Spacewalk KickstartSpacewalk is an open source Linux systems management solution rich with different functions, that include installing and upgrading software, OS, making security check and more. In the last post, dedicated to Spacewalk, we will describe the process of setting up Spacewalk Kickstart, or remote installation over the network. For this purpose, it is bound with Cobbler – a Linux installation server that allows for rapid setup of network installation environments.

 

Part One – How to install Spacewalk

Part Two – How to configure channels in Spacewalk

Part Three – How to install and register clients with Spacewalk

Part four – Spacewalk Features

Part Five – Spacewalk kickstart

CentOS 7 Spacewalk kickstart – initial steps

For Kickstart to work, you need to Set up Spacewalk repositories and channels, and sync that channel with marked option – Create a kickstartable tree. This is essential. If you need more detailed instructions of how to do this, refer to my earlier articles about Spacewalk – Spacewalk installation and channel configuration. Here is an option that needed to be checked for Kickstart to work properly:

Spacewalk kickstart

CentOS 7 Spacewalk kickstart – Create Distribution

Navigate to Systems -> Kickstart -> Distributions, and click Create Distribution:

Spacewalk Kickstart 2

You need to know Tree path to your kickstartable tree. Trees are located in /var/satellite/rhn/kickstart, and in my case, for the channel labeled CentOS_Base is in /var/satellite/rhn/kickstart/1/CentOS_Base/. Next, choose Installer Generation – for CentOS the option should be – Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7. Click Create Kickstart Distribution, and you will create a distribution. To check this result from the console, enter cobbler distro list:

CentOS 7 Spacewalk kickstart – Create Kickstart Profile

Navigate to Systems -> Kickstart -> Profiles, and click Create Kickstart Profile:

Spacewalk kickstart 4

Here you need to enter a label for new kickstart profile, choose a base channel and a kickstartable tree (and if you have only CentOS distribution, you will have only one choice), and click next:

Just accept Default Download Location clicking Next:

Spacewalk kickstart 5

On the final step, enter the Root password for new systems of this profile and click Finish

Spacewalk kickstart 6

CentOS 7 Spacewalk kickstart – DHCP settings

And this is very simple step. You just need to add to your dhcpd.conf following string:

Be sure, that servers can resolve Spacewalk server name from DNS.

CentOS 7 Spacewalk kickstart – Possible Problems

Things not always go as in manuals. So here a couple of problems, that I’ve faced setting up Kickstart.

First of all, there is a very helpful command, that we can use since Spacewalk uses Cobbler – cobbler check. Here is sample output from my Spacewalk server:

Check, if you have these packages installed, and if not – install them:

When you try to make a network installation of new syste, you can see this error – can’t find installer main image path in .treeinfo:::::

That file is located on your Spacewalk server in kickstart directory. In my case, it is located in /var/satellite/rhn/kickstart/1/CentOS_Base. So when you need to check availability of images or check paths to them, you can edit this file like this:

If you would like to edit boot menu, that you see when you install a new server, edit this file : /var/lib/tftpboot/pxelinux.cfg/default

Making Kickstart up and running took some my time, and may be you will face different errors, that are not mentioned in this article, so feel free to ask questions in comments!

So, we have described nearly all that you can do with your Spacewalk installation! Thank you for attention