4.1 About Kickstart Trees, Distributions, and Profiles

You can use Kickstart to automate the installation of Oracle Linux systems and use Spacewalk to provide the packages during the installation.

If you want to provision bare-metal and virtual machine systems, create a distribution in Spacewalk for each combination of Oracle Linux release and system architecture that you want to be able to install using Kickstart.

You need to set up a local directory such as /var/distro-trees on your Spacewalk server that contains the entire Kickstart tree for each distribution that includes the installation kernel, the initial ram-disk image, installation files, and information about the repositories. This directory must be readable and accessible by the httpd and tomcat6 services. The Kickstart tree does not need to include any packages, as Spacewalk provides these.

Relative to the root of the Kickstart tree, the installation kernel and initial ram-disk images should be located at ./images/pxeboot. For example, if the root of the Kickstart tree for Oracle Linux 6 (x86_64) server installations is /var/distro-trees/ol6-x86_64-server, the installation kernel and initial ram-disk images would be located at /var/distro-trees/ol6-x86_64-server/images/pxeboot.

See Section 4.2, “Setting up Kickstart Trees”.

You create a Kickstart distribution by associating a Kickstart tree with existing channels. A client boots using the Kickstart tree but installs its software packages from the existing channels. The packages installed on the client will be as up to date as those that are currently available from the channels.

See Section 4.3, “Working with Kickstart Distributions”.

Note

It is not currently possible to use the spacewalk-repo-sync --sync-kickstart command to create a Kickstart distribution from the channels that are available on Oracle Public Yum or ULN.

Once you have created a Kickstart distribution, you can use it with Kickstart profiles. Typically, each profile provisions a different type of server. You can configure a profile to generate a Kickstart file or you can use an existing Kickstart file. You can associate as many profiles with a single distribution as you need to provision servers that share the same combination of Oracle Linux release and system architecture.

See Section 4.4, “Working with Kickstart Profiles”.