[syslinux] pxelinux and http

Timothy Legge tlegge at rogers.com
Wed May 19 14:43:28 PDT 2004

> If the config file needed vmlinuz or initrd, it would make an http 
> request.  Now, the web server could look into a database and decide 
> which kernel and ramdisk to hand out.  Maybe you get OS 4.x today but 
> tomorrow the web server would hand out 5.x.  It makes maintaining 
> multiple builds and hosts much easier than dealing with many config files.
> Is this something I could do with etherboot?  I do not want to modify 
> the hardware in any way.

Etherboot can be loaded via pxe, so instead of loading pxelinux load
Etherboot (that give you Etherboot capabilities without burning roms).

Etherboot could find the filename via dhcp (a simple dhcpd.conf section
could distinguish between Etherboot and pxe but I am not sure about
whether other dhcp servers support this). (I suppose one could hard code
the http server and file name.)

Once the request is made to the http server, and the decision on kernel
and initrd is made you could dynamically create the tagged kernel with
the ramdisk appended (or download an already prepared file).

There are probably other options, I don't use Etherboot in a production
setting (I just maintain the drivers) so I am not as familiar as I
should be with all the ways to do some of the things you want.  Send a
message to the etherboot-users list and someone may be able to help out.


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