Lab Image/clone solution

We’ve got several labs at my job that we are currently supporting, most are windows and the windows team uses Norton ghost which seems to do a nice job for them. I have a few Linux labs which I have inherited. I have been trying to find a way to deploy an image (opensuse 11.2) to 5+ (up to 40) computers at once. DHCP is handled campus wide, so I don’t have access to DHCP for PXE booting.

I am currently running clonezilla, but a default clonezilla disk image won’t restore grub properly and I have to rescue each system manually. Does anyone have experience with a “ghost” like system with multicast?


I’ve deleted your duplicte thread in General-Chit-Chat. This FYI. A very warm welcome here.
I’m not a specialist in this matter, but I guess there’s loads of solutions for your situation. Step away from windu thinking, be as clear as you can about hardware, linux versions etc. There are other members who will be able to help you.

Clonezilla was my first thought.

I think there is a way to record all of the applications installed on a system into a file. This way you can do a minimal install and then run a bulk installation of these program? Of course this doesn’t cover configurations.

Maybe can do a LiveCD to run like a PXE installation?

I’m guessing here. As you can tell I’m not a system admin. :wink:

Yeah I’m toying with the thought of building custom RPM’s of our software suites, running a repository and doing some sort of unattended install. But I haven’t done that before so I’m not sure how much custom configuration that could handle.

Right now clonezilla live is getting the job done.

Is seems like you might be implying that there is a way to boot and have PXE pointed to a custom location, that would be nice.

I suspect the Grub problem is that Suse uses the disk-id method of naming in the menu.lst and fstab files. The method uses the unique ID for each drive thus an image restored from base system to a different system with a different disk-id won’t boot.

Try this change the /boot/grub/menu.lst file and /etc/fstab to use the sdx format to id the drive rather then the drive id_partx format on the base machine.

From what I can recall of the errors I was getting, it sounds like you hit it. I’ll give it a try. Thanks gogalthorp!

Hey gogalthorp,

That worked man! Thanks!


I’m a little late to the party but something I do is use Yast2-firstboot. Then when the image gets deployed I just run back through the Yast configuration tool to setup hostname, network, time, users, etc. I use Clonezilla for this as weill.