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Bigger doesn't imply better. Bigger often is a sign of obesity, of lost control, of overcomplexity, of cancerous cells

Minimization of boot ISO

Please do the following to create a minimal bootable iso.

  1. Download the iso file rhel-server-6.5-x86_64-boot.iso from the following link, which is proximally  300 MB in size. (Boot.iso file)
  2. Then on your Red Hat Enterprise Linux machine, mount it
    # mount -o loop /path/to/downloaded/rhel-server-6.5-x86_64-boot.iso /mnt
  3. Create a new directory and copy few contents.
    # mkdir -p /tmp/iso
    # cp -avRf /mnt/isolinux/* /tmp/iso
    
  4. Now go to /tmp/iso and create a file ks.cfg as follows.
    # cat /tmp/iso/ks.cfg
    install
    cdrom
    lang en_US.UTF-8
    keyboard us
    network --onboot no --device em1 --bootproto static --ip <IP> --netmask 
    255.255.240.0 --gateway 10.194.176.1 --noipv6 --hostname <hostname>
    network --onboot no --device em2 --bootproto dhcp --noipv6
    network --onboot no --device ib0 --bootproto dhcp --noipv6
    network --onboot no --device ib1 --bootproto dhcp --noipv6
    rootpw <test>
    firewall --service=ssh
    authconfig --enableshadow --passalgo=sha512
    selinux --enforcing
    timezone --utc America/New_York
    bootloader --location=mbr --driveorder=sdb,sda --append="crashkernel=auto rhgb 
    quiet"
    clearpart --none
    part None --fstype=efi --onpart=sda1 --noformat
    part None --fstype=vfat --label="DellUtility" --onpart=sdb1 --noformat
    part / --fstype=ext4 --size=64000
    part /home --fstype=ext4 --size=32000
    part /tmp --fstype=ext4 --grow --size=200
    
    %packages
    @base
    @client-mgmt-tools
    @compat-libraries
    @console-internet
    @core
    @debugging
    @basic-desktop
    @desktop-debugging
    @desktop-platform
    @development
    @ftp-server
    @fonts
    @general-desktop
    @graphical-admin-tools
    @input-methods
    @internet-browser
    @java-platform
    @legacy-x
    @network-file-system-client
    @network-tools
    @performance
    @perl-runtime
    @remote-desktop-clients
    @server-platform
    @server-policy
    @system-admin-tools
    @x11
    mtools
    pax
    python-dmidecode
    wodim
    sgpio
    genisoimage
    dos2unix
    unix2dos
    device-mapper-persistent-data
    ftp
    lftp
    mutt
    systemtap-client
    abrt-gui
    expect
    jpackage-utils
    libXmu
    arpwatch
    nmap
    perl-DBD-SQLite
    mc
    screen
    tree
    hardlink
    expect
    vlock
    lsscsi
    -nano
    -trace-cmd
    -valgrind
    -crash-gcore-command
    -crash-trace-command
    -byacc
    -rcs
    -swig
    %end
    
  5. Please replace cdrom by the URL of yum repository and hostname/IP and root password must be changed. I assume you make this changes and after making these changes, put the ks.cfg in /tmp/isodirectory.

     
  6. Then open the file /tmp/iso/isolinux.cfg and make the following changes. It should appear as follows only.
    default vesamenu.c32
    #prompt 1
    timeout 600
    
    display boot.msg
    
    menu background splash.jpg
    menu title Welcome to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5!
    menu color border 0 #ffffffff #00000000
    menu color sel 7 #ffffffff #ff000000
    menu color title 0 #ffffffff #00000000
    menu color tabmsg 0 #ffffffff #00000000
    menu color unsel 0 #ffffffff #00000000
    menu color hotsel 0 #ff000000 #ffffffff
    menu color hotkey 7 #ffffffff #ff000000
    menu color scrollbar 0 #ffffffff #00000000
    
    label linux
    menu label ^Install or upgrade an existing system
    menu default
    kernel vmlinuz
    append initrd=initrd.img ks=cdrom:/ks.cfg
    label vesa
    menu label Install system with ^basic video driver
    kernel vmlinuz
    append initrd=initrd.img xdriver=vesa nomodeset
    label rescue
    menu label ^Rescue installed system
    kernel vmlinuz
    append initrd=initrd.img rescue
    label local
    menu label Boot from ^local drive
    localboot 0xffff
    label memtest86
    menu label ^Memory test
    kernel memtest
    append -
    
  7. Then create a bootable media
    # cd /tmp/iso
    # mkisofs -r -T -J -b isolinux.bin -c boot.cat \
     -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table -v -o /tmp/linuxboot.iso .
    
    After running this command, you will get the resulting iso /tmp/linuxboot.iso with almost 35 MB in size which will automatically deploy machines using kickstart and network repositories.

Kickstart Tools Introduction

Once the bootdisk lauches the kernel, it looks in the ks.cfg file to figure out where it is going to get it's root file system.
This is specified in the NFS line in ks.cfg. For example, here is the default nfs line:

nfs --server KickStart.cisco.com --dir /export/ftp/pub/linux/redhat/linux/7.0/en/os/i386



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