[CentOS] Creating an alternitive install CD for CentOS 5.2 (w/patched mkinitrd)

Robert Heller heller at deepsoft.com
Mon Mar 9 04:24:24 UTC 2009


At Sun, 8 Mar 2009 22:25:31 -0400 CentOS mailing list <centos at centos.org> wrote:

> 
>  
> 
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: centos-bounces at centos.org
> > [mailto:centos-bounces at centos.org] On Behalf Of Robert Heller
> > Sent: Sunday, March 08, 2009 15:46
> > To: CentOS mailing list
> > Cc: CentOS mailing list
> > Subject: Re: [CentOS] Creating an alternitive install CD for CentOS 
> > 5.2 (w/patched mkinitrd)
> > 
> > At Sun, 8 Mar 2009 08:47:50 -0400 CentOS mailing list 
> > <centos at centos.org> wrote:
> > 
> > > 
> > > On Sat, Mar 7, 2009 at 2:34 PM, Robert Heller
> > <heller at deepsoft.com> wrote:
> > >  .....
> > > 
> > > > I was unsure of the specific options above -- After installing 
> > > > revisor and poked around in the source code and found
> > what I needed,
> > > > but my test install failed -- it complained that there
> > was a problem
> > > > with mkinitrd -- could not open it or find it -- guessing
> > I need to
> > > > rebuild the repro database.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >>
> > > >> ... reboot, lather, rinse and repeat .... :-) :=)
> > > >>
> > > >> You may find "re-generating" the CentOS CDs/DVD quite
> > easy at times
> > > >> and very frustrating and complex at others ......
> > > >
> > > > Yeah, it appears so. B I just hope I don't have to rebuild all 6 
> > > > CDs, since I don't have the DVD nor do I have a DVD-R
> > drive either,
> > > > so doing things with a single DVD is not an option.
> > > >
> > > 
> > > Last time I added a DVD burner to my Build system, it cost
> > $29 (USD)
> > > and this was for a very good, reliable unit.  Not worth my time and 
> > > immense hassle to do otherwise ....
> > > 
> > > As for ...
> > > 
> > > > could not open it or find it -- guessing I need to
> > rebuild the repro
> > > > database.
> > > 
> > > What about:
> > > 
> > > >> First of all, if you replace an RPM, you'll need to do
> > createrepro.
> > > 
> > > What isn't clear?? As "need to" means **MUST**.... <hmmmm>.
> > > Why did you even make an attempt without the createrepro command??
> > > Two to three minutes of your time wasn't worth it (but
> > taking our time
> > > is, of course) :-):-) ...
> > 
> > I did not even know about the createrepro command!
> > 
> > > 
> > > While I believe your bug reports, I install CentOS on RAID + LVM 
> > > everyday without any problems, private kernel patches, etc. -- as a 
> > > counter-example.
> > 
> > Did you *specificly* install CentOS 5.2 (as opposed to 5.1 or 4.7?  Do 
> > you want the URLs of of the CentOS 5.2 & RHEL 5.2 bug reports?  Did 
> > you install onto bare partitions and then migrate to RAID and/or LVM 
> > later?
> > Note this is *software RAID*, not hardware RAID.
> > 
> > > 
> > > Now, let's see if we understand the situation clearly:
> > > 
> > >    1.  This is a "one-time" conversion (will "throw the CD
> > away when done") ...
> > > 
> > >    2.  You're migrating a system from Ubuntu to CentOS
> > (e.g., a different
> > >         version / patch level of LVM + RAID) and *hope* to keep data
> > >         consistency and reliability ...
> > > 
> > >    3.  You have a backup of this precious data, yes / no??  
> > If no, eegaddss....
> > > 
> > >    4.  So, why not just do a wipe + fresh install and
> > reload the data???
> > 
> > I want the option of falling back to the existing (working) Ubuntu 
> > system, in case there are problems with the CentOS setup.  Right now, 
> > this is for a small (and relatively
> > impoverished) small town library. 
> 
> Is the library a 501c3?

It is a public town library.  Wendell, MA is a small town and funds are
limited, esp. with the ecconomic situation, with state budget cuts, etc.


> 
> > The original setup (done by someone else who does not have the time, 
> > etc. to deal with it) uses LTSP and diskless thin clients.  While this 
> > works, there are some performance issues.  Because the LTSP uses the 
> > 'PC's as pretty much bare X Terminals, this means all of the real 
> > 'work'
> > is done on the server itself.  With several people working, often kids 
> > and teens playing Flash games and maybe one or two people using Open 
> > Office, the server litterally runs out of RAM and starts swapping, 
> > which slows everything down.  I want to set up a slighter thicker 
> > clients using NFS mounted file systems in hopes that this will work 
> > better.
> > 
> > There is a backup process in place, but it has not been working 
> > lately, since there seems to be a problem with sshd on the external 
> > server.
> > Even if it was working it might be problematical to restore it anyway 
> > because of the rather funcky internet connection we have (HughesNet 
> > satelite dishes -- nothing better is available here in the wilds of 
> > Western Mass).
> > 
> > The main reason for moving from Ubuntu to CentOS is that I am much 
> > more familar / confortable with RedHat flavored systems.
> >  Ubuntu seems to have more 'magical' things going on, which I could 
> > not figure out.  I think Ubuntu tries to be overly 'helpful', which 
> > might be nice for some users and probably makes more sense for home 
> > desktop users, but was just frustating for someone trying to do some 
> > 'outside of the box' things.
> 
> Trying to get this straight, is this for the server or a client?

The server.  The clients are all diskless, using LTSP at present (well,
one has a noisy, dieing IDE disk, but it is going to become diskless).

> 
> What are the disk specs for the machine? Why would you not just buy additional
> storage, even if you accomplish this install/upgrade over the old version you
> will most likely not be able to go back.

Right now it has two 80gig SATA disks with two Software RAID1 arrays,
one 10gig mounted as / and one 63gig mounted as /home, with a swap
partition on each disk (not RAID for some reason).  This was set up by
another Linux guru, who favored Ubuntu.  He is not as available as I am
(I live in town and am effectively underemplored right now), so I have
inheirited this setup and have tried to make some improvements.  We are
going to get an additional pair of 80gig SATA disks (possiblely from
geeks.com, which has them for about $50/each) -- the existing pair are
close to 2 years old, so I'd like to have some newer ones in place
before the existing ones start failing.  It is in a Dell server box
(small tower type).
 

> 
> > 
> > > 
> > > Now how much time have you spent on this "project" so far?? 
> >  I believe
> > > the above would be done 2 to 3x times over by now ....
> > > 
> > > Plus, you've found out that it is a lot more than "just a mkisofs 
> > > command with a few arguments" (and that you have to follow 
> > > instructions precisely or things just don't WORK(tm)).
> > > 
> > > Hmmmm....
> > > 
> > >    -rak-
> > > _______________________________________________
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> > > CentOS at centos.org
> > > http://lists.centos.org/mailman/listinfo/centos
> > > 
> > >                                                             
> >                                   
> > 
> > -- 
> > Robert Heller             -- 978-544-6933
> > Deepwoods Software        -- Download the Model Railroad System
> > http://www.deepsoft.com/  -- Binaries for Linux and MS-Windows
> > heller at deepsoft.com       -- 
> > http://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem/
> >                                                           
> > 
> 
> 
> 
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>                                                          

-- 
Robert Heller             -- 978-544-6933
Deepwoods Software        -- Download the Model Railroad System
http://www.deepsoft.com/  -- Binaries for Linux and MS-Windows
heller at deepsoft.com       -- http://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem/
                                                                                                                      


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