[et-mgmt-tools] Cobbler 0.5.0 & koan 0.5.0 released (testing)

Michael DeHaan mdehaan at redhat.com
Wed Jun 27 18:19:55 UTC 2007

Hi folks,

Cobbler 0.5.0 was building up in terms of features and it's time to do a 
release.   This release is a testing release, as indicated by Cobbler 
having an odd number.
Things are expected to work well, and I've done some testing, though 
caution when playing around on a production box is advisable -- there's 
a lot of new stuff here.
(The biggest change is the support for inheritance in profiles and this 
affects the sync code a good bit).

For this release, koan needs to be updated to take advantage of changes 
in cobbler.   Basically, cobblerd is now written in Cobbler's own API, 
and we have
less dependency on YAML.   Removing this sort of thing required changes 
on both sides of the fence.

I will push this to F7-testing's yum repository, shortly, and barring 
any major noise, F-7 stable and FC-6 will follow.


The main changes in cobbler are:

* Cobbler systems can be named anything.   If you want to name them 
"blippy", this works.   If using arbitrary labels, specify the mac with 
--mac or the ip with --ip.
One or the other is required to make a PXE-able configuration, though 
koan doesn't need either.   If you name a system the old way (after the 
MAC address), cobbler
will fill in the value for --mac automatically, as you would expect.

* You can now say things like "cobbler system report FOO" to get the 
properties of just that one system.

* Optionally use dnsmasq for DHCP (and DNS!) instead of ISC 
dhcpd.        You'll need to reload (SIGHUP) dnsmasq peridocally or run 
cobbler sync to make changes made in Cobbler apply to the outside 
world.   This works very well and is quite easy to configure.   See the 
manpage for more details.

* Cobbler system add also takes a --hostname.   If manage_dhcp is 
enabled, and using dnsmasq, this has real meaning.  If not, it's just
a metadata variable to use in templating.

* Triggers are restructed.    There are now "pre" and "post" triggers.   
Pre-triggers run before an object is added, post-triggers run 
afterwards.   Triggers are also now validating.   If a pre trigger 
returns non-zero, it can cancel the creation of a cobbler object.   
Older docs http://et.redhat.com/page/Cobbler_Triggers will be updated 

* Patch to allow --createrepo-flags and to cache on import.  Multiple 
calls to createrepo have been removed.

* Various modifications to allow for profile inheritance.   See the 
manpage or my earlier email to the list for details.


cobbler profile add --name=foo --distro=bar --param1=...
cobbler profile add --name=foo2 --inherit=foo --param2=...

- All variables in object tree now available for use in templating

This means that if you pass in a value to --virt-ram, in the kickstart 
template, you can actually reference $virt-ram as a templating variable, 
This works for all variables.

- Optional override of --kickstart in system object

I'm not sure of a great reason for this, though there have been some 
requests.   If you have a system object and want to use a slightly 
tweaked kickstart file,
you can now do so.  It's still recommended to use templating instead, 

Koan has only changed in order to support Cobbler 0.5.0, including the 
ability to name systems in cobbler after things that are not MAC addresses.
--virt-name still works as an override in koan, though if you do a 
"cobbler system add --name=foo" and a "koan --virt --system=foo 
--server=...", the virtual
system you install will be named, as expected, "foo".


Updates can be found here:  http://cobbler.et.redhat.com/download

Comments/questions welcome.



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