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I am trying to find a solution when deploying VMs and physical hosts using PXE where I can interact with a database to build a host or VM so I can manipulate the build process. An example of this would be to build a xenserver using a database so I can determine to role of the xenserver, ie is it a pool master or a slave. I could have IP information regarding the pool, the members in that pool and hostnames etc. I then would run a python script for example that could look up database values and configure the host accordingly. This is sometimes referred to as zero touch.

I have been reading up about puppet razor, cobbler, gpxe and some other next gen pxe tools but I thought I would ask if it is possible to interact with a database using these tools, or if anyone else has had some experience doing this?

The problem I see is when do I run these scripts to interact with a DB? Ie, can I get the PXE server to do this and pass the values to the servers I am building via say a kickstart script or do I do run the scripts directly on the server after PXE has build the server?

Any suggestions would be welcome? Many thanks

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Spacewalk. –  Michael Hampton Jan 15 '13 at 6:53

2 Answers 2

In Microsoft "standardized" world what you describe is call today SCCM 2012

On the non-standard world (Linux, Hypervisors, Recovery tools, etc) there's nothing like that. SCCM is really a big ball, really a big one, can you imagine what kind of monster a tool like the one you describe would be? to code and maintain that thing would be a daunting task. Then the answer to your question is No; there's nothing like you describe and I seriously doubt will ever exist.

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it's amazing when people downvote an run-away ;-) –  Pat Feb 14 '13 at 13:24
    
I was talking to someone from puppet labs who said this is possible using dynamic kickstart scripts. I think possibly the downvote was for "I seriously doubt will ever exist". I suppose what the guys at puppet labs are saying is, use dynamic kickstart scripts with values coming from a data source, so it already exists. I saw puppet razor being demo'd and it sends an xml file from a micro kernal back to the puppet razor server, so essentially, using a xlm parser, you could read those values and send back a dynamic kickstart file to the pxe build server. That is what I am looking at right now.. –  Oli Mar 6 '13 at 11:14
up vote 0 down vote accepted

I looked at puppet razor and as per my comment above, this is for me the way forward. I can't detail too much just yet as I don't have all the answers.

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