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Old 12-22-2010, 12:19 PM   #1
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Cloning as a means of O/S distribution

Here's my situation: I have a cluster of 53 Dell Poweredge 850 servers on a private network. I want to upgrade them to the current version of Fedora. I could install the O/S from the CDs, but this will take a long time, so I'm experimenting with cloning the hard drives from a node that I have installed from CD. I'm encountering some problems, particularly with networking, which I suspect are due to misconfiguration due to the differences in the hardware (e.g. wrong MAC address). Is there a tool that will detect hardware and autoconfigure? If not, can anyone offer suggestions on what things would need to be changed and how to do so?
Old 12-22-2010, 12:34 PM   #2
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Red Hat and Fedora Core have a utility called Kickstart.

I don't know why just cloning a configured system didn't work unless you have static addresses in /etc/hosts or some other node specific stuff. Normally a lot of the system configuration is performed during system startup so a vanilla installation should be transportable to identical hardware.

Last edited by stress_junkie; 12-22-2010 at 12:38 PM.
Old 12-22-2010, 09:15 PM   #3
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I don't see the problem with cloning to multiple machines either, unless you cloned a machine with static networking configuration. The different MAC addresses should have no effect on the TCP/IP configuration, and if everything is setup to use DHCP (which I assume, on a cluster, you have done) you can push out hostnames and IP addresses via individual MACs to keep static addresses.

Though I'm not sure why you just don't update them over the network instead of using the CDs. You could script the operation and just run it on all nodes

This would appear to be in the wrong forum, as I see no connection with mobile devices here. You should request a moderator moves this topic to a more suitable forum so that your question get's more exposure.

Last edited by MS3FGX; 12-22-2010 at 09:17 PM.
Old 12-22-2010, 09:28 PM   #4
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I think that kickstart has the options to more fully produce desired images to targets. If all you want is clones then dd over ftp or other clone's would work but it may take a while at 850.

The problem with any clone on a non-identical device is that who knows what may happen. I doubt a mac address would be any issue but a true install should fix any small things that an install may know about.

Dunno if one could make use of any networked drive such as an iscsi to help. I have never loaded from a nas booted but we are back to the number of stations out there.

Last edited by jefro; 12-22-2010 at 09:31 PM.


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