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Old 10-19-2005, 07:05 AM   #1
kester
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Registered: Oct 2005
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A magic CD for Installing


Is there a way of producing a CD, that can be placed into a machine, that will format the hardisk, partition the disk, and install Linux, along with MySQL, Tomcat etc.

This is so it can go on to test rigs time and time again, and we are always guarented its the same.

I would like to make a bootable CD that you put in the machine, it comes up, click yes I am sure and everything is done for you..... is this possible? How do you do it?

Thanks in advance!
 
Old 10-19-2005, 07:28 AM   #2
Metalbarthug
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Kester,

Sounds like you are describing what a Ghost Recovery CD does, essentially an image of a Hard Drive, that self installs at boot to restore a Laptop, PC whatever to a certain state, including OS, apps, extras etc.

I have created several CDs like that for Windows machines using Norton Ghost, so that if anything goes wrong, I can be up and running again in a matter of minutes. At work, the IT staff used to do the same, except they would run a patch cable between 2 desktops and transfer the image that way.

For what you are suggesting, it sounds like you want a Master DVD / CD, that you can install time and again on different PCs?

with Linux, the only thing that you need to consider is that an Image file, bootable or not, will only be for the / partition, and not include your Swap partition. Also, you would need to ensure every machine was EXACTLY the same spec, right down to the modem.

Partitioning tools etc are part of the manual process when installing Linux. What you could try is this:

- Write down your ideal config for boot, Swap and / partitions. this is your blueprint.

- Setup the same partitions on each PC or Laptop using whatever tools (FParted, Acronis, whatever) for swap, / and another to store the image (.ISO , .GHO formats) of your / partition.

- Then, use your Master DVD / CD to reinstall your / partition (again , this must be based on an exact copy of the machine you're installing to).

- Repeat as necessary.

I have not tried to do this myself, so can fellow LQr's add to this with any pitfalls etc. In principle this could work, however it would need some proper testing to see if it is viable. also, to determine if it is in fact any faster than installing Linux (which to be quite honest is fast as Hell anyway!!!)

Last edited by Metalbarthug; 10-19-2005 at 07:34 AM.
 
Old 10-19-2005, 07:36 AM   #3
kester
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Thanks

Thanks for your reply, I use Ghost for Windows based machines, but have not found it to be succesful with Linux, so something similar to this but for Linux would be ideal!!
 
Old 10-19-2005, 07:41 AM   #4
Metalbarthug
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As a postscript, I know that Partition Magic is a bit rubbish at formatting for Linux, better left to the propriety partition tools for your Distro (e.g. Drake, YasT and so on). But QParted is supposed to be ace and is standalone.

Read up on QParted here - http://qtparted.sourceforge.net/faq.en.html
 
Old 10-19-2005, 07:46 AM   #5
Metalbarthug
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Kester,

Try Ghost for Linux http://freshmeat.net/projects/g4l/ - sounds like it's still early on in development, but there's plenty of posts and queries on this page. I think g4L is really aimed as a direct GPL version of Ghost in terms of functionality, rather than designed to overcome issues of cloning Linux boxes.

For research , some good stuff from Symantec on Ghost compatibility with linux (includes a reference table of supported Distros)

http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT...&osv=&osv_lvl=

Good Luck Kester! and don't forget to post your experience on LQ!!

Last edited by Metalbarthug; 10-19-2005 at 07:48 AM.
 
  


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