Clonezilla and DRBL
On Mon, Sep 15, 2008 at 11:32 AM, Gavin McCullagh <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Be very careful! *DRBL will stomp all over your ltsp config. *A colleague
of mine recently installed DRBL on an LTSP server and seriously regretted
By all means use DRBL/Clonezilla (although also look at FOG):
* * * *http://freeghost.no-ip.org/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1
but do it on a non-production machine, not on your LTSP server.
DRBL is an acronym for Diskless Remote Boot in Linux.* It is a project that can convert any of the following
Debian Woody(3.0), Sarge(3.1), Etch(4.0), Lenny (5.0),
Ubuntu Breezy(5.10), Dapper(6.06), Edgy(6.10), Feisty(7.04), Gutsy (7.10), Hardy(8.04),
RedHat Linux 8.0, 9,
Fedora Core 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, Fedora 7, Fedora 8,
Mandrake 9.2, 10.0, 10.1, Mandriva LE2005 (10.2), 2006, 2007.0, 2007.1, 2008.0,
CentOS 4, CentOS 5,
Scientific Linux 4.x/5.x, RHEL 4.x/5.x (Use drblsrv-offline)
SuSE 9.3, SuSE 10.0, OpenSuSE 10.0, 10.1, 10.2. 10.3,
into what most on this list understand to be a Thin Client Server or a
LTSP server.* You definitely want to use one or the other, or
dual-boot, if you want to try them on the same box.* If you want to use
a DRBL server and and Edubuntu LTSP server on the same LAN, both will
be answering PXE/Etherboot requests, so don't.* Clonezilla is an application that you can run from the DRBL console or from a Live CD.* It is used for multicast or unicast system or patition imaging and resizing.* In some setups I
support, we have a thin-client server, but power it down and bring up
the DRBL server when doing mass, multicast system imaging with Clonezilla.* In other
scenarios I leave both running, but keep the the DRBL LAN NIC
disconnected.* Then I can use a live Clonezilla CD to pull images from
the DRBL server in a unicast mode.
Some may wonder about the differences between LTSP and DRBL.* From the DRBL FAQ:
DRBL uses PXE or etherboot, which is similar to Linux Terminal Server Project (LTSP),
to boot the client machine. While LTSP is a centralized server, all the
client machine users' access the LTSP server to run their applications
on it. The client's keyboard and mouse are used to input whereas the
client's monitor is used to display the results. This is great when
useing a thin client. The server requirements must be increased when
more than 20 or 30 clients are being used. On the other hand, DRBL uses
NFS and NIS to provide boot services to the client machines. In
essence, the DRBL server is just a NFS and NIS server. All users from
all client machines just access the DRBL server to request files or
authentication. Packages are loaded to the client machines and they use
their own CPU and RAM for processing. A regular PC can be used as the
DRBL server since it is only serving files and authenticating. The
client machines, however, should be powerful enough to run the
applications they need. Typical installations using DRBL to deploy the
Linux classroom have around 30 to 40 clients.
///NOTE/// From LTSP 5.0, there is a fat client (diskless workstation,
LowFat client) mode, it's basically quite similar to DRBL.
Besides the diskless (fat/powerful) client mode provided by DRBL, DRBL provides other functions, such as:
the opensource clone system. It's a server version of imaging tool,
similar to Ghost server edition, True image or Rembo. By using
Clonezilla, you can clone a 5.6 GBytes system image to 40 computers
within 10 minutes via multicasting.
(b) Small Linux diskless soltion. DRBL provides Damn Small Linux (DSL),
PuppyLinux... for clients. You can import those small Linux
distributions and let client boot from PXE without hardisk, CD or USB
(c) Diskless FreeDOS for clients.
(d) Diskless memtest for clients.
(e) Install GNU/Linux (Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, CentOS, Mandriva, SuSE...) for clients from network.
LTSP and DRBL each have their own benefits. Choose the one that is best suited to your needs.
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