Need information about customizing ISO images

General support questions including new installations

Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby marty_one » 2009/11/04 05:31:56

I know there are similar topics about this that have been posted, but the information I need I cannot find. Im in a situation where I have two new HP DL360 G6 servers, both have a HP Smart Array B110i Sata Raid Controller. Since the raid controller is so new CentOS 5.3/5.4 and RHEL 5.3/5.4 do not have support built into the installer.

I do have a driver for the raid controller which I have used and successfully installed CentOS 5.3 on one of the systems.

The reason I need to customize an ISO is because I need the raid controller driver as part of the installation disc. As these systems are servers and are going to be deployed remotely I will not have physical access to these systems if they need to be rebuilt. I also have to build machines remotely as well using iLO (having a floppy image or usb image of the drivers does not work through iLO).

The installation rpm's can be as is, I do not need to make any changes there. I just need to make sure that the raid controller driver is loaded into memory from the media rather than another media source, before the installer kicks in.

Also please remember I am a bit of a newb here and where I work there is no-one else who knows about this stuff.

Regards
Martin.
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby arrfab » 2009/11/04 19:31:52

There is no need (at least for such a basic problem) to rebuild a modified iso (with a modified initrd that contains the .ko for the raid controller) : just specify dd= and point to the necessary driver disk (can be on http/ftp/nfs remote folder)
On the other hand i'm surprized that a HP/Compaq raid controller isn't handled by the cciss .ko module .. I don't have time to search for you but are you sure that it's a real raid controller and not a fake one ?
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby marty_one » 2009/11/04 22:40:43

Do you have an example of syntax required for the dd command to include the driver in the iso image?
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby pschaff » 2009/11/05 02:07:34

The "dd=" parameter is to specify a "driver disk" for the installer to load. It has nothing to do with the "dd" command, nor creating a new ISO image.
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby marty_one » 2009/11/05 05:21:12

pschaff wrote:
The "dd=" parameter is to specify a "driver disk" for the installer to load. It has nothing to do with the "dd" command, nor creating a new ISO image.


Im sorry but this does not solve the problem i am faced with. With the types of systems I deal with, sometimes I wont have physical access to these system to build. I have to do it through iLO (hardware based remote access to the server). At the moment the only solution I can see that will work is to re-author the iso image of CentOS 5.3 to inlcude the raid controller driver when it loads all the other drivers before the installation application starts.

Is there any official documentation/faq/howto to do this?

Regards
Martin.
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby arrfab » 2009/11/05 07:21:43

marty_one wrote:
pschaff wrote:
The "dd=" parameter is to specify a "driver disk" for the installer to load. It has nothing to do with the "dd" command, nor creating a new ISO image.


Im sorry but this does not solve the problem i am faced with. With the types of systems I deal with, sometimes I wont have physical access to these system to build. I have to do it through iLO (hardware based remote access to the server).


Yes it solves the problem you're faced to (assuming your hardware manufacturer gives you a driver disk). What's the problem with the dd= parameter we gave you ? The only time i had to modify the initrd.img file was when i had to setup over the network *and* that the network card wasn't included, which isn't your problem here. You don't need physical access to that system for the dd= parameter to work (see http://www.centos.org/docs/5/html/5.2/I ... s-x86.html)

BTW you still haven't answered the 'fakeraid' question, which i think is the real issue here : i doubt such embedded controller is a real raid adapter, and i even think that it's only based on the ICH10 chipset. When you boot the installer, do you see two independant volumes ? If so , forget about that fakeraid configuration and use linux software raid instead ...
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby pschaff » 2009/11/05 11:13:33

marty_one wrote:
...the only solution I can see that will work is to re-author the iso image of CentOS 5.3 to inlcude [sic] the raid controller driver...


The current release is 5.4, so starting with 5.3 is not recommended. I strongly agree with arrfab that dd= should do what you need, and that you need to give some consideration to the RAID. Please see http://wiki.centos.org/HowTos/SoftwareRAIDonCentOS5 for some discussion of the issues.
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby marty_one » 2009/11/05 21:16:32

BTW you still haven't answered the 'fakeraid' question, which i think is the real issue here : i doubt such embedded controller is a real raid adapter, and i even think that it's only based on the ICH10 chipset. When you boot the installer, do you see two independant volumes ? If so , forget about that fakeraid configuration and use linux software raid instead


To be honest im not sure about what you mean by real raid/fake raid as there is a built in hardware controller for it. I might agree with you that it might be a fake raid as in the past with these systems, the raid controller that came with them I not only had to create the raid config but build the array as well. With these new ones you create the raid config but you dont build the array!

You don't need physical access to that system for the dd= parameter to work (see http://www.centos.org/docs/5/html/5.2/I ... s-x86.html)


Thanks for the link, as you said it definately does answer my question. I was getting really frustrated that everything i tried before getting on the forums wasnt working.

I have one question though. The way HP releases the drivers is in a format created by the dd command (iso format I think), will I need to get the files extracted and put into the same directory layout if i put the files on a nfs/http location?
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby marty_one » 2009/11/05 23:28:26

I have been trying the dd= option as suggested. I have extracted the files as they were out of the iso image(hpahcisr-1.2.1-6.rhel5.x86_64.dd) provided by HP. The list of files from the archive are:

Code: Select all
[ ]   fix_driver_order   06-Nov-2009 19:33    362
[ ]   modinfo   06-Nov-2009 19:33    69
[ ]   modules.alias   06-Nov-2009 19:33    132
[ ]   modules.cgz   06-Nov-2009 19:33    399K
[TXT]   modules.dep   06-Nov-2009 19:33    0
[ ]   pcitable   06-Nov-2009 19:33    158
[ ]   rhdd   06-Nov-2009 19:33    32


i then copied these files to a apache webserver that is local to my network (ie: http://192.168.X.X/hpb110i). when the boot loader came up i entered:

Code: Select all
linux dd=http://192.168.X.X/hpb110i


but it didnt load or find anything. I also tried:

Code: Select all
linux dd=nfs://192.168.X.X/opt/hpb110i


I even extracted out the "hpahcisr.ko" for the 2.6.18-128.el5 kernel (default for CentOS 5.3) and tried to reference it specifically

Code: Select all
linux dd=http://192.168.X.X/hpb110i/hpahcisr.ko


after changing the extension of hpahcisr-1.2.1-6.rhel5.x86_64.dd from dd to iso/img (they are the same format arent they?) i tried:

Code: Select all
linux dd=http://192.168.X.X/hpb110i/hpahcisr-1.2.1-6.rhel5.x86_64.img


and still didnt work. Is there something basic that i might be missing?

also I am stuck with having to use CentOS 5.3 as the default supported kernel by the driver is 2.6.18.128.el5 or 2.6.18-92.el5. There is no newer releases yet. I have even gone as far as trying RHEL 5.4 (the driver doesnt work with the kernel in this version, i know this because I have built one of the two servers following the steps outlined in the text files, ie: writing the image to a usbkey, running "linux dd" at the boot prompt, pluging in the usbkey to the server for the bootloader to find and load the drivers)
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Re: Need information about customizing ISO images

Postby AlanBartlett » 2009/11/06 14:33:33

Something to try.


[ ] modules.cgz 06-Nov-2009 19:33 399K


The modules.cgz file contains the driver module. It's a gzip'ed cpio archive, so you could extract the .ko file from it and attempt to use it . . . ?
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