XenServer – Installing 6.0.2 by PXE

In this video we look at installing Citrix XenServer 6.02 but in the understanding that many Data Center Servers will not have an optical drive to install from the CD. In this common scenario PXE may be an option to boot the system and then use an HTTP or NFS server as an installtion source. We will use SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 Linux as the PXE Server, DHCP Server and Apache HTTP Server to complete the installation of XenServer 6.02. I have other videos and blogs that look at setting up PXE in more detail and setting up the Web Server. So here we concentrate on copying across the files that are required for the XenServer install rather than deatiled setup of PXE, DHCP and HTTP.

The PXE files are included in the SYSLINUX package in many Linux distributions but for ease Citrix include these on the XenServer 6 installion CD.

  1. Copy YOURSOURCECD/boot/pxelinux/mboot.c32 and pxelinux.0 to your server’s TFTP directory , in my case /tftpboot
  2. Create /tftpboot/xs602 , a directory with specific boot files for XenServer 6.02
  3. Copy YOURSOURCECD/boot/xen.gz and vmlinuz to /tftpboot/xs602
  4. Copy YOURSOURCECD/install.img to /tftpboot/xs602
  5. Now create the directory /tftpboot/pxelinux.cfg and in that directory create a file called: default

The default file is used if there is no specific file for the MAC or IP Address od the booting computer. Ther file will read similar to this:


default local
prompt 1
timeout 60

label local
        localboot 0

label install-xenserver
        kernel mboot.c32
        append xs602/xen.gz  --- xs602/vmlinuz xencons=hvc console=hvc0 console=tty0 --- xs602/install.img

This file will enable booting from the local disk is no selection is made within 60 tenths od seconds, 6 seconds. AT the prompt you need to type install-xenserver to start the install

The PXE Server provides the OS to start the install but not the files to install. This is where the web server comes in. In the video you will see that I copy from the root of the install CD the files packages* and the repo list: XS-REPOSITORY-LIST. So all the files that start packages and the additional list of files are copied to the web server directory /export/xs602. You need to make sure you web server can access the directory or the directory you copy the files to. The final step is to make sure the DHCP server is configured witht eh filename option and the next-server option. Next-server points tot he TFTP server and the filename option will point to pxelinux.0. Now boot yo the network from your XenServer and the install will start you will need to choose and http installion media rather the local media.



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