booting zipslack over nfs overview, part 4 of 4

Gregory Nowak greg at
Sat Nov 8 22:59:23 EST 2003

Remember that your dhcp server will need to assign a static ip address to your dumb terminal. In the host directive of dhcpd.conf for your dumb terminal, you will need to place a filename directive to tell dhcpd where the kernel to boot is found.
For example: 

filename "";

Next, you will need to start /usr/sbin/tcpd in.tftpd in /etc/inetd.conf. Remember to send inetd a -HUP.

Finally, it's time to start nfs services.

First, you will want to put a line like the following in /etc/exports.


Next, edit /etc/rc.d/rc.inet2 on your server, and do the following.

1. uncomment the lines that start /sbin/rpc.portmap.
2. Uncomment the lines that start the /etc/rc.d/rc.nfsd script.

Make sure that you load the knfsd module in /etc/rc.d/rc.modules, or that you have it compiled into your server's kernel.

Next, startup rpc.portmap and rc.nfsd by hand, or reboot your server. It should go without saying here that you want to have a tight firewall configuration, if your nfs server is also connected to the internet.

That should do it. Power up your dumb terminal, and cross your fingers. With luck, it should start talking to you fairly soon after power-up, if you have speakup in your kernel. If this does not happen, check /var/log/syslog on your server for error messages from tftpd, or the nfs service.

Well, that should pretty much cover it. As I've mentioned above, this is just a bear outline of the steps to take to boot zipslack over nfs, and it could really use fleshing-out in a lot of places. If someone chooses to take on the task of fleshing out this overview, a mention in your document's credits/acknowledgements section would be greatly appreciated if this overview proved to be helpful.

The sources I mostly relied on were the ltsp project, the 2 root over nfs HOWTOS, the nfs server HOWTO, and various man pages.
I am releasing this overview under version 2, or any later version of the gpl.

If you would like a copy of the modified zipslack files I mentioned herein, drop me a line. If I get enough requests for the files, I'll probably end up posting them on my website.

While I have not done so, it should be possible to expand this setup, so that multiple clients can share the same files in a base directory, and load any machine-specific files (such as a kernel image) from their individual directories on the server.

Gregory Nowak, November 2003.

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