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Re: Debian mass installation

Heather wrote:

> > On Wed, Nov 15, 2000 at 10:32:57AM +0100, Christian Rehn wrote:
> > >
> > > I'd like to install Debian on a number of laptops over the network
> > > automatically.  As all laptops have the same hardware I'd like to
> > > install one manually, generate a file that describes the configuration
> > > and install Debian with the identical configuration on the other
> > > laptops without following the interactive setup.
> > > I know that RedHat has something called kickstart that does the job.
> > > Is there a similar program for Debian?
> > >
> > > Cheers,
> > > Christian
> >
> >       Two programs you should have a look at. FAI and replicator.
> > Search for them on freshmeat.
> >
> >       The other option is if they're going to be exactly the same.
> > ie exact same hardware exact same install.
> > Just create a disk image of one of them and then create a boot disk that
> > nfsmounts over a networks and dd's the image to the disk.
> I *really* don't recommend dd, one annoying glitch in the new laptop's disk
> and you'll never really know what app got shredded.  Tarball, sure.  dd, I'd
> only use for a floppy or a RAM disk.  (floppies are small enough to do a
> checksum of sanely, and if a RAM disk has "scratches" it's worth knowing.)
> But I did forget to mention rsync...

A (hopefully) related question...What I want to do is replace my current hard
drive with a larger hard drive and copy my current set up to the new drive.  My
basic plan of attack is to backup my current hard drive then use GNU parted to
create a (?bootable?) partition on new harddrive, then (somehow--maybe by
booting using a boot disk...) rsync a backed up system to that new partition
(via nfs).

What I am not sure of is what else I need to do, or is that it?  It seems to me
that, if it works, this approach would work pretty well for doing mass



PS the GNU parted documentation is helpful for this.  Unfortuanately, it has a

"Disk imaging is a method for avoiding the tedious Windows install process.
For example, if you want to install Windows and Office on 1000 machines,
it'll probably take you about 5 times 1000 hours.  Things aren't so bad
with GNU/Linux, because there are programs like Red Hat's kickstart, which
allow you to automate the install of other programs, or practically anything
you need to do.  Therefore, disk imaging is really only used for Windows

which, as you/we are finding out, is not quite right!


> * Heather * star@ many places...
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org:Algorithmics Inc
adr:;;185 Spadina Avenue;Toronto;Ontario;M5T 2C6;Canada
title:Financial Engineer
fn:Richard Black

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