Automatic post install installations

I’ve setup autoyast for installations of SuSE on 60+ PC’s. So far I’ve only made some installation tests on a few of them. It seems to work fine with rules and profiles with various settings for different PC’s.

Typically though, later on I will have the need of installing applications and making configurations automatically on groups of these PC’s without having to reinstall the entire system using autoyast. What I am looking for is a system like wpkg (Main Page - WPKG | Open Source Software Deployment and Distribution) for Windows, but it should work for SuSE of course.

With wpkg you can have profiles saying what softwares should be installed/removed on what PC’s and it will be carried out in the background or when the system boots up the next time.

Anyone know of such a system for SuSE?
Or do I have to make a DIY system (hacking scripts and such) to accomplish this? Any suggestions for the layout of such a DIY system?

Offhand I don’t know of a patch management/upgrade system such as you describe . . . You might consider creating an updates repository for all or a logical group of PC’s; IIRC this is essentially the approach sometimes used by Novell customers for patch management. And of course that can be scheduled automatically via YaST. Also look at the man page for zypper, it is very powerful and flexible; writing a push update script wouldn’t be too hard. A quick google on “novell automatic updates” turned up a nbr of hits, including this Systems Manageability Part 6: Patch Management and Online Updates

Zypper is indeed a powerful tool. Together with a much faster repository handling system in openSuSE 11.0 installations of packages is a breeze.

However, my needs for a patch management system mainly concerns settings and software other than non ready made packages outside the reach of zypper. So I ended up writing some simple scripts to handle groups and profiles of PC’s in somewhat the same manner as wpkg for windows. It’s all initiated from a cron job on each client every minute checking the server to see what needs to be done for that particular client.

It works but any home made system like this needs constant maintenance adapting it to changes of the operating system. I would love to see a professional SuSE supported approach to patch management system like this. Developers? :wink:

Frankly, you’re seeing an example of the advantages inherent in the market size presence of a Microsoft and its ecosystem. Or an IBM, HP, or Sun, all of which have software management infrastructures which make even what’s available for Windows look paltry by comparison. But that of course is expected; these outfits support the world’s largest data centers. Even as much as Red Hat (let alone Novell) has delivered, it still cannot match the serious enterprise players. Until then, sharp techs will have to fill the gap. Heck, it’s an “opportunity”, right? :wink: