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Installing / configuring DRBL with Clonezilla Server


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#1 bnew

bnew

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 12:51 PM

Installing / configuring DRBL with Clonezilla Server- Updated 7.8.09

Update- added extra related websites, additional environment info, extra information relating to dhcp

Sorry, wall of text does 7858675 damage.

I work as a System Admin in a college. We have a mature, internally developed SOE (standard operating environment) which consists of a customised, hardware independent XP SP3 image that is used throughout the college (uncompressed, the SOE is around 4GB)

Deploying the SOE used to be done using DVD sets produced by Ghost. We then deployed PING ( http://ping.windowsdream.com/ ) which allowed deployment of the SOE via PXE booting from the clients. PING is a great open source project (I’d recommend it to anyone wanting a Ghost-like server for the home/small business) but its main limitation is that it is unicast only. In practice, this means that imaging one machine is quite fast, two is reasonable, five is a little slow. Imaging a whole lab (say around 30 machines) is out of the question.

The following is how I went about installing and configuring DRBL/Clonezilla. The usual disclaimers apply- everything is at your own risk, your mileage may vary, all of the below was tested and deployed in a non-critical test environment first (ie deployment untested into a production environment is crazy- don’t do it!). Everything is specific to my particular configuration and environment- don’t expect it to just work for you.

Websites:


http://ping.windowsdream.com/ -PING website
http://clonezilla.org/ -Clonezilla website
http://drbl.sf.net/ -DRBL website
http://sourceforge.n...forum_id=394007 -My initial thread about clonezilla in the DRBL forums
http://sourceforge.n...forum_id=394007 -My second thread, relating specifically to dhcp issues


Aim:

-Replace the current image deployment system with something that offers similar functionality but can offer faster speeds, particularly for concurrent SOE image deployment (ie multicast cloning sessions)

My environment:

The DRBL/Clonezilla server:

-OpenSuse 11.1, 2.6.27.23-0.1-pae kernel
-Dell Optiplex GX280- 2.8ghz, 1.5gb ram, 500GB, 2 x NIC (networks: 192.168.3, 192.168.0)
-DRBL 1.9.4-27.i386

Other relevant information:

-Network 1- 192.168.1 addresses. The bulk of the clients reside on this network. The clonezilla box has eth0 (192.168.3.15) connected to this network
-Network 2- 192.168.0 addresses. Only around 50 clients on this network. The smaller dhcp scope for clients means that the clonezilla interface connected to this network (eth1) can still use 192.168.0 addresses, I just adjust the scope accordingly so they don't overlap.

DRBL?

From http://drbl.sf.net/ (bolding mine):

“DRBL (Diskless Remote Boot in Linux) is a free software, open source solution to managing the deployment of the GNU/Linux operating system across many clients. Imagine the time required to install GNU/Linux on 40, 30, or even 10 client machines individually! DRBL allows for the configuration all of your client computers by installing just one server machine.

DRBL provides a diskless or systemless environment for client machines. It works on Debian, Ubuntu, Mandriva, Red Hat, Fedora, CentOS and SuSE. DRBL uses distributed hardware resources and makes it possible for clients to fully access local hardware. It also includes Clonezilla, a partitioning and disk cloning utility similar to Symantec Ghost®.”

Basically, if you want to have a Ghost Server-like setup using Clonezilla Server, you install DRBL as it has this as part of the included functionality (it took me quite a while to realise this!). It includes lots of other functionality too, but I haven’t looked into it as yet.


Installation:

Download DRBL (I used the rpm but obviously use whatever suits the distribution you are using):
https://sourceforge....86.rpm/download

Assuming you are using the rpm, install as follows:

Install the rpm:
rpm -Uvh drbl-1.9.4-27.i386.rpm


Install drbl:
/opt/drbl/sbin/drblsrv -i


Pretty self explanatory, I won’t go into detail about the options here- just follow the prompts.

Note 1: during testing, I did a few reinstallations of DRBL from the same rpm. I ran into some problems where previously working functionality broke- turns out between my first and subsequent installations the version of clonezilla retrieved from the repository when running drblsrv –i had changed. I ended up trying the ‘testing’ and ‘unstable’ branches- these worked fine (this was on advice from one of the developers- these branches were soon after moved to ‘stable’)

Note 2: I was also running into an error relating to signature verification of repositories- ‘Signature verification failed for file 'repomd.xml' from repository’. Because of the way DRBL removes and re-adds software repositories during setup even if I manually turned off repository verification pre setup it would fail. Solution was to open another terminal while running drblsrv –i (after the repositories had been added by setup) and running ‘zypper clean’ and then ‘zypper refresh’ (and allowing the DRBL related repositories). Keep in mind this is very likely a OpenSuse 11.1 issue, so you probably won’t have to worry about it.

Configure DRBL settings:
/opt/drbl/sbin/drblpush -i

This is used to define the specifics of how DRBL will operate- what services will be offered to clients, what network interfaces will be used for what, ip address ranges and so on. One strange thing about Clonezilla is that it assumes that you want to have an external facing network interface. For example, when I was testing with just one physical interface, you can specify that one interface as being the external and internal interface (clonezilla will yell some warnings, but I don’t require an external facing interface as I’m just wanting to image internal clients, so it doesn’t matter). When I installed an additional physical interface (because I want to deploy images to both the 192.168.0 and 192.168.3 networks) Clonezilla would only allow me to setup one interface as an internal and one as an external (whereas I wanted them both to be configured as internal). The solution was to create an alias on one of the interfaces, so the final configuration is as follows:

NIC	NIC IP					Clients
+-----------------------------+
|		 DRBL SERVER		 |
|							 |
|	+-- [eth0:1] 192.168.2.15 +- to WAN
|							 |
|	+-- [eth0] 192.168.3.15 +- to clients group 0 [ 30 clients, their IP
|							 |			from 192.168.3.16 - 192.168.3.45]
|	+-- [eth1] 192.168.0.15 +- to clients group 1 [ 30 clients, their IP
|							 |			from 192.168.0.16 - 192.168.0.45]

With eth0:1 being the bogus, un-used alias created to allow use of both physical interfaces as internal interfaces.

Other options related to drblpush -i (as I configured them):

Searching the installed packages for DRBL server...This might take several minutes...
Finished searching the installed packages for DRBL server.
******************************************************
------------------------------------------------------
The interactive mode let you supply the information of your DRBL environment.
------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------
Please enter DNS domain (such as drbl.sf.net):
[<your domain should show up automatically here>]
Set DOMAIN as your.domain
------------------------------------------------------
Please enter NIS/YP domain name:
[penguinzilla]
Set DOMAIN as penguinzilla
------------------------------------------------------
Please enter the client hostname prefix:
This prefix is used to automatically create hostname for clients. If you want to overwrite some or all automatically created hostnames, press Ctrl-C to quit this program now, ed
stname, then run this program again.
[clone]
Set the client hostname prefix as clone
------------------------------------------------------
eth0: IP address 192.168.3.15, netmask 255.255.255.0
eth0:1: IP address 192.168.2.15, netmask 255.255.255.0
eth1: IP address 192.168.0.15, netmask 255.255.255.0
Configured ethernet card(s) found in your system: eth0 eth0:1 eth1
------------------------------------------------------
The public IP address of this server is NOT found.
Which ethernet port in this server is for public Internet accsess, not for DRBL connection?
Available ethernet ports in this server:
eth0 (192.168.3.15), eth0:1 (192.168.2.15), eth1 (192.168.0.15),
[eth0] eth0:1
The ethernet port you choose for the WAN connection: eth0:1
The ethernet port(s) for DRBL environment:  eth0 eth1
******************************************************
******************************************************
Now we can collect the MAC address of clients!
If you want to let the DHCP service in DRBL server offer same IP address to client every time when client boot, and you never did this procedure, you should do it now!
If you already have those MAC addresses of clients, you can put them into different group files (These files number is the same number of networks cards for DRBL service). In th
p.
This step helps you to record the MAC addresses of clients, then divide them into different groups. It will save your time and reduce the typos.
The MAC addresses will be recorded turn by turn according to the boot of clients,
and they will be put into different files according to the network card in server, file name will be like macadr-eth1.txt, macadr-eth2.txt... You can find them in directory /etc
Please boot the clients by order, make sure they boot from etherboot or PXE!
Do you want to collect them?
[y/N] n
******************************************************
OK! Let's continue...
******************************************************
Do you want to let the DHCP service in DRBL server offer same IP address to the client every time when client boots (If you want this function, you have to collect the MAC addre
 in file(s) (as in the previous procedure)). This is for the clients connected to DRBL server's ethernet network interface eth0 ?
[y/N] n
******************************************************
OK! Let's continue, we will set the IP address of clients by "first boot gets IP first" instead of fixed one!
Hostmin: 192.168.3.1
******************************************************
What is the initial number do you want to use in the last set of digits in the IP (i.e. the initial value of d in the IP address a.b.c.d) for DRBL clients connected to this ethe
[1] 16
******************************************************
How many DRBL clients (PC for students) connected to DRBL server's ethernet network interface eth0 ?
Please enter the number:
[30]
******************************************************
The final number in the last set of digits in the client's IP address is "45".
We will set the IP address for the clients connected to DRBL server's ethernet network interface eth0 as: 192.168.3.16 - 192.168.3.45
Accept ? [Y/n]
******************************************************
OK! Let's continue...
Do you want to let the DHCP service in DRBL server offer same IP address to the client every time when client boots (If you want this function, you have to collect the MAC addre
 in file(s) (as in the previous procedure)). This is for the clients connected to DRBL server's ethernet network interface eth1 ?
[y/N]
******************************************************
OK! Let's continue, we will set the IP address of clients by "first boot gets IP first" instead of fixed one!
Hostmin: 192.168.0.1
******************************************************
What is the initial number do you want to use in the last set of digits in the IP (i.e. the initial value of d in the IP address a.b.c.d) for DRBL clients connected to this ethe
[1] 16
******************************************************
How many DRBL clients (PC for students) connected to DRBL server's ethernet network interface eth1 ?
Please enter the number:
[30]
******************************************************
The final number in the last set of digits in the client's IP address is "45".
We will set the IP address for the clients connected to DRBL server's ethernet network interface eth1 as: 192.168.0.16 - 192.168.0.45
Accept ? [Y/n]
******************************************************
OK! Let's continue...
******************************************************
The Layout for your DRBL environment:
******************************************************
		  NIC	NIC IP					Clients
+-----------------------------+
|		 DRBL SERVER		 |
|							 |
|	+-- [eth0:1] 192.168.2.15 +- to WAN
|							 |
|	+-- [eth0] 192.168.3.15 +- to clients group 0 [ 30 clients, their IP
|							 |			from 192.168.3.16 - 192.168.3.45]
|	+-- [eth1] 192.168.0.15 +- to clients group 1 [ 30 clients, their IP
|							 |			from 192.168.0.16 - 192.168.0.45]
+-----------------------------+
******************************************************
Total clients: 60
******************************************************
Press Enter to continue...
******************************************************
------------------------------------------------------
In the system, there are 3 modes for diskless linux services:
[0] Full DRBL mode, every client has its own NFS based /etc and /var.
[1] DRBL SSI (Single system image) mode, every client uses tmpfs based /etc and
mmended at least 256 MB. (b) The setting and config files of client will not be
in the template client (located in /tftpboot/nodes), you have to run /opt/drbl/s
 overwrite the setting in the template tarball when client boots, check /tftpboo
[2] I do NOT want to provide diskless Linux service to client.
Which mode do you prefer?
[0] 2
No diskless Linux for client is the system.
******************************************************
******************************************************
------------------------------------------------------
In the system, there are 3 modes available for clonezilla:
[0] Full Clonezilla mode, every client has its own NFS based /etc and /var.
[1] Clonezilla box mode, every client uses tmpfs based /etc and /var. In this mode, the loading and necessary disk space of server will be lighter than that in Full Clonezilla m
ode. Note! In Clonezilla box mode, the setting and config files of client will n
[2] I do NOT want clonezilla.
Which mode do you prefer?
[0]
Full clonezilla mode is set!
******************************************************
******************************************************
------------------------------------------------------
When using clonezilla, which directory in this server you want to store the save
[/home/partimag]
Directory for clonezilla saved images: /home/partimag
******************************************************
The clients will use text mode when they boot.
******************************************************
OK! Let's continue...
------------------------------------------------------
Do you want to set the pxelinux password for clients so that when client boots,
[y/N] y
New pxelinux password for clients (It will not be echoed in the screen)?
Retype new password (It will not be echoed in the screen).
------------------------------------------------------
Do you want to use graphic background for PXE menu when client boots?
Note! If you use graphical PXELinux menu, however client fails to boot, you can
[y/N] y
Use text PXE Linux menu for client.
------------------------------------------------------
OK! Let's continue...
------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------
Do you want to let DRBL server as a NAT server? If not, your DRBL client will NO
[Y/n] n
This DRBL server does NOT provide NAT service, so your DRBL client will NOT be a
------------------------------------------------------
Do you want to keep the old setting of existing DRBL clients if they exist?
[Y/n] n
We will remove all the setting of the DRBL clients if they already exist.
******************************************************
******************************************************
The running kernel in the server supports NFS over TCP!
Note! If you change the running kernel in the server, and not sure whether the k
t boots in failure!
Press Enter to continue...

Additional notes on the above:

-I didn’t opt to collect MAC addresses as we use a hardware independent image- I don’t care what address the PXE client gets each time, it will just be assigned whatever it gets from the clonezilla dhcp sever
-Setup a PXE password- a must for my environment (stops curious kids from reimaging machines)
-I’m not using DRBL, so I didn’t set it up
-I use Full Clonezilla mode- seems to work best
-I choose to create 30 clients per network as that it the most clients I’ll ever concurrently want to image (it takes a while to setup each client and make subsequent changes, so its probably best to only do as many as you’ll need).

Setup the boot environment:
/opt/drbl/sbin/dcs

This is a GUI based setup where you specify what you actually want to do when you PXE boot from a client (and generate a corresponding /tftpboot/nbi_img/pxelinux.cfg/default file based on what you specify). Everything you can do from here can also be run as a single command from the shell (clonezilla helpfully gives you the equivalent command after you finish using the GUI, in case you need to run it again).

For my setup, I wanted to configure it as follows:
-Always be able to pxe boot a single client and re-image it (for those times I just want to quickly re-image a student computer that has crapped itself)
-Occasionally do a mass re-image of a bunch of machines using a multicast session (for those times during school holidays where I want to deploy an updated SOE image to a lab or two).

When you run /opt/drbl/sbin/dcs, an entry relating to what you choose is created in /tftpboot/nbi_img/pxelinux.cfg/default under the label [clonezilla]. That’s fine, but it replaces whatever WAS there under that label. As I wanted to ALWAYS have access to cloning a single client, I simply copied and renamed the label of the relevant entry in the pxelinux.cfg/default file. The end result is as follows (excerpts- not the full file):

label drbl
  # MENU DEFAULT
  MENU HIDE
  MENU LABEL SuSE 11.1 Linux (DRBL mode, mostly local resources)
  MENU PASSWD
  kernel vmlinuz-pxe
  append initrd=initrd-pxe.img devfs=nomount drblthincli=off selinux=0	 clientdir=node_root
  TEXT HELP
  * DRBL version: 1.9.4-27. (C) 2003-2008, NCHC, Taiwan
  * Disclaimer: DRBL comes with ABSOLUTE NO WARRANTY
  ENDTEXT

label clonezilla
  # MENU DEFAULT
  # MENU HIDE
  MENU LABEL Clonezilla: multicast restore soe_working to disk sda
  MENU PASSWD
  kernel vmlinuz-pxe
  append initrd=initrd-pxe.img devfs=nomount drblthincli=off selinux=0 1	 ocs_opt="--language en  -g auto -e1 auto -e2 --clone-hidden-data -p reboot --mcast-port 2232 multicast_restoredisk soe_working sda"
  TEXT HELP
  * Clonezilla version: 2.3.3-31. (C) 2003-2008, NCHC, Taiwan
  * Disclaimer: Clonezilla comes with ABSOLUTE NO WARRANTY
  ENDTEXT

label clonezilla2
  # MENU DEFAULT
  # MENU HIDE
  MENU LABEL Clonezilla: choose save or restore later
  MENU PASSWD
  kernel vmlinuz-pxe
  append initrd=initrd-pxe.img devfs=nomount drblthincli=off selinux=0 1	 ocs_opt="--language en -k select_in_client "
  TEXT HELP
  * Clonezilla version: 2.3.3-31. (C) 2003-2008, NCHC, Taiwan
  * Disclaimer: Clonezilla comes with ABSOLUTE NO WARRANTY
  ENDTEXT

**UPDATED** IMPORTANT- for running Clonezilla’s dhcp server alongside an existing one:

Clonezilla comes with its own dhcp server as part of the standard configuration. As with most organisations we already run a dhcp server. The best solution for our particular setup was to allow both the clonezilla server dhcp service and our ‘real’ dhcp service to run side-by-side, but configure the clonezilla dhcp so that it only gives addresses to PXE clients. This is fairly easy to setup- once you have run /opt/drbl/sbin/drblpush –i, simply edit the resulting dhcpd.conf file and uncomment the 'allow members of "DRBL-Client' line (for me, I have to do it twice due to the two interfaces).

No, it wasn't quite that simple after all. For more details of my testing, see here.

A quick summary though:

-Even though I had the right lines un-commented in dhcpd.conf, there was still a bit more to do to allow the clonezilla dhcp server and my 'real' dhcp servers co-exist on the same network
-For my 192.168.0 network, I simply adjusted the address scopes of both the 'real' dhcp server and the clonezilla server so they don't overlap. No problems there. (not much testing either though, I suspect I'll eventually configure this the same way as the other clonezilla interface)
-For my 192.168.1 network (where the bulk of the clients reside) I was having major issues. Not only were clonezilla clients having issues getting an address to initiate imaging, but dhcp services to ALL clients on the network were getting screwed up big time.
-I changed eth0 on clonezilla to 192.168.3.15 to eliminate any potential address conflicts and make troubleshooting easier. So, while it remains physically connected to the 192.168.1 network, for clonezilla clients it gives out 192.168.3 addresses
-I turned on the authoritative setting for both the 192.168.1 dhcp server and the clonezilla dhcp server (turns out this did more harm than good- explained below)

At this point, things weren't looking much better. Still getting similar problems as before. Occasionally on clonezilla clients I would see a request for a 192.168.3 address, but 95% of the time it would still be requesting 192.168.1 addresses. Also, my clonezilla clients started receiving 'DCHP NAK' on occasion. From there, I tried to eliminate clonezilla clients from requesting 192.168.1 addresses. I did this by adding a similar entry to my 192.168.1 dhcp server as appears on the clonezilla dhcp server in relation to 'members of DRBL-Client' Rather than allow them access to an address pool though, I deny them access to the 192.168.1 pool. This worked well.

At this point, I was still having network wide dhcp issues when I had the clonezilla eth0 interface active. Clonezilla clients were no longer requesting 192.168.1 addresses, but in most cases they would continue to receive DHCP NAK for a seemingly random amount of time before finally getting a 192.168.3 address and beginning the imaging process. After some research and testing, this turned out to be due to having the authoritative setting on. From what I can work out, this is what was roughly happening:

-Clonezilla client broadcasts DHCPINFORM and DHCPDISCOVER
-192.168.1 dhcp server ignores it, clonezilla dhcp server responds with offer for 192.168.3 address
-Clonezilla client broadcasts DHCPREQUEST for 192.168.3 address
-192.168.1 dhcp server responds first (95% of the time) sends clonezilla DHCP NAK, since it can't give it a 192.168.3 address
-Repeat process for a seemingly random amount of time, until 192.168.3 dhcp gets in first and gives clonezilla client an ip

Turning off the authoritative setting on the 192.168.1 server seemed to allow it to simply ignore clonezilla client requests, rather than flat out killing them (ala DHCP NAK). Similarly, turning off authoritative on the clonezilla dhcp server allowed it to simply ignore requests for 192.168.1 addresses, fixing the network issues I was having.

Resulting files (excerpts) are as follows:

clonezilla dhcpd.conf

class "DRBL-Client" { 
match if 
(substring(option vendor-class-identifier, 0, 9) = "PXEClient") or 
(substring(option vendor-class-identifier, 0, 9) = "Etherboot") or 
(substring(option vendor-class-identifier, 0, 10) = "DRBLClient"); 
} 

		subnet 192.168.3.0 netmask 255.255.255.0 {
	option subnet-mask  255.255.255.0;
	option routers 192.168.3.15;
	next-server 192.168.3.15;

	pool {
	  allow members of "DRBL-Client";
	  range 192.168.3.16 192.168.3.45;
	}
}

subnet 192.168.0.0 netmask 255.255.255.0 {
	option subnet-mask  255.255.255.0;
	option routers 192.168.0.15;
	next-server 192.168.0.15;

	pool {
	  allow members of "DRBL-Client";
	  range 192.168.0.16 192.168.0.45;
	}
}

192.168.1 server dhcpd.conf

class "DRBL-Client" { 
match if 
(substring(option vendor-class-identifier, 0, 9) = "PXEClient") or 
(substring(option vendor-class-identifier, 0, 9) = "Etherboot") or 
(substring(option vendor-class-identifier, 0, 10) = "DRBLClient"); 
} 
 
 
# student 
subnet 192.168.1.0 netmask 255.255.255.0 { 
option netbios-name-servers 192.168.1.248 , 192.168.1.250; 
option domain-name "my.domain"; 
option domain-name-servers 192.168.1.248; 
pool { 
range 192.168.1.40 192.168.1.200; 
deny members of "DRBL-Client"; 
}

Other than the above, you may also need to specify in your ‘real’ dhcp server the address and bootfile name on the clonezilla server. For example, in my setup it is as follows:

Boot filename- pxelinux.0
Boot file server- 192.168.1.15 (one of the two clonezilla interfaces)


Nope, it seems to work fine without this.

Other stuff:

/opt/drbl/sbin/mknic-nbi -r 50

I had to run the above to increase the number of times the client retries to get an address via dhcp from the default of 3 to 50 (some of the client machines have crappy Broadcom NICS that rarely got an address within the first 3 attempts). UPDATE- it appears that most of this was not a NIC issue, but a dhcp configuration error (doh!). Since making the changes mentioned in regards to dhcp I have not had any clients requiring additional retries to get an address.

/opt/drbl/sbin/drbl-all-service restart

Restarts everything drbl/clonezilla related. If your experience is anything like mine you will do this many times during testing / configuration.

/opt/drbl/sbin/drblsrv -u

Uninstalls drbl/clonezilla (again, a command I have run many times!)

Note: with some of the commands mentioned (such as drblpush, and the all services restart) you will need to go back and re-enter any manual settings as running the commands regenerates the configuration files. Two important examples of this that burnt me a few times:

-Running /opt/drbl/sbin/drbl-all-service restart would turn on the firewall on my clonezilla server (even through it was turned off and isn’t required). I have to go and turn off the firewall each time I manually restart
-Running /opt/drbl/sbin/drblpush –i re-comments the lines in dhcpd.conf about allowing only DRBL clients an address lease. Caused some hairy dhcp-related problems the first time I did it and didn’t release.

Wrap-up:
Whilst I’m still ironing out a few minor bugs, I’m pretty happy with the performance so far. I’ve been able to re-image 30 machines, each with a 4GB image, in around 4 minutes. Using the unicast-only old system, this would have taken hours. UPDATE: bugs successfully ironed out :)

I have probably glossed over quite a few details here. There’s also probably better/different ways of doing what I’ve done. Feel free to ask questions etc and I’ll try to answer as best I can.

Hope someone else finds this useful.

Edited by bnew, 08 August 2009 - 10:24 AM.


#2 TheSecret

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 10:02 PM

Awesome writeup :)
The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him. - Tolstoy

#3 bnew

bnew

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Posted 10 August 2009 - 02:40 PM

Awesome writeup :)


Thanks. We used it to re-image another lab last week, worked flawlessly.
As mentioned in my other thread I do get DCHPINFORM and martian source entries in the log, but these seem to be harmless.

I haven't used Ghost Server in quite a while, but based on my experience with it there isn't really anything that it can do that Clonezilla can't. Anyone with a bit of linux knowledge could set this up on inexpensive hardware (my clonezilla 'server' is a retired desktop machine- for the moment at least). It doesn't even need expensive network infrastructure- some of our edge networks are still running 10/100 speeds unfortunately, but clonezilla imaging still achieves around 1GB/min transfer rate in multicast mode.

#4 bnew

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Posted 18 August 2009 - 12:36 PM

Just a small update on how its all working. To date I've re-imaged around 100 machines of varying hardware configurations (as stated, our SOE is hardware independant). I did come across two computer labs where multicasting was very slow: -The first lab was actually due to a long forgotten 5 port 10-BASE-T hub that was providing connectivity for 3 machines. Once that was removed, full speed multicast worked perfectly. -The second lab I am yet to finish diagnosing. Due to the way multicast works, if you have one machines that is dragging the chain for some reason it will cause all of the machines in that multicast session to be slow. The DRBL FAQ covers some possible reasons for slow multicast speeds, but the trick is to find which machines are causing the slow down. Anyhow, with the exception of the second lab everything is working perfectly. Will post back when I work out the cause of the slow multicast.




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