Automating Solaris 11 Zones Installation Using The Automated Install Server

Introduction

How to use the Oracle Solaris 11 Automated install server in order to automate the Solaris 11 Zones installation.
In this document I will demonstrate how to setup the Automated Install
server in order to provide hands off installation process for the Global
Zone and two Non Global Zones located on the same system.



Architecture layout:


Figure 1. Architecture layout

Prerequisite
Setup the Automated install server (AI) using the following instructions
“How to Set Up Automated Installation Services for Oracle Solaris 11”

The first step in this setup will be creating two Solaris 11 Zones configuration files.

Step 1: Create the Solaris 11 Zones configuration files

 The Solaris Zones configuration files should be in the format of the zonecfg export command.

# zonecfg -z zone1 export > /var/tmp/zone1

# cat /var/tmp/zone1

create -b
set brand=solaris
set zonepath=/rpool/zones/zone1
set autoboot=true
set ip-type=exclusive
add anet
set linkname=net0
set lower-link=auto
set configure-allowed-address=true
set link-protection=mac-nospoof
set mac-address=random
end


 Create a backup copy of this file under a different name, for example, zone2.

# cp /var/tmp/zone1 /var/tmp/zone2


Modify the second configuration file with the zone2 configuration information
You should change the zonepath for example:

set zonepath=/rpool/zones/zone2

Step2: Copy and share the Zones configuration files


 Create the NFS directory for the Zones configuration files

# mkdir /export/zone_config


Share the directory for the Zones configuration file

# share –o ro /export/zone_config


Copy the Zones configuration files into the NFS shared directory

# cp /var/tmp/zone1 /var/tmp/zone2  /export/zone_config


Verify that the NFS share has been created using the following command

# share

export_zone_config      /export/zone_config     nfs     sec=sys,ro


Step 3: Add the Global Zone as client to the Install Service

Use the installadm create-client command to associate client (Global Zone) with the install service

To find the MAC address of a system, use the dladm command as described in the dladm(1M) man page.

The following command adds the client (Global Zone) with MAC address 0:14:4f:2:a:19 to the
s11x86service install service.

# installadm create-client -e “0:14:4f:2:a:19" -n s11x86service

You can verify the client creation using the following command

# installadm list –c


Service Name  Client Address     Arch   Image Path
------------  --------------     ----   ----------
s11x86service 00:14:4F:02:0A:19  i386   /export/auto_install/s11x86service


We can see the client install service name (s11x86service), MAC address (00:14:4F:02:0A:19 and Architecture (i386).

Step 4: Global Zone manifest setup


 First, get a list of the installation services and the manifests associated with them:

# installadm list -m

Service Name   Manifest        Status
------------   --------        ------
default-i386   orig_default   Default

s11x86service  orig_default   Default


Then probe the s11x86service and the default manifest associated with it.

The -m switch reflects the name of the manifest associated with a service.

Since we want to capture that output into a file, we redirect the output of the command as follows:

# installadm export -n s11x86service -m orig_default >  /var/tmp/orig_default.xml


Create a backup copy of this file under a different name, for example, orig-default2.xml, and edit the copy.

# cp /var/tmp/orig_default.xml /var/tmp/orig_default2.xml


Use the configuration element in the AI manifest for the client system to specify non-global zones.
Use the name attribute of the configuration element to specify the name of the zone.
Use the source attribute to specify the location of the config file for the zone.
The source location can be any http:// or file:// location that the client can access during installation.


The following sample AI manifest specifies two Non-Global Zones: zone1 and zone2

You should replace the server_ip with the ip address of the NFS server.


<!DOCTYPE auto_install SYSTEM "file:///usr/share/install/ai.dtd.1">
<auto_install>
  <ai_instance>
    <target>
      <logical>
        <zpool name="rpool" is_root="true">
          <filesystem name="export" mountpoint="/export"/>
          <filesystem name="export/home"/>
          <be name="solaris"/>
        </zpool>
      </logical>
    </target>
    <software type="IPS">
      <source>
        <publisher name="solaris">
          <origin name="http://pkg.oracle.com/solaris/release"/>
        </publisher>
      </source>
      <software_data action="install">
        <name>pkg:/entire@latest</name>
        <name>pkg:/group/system/solaris-large-server</name>
      </software_data>
    </software>
    <configuration type="zone" name="zone1" source="file:///net/server_ip/export/zone_config/zone1"/>
    <configuration type="zone" name="zone2" source="file:///net/server_ip/export/zone_config/zone2"/>
  </ai_instance>
</auto_install>

The following example adds the /var/tmp/orig_default2.xml AI manifest to the s11x86service install service

# installadm create-manifest -n s11x86service -f /var/tmp/orig_default2.xml -m gzmanifest

You can verify the manifest creation using the following command

# installadm list -n s11x86service  -m

Service/Manifest Name  Status   Criteria
---------------------  ------   --------
s11x86service

   orig_default        Default  None

   gzmanifest          Inactive None


We can see from the command output that the new manifest named gzmanifest has been created


and associated with the s11x86service install service.

Step 5: Non Global Zone manifest setup


The AI manifest for non-global zone installation is similar to the AI manifest for installing the global zone.

If you do not provide a custom AI manifest for a non-global zone, the default AI manifest for Zones is used

The default AI manifest for Zones is available at /usr/share/auto_install/manifest/zone_default.xml.


In this example we should use the default AI manifest for zones


The following sample default AI manifest for zones

# cat /usr/share/auto_install/manifest/zone_default.xml


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!--
  Copyright (c) 2011, 2012, Oracle and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.
-->
<!DOCTYPE auto_install SYSTEM "file:///usr/share/install/ai.dtd.1">
<auto_install>
    <ai_instance name="zone_default">
        <target>
            <logical>
                <zpool name="rpool">
                    <!--
                      Subsequent <filesystem> entries instruct an installer
                      to create following ZFS datasets:
                          <root_pool>/export         (mounted on /export)
                          <root_pool>/export/home    (mounted on /export/home)
                      Those datasets are part of standard environment
                      and should be always created.
                      In rare cases, if there is a need to deploy a zone
                      without these datasets, either comment out or remove
                      <filesystem> entries. In such scenario, it has to be also
                      assured that in case of non-interactive post-install
                      configuration, creation of initial user account is
                      disabled in related system configuration profile.
                      Otherwise the installed zone would fail to boot.
                    -->
                    <filesystem name="export" mountpoint="/export"/>
                    <filesystem name="export/home"/>
                    <be name="solaris">
                        <options>
                            <option name="compression" value="on"/>
                        </options>
                    </be>
                </zpool>
            </logical>
        </target>
        <software type="IPS">
            <destination>
                <image>
                    <!-- Specify locales to install -->
                    <facet set="false">facet.locale.*</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.de</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.de_DE</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.en</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.en_US</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.es</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.es_ES</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.fr</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.fr_FR</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.it</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.it_IT</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.ja</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.ja_*</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.ko</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.ko_*</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.pt</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.pt_BR</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.zh</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.zh_CN</facet>
                    <facet set="true">facet.locale.zh_TW</facet>
                </image>
            </destination>
            <software_data action="install">
                <name>pkg:/group/system/solaris-small-server</name>
            </software_data>
        </software>
    </ai_instance>
</auto_install>


(optional) We can customize the default AI manifest for Zones


Create a backup copy of this file under a different name, for example, zone_default2.xml and edit the copy

# cp /usr/share/auto_install/manifest/zone_default.xml /var/tmp/zone_default2.xml

Edit the copy (/var/tmp/zone_default2.xml)

The following example adds the /var/tmp/zone_default2.xml AI manifest to
the s11x86service install service and specifies that zone1 and zone2
should use this manifest.

# installadm create-manifest -n s11x86service -f /var/tmp/zone_default2.xml -m zones_manifest -c zonename="zone1 zone2"

Note: Do not use the following elements or attributes in a non-global zone AI manifest:

    The auto_reboot attribute of the ai_instance element

    The http_proxy attribute of the ai_instance element

    The disk child element of the target element

    The noswap attribute of the logical element

    The nodump attribute of the logical element

    The configuration element


Step 6: Global Zone profile setup


We are going to create a global zone configuration profile which
includes the host information for example: host name, ip address name
services etc…

# sysconfig create-profile –o /var/tmp/gz_profile.xml

You need to provide the host information for example:

    Default router

    Root password

    DNS information


The output should eventually disappear and be replaced by the initial
screen of the System Configuration Tool (see Figure 2), where you can do
the final configuration.


Figure 2. Profile creation menu


You can validate the profile using the following command

# installadm validate -n s11x86service –P /var/tmp/gz_profile.xml


Validating static profile gz_profile.xml...
  Passed


Next, instantiate a profile with the install service.

In our case, use the following syntax for doing this

# installadm create-profile -n s11x86service  -f /var/tmp/gz_profile.xml -p  gz_profile

You can verify profile creation using the following command

# installadm list –n s11x86service  -p


Service/Profile Name  Criteria
--------------------  --------
s11x86service

   gz_profile         None


We can see that the gz_profie has been created and associated with the s11x86service

Install service.

Step 7: Setup the Solaris Zones configuration profiles


The step should be similar to the Global zone profile creation on step 6

# sysconfig create-profile –o /var/tmp/zone1_profile.xml

# sysconfig create-profile –o /var/tmp/zone2_profile.xml

You can validate the profiles using the following command

# installadm validate -n s11x86service -P /var/tmp/zone1_profile.xml

Validating static profile zone1_profile.xml...
  Passed

# installadm validate -n s11x86service -P /var/tmp/zone2_profile.xml

Validating static profile zone2_profile.xml...
  Passed


Next, associate the profiles with the install service

The following example adds the zone1_profile.xml configuration profile
to the s11x86service  install service and specifies that zone1 should
use this profile.

# installadm create-profile -n s11x86service  -f  /var/tmp/zone1_profile.xml -p zone1_profile -c zonename=zone1


The following example adds the zone2_profile.xml configuration profile
to the s11x86service  install service and specifies that zone2 should
use this profile.

# installadm create-profile -n s11x86service  -f  /var/tmp/zone2_profile.xml -p zone2_profile -c zonename=zone2


You can verify the profiles creation using the following command

# installadm list -n s11x86service -p

Service/Profile Name  Criteria
--------------------  --------
s11x86service

   zone1_profile      zonename = zone1

   zone2_profile      zonename = zone2

   gz_profile         None


We can see that we have three profiles in the s11x86service  install service


    Global Zone  gz_profile

    zone1            zone1_profile

    zone2            zone2_profile.

Step 8: Global Zone setup


Associate the global zone client with the manifest and the profile that we create in the previous steps

The following example adds the manifest and profile to the client (global zone), where:



  • gzmanifest  is the name of the manifest.

  • gz_profile  is the name of the configuration profile.

  • mac="0:14:4f:2:a:19" is the client (global zone) mac address

  • s11x86service is the install service name.


# installadm set-criteria -m  gzmanifest  –p  gz_profile  -c mac="0:14:4f:2:a:19" -n s11x86service


You can verify the manifest and profile association using the following command

# installadm list -n s11x86service -p  -m

Service/Manifest Name  Status   Criteria
---------------------  ------   --------
s11x86service

   gzmanifest                   mac  = 00:14:4F:02:0A:19

   orig_default        Default  None


Service/Profile Name  Criteria
--------------------  --------
s11x86service

   gz_profile         mac      = 00:14:4F:02:0A:19

   zone2_profile      zonename = zone2

   zone1_profile      zonename = zone1

Step 9: Provision the host with the Non-Global Zones


The next step is to boot the client system off the network and provision
it using the Automated Install service that we just set up.

First, boot the client system. Figure 3 shows the network boot attempt (when done on an x86 system):


Figure 3. Network Boot

Then you will be prompted by a GRUB menu, with a timer, as shown in
Figure 4. The default selection (the "Text Installer and command line"
option) is highlighted.

 Press the down arrow to highlight the second option labeled Automated Install, and then press Enter.


The reason we need to do this is because we want to prevent a system
from being automatically re-installed if it were to be booted from the
network accidentally.

Figure 4. GRUB Menu


What follows is the continuation of a networked boot from the Automated
Install server,. The client downloads a mini-root (a small set of files
in which to successfully run the installer), identifies the location of
the Automated Install manifest on the network, retrieves that manifest,
and then processes it to identify the address of the IPS repository from
which to obtain the desired software payload.


Non-Global Zones are installed and configured on the first reboot after the Global Zone is installed.

You can list all the Solaris Zones status using the following command

# zoneadm list -civ


Once the Zones are in running state you can login into the Zone using the following command

# zlogin –z zone1

Troubleshooting Automated Installations


If an installation to a client system failed, you can find the client log at /system/volatile/install_log.

NOTE: Zones are not installed if any of the following errors occurs:


    A zone config file is not syntactically correct.

    A collision exists among zone names, zone paths, or delegated ZFS datasets in the set of zones to be installed

    Required datasets are not configured in the global zone.


For more troubleshooting information see “Installing Oracle Solaris 11 Systems


Conclusion


This paper demonstrated the benefits of using the Automated Install
server to simplify the Non Global Zones setup, including the creation
and configuration of the global zone manifest and the Solaris Zones
profiles.

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