[Novalug] Kickstart (was Re: Need some guidance)
James Ewing Cottrell 3rd
JECottrell3 at Comcast.NET
Mon Nov 2 23:02:25 EST 2009
Of course, there is another issue that Beartooth hinted at...Post
Synchronization. One could argue, and I have, that "Installation is Just
a Special Case of Maintenance", and that rather than Doing Everything,
it should simply Do The Minumum Required in order to support the Real
Synchronizatizers, such as Cfengine or Puppet.
Of course it depends on a system's expected lifetime.If you are going to
re-image it on reboot or failure as Bryan suggests, then ignore the
rest of this posting.
But many production shops will install a system exactly once, and run it
for months, even years, at a time until they can schedule a re-install
of the next version.
And for those months you will need to use something else to synchronize
and maintain the system.
So one strategy is to make your kickstart system as simple as possible.
The installation environment is often weirder and more hostile than the
My first kickstart system did exactly that. It installed a Rescue Linux
using the "Minimal" profile (bring them back!) in RHEL/CentOS 4 into
Partition 1 of "the disk". I wrote a script to clone Partition 1 to
Partition 2 (pretty much the rest of the disk except for the swap) and
change the default GRUB entry. POOF! My Kickstart files were now All
They Ever Needed To Be.
Of course, it was fun to keep pushing those boundaries, but I didn't
need to unless I wanted.
The Doctor wrote:
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> Beartooth wrote:
>> Would kickstart be good for what you might call pre-synchronizing them?
> If you want all of them to be identical when you roll them out, yes.
> Kickstart is used to partition and format the drives all at once, set up
> drive mirrors, and install the same package sets across all of the
> machines. You can use it to configure them to a certain extent but most
> of the fine tuning would have to be done by hand. I've gotten Kickstart
> to run scripts that were stored on the boot disks (I guess that dates
> when I was using KS in the data center) but it's tricky.
> In other words, it's used for mass installs.
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