RHEL 7/8 Kickstart Installation

Gini Gini Follow · 2 mins read
RHEL 7/8 Kickstart Installation
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1. Pre-Requisites

1.1. Configure DHCP and DNS

  • Configure DHCP server in same network : We need a dhcp server to provide initial IP for the machine to use, so that it wasn access the http servers for ISO, Packages and kickstart.cfg
  • Configure a DNS server in same network (Optional)

2. Download and Preapre RHEL ISO

Refer : Product Downloads

  • Download the minimal boot image ISO (eg: Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.2 Boot ISO)
  • Download the binary ISO to copy to repository

3. Prepare kickstart file

  • Generate kickstart file using Kickstart Generator
  • Add/modify content as needed (like post-scripts, Software RAID etc)

4. Configure Repo Server and ISO

  • Deploy a server with http
  • Copy RHEL7/8 content to a directory on server and enable repo (Refer how to setup local repo server)
  • Copy RHEL7/8 Boot ISO (minimal one) to another directory (if planning remote ISO loading)
  • Copy kickstart to Web server path (eg: /var/www/html/ks/rhel/8/ks.cfg)

5. Boot from ISO and Use kickstart configuration

  • If we are loading ISO manually to VM/Physical servers, the boot from “RHEL7/8 Boot ISO” (either attach to VM or fetch it from http path which you have stored in repo server setup previously)
  • When the ISO installer asks for “Install”, press Tab and add inst.ks= (your http path) and press Enter
  • Installation will kickstart without asking for any answers (unless you missed anything in ks.cfg)

Note : To load your Kickstart file automatically without having to specify the inst.ks= boot option, name the file ks.cfg and place it on a storage volume labeled OEMDRV.

5.1. Automated Booting and Installation

  • If you are planning fully automated installation, you can use PXE booting; it will load basic boot ISO (need to create custom boot images).
  • You can mention the custom ks.cfg in the boot command line itself and installation will not even ask for kickstart file or any answers.

Warning: Only use this method with restricted IP/DHCP/MAC binded network, otherwise it may wipe-out other systems when it reboot !!!

6. Appendix

6.1. References

6.2. Validating Kickstart File - ksvalidator

# yum install pykickstart
$ ksvalidator /path/to/kickstart.ks

## Changes in Kickstart Syntax
$ ksverdiff -f RHEL6 -t RHEL7

Sample ks.cfg files

Written by Gini Follow
Backpacker, Foodie, Techie

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