Advanced OS deployment system
Tutor / director / evaluatorBarrado Muxí, Cristina
Document typeMaster thesis (pre-Bologna period)
Rights accessOpen Access
Personal Computers are a fundamental tool in many disciplines of study and work. In many cases they are offered to users inside an open room to be used freely for their needs. A college computer laboratory is just one limit example of this situation. Students of different courses, with different needs, are sharing the same infrastructure. Technical managers know well the needs of maintenance of shared computer labs. Many people entering and using the computers represents a lot of small hardware reparations, resulting in a heterogeneous environment due to reparations and component substitutions. Then the real complexity arises: software management. In addition to the initial requirements of software to install on computers, the heterogeneous hardware makes exponential the number of combinations to maintain. The requirements are just a remote server connected to a network to the PC laboratory. This project, OS deployment system, is a modified way to use Linux thin client to restore images, using kexec to boot an OS without reboot. The state of the art on similar tools is the Rembo system, recently bought by IBM, added to the Tivoli Provisioning Manager suite. This final thesis presents how the OS deployoment system has improved to overcome PC labs management. The OS deployment system is a free software solution that permits: • The end-user to restore, interactively and easely, operating systems images on demand. - Multiple OS management. - Improve maintenance's time, autorestoring lab's computers to the initial configuration simultaneously. - An empty PC can be filled up with an operating system and software via network. - Fast image restoring.
The main project’s objective is to design and build an OS deployment system taking advantage of the Linux OS and the Open Source community developments. This means to use existing technologies that modularize the system. With this philosophy in mind, the number of developed code lines within the project is keeping as small as possible. As REMBO, the OS deployment system to develop has to be transparent to the user. This means a system with a friendly user interface and no technological knowledge needed to manage it.