Seeking insight on iPXE and Fog setup



  • Hello everyone,

    A coworker and myself are attempting to stand up a new fog server. We support two different domains and the first domain already has a functioning fog server. Unfortunately, none of the individuals currently working in the organization deployed and configured this fog server (one of our predecessors did). We have been looking through an extensive amount of the Fog wiki and forums while installing and configuring; we have came to a point where we cannot figure out what to do next. When PXE booting, the client computer will endlessly loop through PXE (my diction is probably wrong, and for that I apologize). So, my questions are this…

    1. Is there a guide that exists that shows the individual how to install fog, setup TFTP and PXE boot, and whatever other steps exist from start to finish?

    2. We have TFTP functioning… can Wake on LAN a computer, but cannot boot into PXE… why is this? We have already configured options 66 and 67 on our Windows DCHP server, attempted to use both undionly.kpxe and undionly.kkpxe.

    Basically at this point we are lost. We know TFTP is functioning by installing it manually and testing it. It seems we are so close to finishing setup. If you guys need screen shots, I can get them uploaded perhaps tomorrow when I am back on site.

    Ubuntu Server 14.04 LTS
    Also, let me know what other specs you need!

    Thanks in advance,
    Thomas


  • Developer

    The iPXE boot loop is kinda strange. I think I’ve never seen this! Why was default.ipxe missing in the first place. How did you get it back? Can you please post the content of that file here in the forum. You should find this text file in /tftpboot/default.ipxe on youf FOG server (192.169.250.100).



  • @george1421 Sounds good, Riley. We will update you when this is done.


  • Moderator

    @Thomas787 OK “bing-bong”, what you need to do is enable/turn on one of the fast spanning tree protocols on your network. It should be enabled globally but if you want to enable on just ports where you want to image. You want fast-STP, RSTP, or what ever your switch mfg calls it.

    You need to turn on optimistic forwarding (start forwarding then check for loopback) not pessimistic forwarding (check first then start forwarding). Pessimistic forwarding is the default for spanning tree. Once the link light comes on it will take 27 seconds for default spanning tree to start forwarding data. The fast methods will start forwarding data right away. FOG booting is so fast in that it gives up by the time the ports start forwarding data.



  • @george1421 There is a Cisco switch and HP switch in the building. We did place an unmanaged switch between the wall port and the client machines yesterday and that cleaned up one error we were getting.


  • Moderator

    @Thomas787 I did just edit my previous thoughts.

    What I want you to do is place an unmanaged switch between this target computer and the building switch. This error makes me think that spanning tree is getting in your way. We’ll use a unmanaged switch to mask/test for this.



  • @george1421 0_1500637705156_pxeloop1.jpg
    0_1500637716124_pxeloop2.jpg

    These are photos of the loop. I am getting an error while trying to upload a video of the loop here.


  • Moderator

    @Thomas787 Initial reaction is I think the version of ipxe kernel you are using is old [0600d]. Checking.

    [Edit: the build numbers just rolled over to 0000 not to long ago]

    OK from the screen shot I can see you have a bios (legacy system) and its a HP.




  • Moderator

    @Thomas787 said in Seeking insight on iPXE and Fog setup:

    Model & mfg: cannot tell until I am on site

    Getting this info is task 1. It will guide you with the other questions.

    UEFI or BIOS: unsure, will report tomorrow morning (believe UEFI) but to be sure, how do I check this in firmware?

    Many firmwares (use to be called bios) have a mode selector switch to change personalities between legacy (bios) mode and uefi for compatibility. This setting needs to be set before the OS is installed, switching it after the OS is installed will break the OS.

    I read the article on secure boot but it was time to leave for the day so I did not pursue it very far, I could not figure out how to turn it off in the time available today.

    Secure boot is a Microsoft thing, FOG or actually any other non MS OS can not boot with the uefi firmware setting secure boot enabled unless your OS is signed with a certain digital certificate.

    Obviously with firmware (leading on from the last question) I did not change it since I do not know how to access it.

    Knowing what computer it is will help.

    Also there are 2 types of pxe boot kernels for fog. One is for legacy (bios) systems, typ undionly.kpxe and one for uefi, typ ipxe.efi you must send the right boot kernel to the correct target computer that matches it firmware.



  • George,

    I assumed the community here would ask as much. Tomorrow (if I end up going over to the site; most likely will) or soon I will be able to get these details to you. Yes, the host is registered with FOG. It was registered manually as this environment has not had a fog server before.

    Model & mfg: cannot tell until I am on site
    UEFI or BIOS: unsure, will report tomorrow morning (believe UEFI) but to be sure, how do I check this in firmware?

    I read the article on secure boot but it was time to leave for the day so I did not pursue it very far, I could not figure out how to turn it off in the time available today.

    Obviously with firmware (leading on from the last question) I did not change it since I do not know how to access it.

    I will provide a video and images tomorrow (if on that site) morning so you guys can see what the deal is.

    Thanks again, glad the community here is so proactive.


  • Moderator

    @Thomas787 If I understand correctly you can WOL that computer so that means you have it registered with FOG (??) Did you register it manually or was this system already registered?

    What model and mfg are you trying to pxe boot?

    Is that target computer configured in uefi or bios (legacy) mode. (you can see this in the firmware). If the system is uefi, did you disable secure boot?

    In the firmware, did you change the boot order so that pxe booting comes before hard drive booting?


  • Moderator

    We need to see the exact error. If you can snap a screen shot of the error, or this ‘looping’ you mentioned that would help. The context of the error is almost as important as the actual error itself


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