I have multiple diagnostics CDs that I want to avoid making twenty copies of for the sake of time and convenience. I figured a good way to do this would be to boot an image of the necessary CD over the network. However, most of the information on booting over the network is about imaging.

I've looked at a few open-source solutions, but all of them were relevant to install, backing up, or restoring an OS. I'd like to be able to select the network boot as the computer's booting, select which CD image to boot to, and have the rest be just as if I'd put the disc straight in the drive.

What sort of server do I need? Are there any software solutions that you would recommend? Am I missing something entirely?

  • You haven't mentioned the operating system that you're using. Aug 8, 2014 at 11:18

2 Answers 2


I used a fedora 20 iso and hosted it out to an entire lab. you don't mention what OS you're using, but check out PXEboot. It requires you have access to your DHCP server, a TFTP server, and storage enough to host your files. This method works for about every linux distro. I posted a howto a while back on my blog using fedora 20 as the client os and RHEL7 as the host: http://hackerhomebrew.com/blog/?p=23

  • Well, the PCs being diagnosed are going to be Windows 7, but it's looking like Linux Mint is good for me. I'll definitely be using your howto as reference here and there.
    – Dan
    Aug 7, 2014 at 20:34
  • If you're using windows, there's WDS which is designed for creating and applying images, but i think it can be used to boot up a windows 'live' environment as well. Aug 7, 2014 at 21:21

Basically a tftp + DHCP server, shipping out pxelinux and memdisk, and then the ISO files.

  • memdisk is a limited solution that only works "sometimes"
    – Pat
    Aug 15, 2014 at 10:29

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