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 Forum index » House Training » HOWTO ( Solutions )
5-steps - Netboot a Puppy over the LAN with NO Media (PXE)
Moderators: Flash, Ian, JohnMurga
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greengeek

Joined: 20 Jul 2010
Posts: 2407
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Wed 12 Sep 2012, 15:48    Post subject:  

Also...if anyone has a suggestion for the best way to view the contents of the pxelinux.0 file (which seems to be ascii) I would be keen to understand the structure of it. Leafpad and Geany don't seem to be the right way (unless I'm using them wrong...)
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gcmartin

Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4121
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Sat 22 Sep 2012, 17:24    Post subject:  

Hi @Greengeek. this understanding "may" help your current troubles.

The prime problem I have ever had with the PXE subsystem's use has been the PXE client's microcode not being current/not having correct Intel compliance.

That's my only problem. I have NOT encountered any problem with 2006+ PCs.

That being said, I have NOT encountered a problem with specific distros.

There are 2 movements currently underway and should provide some possible release (although, the changes are more cosmetic versus structural changes.). They "may" have a positive impact for you.

The 2 are a change in the document that is used to be more up to date with the PPM changes that has occurred in Puppy Linux, where DNSMASQ is concerned. And, there is a new Netboot Script under development that will make use of Netbooting a "little" (maybe a lot) more intuitive.

Please give a couple days to see the 2 items hit the forum.

Lastly, if you don't mind and think it useful, I will post my FATSlacko CD's ISO that has a working Netboot subsystem for you to test as a PXE server on your LAN. If you feel it will help, check your PM for instructions. I have been using FATSlacko since its release as a NAS, a Netboot server and a desktop since its community availability. The ONLY thing ever installed-added was the Netboot server because everything else was already present. In fact, I also have employed LightHouse64, similarly. In each's case, I found these 2 distros to deliver very suitable functionality OOTB where Netboot was the only subsystem added and available for use via the desktop.

Let me know if this helps until the arrival of the upgraded Netboot PET and more current instructions updates when using it.

Here to help

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greengeek

Joined: 20 Jul 2010
Posts: 2407
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Sun 23 Sep 2012, 14:09    Post subject:  

Thanks GC. I am making progress with my PXE trials... and I have a question for anyone who may be able to help me with the set up of the netboot-server-jb.sh script:

I have modified the script so that it runs automatically in debug mode without asking me which mode I want to use, and this is working correctly but I don't know how to tell it to use a "minimised window".

My modification is that I "comment out" some lines at the bottom of the script:

Code:
# how to run it
   run_dnsmasq_debug ;
#MODE=$(Xdialog --title "Netboot Server" --no-tags --menubox "How do you want to start the server?" 0 0 3 "normal" "Normal" "debug" "Debug Mode" 2>&1)
#case "$MODE" in
#   normal) run_dnsmasq_normal ;;
#   debug) run_dnsmasq_debug ;;
#   *) exit 1 ;;


but I wonder if it is possible to insert an extra parameter further up, in the "function run_dnsmasq_debug section so that it starts with minimised window??

Code:
# run dnsmasq with debug flag set, capture output in a window
function run_dnsmasq_debug() {
   run_dnsmasq -d
   Xdialog --title "Netboot server" --backtitle "Running server in debug mode. Click cancel to quit and stop server." --no-ok --tailbox /tmp/dnsmasq-debug.log 20 100
   kill $DNSMASQ_PID
   return 0
}


I have no actual knowledge of what language this script is using, I am just a cautious tinkerer. I am hoping there is some way the Xdialog window can be opened in a "pre-minimised" state - which sort of goes against the whole purpose of bringing up a dialog window, but maybe there is a way??
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greengeek

Joined: 20 Jul 2010
Posts: 2407
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Sun 23 Sep 2012, 14:30    Post subject:  

slenkar wrote:
I followed all the steps but for some reason the netboot server doesnt startup, when I start it in debug mode the window dissappears and nothing else happens

This sounds like the symptom I get if I start the netboot server without the network cable being plugged in, or when there is some problem with the router / dhcp server not offering an IP address. Could that be the problem you are having?
.
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slenkar

Joined: 10 Jul 2009
Posts: 204

PostPosted: Thu 11 Oct 2012, 16:05    Post subject:  

i got it to work on a different distro thanks
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gcmartin

Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4121
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Thu 11 Oct 2012, 16:30    Post subject:  

slenkar wrote:
i got it to work on a different distro thanks
Yes, there are some issues in DNSMASQ and some of the packages that a desktop has installed. I have had this happen once.

I am not exactly sure how to diagnose this kind of issue with DNSMASQ and the script that is used from the menu.

Can anyone suggest a method? If so, we can add this to the Netboot Guide to assist others.

Thanks in advance for any recommendations from anyone.

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greengeek

Joined: 20 Jul 2010
Posts: 2407
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Mon 04 Mar 2013, 13:47    Post subject:  

If anyone is keen to try PXE booting but wants it to be made as simple as possible I have made a modified version of Pupserver435 (thanks jrb!) and I have added the PXE bootfiles for ThinSlacko inside the iso.

This means that all you have to do is boot the first PC from a CD containing my iso, then set the second PC to boot from network, and it will all happen automatically without any other intervention from the user. Very handy if you are trying to boot a PC that has no hard drive or CD.

See last 2 posts of thread here http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=80620
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gcmartin

Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4121
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Thu 15 Aug 2013, 11:32    Post subject: LightHouse64 Versions 600+ made this all too simple  

LightHouse64 Version 602+ has all items necessary to accomplish "Netboot", built-in. This is an OOTB solution that ONLY requires the user to provide it the ISO you want any PC on your LAN to boot. Simply start it from desktop's Menu (select Network>Netboot Server), and give it the ISO you want the PC(s) on your LAN to boot. If you want a complete walk-thru see this manual.

That's IT! -- NOTHING to install; Users just run it.
(Just go to any LAN PC you want, and tell it to boot via its network card.)

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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 10944
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Thu 15 Aug 2013, 16:11    Post subject:  

What about each user's settings and customizations, are they saved? If so, how? (See here for a possible solution.)
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gcmartin

Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 4121
Location: Earth

PostPosted: Thu 15 Aug 2013, 19:40    Post subject: Network Booting Puppy LInux with save-session options  

Yes, @Flash, I did see that thread. You were correct in your observation there: On multiple PC users saving individual sessions when Netbooted (PXE).

With this method in this thread and described in its accompanying guide, here's how it can work. But, first a disclaimer on this technique: This method; namely Method 1, will ONLY work for 32bit PUPs where there is either a HDD or a USB available to contain the save-session for the booted PC. Thus permanent or removable media is required. The other 2 methods can work whether a PC uses local media or NOT.

1 Method for save session:
Same as CD/DVD/USB/KVM booted PUP distros: namely at Shutdown/Reboot, tell the system to where to "locally" save your PC session. On reboot over PXE, Puppy system(s) behave as they traditionally do and will find the save-session on the booting PC's device.

The advantage, here, is that it provides a way for removable media to contain the save session.

This is technology that members has used, thus far, when the need for a save-session is required for the netbooted PC(s). This works OOTB.

2nd Method
Netboot your PC. Tailor your system with all PPM-Pets necessary for what you want your system to provide. Make a new distro by Remaster and save to an ISO. Then use MultiPUP directions in the Netboot document to create a new PXE boot file which allows the old and your new distro to boot.

The advantage, here, is that it provides a way for diskless PCs to have a customized distro for the PC's booting needs

This is technology that members has used, thus far, in customizing an OOTB Puppy distro. Remaster is generally understood.

Another Method (which is not tested nor technology automation exists)
An untested idea for FATDOG/LightHouse versions 600+ users is the boot-time technology that JamesBond built for accessing a save-session that exist somewhere other than the booting PC on the LAN. This has NOT been tested (as far as I know) by anyone where a Netboot PC both saved and restarted using his technology for 64bit PCs. But, assuming you could save to a NAS and the boot-time was told to look to the NAS for saved-sessions, it, "again might", allow a list of save-sessions where the booting user could select the one for his PC. (of course this technology could be extended where the save session could be locally identified by it's MAC address or hostname or ... AGAIN, although mentioned, this method has neither been tested and NO current automation exist for multiple netboot PCs to be doing such.

Hope this helps for those using the technology described by this thread.

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