Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-autoinstall (69 mails)

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Re: [suse-autoinstall] Network installation of SuSE 8.2 (GRUB, PXE, Ramdisk) - pointers to information needed
  • From: Anas Nashif <nashif@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 21 May 2003 22:55:18 +0000 (UTC)
  • Message-id: <3ECC03DF.1020003@xxxxxxx>
Ralph Seichter wrote:
Anas Nashif <nashif@xxxxxxx> wrote:


you dont need to build the initrd by yourself. Its already on the
CDs in /boot/loader/, unless of course you are talking about
something completly different :-)


I think my original message might have been misleading, so let me
explain in more detail:

I've set up a regular PC with SuSE 8.2, installed a TFTP server and
a DHCP server, and configured the latter to provide BOOTP aswell.
Let's call this one "server". I copied the default linux kernel and
initrd from the 8.2 installation media and edited GRUB's menu.lst to
allow access to these files. I also mounted the installation media
on a directory where it can be served by a regular FTP server.

The second computer, let's call it "client", features a hard disk
and network interface which supports PXE, but no floppy or CDROM.
I've already managed to boot "client" with the help of "server",
then chose "(nd)/menu.lst" as the configuration file, and started
the SuSE 8.2 installation process. This manual installation was
successful, and "client" can boot from its own hard disk now.

What I need to do is to customize the installation process. Given a
configuration file with a few basics (i.e. the network address), a
virgin "client" should boot over the network, have its hard disk
partitioned, file systems created, partitions mounted, and then
start a hands-free installation with a predefined subset of RPM
packages. User interaction should be as close to zero as possible,
because later on, these installations are to be performed by remote
maintenace personnel without Linux skills.

And thats exactly what autoyast does? Are you trying to do it on your own?


To achieve this, I tried to create my own initrd file using a
modified version of /sbin/mk_initrd as a starting point. My idea is
to copy commands like mount, mkfs etc. to the initrd, add device
files like /dev/hda[0-9] etc., and then use a shell script as my
/linuxrc which does the partitioning and the further steps. This
part is giving me great difficulties.

Why not use autoyast?


Is my approach reasonable, or is there a better way to perform a
hands-free installation for network booting computers?


Well it is reasoable if you want to reinvent the wheel :-)

Anas


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