IRC chat logs for #ltsp on irc.freenode.net (webchat)


Channel log from 30 October 2014   (all times are UTC)

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04:47
<championofcyrodi>
vagrantc: is there a prepackaged kernel that would include the intel ethernet drivers? may be a foolish question, but can i just use a compiled kernel from an installation of the OS already running on a desktop? I've never compiled a kernel before today, so I'm not sure if i need to even do this, or if there is a prepackaged kernel that will support the ethernet and nfs root fs.
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04:49
<alkisg>
championofcyrodi: you "cannot use source or binaries that are not 'approved' by someone" but you can compile and use your own kernel?
04:49
What's stopping you from using the newest ltsp sources?
04:49
<championofcyrodi>
well, the kernel source is in the centos repo
04:50
<alkisg>
Does the centos repo have ltsp? Which version/
04:50
?
04:50
<championofcyrodi>
the client network will only allow rhel/centos+epel6 packages
04:51
its 'k12linux'
04:51
and i couldnt get it to work
04:51
<alkisg>
How does compiling a kernel help you?
04:51
<championofcyrodi>
so i thought i would try something similar to what ltsp does
04:54
<alkisg>
If you use the same arch as the server, sure, you could use the kernel of the server in the chroot as well
04:54
I've never used centos, but in ubuntu, adding a module goes like this: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/UbuntuLTSP/AddingModules
04:55
I.e. it involves initramfs modules, not kernel compilation
04:55
You can also use something like this, to get a fat client chroot out of a standalone installation:
04:55
!ltsp-pnp
04:55
<ltsp>
ltsp-pnp: ltsp-pnp is an alternative (upstream) method to maintain LTSP installations for thin and fat clients that doesn't involve chroots: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/UbuntuLTSP/ltsp-pnp
04:57
<championofcyrodi>
http://blog.devicenull.org/2012/01/22/nfs-booting-using-only-the-kernel.html
04:58
so i was reading that blog, which talks about booting a centos kernel and starting a bash shell in a minimal filesystem
04:58
that is nfs mounted
04:58
<alkisg>
Why not use an initramfs, which is much easier? Doesn't centos use an initramfs by default, for netbooted clients?
04:59
Using the kernel only might save you a couple of seconds in boot time, but I don't think it's worth the trouble
05:00
<championofcyrodi>
this site: http://kernelnewbies.org/FAQ/DisklessImages discusses using a initramfs instead, but it still seems to require networking as well no?
05:00
<alkisg>
The modules should be included in the initramfs
05:00
So your intel should work out of the box there
05:01
<championofcyrodi>
interesting. so if i choose to use initramfs, i just need to make sure the filesystem includes the needed modules in /lib?
05:01
<alkisg>
It should already include them, but yup, that's it
05:01
You can unzip your initramfs and see for yourself
05:01
(the "server" one, in /boot/initrd*whatever
05:01
E.g. with `zcat initrd | cpio -i`
05:02
I think the easiest thing to do in your case would be to troubleshoot k12linux though
05:02
<championofcyrodi>
okay. it is odd, but in the 2nd link i posted, there is a statement just above using CPIO based raminitfs that says "If your kernel is compiled with modules, don't forget to install the modules in the right place." but i had no idea how i would include the network modules if the fs is nfs!?
05:04
so in ltsp, a ramfs is started... then unionfs of the root fs with nbd image?
05:04
<alkisg>
zcat /boot/initrd.img-3.13.0-37-generic | cpio --list | grep atl1c.ko
05:04
lib/modules/3.13.0-37-generic/kernel/drivers/net/ethernet/atheros/atl1c/atl1c.ko
05:05
That's how I verify that e.g. the atheros module is included. It's autoloaded by the initramfs.
05:05
initramfs is started, which uses nbd/nfs/aoe to mount the root file system readonly,
05:06
<championofcyrodi>
thats crazy
05:06
<alkisg>
then uses overlayfs or aufs to merge it with a tmpfs to make it writeable
05:06
Fedora etc might use unionfs instead, no idea
05:16
<championofcyrodi>
thank you for the feedback. I will look in to using initramfs instead of nfs. ultimately my users can work on a server via ssh/nx/X, but just cant have hard disks in their workstations. and with the requirement of using rhel/centos repos, I'm hoping to reproduce something like LTSP on Ubuntu, as the users on the ubuntu network love LTSP fat clients we have (Intel NUCs). I looked at the common/shared scripts in the ltsp
05:17
i guess it is learning up if you look at OSI model
05:17
ethernet -> software
05:18
<alkisg>
I think your paragraph was too long and it was cut in half, the last I saw was "I looked at the common/shared scripts in the ltsp"
05:19
<championofcyrodi>
I looked at the common/shared scripts in the ltsp launchpad repo for the redhat distro... but I just don't understand enough about linux bootstrap process to integrate with something so well established. so i'm starting from core services (tftpd+dhcp) and learning up/down.
05:19
<alkisg>
You can use initramfs _and_ nfs for netbooting. It's just easier to use "kernel + initramfs" rather than plain "kernel".
05:19
E.g. debian defaults to using initramfs + nfs, while ubuntu defaults to initramfs + nbd
05:20
<championofcyrodi>
that makes sense.
05:21
<alkisg>
Creating a chroot is the easy part; netbooting it over a read-only master template is a bit harder
05:22
It'll be easier to read the ltsp code base for the netbooting part, rather than re-implementing it from scratch
05:22
<championofcyrodi>
the blog lead me to believe compiling nfs module support into a kernel would be trivial. and honestly, it worked fine the 1st time. it wasnt until i went and tried to include the intel drivers that i got stuck.
05:22
<alkisg>
You can ignore all the `ltsp-build-client` bits though, you can create a chroot however you want, even with e.g. virtualbox
05:22
Mounting nfs read-only won't help you though
05:23
So you'll then change your requirements and decide that "plain kernel is not enough"
05:23
<championofcyrodi>
aparently you can use " yum --installroot /chrootpath install base filesystem bash"
05:23
<alkisg>
If you want fat clients, I'd suggest using a vm instead of a chroot
05:23
It's way easier to manage it
05:23
(netbooted fat clients, of course)
05:24
Or, ltsp-pnp
05:26
<championofcyrodi>
oh no... vagrantc lead me towards that... couldnt figure it out. I'll have to go through the process of initramfs and getting my test client in to bash first. then maybe what LTSP-pnp is doing will make more sense.
05:28
<alkisg>
With ltsp-pnp, you don't have to create an initramfs, you just use your existing one without modifications
05:28
championofcyrodi: can you post your current initrd, e.g. from your server?
05:29
(from any centos installation, that is...)
05:29
<championofcyrodi>
you mean the initrd.img ?
05:29
<alkisg>
Yes
05:29
Not from a chroot. From the server.
05:30
<championofcyrodi>
sure
05:30
i guess i will have to find it on the server.
05:30
<alkisg>
Somewhere under /boot
05:34
<championofcyrodi>
contents of /boot: http://pastebin.com/bZBxivHs
05:35
<alkisg>
And the output of `uname -a` ?
05:35
<championofcyrodi>
i am using VPN, so the actual server (centos 6.5 minimal) is not available to me, but that list is from my 2.6.32-431.29.2.el6.x86_64
05:36
from my centos 6.5 server i was using to build the kernel
05:36
which is the same install
05:36
<alkisg>
Any centos installation would do, no problem
05:36
Just upload one of the initramfs files somewhere... dropbox, wherever
05:36
E.g. initramfs-2.6.32-431.29.2.el6.x86_64.img
05:37
<championofcyrodi>
gotcha.. 1 sec
05:37
i guess i should create a drop box account...
05:38
<alkisg>
Where do you upload big files? It doesn't need to be dropbox...
05:39
<championofcyrodi>
heh... a hard drive, and then snail mail.
05:39
ill just create a drop box.
05:42
does this work? https://www.dropbox.com/s/icl3bi8pmze8gkk/initramfs-2.6.32-431.el6.x86_64.img?dl=0
05:42
<alkisg>
Yup
05:43
cd $(mktemp); zcat ~/Desktop/initramfs-2.6.32-431.el6.x86_64.img | cpio -i
05:43
That's how you look inside your initramfs
05:44
<championofcyrodi>
<-- man pages zcat....
05:45
output was: bash: cd: /tmp/tmp.6id1zcMyI8: Not a directory
05:45
82688 blocks
05:48
i see. zcat would 'cat' the archive and decompress in to cpio and copy files from archive (initramfs) to /tmp/sometmpfolder
05:48
is what you intented
05:48
theni can see the contents in the /tmp folder
05:50
<alkisg>
Sorry, mktemp -d
05:50
<championofcyrodi>
alkisg: http://landley.net/writing/rootfs-howto.html <- first sentence is like what you say
05:50
~because it saves memory, gives the user more control over the boot process, and simplifies the kernel's internal implementation. 
05:52
whoa... initramfs is like a whole linux filesystem
05:52
the mini linux to load the rest of your linux..
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05:54
<championofcyrodi>
Do all the common linux distros boot this way?! if so I feel so ignorant not knowing for so long.
05:54
<alkisg>
Yes, all distros I've tried so far use an initramfs
05:55
<championofcyrodi>
heh, so i can just use my own initramfs... is this specified in the pxelinux cfg as 'initrd=' ?
05:56
<alkisg>
Yes
05:56
Distros usually have ways to modify your initramfs in a standard way
05:56
E.g. in debian we say "modules=net" and it includes all network modules inside it
05:57
And it's re-created after each kernel upgrade, it's not shipped by packages
05:57
mkinitramfs etc
05:57
<championofcyrodi>
i need some time to think about that
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06:00
<championofcyrodi>
so upstream i just get the kernel update... 'kernel images/vmlinuz'
06:00
but the distro, like debian, has a custom initramfs for their specific kernel package config...
06:00
e.g. they may or may not include certain modules like nfs,crypto,etc.
06:00
<alkisg>
Each distribution has its own initramfs implementation
06:01
Debian uses initramfs-tools, Centos uses dracut etc
06:01
<championofcyrodi>
they both use the same kernel build?
06:01
<alkisg>
Yes
06:01
<championofcyrodi>
so then it makes no sense for me to have to build my own kernel... just use initramfs
06:01
<alkisg>
Right
06:02
<championofcyrodi>
lol
06:02
<alkisg>
You just need to learn how to tell dracut to include the intel module
06:02
You don't need to do it manually, it will be a single line, like Debian's "modules=net"
06:03
http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Dracut/Options#-m.2C_--modules
06:04
Nah, not that
06:04
--drivers instead
06:04
"Specify a space-separated list of kernel modules to include in the initramfs."
06:04
<championofcyrodi>
https://access.redhat.com/documentation/en-US/Red_Hat_Enterprise_Linux/6/html/Deployment_Guide/sec-Verifying_the_Initial_RAM_Disk_Image.html#procedure-Verifying_the_Initial_RAM_Disk_Image i have reading to do...
06:05
<alkisg>
The ltsp sources have code for all that
06:05
So you can grep the sources in order to find a good way to do these things in centos
06:05
But keep in mind that troubleshooting ltsp will be waaaay easier than re-inventing the wheel
06:08
<championofcyrodi>
I have talked with my peers about using and updating the LTSP source. However, I am often on my own and tasked with several projects at the same time.
06:09
and the 'approved software' list is WAY out of my hands
06:10
i think right now the consensus is "lets figure out how pxeboot linux works. then look we can understand what ltsp is doing."
06:11
i've just been supporting it via ltsp-chroot and ltsp-update-image on the ubuntu systems... and thats pretty much it.
06:13
<alkisg>
E.g. now you were reading about compiling kernels etc, and you realized that it's really wasted time
06:14
<championofcyrodi>
it is not wasted because now i understand why initramfs exists.
06:14
<alkisg>
ltsp will direct you at what you really need, unlike any netbooting page out there in the internet
06:14
<championofcyrodi>
rather than accept that it does
06:14
<alkisg>
You only understand it because I took the time to direct you there :)
06:14
ltsp sources would do that instead of me...
06:14
googling about kernel compilation wouldn't
06:15
<championofcyrodi>
i agree with that.
06:21
the ltsp sources, are these them: http://bazaar.launchpad.net/~ubuntu-branches/ubuntu/trusty/ltsp/trusty/files/head:/client/k12linux/ ?
06:22
<alkisg>
!ltsp-upstream
06:22
<ltsp>
ltsp-upstream: Comitters to the LTSP upstream branch on launchpad: https://launchpad.net/~ltsp-upstream
06:23
<alkisg>
That's the upstream part, some distros also carry a small distro-specific part in their own repositories
06:23
!ltsp-source
06:23
<ltsp>
ltsp-source: at http://bazaar.launchpad.net/~ltsp-upstream/ltsp/ltsp-trunk/files
06:23
<alkisg>
Sorry, that one instead ^
06:25
<championofcyrodi>
weird, there is k12linux, redhat and dracut...
06:26
i see, debian and Ubuntu... these are actually separate distros
06:26
for some reason i always thought ubuntu *was* debian
06:28
<alkisg>
It's a "child" of debian, it has a few changes specific to it
06:28* alkisg and vagrantc were trying to minimize them as much as possible
06:30
<championofcyrodi>
gotcha. thanks for your time. if you're interested i've verified that the ubuntu ltsp packages work in docker and have been running a 10 client server for about 60 days in a linux container. makes it much easier to deploy an instance and point your 'next-server' at it.
06:32
probably outside the scope of ltsp actually. nvm
06:32
<alkisg>
I haven't heard of docker... it seems a little vague to me where it could help
06:33
<championofcyrodi>
docker is similar to vagrant. https://www.docker.com/
06:33
it's like a virtual machine... but does not actually do the full initd
06:33
<alkisg>
like lxc?
06:34
<championofcyrodi>
yes
06:34
but fantastic wrapper
06:34
<alkisg>
Ah, it's a wrapper for lxc?
06:34
<championofcyrodi>
yes... with layered file system.
06:34
<alkisg>
Cool
06:35
<championofcyrodi>
was able to make a simple dockerfile for ltsp... and map port 69/udp, 10300??/tcp (nbd) and 22/tcp (ssh) and run the full ltsp with the chroot as a host loop back volume
06:36
http://championofcyrodiil.blogspot.com/2014/08/ubuntu-1404-ltsp-docker-container.html
06:37
the host is actually centos 6.5... but the LXC is ubuntu 14.04
06:39
initially i had issues with the cloud image of ubuntu 14.04 because of pam.d config. so i did a tar of an ubuntu 14.04 VM excluded /proc and /sys
06:39
then used that as the base image for the container
07:20alkisg is now known as work_alkisg
07:25
<wouter>
work_alkisg: re: deadlocks for doing /dev/sda: deadlocks occur on client side, not on server side
07:26
if you connect to it from localhost and have a single-CPU system, you might run into trouble (that problem has never been fixed, TTBOMK)
07:27
if you somehow make a local device depend on your own export (i.e., you import the export from another machine and then re-export (part of) that back to the original), you will most likely run into trouble as well
07:27
if you don't do such silly things, though, all should be fine
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15:39
<alkisg>
!client-list
15:39
<ltsp>
client-list: to get a list of all nbd-clients (which sometimes is the same as ltsp clients), run: netstat -tn | sed -n 's/.*:10809 *\([0-9.]*\):.*/\1/p' | sort -Vu
15:42
<alkisg>
wouter: thanks, I'll start posting tutorials on how to clone disks via nbd-server + ltsp ;)
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16:51
<alkisg>
!xterm
16:51
<ltsp>
I do not know about 'xterm', but I do know about these similar topics: 'localxterm'
16:55
<alkisg>
!learn xterm-xsession as if you see LDM but then immediately after login Xorg fails, try this for troubleshooting: LDM_XSESSION="/usr/bin/xterm -class"
16:55
<ltsp>
The operation succeeded.
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17:17
<JuJuBee>
Anyone here use a raspberry pi with ltsp?
17:19
<alkisg>
gbaman, I think
17:19
vagrantc also has some experience with pis but doesn't recommend them because they're too slow
17:20
<JuJuBee>
Im currently running a fat client 64bit and wondered if I should set up a new network to test the pi on?
17:20
<alkisg>
New network? Do you mean new ltsp image?
17:20
<JuJuBee>
separate lan
17:21
build a new ltsp server with a 32bit image thin client
17:21
<alkisg>
You don't need a separate lan... just separate the clients with dhcp
17:21
<JuJuBee>
I can build a second image on the server and direct clients to it by MAC?
17:23
<alkisg>
Yup
17:23
<JuJuBee>
if my server is running ubuntu 14 64 bit, how do I create a 32 bit image? Im guessing 32 bit will be better for pi?
17:26
<alkisg>
arm, not 32 bit
17:26
read some pi how-to
17:29
<JuJuBee>
I found this http://www.uzerp.com/blog/running-raspberry-pis-as-thin-clients-with-ubuntu-14-04-lts/ and they suggest i386 arch. The berryterminal running on the pi seems to use RDP
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17:59
<alkisg>
JuJuBee: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raspberry_Pi => CPU ARM1176JZF-S (ARMv6k) 700 MHz
17:59
That's not i386, you can't use an i386 chroot to netboot pis
17:59
You need an arm image
18:01
I think vagrantc has a how-to for pis, you may ask him for the link..
18:01
!pi
18:01
<ltsp>
Error: "pi" is not a valid command.
18:02
<alkisg>
!raspberrypi
18:02
<ltsp>
raspberrypi: (#1) LTSP with raspberry pi: http://cascadia.debian.net/trenza/Documentation/raspberrypi-ltsp-howto/, or (#2) To use a similar environment to LTSP on the raspberry pi http://berryterminal.com/, or (#3) https://github.com/gbaman/RaspberryPi-LTSP
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18:33
<vagrantc>
!learn raspberrypi as https://pi-ltsp.net
18:33
<ltsp>
The operation succeeded.
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22:21
<championofcyrodi>
alkisg: thanks for your help last night. I now have dhcp+tftpd booting the client with initramfs... after everything is booted, it mounts the chroot via NFS, and then switches the the nfs mount to the 'root' in dracut. at this point everything pops up and I have bash!
22:24
however what is weird is that currently, when i install some packages in the chroot... like X Window... the 1st time i boot into the environment everything seems to work. however after a reboot, the root filesystem claims to be read-only.. even though the nfs share is rw.
22:25
i feel like there is something odd happening on shutdown, but not sure what.
22:27
nfs opts are (rw,sync,no_subtree_check,no_root_squash)
23:45
I think i'm going to go w/ the layerfs and add the tmpfs so enable write, but keep the nfs chroot as read-only. (like ltsp does)