Friday, November 20, 2009

Custom RHEL / OEL 5.4 CD (iso) with kickstart

The end result of this tutorial is a bootable iso which will install a pre-configured RHEL 5.4 without any user input.

Step1: Copy

Copy the entire contents of the RHEL 5.4 dvd to $rhroot, where $rhroot is any directory on your system.

Step 2: Create Kickstart

A kickstart file tells the installer how you want the system installed and allows your install to take place with no user input. In it, you configure options like the timezone, the partition layout, and which packages you want installed. The easiest way to create a kickstart config file is to use the one created when you installed your current system which is located at /root/anaconda-ks.cfg. See the documentation for more information on tweaking your kickstart file.

Step 3: Remove Unnecessary Packages, Add Extra Packages

Remove the rpms that you don't need from $rhroot/Server/. Most likely the Cluster, ClusterStorage, and VT directories of $rhroot can also be removed. The rpms you don't need are determined by what packages your installing as defined in the kickstart file. For any additional custom RPMs, be sure you add them to kickstart file or include them in a package group (see $rhroot/Server/comps-rhel5-server-core.xml).

Despite the fact that you may remove many RPMs, I haven't found any benefit to removing references to them from the package group file.

Step 4: Rebuild the Repository

Run the following command from $rhroot/Server to rebuild the Server repository to reflect any packages that were added or removed:
$ createrepo -u "media://`head -1 ../.discinfo`" -g repodata/comps-rhel5-server-core.xml .
Step 5: Build the ISO

From $rhroot run the following:
mkisofs -r -R -J -T -v -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table -b isolinux/isolinux.bin -c isolinux/ -x "lost+found" -o ../oel5Custom.iso .
Step 6: Test

I use VirtualBox to give my new ISO a spin.

Good References:

Friday, November 06, 2009

Ozone mobile web browser

For the longest time, I've been looking for a decent web browser for the Nokia e71.  After trying webkit s60 (the built in browser), skyfire, opera mini, bolt, and teashark, I finally found Ozone.  Ozone is amazing.  It is fast and loads pages with javascript better than any other mobile browser.

Interestingly enough, Ozone's author(s) is mysteriously elusive.  It is a really good browser, so I would conclude that it took a lot of money to develop.  Why is there no mention of a company or author?  With nobody to give credit to, there's nobody to take blame -- for better or worse.  It's hard for me to trust my identity (gmail username/password, for example) to Ozone.  For all I know, there's a good chance Ozone is the fruit of an organized crime effort.  I'm pretty sure someone could earn a buck or two if they full access to the kinds of information people, usually trustingly, put into their web browser.

So while I'll be using Ozone for everything I can, I won't be giving it any information I wouldn't openly post on the internet.