Auto OS Install Process

bruce badouglas at
Thu Dec 26 17:52:00 UTC 2013

Hey Suvayu,

Not to be insensitive.. but I've had left-post/right-post/top-post
args etc for damn near 30 years...

My motto - if I create the post, I'll post/add to it as i see fit.
Everyon else is welcome to reply, or not!!

Now that that's out of the way...

My need is in the case a system gets hacked/corrupted. If the system
is remote, I want a method of being able to get into the hacked
system, and to have it then restore the running/corrupted partition
from the "clean" partition.

This means I need to be able to install dual OS, as well as have a
method of being able to switch the boot process as required.

No, this isn't foolproof to eleminate hacking, but it does allow me to
then be able to more easlity/quickly recover in the event the process
detects the master partition as being hacked.

So, in my mind, I'll have dual OS/partitions
  -minimal OS
  -used to do a netinstall/reinstall of a clean OS into partitionB
  -so when the system boots up into this partition, it will auto
   perform the netinstall process into the partitionB for the

  -the master partition/OS
  -contains the working/real OS/env of the system
  -also able to invoke a netinstall process to reinstall partitionA as
  -has the ability to toggle between the partitions
  -has the ability to set itself as the default OS/partition

So in my mind, this really should be a matter of doing a dual
install/boot process, and then determining how one can
programatically/automatically set whatever function/switch has to be
set to switch between the partitions/OS on reboot of the system.

Keep in mind, once the system is created/provisioned, all of this is
being handled remotely, via ssh.


On Thu, Dec 26, 2013 at 12:21 PM, Suvayu Ali
<fatkasuvayu+linux at> wrote:
> Hi Bruce,
> Please read the mailing list guidelines (linked from the list
> signature); top-posting is frowned up on on this list.
> Now some comments...
> On Thu, Dec 26, 2013 at 10:14:52AM -0500, bruce wrote:
>> What I'd really like is the ability to set two partitions
>> PartitionA - base/minimal OS
>>   -used to just do a netinstall to setup partitionB with the real OS, and
>>    the actual system that's going to contain the VM
>>  -when this partition is invoked, it automatically does a netinstall to
>>   set up partitionB
>>  -after doing the netinstall, the process then resets whatever is needed
>>   to then boot into partitionB
>> PartitionB - complete/full OS, along with all the rest of the system/env files
>>   -created by the netinstall process from Partition A, the minimal install/OS
>>   -has the ability to also do a "netinstall" to reinstall the OS for the
>>    partition A OS
>>  -has the ability to set the system, so the next reboot, it goes into
>> Partition A
> From what I understand you expect on partitition dedicated for
> installation of other partitions.  I do not understand why you need
> that.  Kickstart files offers you a completely automated way to install
> from disk images on local disks, over the network, and repositories.
> You can put your image on a partition, and treat that as your
> PartitionA.  You could then use different kickstart files to setup
> systems with different customisations.  Doesn't that work?
> I maybe missing something, maybe you want to do this remotely.  In that
> case it should still be possible, but you would need a separate "command
> & control" machine for that.  I believe many vendors like Dell, IBM
> offer such solutions.  I have personally seen a Dell system with 10 real
> servers being installed & setup this way.  If your setup is at home, you
> could repurpose a old machine for this purpose.
> Hope this helps,
> --
> Suvayu
> Open source is the future. It sets us free.
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