[LINUX] HOW-TO create a XBMC server for diskless PXE network booting clients - Printable Version
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- cr4sh0verride - 2010-11-12 15:36
Finally got it all working to try it on the Thin Client I have only to find it has an i686 cpu and the build only supports x86-64
- opdenkamp - 2010-11-12 15:46
Eeh no, by default an x86 installation is created. In this version, you'd even have to change the code a bit (change the debootstrap call) to get it installed for amd64.
I can't think of any reason to use amd64 on a dedicated media player, so I never paid much attention to it (and it's unlikely that I will unless someone can give me a good reason).
- Nick8888 - 2010-11-12 16:16
Okay, i'm new to this idea and trying to visualise how it works. This is what I've got:
However, reading the first post again, I see you need some sort of dhcp server. Sorry if this is a stupid question but how does this affect an existing router? Would I just disable the dhcp server on my router?
Also any rough ideas on price for a suitable diskless pc?
- JVincent - 2010-11-12 17:26
Thank you for a very interesting product. I'm experimenting with it now.
In my configuration, I use a household file server as a router/DHCP server/media server for the media players on a separate physical network from a household network. So setting this up on the same server worked pretty well -- once I changed the IP address in /etc/exports to the gateway address of the second ethernet card.
I'm running into trouble so far with audio and the MCE remote control, and am working on it (Zotac IONITX head ends).
One problem I've encountered: when creating an image, selecting the "Team-XBMC" PPA isn't accepted. Instead, it restarts the image creation process at the first menu. Not sure if there's something I need to change.
- opdenkamp - 2010-11-13 13:17
Nick8888 Wrote:However, reading the first post again, I see you need some sort of dhcp server. Sorry if this is a stupid question but how does this affect an existing router? Would I just disable the dhcp server on my router?I assume your router on your diagram is a router + switch and that your diskless workstations are connected to the switch?
You could disable dhcp on your router, but I recommend you look into the solution that was posted on the previous page. That will be integrated into this package too.
Quote:Also any rough ideas on price for a suitable diskless pc?a diskless pc is just an ordinary pc without a hdd. can't give you a price, but I think a minimal pc that does hardware acceleration will be about 250€. there are some topics about hardware on this forum, so check those out.
JVincent Wrote:I'm running into trouble so far with audio and the MCE remote control, and am working on it (Zotac IONITX head ends).yeah that's possible. look into the provisioning mechanism to get the config persisted even when clearing out your overlay after you've fixed it.
Quote:One problem I've encountered: when creating an image, selecting the "Team-XBMC" PPA isn't accepted. Instead, it restarts the image creation process at the first menu. Not sure if there's something I need to changeI'll check it out, but I might have fixed it in the latest source. I'll post updated packages on the ppa later this week end.
fixed on git
- mason - 2010-11-15 10:54
something i noticed after a week of switching to the diskless system.
It seems that the NBD Daemon doesn't close the connection when the client shuts down. I have now several instances running...
Is this normal behavior of the daemon or a bug?
Right now i my process list is flooded with several of these processes ...
- opdenkamp - 2010-11-15 11:22
I'm aware of that bug. It's probably caused by not closing the connection properly on the client.
Until it's fixed, just "killall nbd-server" when all your clients are shut down to clean up your processes.
- mason - 2010-11-15 19:13
Thanks for the information, no problem. I will kill the tasks via a cron job.
But i just managed to get another problem, i tried to install your latest ppa packages from you, but unfortunately not with your script but rather with the mounted chroot which failed due to not running daemons probably. I guess I fucked up the installation...
Can I reset the system via generating a new clean image and just copy over the overlay of the old one?
- opdenkamp - 2010-11-15 19:42
make sure your clients are shut down before you kill the nbd-server instances, cause otherwise they'll crash because of a missing root
you can just create a new image. no need to copy anything, because the overlay won't be touched.
this is how it works:
- your system boots the initrd image
- this image contains a script that mounts / over nbd, from /var/lib/xbmc-diskless/images on your server
- then it puts a ram overlay over your root, so changes to your root will be persisted in memory until the system shuts down
- next step mounts /home/xbmc over nfs from the directory /var/lib/xbmc-diskless/overlay/XX, where XX is the mac address of your client without colons. the directory XX will be created if it doesn't exist
- the last step checks if /home/xbmc/config exists and copies over /etc to that directory if it doesn't. /etc is bound to /home/xbmc/config, so changes in that directory (e.g. X config, alsa config, lirc, ...) are persisted on the nfs overlay.
when you create a new image, you'll only replace the files in /var/lib/xbmc-diskless/target (the uncompressed installation) and /var/lib/xbmc-diskless/xbmc.img (the compressed image). the overlay in /var/lib/xbmc-diskless/overlay is never touched, cause that would reset all the client configurations when updating the xbmc installation. wouldn't make much sense
- mason - 2010-11-15 20:20
Thanks for the explanation again, I just wasn't sure if the config would be overwritten in parts while generating a new image.
Now I will take notes I guess what's needed to be changeed in the target...
Anyway I did a backup of the xbmc.img just in case... the girl would go beserk when I can't provide working media
But one last thing I'm struggling with, I don't get the locales working correctly
Quote:perl: warning: Please check that your locale settings:
Any idea how i could change the default locale in the chroot? Not really a xbmc issue.. but maybe you can point me in the right direction (again).
Never mind i figured it out...