated the Sun Microsystems version of OpenOffice with Novell's version 3.2, Thunderbird 3.1, Firefox 3.6, Zotero now supports shared data, replaced F-Prot with Microsoft Security Essentials.
As of 17 October 2012 this version is no longer receiving security updates.

Version 3.5 - Released September 2009. Firefox and OpenOffice major upgrades; near completion of auto configuration begun in version 3.4; security vulnerabilities patched.

Version 3.4 - Released February 2009.

Version 3.3 - September 2008. A fairly minor release, adding some minor software, upgrading many software applications and fixing some issues. Notable updates: Firefox 3 major upgrade, OpenOffice 2.4.1 minor upgrade.

Version 3.2 - April 2008. Notable updates: OpenOffice 2.4; GIMP 2.4; Debian server 4.0; automated workstation software upgrades; pfSense firewall appliance; administer mailboxes using web browser.

Version 3.1 - June 2007 - added some new software applications and updated the rest; if no mail server required then it's now possible to use Debian 4.0.

Version 3.0 - November 2006 - totally updated system; new technique of automatically installing all software applications using WPKG; lots of new desktop applications; added print server; mail server moved from dedicated Windows server onto the Debian server; IPCop replaces FloppyFW firewall/router; updated TWEAK.

Version 2

Version 2 - 2002/2003 - Debian 3.0 domain server with Pegasus Mail 4.11 on the server. Windows 2000 Pro and Mercury Mail 3.32 on the mail server. Windows 2000 Pro, OpenOffice 1.0.3.1, Mozilla 1.3/1.3.1 Browser and Composer, IrfanView 3.80, NoteTab Light 4.92, Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.1, Nero 5.5.10.20, F-Prot anti-virus 3.12, Flash Player 6 and 7-Zip 2.30 beta 30 on workstations. FloppyFW firewall and router. TWEAK was developed to configure RCS 2.0 workstations. Minimum hardware required: Pentium II 366/450MHz equivalent CPU, 64/128MB RAM and 10GB hard disk for workstations; 10mbps network shared through hubs with 100mbps backbone.

Version 1

Version 1 - 1999 (and later updates) - Windows NT 4, Mercury Mail 3.?, Adobe PageMaker 6.52, Netscape 4.7x, Pegasus Mail 3.12c, Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.05 and Microsoft Office 97 on the server. Windows NT 4 and WinZip 8.0 on workstations. Minimum hardware required: 100MHz Pentium Classic equivalent CPU and 32MB RAM on workstations; 10mbps network shared through hubs.
Note there is no clean upgrade path from 1.0 to 2.0.