[K12OSN] (OT) K12LTSP/XP dual partition: working ghost image

Les Mikesell les at futuresource.com
Mon Jun 19 14:59:42 UTC 2006

On Mon, 2006-06-19 at 06:51 -0600, Alan Hodson wrote:
> Faced with budgetary constraints and pressured by inquisitive minds
> there is a need at the district level to look into using PCs (mostly
> Dells) as dual partition machines. While Knoppix and other forensic
> tools provide a way of partitioning, and K12LTSP provides an ideal dual
> desktop environ, the quest for an image tool (not necessarily Open
> Source) is on. Norton/Symantec ghost tool (huge district license) will
> not provide a working image that out techs can "just drop" into a
> machine and have it be reborn as a dual boot system... Is there anybody
> in the list that has had any luck creating a working image of a
> dual-partitioned hard drive? Please share your experience - Even though
> I have been a strong advocate of Thin Clients for years, there is now an
> opportunity to advocate K12LTSP, and I am convinced that if a working DB
> image is available (something the techs can easily manipulate), the
> students would embrace the "new" operating system right away.

First, you might want to consider accessing the k12ltsp system with
X running on the windows box instead of needing a separate boot. You
may not be able to get sound or the extra features of teachertool to
work but it should work fine otherwise.  There are at least 2 free
versions, cygwin and this: http://www.straightrunning.com/XmingNotes/.
With X in fullscreen and -query mode you would see little difference
from a thin client boot.

However, if you really need dual boot from the hard drive and the
drives are all identical, a simple dd copy of the whole device
should do it.  For example, if you connect the disks up as
the primary on each ide controller so they become /dev/hda and /dev/hdc
you can boot about any run-from-cd linux (for example the k12ltsp first
install disk with 'linux rescue' at the boot prompt) you can
dd bs=1M if=/dev/hda of=hdc
and get an exact copy.  There are any number of ways to do the
same thing to/from a file accessed over the network if you don't
want to swap drives.  You'll either need an enterprise licensed XP
or you have to sysprep the source before the copy and go through
the license process on each copy.  If there are hardware differences
you may need the sysprep anyway. On the Linux side the only likely
problem is that you might have to remove the HWADDR line from
/etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0 so it will work on
a different machine.

  Les Mikesell
   les at futuresource.com

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