Opened 17 years ago

Closed 16 years ago

#6 closed enhancement (fixed)

Automatic installation of common distributions

Reported by: ecprice Owned by: price
Priority: blocker Milestone:
Component: autoinstallers Version:
Keywords: Cc:


Users should be able to quickly set up initial installations of common distributions, so they don't need to sit through the installs themselves.

Change History (8)

comment:1 Changed 17 years ago by ecprice

  • Type changed from defect to enhancement

comment:2 Changed 17 years ago by ecprice

  • Priority changed from major to blocker

comment:3 Changed 16 years ago by price

The current plan is that when a user hits the button to get a new install of something we support autoinstalling, the system dd's over a clone of an existing golden image, then goes in to frob the SSH host keys, root password, whatever else needs to be different. That last bit is inevitably distro-specific, so each autoinstaller will consist of two components:

  • the golden image
  • a script, in some form, for frobbing what needs to be frobbed

In testing, dd'ing one 4 GB logical volume into another, fresh one took 20-25 seconds.

So this has several components:

  • write the system-level software that creates a fresh LV, gets its hands on both the old and the new LVs, does the dd, then invokes the frobbing script
  • write a couple of autoinstallers, both image and frob-script
  • tie it all into the remctl and web interfaces

Naturally these all require some coordination.

One thing to keep in mind while designing: it'd be great to have the frob-script not run as root on black-mesa, because then we have options for allowing other people to supply autoinstallers/images. E.g., the script could be run in a VM of its own, launched just for the one installation. But for now, do whatever's easiest and works.

Some partial code for this feature exists. Whoever works on this next should feel free to use it or ignore it.

comment:4 Changed 16 years ago by quentin

Keep in mind that LVM supports making copy-on-write clones of volumes, which would reduce the copy time from 25 seconds to ~0 seconds.


comment:5 Changed 16 years ago by price

Partly implemented now as r336:

"""copying installer works now (maybe?)

At least for the image 'ice3', which IIRC was created with /usr/sbin/sipb-xen-make-iso. It's an etch amd64 image. It also had to have package nullmailer installed, replacing exim4. """

On black-mesa you can run

$ /usr/sbin/sipb-xen-duplicate ice3 _hostname_ _hostname_ _new-root-password_

to try it out for yourself. Eric and Evan seem to be doing fine with it for the VM "console".

Next step is to hook this into remctl and the web. Then make another image, say from gutsy, and make the necessary generalizations and customizations so that that works too...

comment:6 Changed 16 years ago by price

Exposed to remctl in #339 and to the web in #340.

comment:7 Changed 16 years ago by price

(that's r339 and r340, of course.)

comment:8 Changed 16 years ago by price

  • Resolution set to fixed
  • Status changed from new to closed

I'm going to close this and open more specific tickets for what remains.

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