Important

   

This space contains documentation for TrueSight Server Automation 8.9.03 and the later service packs for 8.9. For earlier releases, see BMC Server Automation 8.9.

Understanding the provisioning process

The following sections describe how servers are provisioned with TrueSight Server Automation.

Provisioning process for Windows and Linux

To provision Microsoft Windows and Linux servers, the TrueSight Server Automation system uses the Pre-boot Execution Environment (PXE) technology. This section describes the phases of provisioning with PXE. 

Designed to work in conjunction with established protocols like DHCP, TFTP, and TCP/IP, this PXE-based approach to provisioning allows Intel computers to boot from a PXE-compliant Network Interface Card (NIC) and retrieve their operating system installation instructions and files over the network, instead of relying on floppy disks and CD-ROMs.

Click the thumbnail below for a full-size image depicting the provisioning process for Windows and Linux. 

The following numbered steps correspond to numbers in the image shown above.

  1. Preparation of the target machine
    Prepare all necessary cabling and install a PXE-enabled NIC card in the machine to be provisioned. Configure the machine's BIOS so it boots to network first and reboot the target machine. Ensure that both the NIC and the BIOS firmware are up-to-date.If you instead want to use UEFI for booting, perform the preparatory tasks described in Preparing for UEFI booting.

  2. Target machine broadcasts to network
    The target machine broadcasts a DHCP packet with its MAC address to the network requesting an IP address for itself and the IP address of the PXE Server.
  3. DHCP server replies
    The DHCP server replies, giving the target machine an IP address. If the DHCP server and the PXE server are running on the same physical device, the DHCP server tells the target server that it is also running the PXE server. If the DHCP server and the PXE server are running on separate physical devices, the PXE server replies to the initial broadcast, letting the target server know that it is the PXE server.
  4. Target machine contacts PXE server
    Using the supplied IP address, the target machine contacts the PXE server using either a multicast or a broadcast.
  5. PXE server checks database
    Using the MAC address of the machine, the PXE server checks a database that contains server configuration information. The database provides instructions for provisioning the server.
  6. PXE server delivers instructions for bootstrap program
    Based on information obtained from the database, the PXE server responds with DHCP scope options 43, 66, and 67 (pxe menu, next-server, and file name), instructing the target to boot either from its local disk or a boot image obtained from the TFTP server. The PXE server provides the TFTP server address and location of the boot image to the target server.
  7. Target machine runs bootstrap and connects to the Application Server
    The target machine boots from the boot image and contacts the TrueSight Server Automation Application Server for instructions.

    Note

    The application server IP address and port are configured on the DHCP server under option sets. Code 211 is used for application servers and Code 212 is used for port. For more information, see Configuring a DHCP server on Windows.

  8. Application Server checks database
    Using the MAC Address of the target machine, the Application Server checks its database to obtain instructions for the target machine.
  9. Application Server delivers provisioning instructions
    Based on information obtained from the database, the Application Server sends a set of provisioning instructions, called a system package, to the target machine.
  10. Target machine requests OS files
    Using the instructions from the Application Server, the target machine requests the full operating system files from an HTTP server for Linux or an SMB server for Windows.
  11. RSCD agent is Installed
    Optionally, the RSCD agent is installed, which is necessary for managing the server with TrueSight Server Automation. A registration event occurs to enter the target machine's information into the TrueSight Server Automation system so the server can be managed from the TrueSight Server Automation Console.
  12. Provisioning runs Batch Job for additional configuration
    Optionally, the provisioning process can run a job that performs additional provisioning of the target machine. For example, a Batch Job can install and configure all necessary applications on the target machine.

Provisioning process for AIX

To provision IBM AIX servers, the TrueSight Server Automation system uses IBM Network Installation Manager (NIM) software. This topic describes the phases of provisioning with NIM. 

TrueSight Server Automation provisioning integrates with existing NIM environments for remote provisioning. Key NIM resources used in the provisioning process include Shared Product Object Tree (SPOT), lpp_source, mksysb, script, fb_script, resolve_conf, and bosinst_data.

Click the thumbnail below for a full-size image depicting the provisioning process. 

The following numbered steps correspond to numbers in the image shown above.

  1. Create system package and data store instance, import device, and run Provision Job:
    • Create a system package that contains all the instructions needed to install an operating system over the network.
    • Create a data store instance that points to the location of a data store, which is where you store sets of installation files that are used for provisioning operating systems.
    • Register the target device's MAC address (and optional additional information) with the TrueSight Server Automation system by importing the device.
    • Create and run the Provision Job.
  2. Reboot the target
    Connect to the service console (HMC) on the AIX target and boot the target to the SMS menu. From the SMS menu, configure the IPL settings to point at the NIM master. Then boot the target to the network.
  3. Target contacts NIM master
    The AIX target contacts the NIM master for its base operating system installation instructions.
  4. NIM master begins OS installation
    The NIM master begins the base OS installation as defined by the files shipped to the NIM master by the TrueSight Server Automation Application Server.
  5. Application Server monitors OS installation
    The TrueSight Server Automation Application Server monitors the base operating system installation job on the NIM master and moves the target to "provisioned" on its completion.
  6. Target reboots to new OS
    The AIX target reboots and comes up to the new operating system, or to the SMS menu, from which you can then boot it to the new operating system.
    Optionally, the NIM master installs the RSCD agent, which is necessary for managing the server with TrueSight Server Automation. A registration event occurs to enter the target machine's information into the TrueSight Server Automation system so the server can be managed from the TrueSight Server Automation Console.
  7. Provisioning runs Batch Job for additional configuration
    Optionally, the provisioning process can run a job that performs additional configuration of the target machine. For example, a Batch Job can install and configure all necessary applications on the target machine.

Provisioning process for Solaris

To provision Oracle Solaris 10 and earlier versions of SPARC and x86 servers, TrueSight Server Automation uses JumpStart software. To provision Oracle Solaris 11 SPARC and x86 servers, TrueSight Server Automation uses AI (Automated Installer).

Solaris 11 does not support JumpStart. Instead, Automated Installer is used. However, JumpStart is supported on Solaris 10 and earlier versions.

Provisioning SPARC devices for Oracle Solaris servers 10 and earlier versions

To provision Oracle Solaris 10 and earlier versions of SPARC and x86 servers, TrueSight Server Automation uses JumpStart software. The TrueSight Server Automation JumpStart integration lets SPARC devices boot from the network using the BOOTP protocol and communicate with JumpStart's boot, config, and install servers for remote provisioning. This integration works with established protocols such as NIS, NIS+, and DHCP.

Click the thumbnail below for a full-size image depicting the provisioning process for Oracle Solaris 10 or earlier.


The following numbered steps correspond to numbers in the image shown above.

  1. Prepare to provision
    To prepare for SPARC provisioning, perform the following tasks:
    • In the TrueSight Server Automation Console:
      • Create a system package that contains all of the instructions required to install an operating system over the network. The system package can include a reboot script, which instructs the target machine to boot from the network. This description assumes that the system package includes a reboot script.
      • Create a data store instance that points to the location of a data store containing the required operating system installation files.
      • Create a Provision Job that references the system package and data store instance.
    • On the device to be provisioned, install all necessary cabling.
    • Ensure that the OpenBoot PROM and the network card on the device are up to date. 
    • In the TrueSight Server Automation Console, import (or add) the device. This action registers the device's MAC address (and optional additional information) with the TrueSight Server Automation system.
    • Open the Provision Job and add the device to the job.
    • Schedule the Provision Job to run.
  2. Provision Job runs
    The Provision Job registers the target with the JumpStart boot server so that the boot server is prepared to respond to the target's BOOTP request with the add_install_client command. The job also pushes all necessary JumpStart control files including sysidcfgprofile, and rules to the JumpStart config server.
  3. JumpStart server causes target to reboot
    After registering the target and pushing JumpStart scripts, the Provision Job instructs the JumpStart server to run the reboot script. The reboot script connects to the target device and forces it to reboot from the network and send a BOOTP request to the JumpStart server. You can use a program such as expect(1) to control the execution of a reboot script.
  4. JumpStart server pushes config files to target
    The JumpStart config server pushes required configuration files (sysidcfgprofile, and rules) to the target.
  5. JumpStart server installs operating system
    The JumpStart install server installs the operating system on the target device, following the configuration instructions in the system package/provisioning wizard.
  6. JumpStart server installs RSCD agent
    Optionally, the JumpStart server installs the RSCD agent, which is necessary for managing the server with TrueSight Server Automation. A registration event occurs to enter the target machine's information into the TrueSight Server Automation system so the server can be managed from the TrueSight Server Automation Console.
  7. Provision Job starts a Batch Job to perform additional configuration
    Optionally, the provisioning process can run a job that performs additional configuration of the target machine. For example, a Batch Job can install and configure all necessary applications on the target machine.

Provisioning x86 devices for Oracle Solaris servers 10 and earlier versions

The TrueSight Server Automation AI integration lets Solaris x86 devices boot from a PXE server using DHCP and communicate with AI servers for remote provisioning. To provision a Solaris x86 operating system: 

  • Configure the target machine's BIOS to boot to the network. 
  • You must have a working Solaris x86 AI environment, which includes a PXE server. The TrueSight Server Automation PXE server is not compatible with the Solaris x86 PXE boot process and the two servers might have difficulties coexisting on the same network. If you require both Windows or Linux PXE provisioning and Solaris x86 provisioning, BMC recommends that you use separate networks.

Provisioning SPARC devices for Oracle Solaris servers 11 and later versions

To provision Oracle Solaris 11 SPARC and x86 servers, TrueSight Server Automation uses AI (Automated Installer). The TrueSight Server Automation Automated Installer (AI) integration lets SPARC devices boot from the network using the BOOTP protocol. This integration works with established protocols such as NIS, NIS+, and DHCP.

Click the thumbnail below for a full-size image depicting the provisioning process for Oracle Solaris 11 or later.


The following numbered steps correspond to numbers in the image shown above.

  1. Prepare to provision
    To prepare for SPARC provisioning, perform the following tasks:
    • In the TrueSight Server Automation Console:
      • Create a system package that contains all of the instructions required to install an operating system over the network. The system package can include a reboot script, which instructs the target machine to boot from the network. This description assumes that the system package includes a reboot script.
      • Create a data store instance that points to the AI server.
      • Create a Provision Job that references the system package and data store instance.
    • On the device to be provisioned, install all necessary cabling.
    • Ensure that the OpenBoot PROM and the network card on the device are up to date.
    • In the TrueSight Server Automation Console, import (or add) the device. This action registers the device's MAC address (and optional additional information) with the TrueSight Server Automation system.
    • Open the Provision Job and add the device to the job.
    • Schedule the Provision Job to run.
  2. Provision Job runs
    The Provision Job registers the target with the AI server so that the boot server is prepared to respond to the target's BOOTP request. The job also pushes all necessary AI control files including manifest.xmlprofile.xml, and installadm commands to the AI server.
  3. A client system boots and gets IP information from the DHCP server.
  4. Characteristics of the client determine which AI service and which installation instructions are used to install the client.
  5. The Oracle Solaris OS is installed on the client, pulling packages from the package repository specified by the installation instructions in the AI service.
  6. The AI server installs the RSCD agent
    Optionally, the AI server installs the RSCD agent, which is necessary for managing the server with TrueSight Server Automation. A registration event occurs to enter the target machine's information into the TrueSight Server Automation system so the server can be managed from the TrueSight Server Automation Console.
  7. Provision Job starts a Batch Job to perform additional configuration
    Optionally, the provisioning process can run a job that performs additional configuration of the target machine. For example, a Batch Job can install and configure all necessary applications on the target machine.

Provisioning x86 devices for Oracle Solaris servers 11 and later versions

The TrueSight Server Automation AI integration lets Solaris x86 devices boot from a PXE server using DHCP and communicate with AI servers for remote provisioning. To provision a Solaris x86 operating system: 

  • Configure the target machine's BIOS to boot to the network. 
  • You must have a working Solaris x86 AI environment, which includes a PXE server. The TrueSight Server Automation PXE server is not compatible with the Solaris x86 PXE boot process and the two servers might have difficulties coexisting on the same network. If you require both Windows or Linux PXE provisioning and Solaris x86 provisioning, BMC recommends that you use separate networks.

Provisioning process for HP-UX

To provision HP-UX servers, the TrueSight Server Automation system uses Hewlett-Packard Ignite software. This topic describes the phases of provisioning in the Ignite environment. 

TrueSight Server Automation provisioning integrates with existing Ignite environments for remote provisioning. Key Ignite resources utilized in the provisioning process include the Ignite master server, Igniteboot helper server, config files, INDEX file, and INSTALLFS.

Click the thumbnail below for a full-size image depicting the provisioning process.

The following numbered steps correspond to numbers in the image shown above.

  1. Create system package and data store instance, import device, and run Provision Job:
    • Create a system package that contains all the instructions needed to install an operating system over the network.
    • Create a data store instance that points to the location of a data store, which is where you store sets of installation files that are used for provisioning operating systems.
    • Register the target device's MAC address (and optional additional information) with the TrueSight Server Automation system by importing the device.
    • Create and run the Provision Job.
  2. Reboot the target
    If your Provision Job is not set up to automatically reboot the Ignite target, you need to reboot the target by doing one of the following things
    • Run the bootsys command, using the following syntax:
      bootsys -a <target machine name>
      for example: bootsys -a itanium1
    • On the booting menu, select network boot on an active LAN device.
  3. Target contacts Ignite master
    The HP-UX target contacts the Ignite master for its base operating system installation instructions.
  4. Ignite master begins OS installation
    The Ignite master begins the base operating system installation as defined by the files shipped to the Ignite master by the TrueSight Server Automation Application Server.
  5. Application Server monitors OS installation
    The TrueSight Server Automation Application Server monitors the base operating system installation job on the Ignite master and moves the target to "provisioned" upon its completion.
  6. Target reboots to new OS
    The HP-UX target reboots and comes up to the new operating system.
    Optionally, the Ignite master installs the RSCD agent, which is necessary for managing the server with TrueSight Server Automation. A registration event occurs to enter the target machine's information into the TrueSight Server Automation system so the server can be managed from the TrueSight Server Automation Console.
  7. Provisioning runs Batch Job for additional configuration
    Optionally, the provisioning process can run a job that performs additional configuration of the target machine. For example, a Batch Job can install and configure all necessary applications on the target machine.
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