On Thu, Dec 28, 2006 at 02:57:21PM -0500, Andy Dills wrote:

> 
> Is there a standard way of installing complete filesystem images onto 
> existing machines via the network, for example using dump, restore, nfs, 
> and boot floppies?
> 
> I want to upgrade our mail server cluster from 4-STABLE to 6-STABLE, and 
> there is so much that goes into the mail server setup... 
> postfix/amavisd-new/clamav/SA/Razor2/DCC/FuzzyOcr all chrooted, that's a 
> lot of port installing and lib copying I don't feel like doing. 
> 
> I've got an image of the 6-STABLE box I'm happy with and I want to be able 
> to serve it via NFS, then go through the cluster booting on (hopefully) 
> the fixit floppy, format the disks and restore the image over nfs, edit 
> some confs, and boot it and away it goes in a fraction of the time it 
> would take to go from scratch with each.
> 
> I'm not sure what tools the fixit floppy has. Anybody done anything like 
> this before?

The fixit floppy is basically a running system, minus extras like X
stuff and the ports, that can be booted from the floppy - or preferrably 
from the CD.   The first install CD also is a fixit, just choose
the menu item to boot to a running system - I forget the label text.
It is just basic FreeBSD Unix including necessary tools to deal with files.

There are a number of ways of moving filesystems from one machine
to another, including over the net.   I am inclined to use dump/restore
because it handles all situations of files and links and permissions, etc
properly and doesn't get locked in to the sector-by-sector trap.
But, you must create the filesystems yourself with either sysinstall
or fdisk/bsdlabel/newfs.   If you have room, the nicest thing is to
create the file systems and then copy the dump file to the machine
and restore it from there rather than over the net.  But it will
work over the net.

Actually, it is possible to build your own install CD that just
charges ahead and builds and installs things the way you want it.
You may need more than one CD if you put a lot on - or make one
to do the system build and then restore dump files on for the rest.

////jerry

> 
> Thanks,
> Andy
> 
> ---
> Andy Dills
> Xecunet, Inc.
> www.xecu.net
> 301-682-9972
> ---
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