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I use PXE + kickstart in conjunction with Foreman, to install new hosts over the network. I've run into a problem while trying to install Red Hat 5. It looks like the older vmlinuz in RH5 does not support the same kernel parameters as the vmlinuz in RH6.

The problem I'm having is retrieving the kickstart file. The kickstart file is provided over HTTPS from Foreman. This works fine for RH6, so long as I specify a nameserver to use during installation (with nameserver=) as well as "noverifyssl", so the installer doesn't attempt to verify the self-signed certificate of my Foreman host.

These parameters don't seem to exist for RH5. As a results, RH5 is unable to resolve the hostname and pull its kickstart file.

I'm able to install RHEL 6 on a host with a PXE configuration file that looks like this:

default linux
label linux
kernel boot/RHEL_6_x86_64-x86_64-vmlinuz
append initrd=boot/RHEL_6_x86_64-x86_64-initrd.img ks=https://myforemanserver.domain/unattended/provision?token=2134134 nameserver=192.168.1.1 ksdevice=bootif network kssendmac noverifyssl
IPAPPEND 2

The same does not work for RHEL5, while using the vmlinuz and initrd for that release. According to https://access.redhat.com/documentation/en-US/Red_Hat_Enterprise_Linux/5/html/Installation_Guide/s1-kickstart2-startinginstall.html, I should be able to specify DNS servers as "dns=". Unfortunately, that did not work for me either.

I could potentially disable SSL on the Foreman server, and just use an IP address over port 80. I'd prefer not to do that. Is there another way to do this?

  • I'm sorry you have to install new EL5 servers. – ewwhite Feb 13 '16 at 0:58
  • I need the ability to rebuild legacy servers in the event of a failure. Not uncommon for a large environment. – blindsnowmobile Feb 16 '16 at 19:28
  • If anyone is interested - the issue was the RH5 initial ram disk. It's using busybox with a version of wget that does not support SSL. Unfortunately it looks like the only options are to roll a custom initrd, or don't serve the kickstart over SSL. – blindsnowmobile Feb 16 '16 at 19:30

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