[ipxe-devel] VMware ESXi stateless + iPXE

Mariusz Preiss sierp at sierp.net
Wed Oct 8 13:08:33 UTC 2014

Hello all,

I'm digging into subject of ESXi stateless booted by iPXE, which 
generally works fine
(tested with ESXi 5.1 and 6.0 RC2) but... I have some questions, that 
you might be able to answer.

I'm using simple solution which is DHCP + TFTPD + iPXE compiled, all on 
FreeBSD 10
I've simply copied ISO image to the directory, which is reachable via 
http, and I'm pointing to this
URL from iPXE. I'm loading modules via iPXE directly (module directive)

To have it worked, I  had to:
- in config/general.h uncomment line
#define IMAGE_COMBOOT           /* SYSLINUX COMBOOT image support */
- in arch/i386/image/multiboot.c file raise values
#define MAX_MODULES 8 -> 200
#define MB_MAX_CMDLINE (I don't remember default) -> 4096
- un-gzip all modules that are loaded by iPXE

Now, my questions are:
- what is the consequence of rasing MAX_MODULES and MB_MAX_CMDLINE?
Can I raise it as much as I want? Or maybe more memory is reserved on 
the client?
- why I had to ungzip all modules? I was sure, that iPXE is able to load 
gzip'ed ones...
- is it possible to forward also parameters for booting itself (tboot 
files from VMware)
that resides in boot.cfg file in VMware ISO, which is

and also timeout, build, updated, bootstate...

based on

I would appreciate any help from this list :-)


Mariusz Preiss

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