We have a pxe-bootable live system to examine a node without touching the system on the harddrive. It is basically a self-made chroot environment.


  • start the script live.sh IP_address available in the git repository
    It creates the right pxeboot configuration for the nodes (see pxe configuration)
  • reboot of the node
  • use serial over LAN (SOL) using the IPMI card
    ipmitool -I lanplus -U user -P password -H IPMI_IP sol activate
  • wait until you get a prompt

other access

One could also enter the system using rsh, ssh (right now only from a node which has not the common known_hosts) and via local access.

change or update the live system

The root-directory is a NFS mount to the FAIserver in /srv/live. Chroot into this directory:
chroot /srv/live /bin/bash
Do necessary updates via aptitude or similar ways. The live system is a lenny installation.

pxe configuration

The configuration is generated by the live.sh script. The pxe configuration looks like this:
default live
label live

kernel kernel/vmlinuz-
serial 1,19200n8
append  root=/dev/nfs nfsroot=/srv/live,v3,tcp,rsize=32768,wsize=32768 ip=:::::eth1:dhcp console=ttyS1,19200n8

Since we want to use SOL the configuration of the serial entry is essential.

-- HenningFehrmann - 28 Aug 2008

DocumentationForm edit

Title Description of the pxe-bootable live system
Description This page explains the usage of the pxe-bootable live system which can be used to examine a node without touching its harddrive.
Tags pxe live system
Category Admin
Topic revision: r5 - 10 Feb 2012, ArthurVarkentin
This site is powered by FoswikiCopyright © by the contributing authors. All material on this collaboration platform is the property of the contributing authors.
Ideas, requests, problems regarding Foswiki? Send feedback