virt-install: boot from specific kernel/initrd just for install

Introduction For some time now with virt-install (developed under virt-manager) you have been able to specify a kernel and initial ramdisk to start a VM with. The only problem is that the VM will always start with that kernel/initrd (unless you change the definition manually). If you are rapidly testing operating system installations this can be problematic. On the one hand, providing the kernel/initrd allows one to automate the install process from a Linux terminal, or even a script, by specifying the kernel/initrd and also the kernel command line options. [Read More]

Update on Easy PXE boot testing post: minus PXELINUX

Introduction This is an update to my previous post about easily testing PXE booting by using libvirt + iPXE. Several people have notified me (thanks Lukas Zapletal and others) that instead of leveraging PXELINUX that I could just use an iPXE script to do the same thing. I hadn’t used iPXE much so here’s an update on how to achieve the same goal using an iPXE script instead of a PXELINUX binary+config. [Read More]

Easy PXE boot testing with only HTTP using iPXE and libvirt

Update: A future post explains how to do this even easier without PXELINUX. Introduction Occasionally I have a need to test out a PXE install workflow. All of this is super easy if you have a permanent PXE infrastructure you maintain which traditionally has consisted of DHCP, TFTP and HTTP/FTP servers. What if I just have my laptop and want to test something in a VM? It turns out it’s pretty easy to do using libvirt and a simple http server. [Read More]