[WBEL-users] system imager
aaron_couts at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 28 13:29:45 CDT 2005
I've been poking around for a good solution for creating templates/images
for my servers, and I was hoping to get some feedback from the list on what
other people use, specifically for building multiple identical Whitebox
machines running software RAID. The two main packages I've looked at are
systemimager and partimage.
I"ve played around most with partimage, and I've found that I'm not crazy
about how it handles software RAID1. My test system has two RAID1
partitions (/boot, /, and also swap paritions on each drive). When I launch
partimage (I'm running it from the System Rescue CD associated with the
Partimage project), I see the following list (the items below are not
md/0 (RAID device for /boot -- hda1 and hdb1)
I haven't fully tested a restore yet, but I think I could create images of
hda1 and hda2, then to build a new system I could partition the drive and
restore the partitions. Then I could create a RAID1 on the second drive
(build it with the first disk failed). Copy the data from disk1 to disk2,
then add disk1 to the RAID array. Honestly, a little more work than I want
to do, and I'm not sure if it will work yet.
I started installing systemimager to play with. It seems like it's pretty
close to what I want. One reservation is that I'm not sure how it will
handle software RAID1. Another is that the installation is not all that
straightforward, and if I am reading the documentation correctly, it
requires a kernel rebuild. Lastly, I'd love to have a restore client that
runs from a CD.
My ideal system would work like this:
- Pop "imager" boot CD in drive and reboot system.
- Create image of whole drive (includes MBR, partition table, and all
partitions, including RAID1) on some sort of network server.
- Pop "imager" boot CD in of idential (hardware-wise) empty system.
- Restore from network image.
Does this system exist? Has anyone modified any existing tools to allow
something like this? Or maybe I'm describing an existing commercial
product? I'm about to try Acronis True Image, but I'm dubious.
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