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Re: [K12OSN] Dual boot to LTSP?

Michael Thomas wrote:
We have an existing Windows 98 lab used for training. However, we want to be able to use the existing lab to train teachers on Linux / LTSP applications. Of course, setting up a dual boot Windows/Linux machine is fairly easy, but the LTSP lab model has generated some questions:

1. Can the machines be set up to boot off of the LTSP server over the LAN without affecting the Windows setup on the HD? I would assume this is the case since the standard k12LTSP setup bypasses the local HD by the use of a boot rom image on a floppy. Would the use of a boot rom floppy when desiring Linux be the easiest way to do this? Or is there better way?

I would recommend using floppies (you could also make CDs that would do the same thing, but floppies are probably much better in your situation.) Using the Network/Local boot option of Etherboot can sometimes not work as expected, depending on your BIOS and other factors. I suspect you can depend on teachers to be able to handle this without stealing or trashing the floppies. ;^)

2. These Windows machines already received their IPs via a centralized DHCP server. Assuming that we want to leave these machines plugged in to the existing LAN, how do we configure the workstations to get their DHCP numbers? Not from the LTSP server, but from the LAN DHCP server, right? If so, do we turn off DHCP services on the LTSP server? How then does the workstation know to pull the kernel, apps, etc. via TFTP from the LTSP server? What other sorts of changes need to be made to the LTSP server? Workstations?

Etherboot can be configured to send a special "key" in its DHCP request, and the DHCP server on an LTSP server can be configured to respond only to such requests and include a special "key" in the reply. This means that you can have a DHCP server running on the LTSP server independently from the one running on your Windows server.

You might need to "steal" a small range of addresses from the Win DHCP
server so that they don't both give out the same addresses, assuming there
are other Windows machines on your network that need addresses.

Scan the mailing list archive at www.etherboot.net for specifics on
setting up Etherboot and the DHCP server to do this, it has been
discussed a number of times.

Hope this helps. Good luck!


Don Christensen       Senior Software Development Engineer
djc cisco com         Cisco Systems, Santa Cruz, CA
  "It was a new day yesterday, but it's an old day now."

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