Setting Up A PXE Install Server For Multiple Linux Distributions With Ubuntu Edgy Eft - Page 2
4 Set Up Ubuntu Edgy Eft Netboot
Now we are ready to set up the netboot for our first distribution, Ubuntu Edgy Eft (i386). The necessary files for the netboot can be found on http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/dists/edgy/main/installer-i386/current/images/netboot/. We download the files now and copy them to the /var/lib/tftpboot directory. This is the directory from where our PXE server will serve the installation images:
(You can download the files from any other Ubuntu mirror as well. Use one that is close to you.)
That's it already. Now have a look at the file /var/lib/tftpboot/pxelinux.cfg/default to get familiar with its structure:
As you see, this file contains all valid installation options (linux, server, expert, etc.) for Ubuntu Edgy Eft, each in its own LABEL stanza. All paths in this file are relative to the /var/lib/tftpboot directory, so ubuntu-installer/i386/initrd.gz translates to /var/lib/tftpboot/ubuntu-installer/i386/initrd.gz. The output of
ls -la /var/lib/tftpboot
should look like this now:
root@server1:~# ls -la /var/lib/tftpboot/
When a client computer boots up over the network, it will look for the file /var/lib/tftpboot/pxelinux.cfg/default and load it, so that's the file we have to modify later on when we add more Linux distributions to our PXE server.
5 Our First Test
(Please make sure that the computers that you don't want to reinstall have the network boot option disabled in their BIOS settings because otherwise it is possible that you or someone else accidentally installs Ubuntu over the existing operating system!)
Now you can boot up your first client computer. Make sure you specified in its BIOS settings that it should use the network as its first boot device. If everything goes well, you should see the usual Ubuntu installation screen, and you can choose from one of the installation options from the /var/lib/tftpboot/pxelinux.cfg/default file, e.g. linux for a normal Ubuntu desktop, server, etc..
Don't forget to change the order of the boot devices after the successful installation (e.g. disable booting over the network and make the HDD the first boot device) because otherwise you will start another installation!