Someone set me up with a dedicated server to play around with and I was wondering if I could do a clean install of Ubuntu remotely without losing my privileges, etc once it's reinstalled.

  1. Is this possible?
  2. Can I do it without having to be physically there to add myself back in?
  3. Is there a tutorial or does someone have some steps?


  • What's running on the dedicated server now? Do you have remote IP KVM capabilities or Serial over LAN? – gravyface May 3 '11 at 17:35
  • It's running Ubuntu 10.5 right now. – Scott Yu - builds stuff May 3 '11 at 21:44

If you are willing to experiment.

It might be possible using a combination of two things. First is using the steps outlined in the Netboot install from Internet guide. Then you can use Kickstart to customize it and add your user for ssh access.

Also please share your findings here because am sure many people including myself would be interested.


It depends on your setup and what type of remote management you have. If you have IPMI then you can connect to the IPMI console and using netboot you can load the system that way.

Another way is to use Netboot and use either Kickstart or Preseed to install the system.

Finally if you have DRAC or iLO then you can use the remote device abilities of those system to share over the network your local cdrom. I have not used that but I have used preseed and kickstart to install systems many times. I use preseed so I can just start up a machine for testing very quickly. My VM's are very weak so it takes a while for me to install a VM. But I come back to a fully working system to customize as needed.

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