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4. Adding workstations

Now that the server is all done, we can start adding workstations.

4.1 Creating a boot disk or bootrom

You'll need ot create a bootrom and / or a bootdisk to boot your workstation.

Creating a bootdisk

Even if you wish to use a bootrom its wise to first test with a bootdisk, to create a boot disk just type:

dd if=/<path-to-zImage>/zImage of=/dev/fd0

Creating a bootrom

There are a few free package's out there to create bootroms:

  1. netboot, this is IMHO the most complete free package out there. It uses standard dos packet drivers so allmost all cards are supported. One very usefull hint I got on there mailing list was to pklite the packetdrivers since some commercial drivers are to big to fit into the bootrom. Netboot's documentation is complete enough, so I won't waste any time reproducing it here, it should be more then sufficient to create a bootrom and boot a ws with it. Netboot's webpage is:
  2. etherboot, this is the other free package out there it has got a few nice features like dhcp support, but has limited driver support as it uses its own driver format. I haven't used this so I really can't give anymore usefull info. Etherboot's webpage is:

About the roms themselves. Most cards take ordinary eproms with an 28 pins dip housing. These eproms come in size upto 64kB. For most cards you'll need 32kB eproms with netboot. Some cards drivers will fit into 16kB but the price difference of the eproms is minimal. These eproms can be burned with any ordinairy eprom burner.

4.2 Creating a ws dir

Just copy over the template by typing:

cd /tftpbootcp -a template <ip>

You could of course also copy over the dir of a workstation with identical mouse, graphicscard and monitor and ommit the configuration in step 5.4.

4.3 Add entries to /etc/bootptab and /etc/hosts

Edit /etc/bootptab and add an entry for your test ws, an example entry is:


Replace nfsroot1 by the hostname you want your ws to have. Replace by the ip you want your ws to have (do this twice) and replace 00201889EE78 by the MAC-ADDRESS of your ws. If you don't know the MAC-ADDRESS of the ws, just boot it with the just created boot disk and look for the MAC-ADDRESS in the boot messages. There's a chance bootpd is already running so just to make sure try to restart it by typing:

killall -HUP bootpd

Don't worry if it fails, that just means it wasn't running, inetd will start it when asked too.

4.4 Booting the ws for the first time

Just boot the ws from the bootdisk. This should get you a working ws in textmode, with the exact same setup as your server except for the ip-nr and the running services. Even if you want to use a bootprom it's wise to first test with the bootdisk, if that works you can try to boot with the bootrom see the bootroms documentation for more info.

4.5 Set the ws specific configuration.

Now it's time to configure any ws specific settings:

  1. First off all to get the mouse working, just run mouseconfig. To apply the changes, and check that the mouse works type:
    /etc/rc.d/init.d restart
  2. Run Xconfigurator, when Xconfigurator has probed the card and you can press ok don't! Since we have moved the symlink for the Xserver from /etc/X11/X to /etc/sysconfig/X11/X Xconfigurator will fail to create the proper link. Thus to make sure the rest of Xconfigurator goes well, switch to another console and create the link in /etc/sysconfig/X11 to the advised server. Now just finish Xconfigurator and test X.
  3. Configure anything else which is different then the server / template:
  4. Save the links and any other changes to /dev type:
    /etc/rc.d/rc.devfs save /etc/sysconfig
  5. All done.

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