Creating a patch catalog for SuSE Linux

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BMC Customers using Automation for Patching use cases depend on OS vendors for Patches and metadata.  To view a document that tracks the service status of the different OS Vendors as known to BMC Support, see the following BMC Communities document:

OS Patching Vendor Health Dashboard

The patch catalog is used to maintain and work with the patch repository through the BMC Server Automation Console. For both types of repositories, online and offline, you create a patch catalog through the BMC Server Automation console. Patches are added to the catalog as depot objects according to filters defined for the catalog.

This topic describes how to set up a patch catalog for SuSE Linux, and includes the following sections:

Step 1: Review prerequisites for the catalog

Review the following prerequisites for creating patch catalogs for SuSE.

VersionPrerequisites
All SuSE versions
  • You must pre-install the following packages on the server that hosts the patch repository:

    • createrepo
    • python-urlgrabber
  • Ensure that security policies on the repository server do not block the download of the catalog.
  • Ensure that the system you will use for the patch repository is supported by BMC Server Automation.

     Click here to see the platforms supported for storing your repository

    Start adding filters for your table either in the macro settings or on the filtration pane.

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Step 2: Create the patch catalog

  1. Right-click a folder in the Depot and select New > Patch catalog > SuSE Linux Patch Catalog. The Patch Catalog wizard opens.

    Note

    After they are created, all panes in the wizard remain available for edit and review except General and Permissions.

  2. Provide information for the patch catalog panels as described in the following table:

    PanelDescription
    Patch catalog - GeneralEnter a Name for the patch catalog and a Description of its contents. Then, browse to the folder in which you want to store the catalog.
    SuSE Linux Catalog options

    The SuSE Linux Catalog tab determines whether the catalog operates in Online or Offline Mode and defines a number of options.

    Defined options include locations (such as location of the source files, the repository, the signature file, and so on) as well as filters and whether local copies of the files are created on the target server or downloaded directly during deployment.

    Catalog Mode

    Select one of two options:

    • Source from Vendor (Online Mode): Use this mode if the BMC Server Automation Application Server is installed on a server with Internet access.
    • Source from Disk Repository (Offline Mode): Use this mode in a secured environment where download occurs on a server, with Internet access, outside of the environment.

    SUSE Linux Network Credentials

    If you selected Source from Vendor (Online Mode), enter the user name and password used to access the vendor website. Select one or both of the following options:

    • Novell Credentials: Set these credentials to connect to SUSE Linux Enterprise 9 URLs.
    • Novell Mirror Credentials: Set these credentials to connect to SUSE Linux Enterprise 10, SUSE Linux Enterprise 11, and SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 mirror URLs.

      Notes

      • If you want to specify the filters for SUSE Linux Enterprise 9 and for SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 and SUSE Linux Enterprise 11, as described in the Filters for Online mode section, set both the Novell Credentials and the Novell Mirror Credentials.
      • You can also specify the Novell Credentials and the Novell Mirror Credentials via the Patch Global Configuration tab. In this case, the credentials you specify are automatically populated in the SuSE Linux Catalog tab when you are creating a new SUSE catalog in online mode. You can override the credentials specified via the Patch Global Configuration tab by specifying a different set of credentials in the SuSE Linux Catalog tab.

    Repository Options

    Enter the following information:

    Field

    Description

    Payload Source Location (NSH Path)

    (Offline mode only) Location of the XML files generated by the downloader and the corresponding payload files
    Metadata files stored in this location are copied to the catalog automatically. Payload files are not copied to the catalog.
    To support sourcing of vendor-supplied media, run the BMC Patch Downloader utility using the -createRepo option. This option creates the repository with the necessary metadata file. Then identify the source location here.

    Repository Location (NSH Path)

    NSH path to the patch repository. This location can be on a Linux platform (Red Hat, SUSE or Oracle Enterprise Linux). However BMC strongly recommends that this location be on a SUSE platform, because some SUSE-specific patches need to be stored only on a SUSE repository server.

    Also, ensure that the repository server has ample free space. Repositories typically contain many files, usually totaling gigabytes of data.

    (For Online mode only) Novell Networks provides the following repositories per Service Pack release: Updates, Online, and Pool. For details about the repositories, see the following link: http://www.novell.com/support/search.do?cmd=displayKC&docType=kc&externalId=7005899&sliceId=1&docTypeID=DT_TID_1_1&dialogID=104000207&stateId=0%200%20207543595.

    Note

    When specifying a host within an NSH path, you can use either the host name of the IP address (IPv4 or IPv6).

    Depot Object Options

    Enter the following information:

    Field

    Description

    Network URL Type for Payload Deployment

    • (default) Copy to agent at staging: During the Deploy Job staging phase, the BMC Server Automation Application Server copies patch payloads to a staging directory on the target server.
    • Agent mounts source for direct use at deployment (no local copy): A Deploy Job instructs the agent on a target server to mount the device specified in the URL and deploy patch payloads directly to the agent. Selecting this option means the Deploy Job does not copy patch payloads to a staging area on the agent, so the job does not create any local copies of the patches on target servers.

    Network URL for payload deployment

    The value entered here depends on your selection in the Network URL Type for Payload Deployment box.

    • If you chose Copy to agent at staging, do not enter a value here. The value is autopopulated based on the repository location.
    • if you chose Agent mounts source for direct use at deployment (no local copy), enter the NFS-accessible path to the location of the payload.
      If you specify the host in this path as an IPv6 address, enclose the IPv6 address in square brackets.

    RBAC Policy

    Browse to select a predefined ACL Policy. Permissions defined by the ACL Policy are assigned to all Depot Objects created in the catalog.

    Filters

    Filters limit the amount of information brought into the catalog. Use this procedure to re-create the same filters defined in the configuration file used by the Patch Downloader utility. You can define a filter during catalog creation or later, when editing the catalog.

    There is no upper limit to the number of filter combinations you can create, but you must create at least one. Only those RPMs that match the combinations that you define (and their dependent RPMs) are added to the catalog.

    To begin, you click Add Filter (as shown in the following figure), and then you provide values for the following options:

    • OS Flavor: Select the combination operating system and architecture from the list provided.
    • OS: The operating system, based on your selection in the OS Flavor box, is supplied automatically in a read-only box.
    • Architecture: The architecture, based on your selected in the OS Flavor box, is supplied automatically in a read-only box. 
    • OS Level: The operating system level of the files to be downloaded.


    (Online Only) In Online mode, the SUSE filter XML file contains the following URLs for a combination of OS and Architecture: Online, Updates, and Pool. Depending on which updates need to be downloaded, select one or more of the following options:

    • Update: The latest updates for the specified OS level. If you select the Updates option, you must ensure that your target is at the OS level for which you require the updates. For example, if you select the Update option for SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP1, you must upgrade your target to SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP1 before applying the updates.
    • Online: Updates from the previous OS level to the specified OS level. You must use the Online option only when you want to bring your target from the existing OS level to the next OS level. For example, you must use the Online option if you want to bring your target from SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP2 to SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP3.
    • Pool: All the updates until the specified OS level. For an OS-Architecture combination, if you require the updates from an OS level to the next or the latest OS level, you must use the Pool option. For example, you must use the Pool option if you want to bring your target from SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP1 to SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP4.

      Note: The Pool option includes the updates provided in the Online option, so selecting the Online option and the Pool option together is not required.

    (Optional) On the Patch Global Configuration tab, you may also specify the SUSE override filters list file by performing the following steps:

    • Import the file into the Depot workspace
    • Point to this Depot path on the Patch Global Configuration tab.
      The drop-down list for Service Packs in the SUSE Linux Catalog tab displays only the service packs specified in the SUSE filters list file.

    Patch catalog - Default Notifications

    The Default Notifications panel provides options for defining default notifications that are generated when a job completes. If you have set up notifications for a particular scheduled job, those notifications are generated instead of default notifications.

    Default notifications can take the form of emails or SNMP traps. When a job completes, an SNMP trap is sent to a specified server, where it can be read using software that receives and interprets SNMP traps. Default notifications are sent when you run a job immediately (that is, you do not schedule the job) or a scheduled job completes but you have not set up email or SNMP notifications for that scheduled occurrence.

    Job Run Notifications

    FieldDescription

    Send email to

    Lists email addresses of the accounts to notify when a job completes with the status that you specify. Separate multiple email addresses with semicolons, such as sysadmin@bmc.com;sysmgr@bmc.com. After entering email address information, check the statuses that cause an email to be generated. The statuses can be Success, Failed, or Aborted.

    Send SNMP trap to

    Provides name or IP address of the server to notify when the job completes. After entering server information, select the statuses that should cause an SNMP trap to be generated. The statuses can be Success, Failed, or Aborted.

    BMC Server Automation provides a management information base (MIB) that describes its SNMP trap structure. You can use this MIB to create scripts that integrate traps into your trap collection system. The MIB is located on the Application Server host computer at installDirectory/Share/BladeLogic.mib.

    List failed servers in email notification

    Indicates that email notifications should list all servers on which a job has failed.

    Patch catalog - Schedules
    The Schedules panel lets you schedule a job to execute immediately, schedule a job at a specific time in the future, schedule a job on a recurring basis, and define notifications that are issued when a job runs.

    When scheduling a job, you can perform any of the following tasks:

    • Scheduling a job that executes immediately — To schedule a job that executes immediately, select Execute job now.
    • Scheduling a job — The Schedule tab lets you schedule a job so it can run one time, recur hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly, or recur at some arbitrary interval. For more information, see Patch catalog - Scheduling.
    • Defining job notifications — The Job Notifications tab lets you set up notifications that are generated when a scheduled job runs. For more information, see Patch catalog - Scheduled Job Notifications.
    Patch catalog - Properties

    The Properties panel provides a list of properties automatically assigned to a Snapshot Job. In this list, you can modify the value of any properties that are defined as editable.

    For any property that has a check in the Editable column, select the property and click in the Value column.

    • To set a property value back to its default value, click Reset to Default Value .
      The value of the property is reset to the value it inherits from a built-in property class. The Value Source column shows the property class from which the value is inherited.
    • Depending on the type of property you are editing, you can take different actions to set a new value, such as entering an alphanumeric string, choosing from an enumerated list, or selecting a date.
      To insert a parameter into the value, enter the value, bracketed with double question mark delimiters (for example, ??MYPARAMETER??) or click Select Property .

    Patch catalog - Permissions

    The Permissions list is an access control list (ACL) granting roles access to any objects created in the system, such as jobs, servers, or depot objects. ACLs control access to all objects, including the sharing of objects between roles.

    Using the Permissions panel, you can add individual permissions to an object. You can also set permissions by adding ACL templates or ACL policies. For more information, see the following table:

    TaskDescription

    Adding an authorization

    An authorization grants permission to a role to perform a certain type of action on this object.

    To add an authorization to this object, click Add Entry  in the Access Control List area. Then use the Add New Entry dialog box to specify the role and authorization you want to add.

    Adding an ACL template

    An ACL template is a group of predefined authorizations granted to roles. Using an ACL template, you can add a group of authorizations to the object.

    To add an ACL template to the object, click Use ACL Template  in the Access Control List area. Then use the Select ACL Template dialog box to specify an ACL template that you want to add to this object.

    To set the contents of the selected ACL templates so they replace all entries in the access control list, check Replace ACL with selected templates. If you do not check this option, the contents of the selected ACL templates are appended to existing entries in the access control list.

    Adding an ACL policy

    An ACL policy is a group of authorizations that can be applied to this object but can be managed from one location.

    To add an ACL policy to this object, click Use ACL Policy  in the ACL Policies area. Then use the Select ACL Policy dialog box to specify an ACL policy that you want to add to the object.

    To set the contents of the selected ACL policies so they replace all entries in the access control list, check Replace ACL with selected policies. If you do not check this option, the contents of the selected ACL policies are appended to existing entries in the access control list.

  3. Click Finish

    A Patch Catalog is stored in the appropriate Depot folder.

Editing the options

  1. In the Depot, right-click the SuSE Linux Patch Catalog you just created.
  2. Select Open.
  3. Set or update any information for the patch catalog options.

  4. When finished, save the catalog.

Where to go from here

Downloading patch payloads to the catalog

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