Shell/Client and Server
The Client and the Server
A client-server model is a means of distributing resources between the provider of a service and a consumer of that service, the client. You're likely very familiar with this concept though less familiar with the name. One common example of a service provided in this manner is email. You, a user, can open an email client (for example, an app on your iPhone or Outlook on a PC) which then connects to a remote server. The server is responsible for providing several services, including receiving mail on your behalf from other servers, transmitting email on your behalf to others, and storing your email for your later use.
There are several advantages to this model:
- Users don't need to personally possess the hardware required to fulfill a particular service, only a means of connecting and communicating with a server which provides the service
- Users don't need to worry about installing and configuring the server hardware
- Users are able to access their data from anywhere in the world (as long as they have internet access)
- The state of a users data remains consistent, regardless of how and from where they access the server
Merlin is built upon this Client/Server Model, so you won't need any particular type of hardware or software, only a device capable of running a web-browser and a terminal emulator (available in Google Chrome).