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


Channel log from 12 October 2018   (all times are UTC)

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10:14
<ghost2911>
Hello everyone. I need an advise on how to best setup windows thin clients connecting via PXE to LTSP server. I already tested LTSP with Ubuntu 16 and PXE (Lubuntu for thin clients), that worked perfectly. To make Windows 10 boot the same way I can use QEMU/KVM to virtualize Windows ? need some ideas. thanks
10:19
<alkisg>
ghost2911: do you already have clients? Which cpu exactly and how much ram?
10:20
And, do you have a windows server edition with CALs for remote access, or are you interested in running normal windows 10 VMs?
10:20
<ghost2911>
yes I have clients it's around 15 machines, RAM 4GB and low end CPU, small machines
10:21
I don't have Windows server edition
10:22
<alkisg>
OK, one solution would be to boot the thin clients in linux, and then at the point where xorg starts, to use vboxmanage to automatically start a windows vm
10:23
The windows vm can be served over a read-only nbd (so that you only maintain one version for all clients), but since windows needs to be writeable, you'd create a "vm snapshot" within e.g. virtualbox
10:23
That snapshot would be stored on the user directory; you'd need one linux user per client.
10:24
I've used this method to a few schools, but I don't know of any documents that describe it in detail
10:25
(of course you can also use kvm if your cpu supports vt-d; virtualbox works without hardware virtualization though)
10:25
*vt-x
10:25
<ghost2911>
alkisg, ok, clients in this case see startup screen as if they would start windows ? like enter their credentials and start windows session ?
10:26
<alkisg>
It's like a single pc. You can select if they'll enter their credentials or if they'll autologin, whatever you prefer
10:26
If you decide to use credentials, they can either be linux credentials or windows credentials, whatever you prefer
10:28
<ghost2911>
thanks for info, that could be a way
10:29
<alkisg>
To boot windows without VM, you'd need 15 different images and an iscsi-based installation; but that's not related to #ltsp then at all
10:30
I don't know how stable netbooted windows are; I've read that it can be done for experiment but I don't know of anyone that uses it in production
10:30
(I mean, without using a vm)
10:34
<ghost2911>
it's possible to use one windows version with KVM for all clients ?
10:34
<alkisg>
Yup, that's what I was describing with the snapshots above
10:34
You maintain one read-only installation and you create writeable snapshots for each client on top of it
10:34
<ghost2911>
ok so every client basically has its snapshot copy of windows
10:34
<alkisg>
Yup
10:36
<ghost2911>
getting interesintg
10:37
I suppose I can set so that this snapshot destroys when client finishes his staff and leaves
10:37
about network boot, with KVM its achievable ?
10:41
<alkisg>
Network booting would be done with ltsp
10:42
kvm would load afterwards, when ltsp has finished loading the underlying linux
10:43
You can automate both the snapshot creation and its destruction
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11:09
<ghost2911>
thanks alkisg!
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14:59
<ghost2911>
Hi again. I was here sometime ago today about LTSP and Windows virtual machine. https://imgur.com/a/m0OxRbA
14:59
On this diagram I tried to reflect what I understood. So when clients boot from network they do it through LTSP, which connects to Win10_VM_snapshot ? And at this moment client sees the Windows login screen. is this right ?
15:16
or I can set maybe directly boot to KVM snapshot without LTSP
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16:08
<alkisg>
ghost2911: this isn't how I described it, no :)
16:09
The windows vm is running on the client itself
16:09
<ghost2911>
but I need only one instance of windows
16:09
<alkisg>
And no there's no "netboot kvm" concept, kvm needs a booted linux environment
16:10
The vm *file* will be only one and on the server
16:10
The *running* vm will be one on each client
16:21
<ghost2911>
ok, I think what I don't see now is how to connect LTSP and KVM
16:24
but it's more clear, thanks
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18:09
<||cw>
so, do these win10 vm snaps run as a standalone? I can't imagine AD would play nice with that without some sort of VDI layer to manage machine names and such in the snaps
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18:27
<alkisg>
Yes in this scenario they'd run as standalone
18:27
If you want machine names etc you can put them on the snapshot, but it'd need to be a bit more persistent then
18:28
Unless you create something like init-ltsp.d but for windows itself, to run at boot
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18:59
<||cw>
serverless VDI would be pretty amazing
19:00
in that there's no beefy central VM server, there would be a ltsp server of course
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19:01
<alkisg>
in the scenario i described, there's no beefy server
19:01
The VMs run on the clients
19:02
It's like vdi, only better, because you need a single image instead of many
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19:10
<||cw>
unless you want centralized auth and file shares
19:10
and GPOs and all that
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19:36
<alkisg>
file shares are on the server
19:36
(vbox supports that)
19:36
authentication can happen on linux
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19:41
<||cw>
that would never work out in a manufacturing/sales environment. some kind of director and SSO is needed
19:41
directory^
20:12
<alkisg>
If you want to get very very specific, sure, nothing ever fits
20:12
I was just covering the things that we already mentioned, not trying to add more :)
20:13
If standalone windows are not suitable for one environment, then of course that person wouldn't want standalone windows in VMs
20:17
<||cw>
my reference is that VDI system do all those things, renaming machine in the snap instance, joining domains, removing from domain when deallocated, etc. an LTSP base that could do those things but run the VM on a fat client would be amazing
20:18
it would fit pretty much all cases, local specialized hardware that doesn't passthru nicely being the main exception
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