[ipxe-devel] Non-ISO Diskless Boot - Pointers?

Richard Hornbaker Richard at Hornbaker.com
Tue Dec 3 17:05:03 UTC 2013


I could use some pointers on a concept I'm chasing.  The idea is a diskless boot for CentOS, but using NFS or HTTP sources instead of ISO.

I've found examples of ISO diskless boot, and NFS/HTTP installers, but not NFS/HTTP diskless boot.

The idea has a couple dimensions:

* Easily modified boot files.  I need to hand this off to customers, and using NFS or HTTP sources make this very easy compared to ISO.  If folks need to change files, I'd like them to be able to just modify them in the boot server's filesystem.

* Upon boot, each node would operate like a torrent server, becoming an additional boot source and serving up its filesystem as source for other booting nodes.  Another reason for it to be filesystem-based and not ISO-based.

If push came to shove, I could tolerate the duplicate RAM consumption with an ISO boot if the ISO could be accessed and served up by the node once booted.  But this image is for hardware verification (incl. RAM tests), so a small footprint is preferred.

I haven't had a lot of success booting from HTTP or NFS in a diskless scenario, only ISO.  Any pointers?  Maybe to folks who've done this before?


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