Apple | Mac OS X Server System Imaging and Software Update Administration For Version 10.4 or Later | System Imaging and Software Update Administration

System Imaging and Software Update Administration
Mac OS X Server
System Imaging and Software
Update Administration
For Version 10.4 or Later
Second Edition
K Apple Computer, Inc.
© 2006 Apple Computer, Inc. All rights reserved.
The owner or authorized user of a valid copy of
Mac OS X Server software may reproduce this
publication for the purpose of learning to use such
software. No part of this publication may be reproduced
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copies of this publication or for providing paid-for
support services.
Every effort has been made to ensure that the
information in this manual is accurate. Apple Computer,
Inc., is not responsible for printing or clerical errors.
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019-0683/02-09-06
1
Preface
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Part I
Chapter 1
Contents
About This Guide
What’s New in NetBoot Service and Software Update Server Version 10.4
What’s in This Guide
Using Onscreen Help
The Mac OS X Server Suite
Getting Documentation Updates
Getting Additional Information
System Imaging Administration
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About System Imaging Administration
Inside NetBoot
Disk Images
NetBoot Share Points
Using NetBoot and Network Install Images on Other Servers
Client Information File
Shadow Files
NetBoot Image Folder
Property List File
Boot Server Discovery Protocol (BSDP)
BootP Server
Boot Files
Trivial File Transfer Protocol
Using Images Stored on Other Servers
Security
Network Install Images
Before You Set Up NetBoot
What You Need to Know
Client Computer Requirements
Network Hardware Requirements
Network Service Requirements
Capacity Planning
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4
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Serial Number Considerations
Setup Overview — NetBoot
Setup Overview — Network Install
Chapter 2
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Creating Boot and Install Images
Creating Mac OS X Boot Images
Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image
Adding an OS Update Package to a Mac OS X Boot Image
Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image from an Existing System
Synchronizing an Image with an Updated Source Volume
Choosing the Protocol Used to Deliver an Image
Compressing Images to Save Disk Space
Changing How Mac OS X NetBoot Clients Allocate Shadow Files
Creating Mac OS X Install Images
Creating an OS Install Image
Adding Software to Boot and Install Images
About Packages
Creating Packages
Adding Packages to a Boot or Install Image
Creating an Application-Only Install Image
Automating Image Installation
Viewing the Contents of a Package
Installing Mac OS Updates
Adding Post-Install Scripts to Install Images
Chapter 3
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Setting Up NetBoot Service
Configuring NetBoot Service
Starting NetBoot and Related Services
Enabling Images
Choosing Where Images Are Stored
Choosing Where Shadow Files Are Stored
Using Images Stored on Remote Servers
Moving Images to Other Servers
Deleting Images
Editing Images
Specifying the Default Image
Setting an Image for Diskless Booting
Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses
Changing Advanced NetBoot Options
Setting Up NetBoot Service Across Subnets
Chapter 4
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Setting Up Clients to Use NetBoot and Network Install
Setting Up Diskless Clients
Contents
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Selecting a NetBoot Boot Image
Selecting a Network Install Image
Starting Up Using the N Key
Chapter 5
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Managing NetBoot Service
Controlling and Monitoring NetBoot
Turning Off NetBoot Service
Disabling Individual Boot or Install Images
Viewing a List of NetBoot Clients
Checking the Status of NetBoot and Related Services
Viewing the NetBoot Service Log
Performance and Load Balancing
Boot Images
Distributing Boot Images Across Servers
Distributing Boot Images Across Server Disk Drives
Balancing Boot Image Access
Distributing Shadow Files
Advanced NetBoot Tuning
Chapter 6
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Solving Problems with System Imaging
General Tips
A NetBoot Client Computer Won’t Start Up
You’re Using Macintosh Manager and a User Can’t Log In to a NetBoot Client
The Create Button in System Image Utility Is Not Enabled
Controls and Fields in System Image Utility Are Disabled
Can’t Edit Image Name in System Image Utility
Changing the Name of an Uncompressed Image
Changing the Name of a Compressed Image
I Can’t Set an Image to Use Static Booting (NetBoot version 1.0)
Downloading the “NetBoot for Mac OS 9” Disk Image and Updating the Startup Disk
Control Panel
The Architecture Field in Server Admin Is Not Enabled
Server Admin Isn’t showing an Image for Intel-based Macs
A Network Install Image Burned to DVD Doesn’t Work
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Part II
Chapter 7
Software Update Administration
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About Software Update Administration
Inside The Software Update Process
Overview
Catalogs
Install Packages
Contents
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Staying Up To Date with the Apple Server
Limiting User Bandwidth
Revoked Files
Software Update Package Format
Log Files
What Information Gets Collected
Before You Set Up the Software Update Server
What You Need to Know
Client Computer Requirements
Network Hardware Requirements
Capacity Planning
Setup Overview
Chapter 8
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Setting Up Software Update Service
Before You Begin
Consider Which Software Update Packages to Offer
Organize Your Enterprise Client Computers
Setting Up a Software Update Server
Starting Software Update Service
Automatically Mirroring and Enabling Updates from Apple
Limiting User Bandwidth for Software Update Service
Mirroring and Enabling Selected Updates from Apple
Pointing Non-Managed Clients to a Software Update Server
Chapter 9
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Managing Software Update Service
Manually Refreshing the Updates Catalog from the Apple Server
Checking the Status of Software Update Service
Turning Off Software Update Service
Chapter 10
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Solving Problems with Software Update Service
General Tips
A Client Computer Can’t Access the Software Update Server
Software Update Server Won’t Sync with the Apple Server
Software Update Server Has Update Packages Listed but They Aren’t Visible to Clients
Glossary
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Index
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Contents
Preface
About This Guide
Learn what’s new in this version of NetBoot and Network
Install services and Software Update Server.
Mac OS X Server version 10.4 includes NetBoot service supporting both NetBoot and
Network Install images and the improved System Image Utility (formerly Network
Image Utility)—a stand-alone utility used to create Install and Boot images used with
NetBoot service.
A new service added in Mac OS X Server version 10.4 is Apple’s Software Update Server.
Designed as a source for Apple Software Updates managed on your network. With SUS,
you are able to directly manage which Apple Software Updates client users on your
network can access and apply to their computers.
What’s New in NetBoot Service and Software Update Server
Version 10.4
 Virtually unlimited number of AFP connections.
 Create faster-installing, block copy, network install disk images. This feature allows
you to install software up to five times faster compared to package install images.
Block copy images can also be used to burn discs that you can use to install software
on client and server computers.
 Create images you can store on a remote server. Previously a command-line interface
option, administrators can now specify an NFS or HTTP indirect path to store
NetBoot and Network Install images that NetBoot service can provide clients as if
they were stored locally.
 Copy a Directory Service configuration to all clients using the same system image.
System Image Utility now provides an option to apply Directory Service settings from
one computer to all clients using the NetBoot image you create.
 Use Software Update Server to manage which Software Update packages your client
users may access from software lists that you control.
7
 As of Mac OS X Server 10.4.4, you can create, maintain, and serve disk images for
Intel-based Macintosh computers. You can also specify default NetBoot images for
both Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh clients. You must update to the
latest Server Admin Tools and have Mac OS X 10.4.4 or later in order to create
architecture-specific images using System Image Utility. Use Software Update to
ensure that you have the latest version.
What’s in This Guide
This guide is organized as follows:
 Part I—System Imaging Administration. “The chapters in this part of the guide
introduce you to system imaging and the applications and tools available for
administering system imaging services.”
 Part II—Software Update Administration. “The chapters in this part of this guide
introduce you to the software update service and the applications and tools available
for administering the software update service.”
Note: Because Apple frequently releases new versions and updates to its software,
images shown in this book may be different from what you see on your screen.
Using Onscreen Help
You can view instructions and other useful information that appear in this and other
documents in the server suite by using onscreen help.
On a computer running Mac OS X Server, you can access onscreen help after opening
Workgroup Manager or Server Admin. From the Help menu, choose one of the options:
 Workgroup Manager Help or Server Admin Help displays information about the
application.
 Mac OS X Server Help displays the main server help page, from which you can search
or browse for server information.
 Documentation takes you to www.apple.com/server/documentation, from which you
can download server documentation.
You can also access onscreen help from the Finder or other applications on a server or
on an administrator computer. (An administrator computer is a Mac OS X computer
with server administration software installed on it.) Use the Help menu to open the
Help Viewer, and then click Library > Mac OS X Server Help.
To see the latest server help topics, make sure the server or administrator computer is
connected to the Internet while you’re using the Help Viewer. The Help Viewer
automatically retrieves and caches the latest server help topics from the Internet.
When not connected to the Internet, the Help Viewer displays cached help topics.
8
Preface About This Guide
The Mac OS X Server Suite
The Mac OS X Server documentation includes a suite of guides that explain the services
and provide instructions for configuring, managing, and troubleshooting the services.
All of the guides are available in PDF format from:
www.apple.com/server/documentation/
This guide...
tells you how to:
Mac OS X Server Getting Started
for Version 10.4 or Later
Install Mac OS X Server and set it up for the first time.
Mac OS X Server Upgrading and
Migrating to Version 10.4 or Later
Use data and service settings that are currently being used on
earlier versions of the server.
Mac OS X Server User
Management for Version 10.4 or
Later
Create and manage users, groups, and computer lists. Set up
managed preferences for Mac OS X clients.
Mac OS X Server File Services
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Share selected server volumes or folders among server clients
using these protocols: AFP, NFS, FTP, and SMB/CIFS.
Mac OS X Server Print Service
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Host shared printers and manage their associated queues and print
jobs.
Mac OS X Server System Image
and Software Update
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Use NetBoot and Network Install to create disk images from which
Macintosh computers can start up over the network. Set up a
software update server for updating client computers over the
network.
Mac OS X Server Mail Service
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Set up, configure, and administer mail services on the server.
Mac OS X Server Web
Technologies Administration for
Version 10.4 or Later
Set up and manage a web server, including WebDAV, WebMail, and
web modules.
Mac OS X Server Network Services Set up, configure, and administer DHCP, DNS, VPN, NTP, IP firewall,
Administration for Version 10.4 or and NAT services on the server.
Later
Mac OS X Server Open Directory
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Manage directory and authentication services.
Mac OS X Server QuickTime
Streaming Server Administration
for Version 10.4 or Later
Set up and manage QuickTime streaming services.
Mac OS X Server Windows
Services Administration for
Version 10.4 or Later
Set up and manage services including PDC, BDC, file, and print for
Windows computer users.
Mac OS X Server Migrating from
Windows NT to Version 10.4 or
Later
Move accounts, shared folders, and services from Windows NT
servers to Mac OS X Server.
Preface About This Guide
9
This guide...
tells you how to:
Mac OS X Server Java Application
Server Administration For Version
10.4 or Later
Configure and administer a JBoss application server on Mac OS X
Server.
Mac OS X Server Command-Line
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Use commands and configuration files to perform server
administration tasks in a UNIX command shell.
Mac OS X Server Collaboration
Services Administration for
Version 10.4 or Later
Set up and manage weblog, chat, and other services that facilitate
interactions among users.
Mac OS X Server High Availability
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Manage IP failover, link aggregation, load balancing, and other
hardware and software configurations to ensure high availability of
Mac OS X Server services.
Mac OS X Server Xgrid
Administration for Version 10.4 or
Later
Manage computational Xserve clusters using the Xgrid application.
Mac OS X Server and Storage
Glossary
Interpret terms used for server and storage products.
Getting Documentation Updates
Periodically, Apple posts new onscreen help topics, revised guides, and additional
solution papers. The new help topics include updates to the latest guides.
 To view new onscreen help topics, make sure your server or administrator computer
is connected to the Internet and click the Late-Breaking News link on the main
Mac OS X Server help page.
 To download the latest guides and solution papers in PDF format, go to the
Mac OS X Server documentation webpage: www.apple.com/server/documentation.
10
Preface About This Guide
Getting Additional Information
For more information, consult these resources:
Read Me documents—important updates and special information. Look for them on the
server discs.
Mac OS X Server website—gateway to extensive product and technology information.
www.apple.com/macosx/server/
AppleCare Service & Support—access to hundreds of articles from Apple’s support
organization.
www.apple.com/support/
Apple customer training—instructor-led and self-paced courses for honing your server
administration skills.
train.apple.com/
Apple discussion groups—a way to share questions, knowledge, and advice issues with
other administrators.
discussions.info.apple.com/
Apple mailing list directory—subscribe to mailing lists so you can communicate with
other administrators using email.
www.lists.apple.com/
Preface About This Guide
11
12
Preface About This Guide
Part I: System Imaging
Administration
I
The chapters in this part of the guide introduce you to
system imaging and the applications and tools available for
administering system imaging services.
Chapter 1
About System Imaging Administration
Chapter 2
Creating Boot and Install Images
Chapter 3
Setting Up NetBoot Service
Chapter 4
Setting Up Clients to Use NetBoot and Network Install
Chapter 5
Managing NetBoot Service
Chapter 6
Solving Problems with System Imaging
1
About System Imaging
Administration
1
This chapter describes how to start up client computers using
an operating system stored on a server and how to install
software on client computers over the network.
The NetBoot and Network Install features of Mac OS X Server offer you alternatives for
managing the operating system and application software your Macintosh clients (or
even other servers) need to start up and do their work. Instead of going from computer
to computer to install operating system and application software from CDs, you can
prepare an install image that is automatically installed on each computer when it starts
up. Or, you can choose not to install software on the clients at all but, instead, have
them start up (or “boot”) directly from an image stored on the server. In some cases,
clients don’t even need their own disk drives.
Using NetBoot and Network Install, you can have your client computers start up from a
standardized Mac OS configuration suited to their specific tasks. Because the client
computers start up from the same image, you can quickly update the operating system
for the entire group by updating a single boot image.
A boot image is a file that looks and acts like a mountable disk or volume. NetBoot boot
images contain the system software needed to act as a startup disk for client
computers via the network. An install image is a special boot image that boots the
client long enough to install software from the image, after which the client can start
up from its own hard drive. Both boot images and install images are special kinds of
disk images. Disk images are files that behave just like disk volumes.
You can set up multiple boot or install images to suit the needs of different groups
of clients or to provide several copies of the same image to distribute the client
startup load.
You can use NetBoot in conjunction with Mac OS X client management services
to provide a personalized work environment for each client computer user.
For information about client management services, see the user management guide.
15
You can use the following Mac OS X Server applications to set up and manage NetBoot
and Network Install:
 System Image Utility: to create Mac OS X boot and install disk images. Installed with
Mac OS X Server software in the /Applications/Server folder.
 Server Admin: to enable and configure NetBoot service and supporting services.
Installed with Mac OS X Server software in the /Applications/Server folder.
 PackageMaker: to create package files that you use to add additional software to disk
images. PackageMaker is installed into /Developer/Applications/Utilities by the
Xcode installer, provided with Mac OS X client software.
 Property List Editor: to edit property lists such as NBImageInfo.plist. Proper List Editor
is installed into /Developer/Applications/Utilities by the Xcode installer, included with
Mac OS X client software.
Inside NetBoot
This section describes how NetBoot is implemented on Mac OS X Server, including
information on the protocols, files, directory structures, and configuration details.
Disk Images
The read-only disk images contain the system software and applications used over the
network by the client computers. The name of a disk image file typically ends in “.img”
or “.dmg.” Disk Utility—a utility included with Mac OS X—can mount disk image files as
volumes on the desktop.
You use System Image Utility to create Mac OS X disk images, using a Mac OS X install
disc or an existing system volume as the source. See “Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image”
on page 29.
NetBoot Share Points
NetBoot sets up share points to make images and shadow files available to clients.
NetBoot creates share points for storing boot and install images in /Library/NetBoot on
each volume you enable and names them NetBootSPn, where n is 0 for the first share
point and increases by 1 for each additional share point. If, for example, you decide to
store images on three separate server disks, NetBoot will set up three share points
named NetBootSP0, NetBootSP1, and NetBootSP2.
The share points for client shadow files are also created in /Library/NetBoot and are
named NetBootClientsn.
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Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
You can create and enable additional NetBootSPn and NetBootClientsn share points on
other server volumes using the NetBoot service General settings in Server Admin.
Warning: Don’t rename a NetBoot share point or the volume on which it resides.
Don’t use Workgroup Manager to stop sharing for a NetBoot share point unless you
first deselect the share point for images and shadow files in Server Admin.
Using NetBoot and Network Install Images on Other Servers
You can also specify the path of a NetBoot image residing on a different NFS server.
When creating your image files, you can specify on which server the image will reside.
See “Using Images Stored on Remote Servers” on page 46.
Client Information File
NetBoot gathers information about a client the first time the client tries to
start up from the NetBoot server. NetBoot stores this information in the file
/var/db/bsdpd_clients.
Shadow Files
Many clients can read from the same boot image, but when a client needs to write
anything back to its startup volume (such as print jobs and other temporary files),
NetBoot automatically redirects the written data to the client’s shadow files, which are
separate from regular system and application software.
The shadow files preserve the unique identity of each client during the entire time it is
running from a NetBoot image. NetBoot transparently maintains changed user data in
the shadow files, while reading unchanged data from the shared system image.
The shadow files are re-created at boot time, so any changes made by the user to his or
her startup volume are lost at restart.
For example, if a user saves a document to the startup volume, after a restart that
document will be gone. This behavior preserves the condition of the environment the
administrator set up. Therefore it is recommended that users have accounts on a file
server on the network to save their documents.
Balancing the Shadow File Load
NetBoot creates an AFP share point on each server volume you specify (see “Choosing
Where Shadow Files Are Stored” on page 46) and distributes client shadow files across
them as a way of balancing the load for NetBoot clients. There is no performance gain
if the volumes are partitions on the same disk. See “Distributing Shadow Files” on
page 57.
Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
17
Allocation of Shadow Files for Mac OS X NetBoot Clients
When a client computer starts up from a Mac OS X boot image, it creates its shadow
files on a server NetBootClientsn share point or, if no share point is available, on a drive
local to the client. For information about changing this behavior, see “Changing How
Mac OS X NetBoot Clients Allocate Shadow Files” on page 35.
NetBoot Image Folder
When you create a Mac OS X NetBoot image with System Image Utility, it automatically
creates a NetBoot image folder whose name ends with “.nbi” and stores in it the
NetBoot image and other files (see table below) required to start up a client computer
over the network. System Image Utility stores the folder whose name ends with “.nbi”
on the NetBoot server in /Library/NetBoot/NetBootSPn/image.nbi (where n is the
volume number and image is the name of the image) Files for PowerPC-based
Macintosh computers are stored at the root level of the folder, those for Intel-based
Macintosh computers are stored in the i386 directory.
File
Description
booter
Boot file which the firmware uses to begin the startup process
mach.macosx
UNIX kernel
mach.macosx.mkext
Drivers
System.dmg
Startup image file (may include application software)
NBImageInfo.plist
Property list file
You use System Image Utility to set up NetBoot image folders. The utility lets you:
 Name the image
 Choose the image type (NetBoot or Network Install)
 Provide an image ID
 Choose the default language
 Choose the computer models the image will support
 Create unique sharing names
 Specify a default user name and password
 Enable automatic installation for install images
 Add additional package or preinstalled applications
See “Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image” on page 29.
The name of a NetBoot image folder has the suffix “.nbi.”
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Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
Property List File
The property list file (NBImageInfo.plist) stores image properties. The property list for
Mac OS X image files is described in the following table. Initial values in the
NBImageInfo.plist are set by System Image Utility and you usually don’t need to change
the property list file directly. Some values are set by Server Admin. If you need to edit a
property list file, however, you can use TextEdit or Property List Editor, which you can
find in the Utilities folder on the Mac OS X Server Administration Tools CD.
Mac OS X property list
Property
Type
Description
Architectures
array
An array of strings of the architectures the image supports.
BootFile
String
Name of boot ROM file: booter.
Index
Integer
1–4095 indicates a local image unique to the server.
4096–65535 is a duplicate, identical image stored on multiple servers
for load balancing.
IsDefault
Boolean
True specifies this image file as the default boot image on the subnet.
IsEnabled
Boolean
Sets whether the image is available to NetBoot (or Network Image)
clients.
IsInstall
Boolean
True specifies a Network Install image; False specifies a NetBoot image.
Name
String
Name of the image as it appears in the Mac OS X Preferences pane.
RootPath
String
Specifies path to disk image on server, or the path to an image on
another server. See “Using Images Stored on Other Servers” on
page 20.
Type
String
NFS or HTTP.
SupportsDiskless
Boolean
True directs the NetBoot server to allocate space for the shadow files
needed by diskless clients.
Description
String
Arbitrary text describing the image.
Language
String
A code specifying the language to be used while booted from the
image.
Boot Server Discovery Protocol (BSDP)
NetBoot uses an Apple-developed protocol based on DHCP called Boot Server
Discovery Protocol (BSDP). This protocol provides a way of discovering NetBoot servers
on a network. NetBoot clients obtain their IP information from a DHCP server and their
NetBoot information from BSDP. BSDP offers built-in support for load balancing. See
“Performance and Load Balancing” on page 55.
Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
19
BootP Server
NetBoot uses a BootP server (bootpd) to provide necessary information to client
computers when they try to boot from an image on the server.
If you have BootP clients on your network, they might request an IP address from the
NetBoot BootP server, and this request will fail because the NetBoot BootP server
doesn’t have addresses to offer. To prevent the NetBoot BootP server from responding
to requests for IP addresses, use NetInfo Manager to open the NetBoot server’s local
NetInfo directory and add a key named bootp_enabled with no value to the directory
/config/dhcp.
Boot Files
When you create a Mac OS X NetBoot image with System Image Utility, it automatically
generates three boot files and stores them on the NetBoot server in /Library/NetBoot/
NetBootSPn/image.nbi (where n is the volume number and image is the name of the
image). These files are:
 booter
 mach.macosx
 mach.macosx.mkext
Note: If you enable NetBoot services when installing Mac OS X Server, the installer
automatically creates NetBootSP0 share point on your server’s boot volume. Otherwise,
you can set up NetBootSPn share points by choosing the volumes in which to store
NetBoot images from the list of volumes in the General pane of the Settings pane of
NetBoot service in Server Admin.
Trivial File Transfer Protocol
NetBoot uses the Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) to send boot files from the server
to the client. When you start a NetBoot client, it sends out a request for startup
software. The NetBoot server then delivers the booter file to the client via TFTP default
port 69.
Client computers access the startup software on the NetBoot server from:
/private/tftpboot/NetBoot/NetBootSPn
This path is a symbolic link to Library/NetBoot/NetBootSPn/image.nbi (where n is the
volume number and image is the name of the image).
Using Images Stored on Other Servers
You can store Mac OS X boot or install images on NFS servers other than the NetBoot
server itself. For more information, see “Using Images Stored on Remote Servers” on
page 46.
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Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
Security
You can restrict access to NetBoot service on a case-by-case basis by listing the
hardware (also called the Ethernet or MAC) addresses of computers that you want to
allow or deny access. A client computer’s hardware address is automatically added to
the NetBoot Filtering list when the client starts up using NetBoot and is, by default,
enabled to use NetBoot. You can specify others. See “Restricting NetBoot Clients by
Filtering Addresses” on page 49.
Network Install Images
An install image is a special boot image that boots the client long enough to install
software from the image, after which the client can boot from its own hard drive.
Just as a boot image replaces the role of a hard drive, an install image is a replacement
for an installation CD.
Like a bootable CD-ROM disc, Network Install is a convenient way to reinstall the
operating system, applications, or other software onto the local hard drive. For system
administrators deploying large numbers of computers with the same version of
Mac OS X, Network Install can be very useful. Network Install does not require the
insertion of a CD-ROM disk into each NetBoot client, because all startup and installation
information is delivered over the network.
While creating an install image with System Image Utility, you have the option to
automate the installation process by limiting the amount of interaction from anyone at
the client computer. Because an automatic network installation can be configured to
erase the contents of the local hard drive before installation, data loss can occur. You
must control access to this type of Network Install disk image and must communicate
to those using these images the implications of using them. It is always wise to inform
users to back up critical data before using automatic network installations.
Software installations using Network Install can be performed using a collection of
packages or an entire disk image (depending on the source used to create the image).
For more information on preparing install images to install software over the network
see “Creating Mac OS X Install Images” on page 35.
Before You Set Up NetBoot
Before you set up a NetBoot server, review the following considerations and
requirements.
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21
What You Need to Know
To set up NetBoot on your server, you should be familiar with your network
configuration, including the DHCP services it provides. Be sure you meet the following
requirements:
 You’re the server administrator.
 You’re familiar with network setup.
 You know the DHCP configuration.
You might also need to work with your networking staff to change network topologies,
switches, routers, and other network settings.
Client Computer Requirements
Most Macintosh computers that can run Mac OS X can use NetBoot to start up from a
Mac OS X disk image on a server. At the time of this publication, this includes the
following Macintosh computers:
 Slot-loading G3 iMac (tray-loading iMacs are not supported)
 G4 iMac
 iMac G5
 Mac mini
 iBook
 eMac
 Power Mac G5
 Power Mac G4
 Power Mac G4 Cube
 PowerBook G3 (FireWire)
 PowerBook G4
 Xserve
 Xserve G5
You should install the latest firmware updates on all client computers. Firmware
updates are available from the Apple support website: www.apple.com/support/.
The older Macintosh computers in the following list require NetBoot 1.0:
 iMacs with tray-loading CD drives
 G3 blue-and-white tower computers
 PowerBook G3 computers with bronze keyboards
Though Server Admin supports only NetBoot 2.0, you can enable support for these
NetBoot 1.0 clients using Terminal commands. For more information, see the system
image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
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Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
Note: AppleCare does not provide support for NetBoot 1.0 under the standard 90-day
warranty, but will assist with issue resolution under a Mac OS X Server software support
contract.
Client Computer RAM Requirements
Client computers using NetBoot to start up from a boot image must have at least 128
MB of RAM.
Client computers using Network Install must also have 128 MB of RAM.
Software Updates for NetBoot System Disk Images
You should use the latest system software when creating NetBoot disk images.
New Macintosh computers require updates of system software, so if you have new
Macintosh clients you’ll need to update your boot images.
To update a Mac OS X disk image, see “Adding an OS Update Package to a Mac OS X
Boot Image” on page 32.
Ethernet Support on Client Computers
NetBoot is supported only over the built-in Ethernet connection. Multiple Ethernet
ports are not supported on client computers. Clients should have at least 100-Mbit
Ethernet adapters.
Network Hardware Requirements
The type of network connections you should use depends on the number of clients
you expect to boot over the network:
 100-Mbit Ethernet (for booting fewer than 10 clients)
 100-Mbit switched Ethernet (for booting 10–50 clients)
 Gigabit Ethernet (for booting more than 50 clients)
These are estimates for the number of clients supported. See “Capacity Planning” on
page 24 for a more detailed discussion of the optimal system and network
configurations to support the number of clients you have.
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Network Service Requirements
Depending on the types of clients you want to boot or install, your NetBoot server
must also provide the following supporting services.
Service provided by
NetBoot Server
For booting Mac OS X computers
with hard disks
For booting Mac OS X computers
without hard disks
DHCP
optional
optional
NFS
required if no HTTP
required if no HTTP
AFP
not required
required
HTTP
required if no NFS
required if no NFS
TFTP
required
required
Note: DHCP service is listed as optional because, although it is required for NetBoot, it
can be provided by a server other than the NetBoot server. Services marked “required”
must be running on the NetBoot server.
NetBoot and AirPort
The use of AirPort wireless technology to NetBoot clients is not supported by Apple
and is discouraged.
Capacity Planning
The number of NetBoot client computers your server can support depends on how
your server is configured, when your clients routinely start up, the server’s hard disk
space, and a number of other factors. When planning for your server and network
needs, consider these factors:
 Ethernet speed: 100Base-T or faster connections are required for both client
computers and the server. As you add more clients, you may need to increase the
speed of your server’s Ethernet connections. Ideally you want to take advantage of
the Gigabit Ethernet capacity built in to your Mac OS X server hardware to connect
to a Gigabit switch. From the switch you should connect Gigabit Ethernet or 100Mbit Ethernet to each of the NetBoot clients.
 Hard disk capacity and number of images: Boot and install images occupy hard disk
space on server volumes, depending on the size and configuration of the system
image , the number of images being stored, including architecture-specific images
that you need for Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh clients. Images can be
distributed across multiple volumes or multiple servers. For more information, see
“Performance and Load Balancing” on page 55.
 Hard disk capacity and number of users: If you have a large number of diskless clients,
consider adding a separate file server to your network to store temporary user
documents. Because the system software for a disk image is written to a shadow
image for each client booting from the disk image, you can get a rough estimate for
the required hard disk capacity required by multiplying the size of the shadow image
by the number of clients.
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 Number of Ethernet ports on the switch: Distributing NetBoot clients over multiple
Ethernet ports on your switch offers a performance advantage. Each port must serve
a distinct segment.
Serial Number Considerations
Before starting the NetBoot service, make sure that you obtain a site license for the
images you intend on serving. The license covers all the NetBoot images served from a
particular server. For every additional server, you need to obtain a site license to
provide NetBoot service. Contact Apple to obtain site licenses.
If you plan on serving Network Install images for installing Mac OS X and Mac OS X
Server, also make sure that you have a site license.
If you plan on serving Network Install images for installing Mac OS X Server, you can
use the Mac OS X Server Assistant to generate a setup file that you can add to the
Network Install image so that the server knows how to configure itself automatically.
If you use a generic file, you’ll have to enter the serial number manually using Server
Admin.
Setup Overview — NetBoot
Here is an overview of the basic steps for setting up NetBoot service.
Step 1: Evaluate and update your network, servers, and client computers as
necessary
The number of client computers you can support using NetBoot is determined by the
number of servers you have, how they’re configured, hard disk storage capacity, and
other factors. See “Capacity Planning” on page 24.
Depending on the results of this evaluation, you may want to add servers or hard disks,
add Ethernet ports to your server, or make other changes to your servers. You may also
want to set up more subnets for your BootP clients, depending on how many clients
you support.
You may also want to implement subnets on this server (or other servers) to take
advantage of NetBoot filtering. See “Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses”
on page 49.
If you plan to provide authentication and personalized work environments for NetBoot
client users by using Workgroup Manager, you should set up workgroups and import
users from the Mac OS X Server Users & Groups database before you create disk
images. Make sure you have at least one Macintosh Manager user assigned to the
Workgroup Manager for Mac OS X clients.
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Step 2: Create disk images for client computers
You can set up Mac OS X disk images for client computers to start up from. To create
Mac OS X disk images, you use System Image Utility. See “Creating a Mac OS X Boot
Image” on page 29.
You may also want to restrict access to NetBoot images by using Model Filtering.
See “Creating an OS Install Image” on page 35.
To create application packages that you can add to an image, use PackageMaker.
Application software packages can be installed by themselves or along with Mac OS X
system software. See “Creating Packages” on page 38.
Step 3: Set up DHCP
NetBoot requires that you have a DHCP server running either on the local server or
another server on the network. Make sure that you have a range of IP addresses
sufficient to accommodate the number of clients that will be using NetBoot at the
same time.
If your NetBoot server is also supplying DHCP service, you might get better
performance if you configure your server as a gateway. That is, configure your subnets
to use the server’s IP address as the router IP address.
Step 4: Configure and turn on NetBoot service
You use the NetBoot settings in Server Admin to configure NetBoot on your server.
See Chapter 3, “Setting Up NetBoot Service.”
You turn on NetBoot service using Server Admin. See “Starting NetBoot and Related
Services” on page 44 and “Enabling Images” on page 45.
Step 5: Set up Ethernet address filtering (optional)
NetBoot filtering is done by client computer hardware address. Each client’s
hardware address is automatically registered the first time the client attempts to start
up from a NetBoot disk image. You can allow or disallow specific clients by address.
See “Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses” on page 49.
Step 6: Test your NetBoot setup
Because there is risk of data loss or bringing down the network (by misconfiguring
DHCP), it is recommended that you test your NetBoot setup before implementing it on
all your clients. You should test each different model of Macintosh that you’re
supporting. This is to make sure that there are no problems with the boot ROM for a
particular hardware type.
Step 7: Set up all client computers to use NetBoot
When you’re satisfied that NetBoot is working on all types of client computers, then
you can set up the client computers to start up from the NetBoot disk images.
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Chapter 1 About System Imaging Administration
You can use the client computer’s Startup Disk System Preference pane to select a
startup disk image from the server, then restart the computer. See “Selecting a NetBoot
Boot Image” on page 51. Or, you can restart the client computer and hold down the N
key until the NetBoot icon starts flashing on the screen. The client starts up from the
default image on the NetBoot server. See “Starting Up Using the N Key” on page 52.
Setup Overview — Network Install
Here is an overview of the basic steps for setting up Network Install service.
Step 1: Evaluate and update your network, servers, and client computers as
necessary
The number of client computers you can support using NetBoot is determined by the
number of servers you have, how they’re configured, hard disk storage capacity, and
other factors. See “Capacity Planning” on page 24.
Depending on the results of this evaluation, you may want to add servers or hard disks,
add Ethernet ports to your server, or make other changes to your servers. You may also
want to set up more subnets for your BootP clients, depending on how many clients
you support.
You may also want to implement subnets on this server (or other servers) to take
advantage of NetBoot filtering. See “Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses”
on page 49.
If you plan to provide authentication and personalized work environments for NetBoot
client users by using Workgroup Manager, you should set up workgroups and import
users from the Mac OS X Server Users & Groups database before you create disk
images. Make sure you have at least one Macintosh Manager user assigned to the
Workgroup Manager for Mac OS X clients.
Step 2: Create disk images for client computers
You can set up Mac OS X disk images for client computers to start up from. To create
Mac OS X disk images, you use System Image Utility. See “Creating a Mac OS X Boot
Image” on page 29.
You may also want to restrict access to Network Install images by using Model Filtering.
See “Creating an OS Install Image” on page 35.
To create application packages that you can add to an image, use PackageMaker.
Application software packages can be installed by themselves or along with Mac OS X
system software. See “Creating Packages” on page 38.
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Step 3: Set up DHCP
NetBoot requires that you have a DHCP server running either on the local server or
another server on the network. Make sure that you have a range of IP addresses
sufficient to accommodate the number of clients that will be using NetBoot at the
same time.
If your NetBoot server is also supplying DHCP service, you might get better
performance if you configure your server as a gateway. That is, configure your subnets
to use the server’s IP address as the router IP address.
Be sure DHCP service is started.
Step 4: Configure and turn on NetBoot service
You use the NetBoot settings in Server Admin to configure NetBoot on your server.
See Chapter 3, “Setting Up NetBoot Service.”
You turn on NetBoot service using Server Admin. See “Starting NetBoot and Related
Services” on page 44 and “Enabling Images” on page 45.
Step 5: Set up Ethernet address filtering (optional)
NetBoot filtering is done by client computer hardware address. Each client’s
hardware address is automatically registered the first time the client attempts to start
up from a NetBoot disk image. You can allow or disallow specific clients by address.
See “Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses” on page 49.
Step 6: Test your NetBoot setup
Because there is risk of data loss or bringing down the network (by misconfiguring
DHCP), it is recommended that you test your NetBoot setup before implementing it on
all your clients. You should test each different model of Macintosh that you’re
supporting. This is to make sure that there are no problems with the boot ROM for a
particular hardware type.
Step 7: Set up all client computers to use NetBoot
When you’re satisfied that NetBoot is working on all types of client computers, then
you can set up the client computers to start up from the NetBoot disk images.
You can use the client computer’s Startup Disk System Preference pane to select a
startup disk image from the server, then restart the computer. See “Selecting a NetBoot
Boot Image” on page 51. Or, you can restart the client computer and hold down the N
key until the NetBoot icon starts flashing on the screen. The client starts up from the
default image on the NetBoot server. See “Starting Up Using the N Key” on page 52.
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2
Creating Boot and Install Images
2
This chapter provides step-by-step instructions for preparing
boot or install images that can be used with NetBoot service.
This chapter is divided into the following sections:
 “Creating Mac OS X Boot Images” on page 29
 “Creating Mac OS X Install Images” on page 35
 “Adding Software to Boot and Install Images” on page 37
 “Adding Post-Install Scripts to Install Images” on page 41
Creating Mac OS X Boot Images
The instructions in this section show how to create boot images of the Mac OS X
operating system that you can use to start up client computers over the network.
As of Mac OS X Server10.4.4, you can create NetBoot images for Intel-based and
PowerPC-based Macintosh computers. To do so, you must have Mac OS X 10.4.4 or later
and the latest version of System Image Utility. Use Software Update to ensure that you
have the latest version.
Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image
You use System Image Utility to create Mac OS X NetBoot images.
Note: You must purchase an OS user license for each client that starts up from a
NetBoot disk image.
To create a boot image:
1 Log in to the server as an administrative user.
2 Open System Image Utility.
3 If creating an image from a Mac OS X v10.2 source, enable image compression.
If the image is not compressed, it might not boot. See “Compressing Images to Save
Disk Space” on page 34 for more information.
4 Click New Boot.
29
5 In the General pane, type a name for the image you’re creating.
This name will identify the image in the Startup Disk preferences pane on client
computers.
6 In the image index field, type an Image ID.
To create an image that is unique to this server, choose an ID in the range 1–4095.
To create one of several identical images to be stored on different servers for load
balancing, use an ID in the range 4096–65535. Multiple images of the same type with
the same ID in this range are listed as a single image in a client’s Startup Disk
preferences panel.
7 (Optional) Type notes or other information that will help you characterize the image in
the Description field. Clients can’t see what you type.
8 Choose whether the image is to be delivered using NFS or HTTP. If you’re not sure
which to choose, choose NFS.
9 To serve the image on the server on which you’re creating the image, choose Local.
10 (optional) To store the image on a remote computer and offer it via NFS or HTTP click
Remote.
 (remote service only) To deliver the image to users via HTTP on a remote server,
complete the path with the remote server’s host name, the HTTP user name, and
password used to access the file. Complete the entry by providing the port used to
access the HTTP server (typically port 80).
 (remote service only) To deliver the image to users via NFS on a remote server,
complete the path with the IP address, image path where the file will be stored on
the server, and the NFS export setting (client, world, or subnet).
Important: System Image Utility will create the actual image on the local server.
By completing the information requested in the path pane, an indirect NFS or HTTP
path will be created for your image. Once you create the image, the admin user of the
remote server must copy the image to and serve it from the exact remote path you
specified.
11 Click Contents and choose the source for the image.
You can choose an install CD or DVD, a mounted boot volume, or an existing disk
image. If you’re creating the image from CD or DVD, be sure it is inserted.
If you’re creating a Mac OS X v10.4 NetBoot image, System Image Utility creates a
minimal boot image. Similarly, if creating a Mac OS X v10.3 NetBoot image, System
Image Utility creates a minimal boot image and will only use the first 2 CDs. If creating
a Mac OS X v10.2 NetBoot image, however, the resulting image will contain everything
in the installation CDs.
If you don’t want a minimal boot image, click Customize.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
Note: If your network includes both Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh
computers, you must create separate images for each architecture, using the
appropriate architecture-specific OS install DVD or volume as the source for the image.
Important: If you have created a standard disk image (.dmg file) from an OS install CD
and want to use that image as the source for a NetBoot image, double-click the .dmg
file in the Finder to mount the image, then choose it from the pop-up menu.
12 (CD source only) Choose the default language for the system. (Available only if you
have already inserted the CD and chosen it as the source.)
13 (Optional) Click the Add (+) button below the Other Items list to add an application
package, system update package, or post-install script to the image.
14 (CD source only) Click Default User, type a user name, short name, and password (in
both the Password and Verify fields) for the system’s default user account. You can log
in to a booted client using this account.
15 (Optional) Click Model Filter, and select the radio button to allow only computers to
boot that are enabled in the list of models. If you want to allow any Macintosh
computer to boot, select Allow any Apple Computer.
16 (Optional) Click Sharing Prefs and in the Computer Name field, type the name that the
NetBoot or Network Install client gets after installation or booting.
Note: Each client will have its computer name and local hostname set to the name you
supplied plus the MAC address (without the colons) of the client.
Note: Alternatively, type the path to a tab-delimited .txt or .rtf file that has a list of MAC
addresses and their corresponding computer names and local hostnames. Each client
will get the name that corresponds to its MAC address in the specified file.
17 (Optional) Click Directory Services. Click Apply Directory Services settings from this
machine to all clients, if you are not using DHCP to provide NetBoot clients with
Open Directory information. If you want each client that will boot from this image to
get a unique set of directory service settings each time it boots, click Authenticate and
authorize this selection.
Note: To create per CPU Directory Services bindings, the machine you are creating the
image on should itself be bound to the DS server. Otherwise clicking the authenticate
button will give an error dialogue saying “No DS bindings found.”
Note: For the checkbox that says “Apply directory services settings from this machine
to all clients,” we recommend that the user sets up the machine he or she is creating
the image on to bind to a DS server using Directory Access app and then check the
checkbox.
18 Click Create.
If the Create button is not enabled, make sure you have entered an image name and
ID, and have chosen an image source.
Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
31
19 In the Save As dialog, choose where to save the image.
If you don’t want to use the image name you typed earlier, you can change it now by
typing a new name in the Save As field.
If you’re creating the image on the same server that will serve it, choose a volume from
the “Serve from NetBoot share point on” pop-up menu.
To save the image somewhere else, choose a location from the Where pop-up menu or
click the triangle next to the Save As field and navigate to a folder.
20 Click Save.
To check progress, look in the lower-left corner of the window. If you need to insert
another CD, you’ll be prompted there. To create the image without including the
contents of a subsequent CD, click Finish when you are prompted to insert it.
Important: Don’t open the .nbi folder in /Library/NetBoot/NetBootSPn while the image
is being created; clients won’t be able to use the resulting image.
From the Command Line
You can also create a boot image using commands in Terminal. For more information,
see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Adding an OS Update Package to a Mac OS X Boot Image
You can add a Mac OS X system update package to an existing NetBoot image so that
your clients start up from the latest available system.
To apply a Mac OS X update to a NetBoot image:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Disable the image you want to update to prevent access while you’re modifying it.
Click Settings, click Images, deselect Enabled for the image, and click Save.
3 Open System Image Utility and click Images.
4 Select the image and click Edit.
5 In the Contents tab, click the Add (+) button and choose the OS update package.
6 Click Save.
7 Reenable the image in the Images pane of Server Admin NetBoot settings.
From the Command Line
You can also update a boot image using commands in Terminal. For more information,
see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image from an Existing System
If you already have a client computer set up to suit your users, you can use System
Image Utility to create a boot image that is based on that client’s configuration,
including its architecture.
You need to boot from a volume other than the one you’re using as the image source
(boot from an external FireWire hard disk or a second partition on the client’s hard disk,
for example). You can’t create the image on a volume over the network.
To create a boot image based on an existing system:
1 Boot the computer from a partition other than the one you’re imaging.
2 Copy System Image Utility to the client computer.
Note: To create architecture-specific images you must have Mac OS X 10.4.4 or later and
the latest version of the System Image Utility. Use Software Update to obtain the latest
version.
3 Open System Image Utility on the client and click New Boot.
4 Click Contents and choose the partition to use from the Image Source pop-up menu.
5 Enter the remaining image information in the other panes as usual, then click Create.
6 After the image has been created on the client, export it to the server.
Click Images, select the image in the list, and click Export.
From the Command Line
You can also create a boot image clone of an existing system using the hdiutil
command in Terminal. For more information, see the system image chapter of the
command-line administration guide.
Synchronizing an Image with an Updated Source Volume
If you create an image from a system volume and later update the original volume, you
can automatically apply the updates to the image without re-creating it using System
Image Utility.
Important: Be sure you synchronize the image with the correct original volume.
The updated original volume must be a local volume on the server where the image is
being edited.
To sync an image with an updated source volume:
1 Make sure that the image you want to synchronize is not in use.
2 Open System Image Utility (in /Applications/Server).
3 Choose System Image Utility > Preferences, enable “Add items and sync with source
when editing,” and close the preferences window.
Note: Due to the nature of the block copy process, you cannot add items to an image
that has been created with block copy enabled.
Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
33
4 Click Images, select the image, and click Edit.
5 Click Contents and choose the updated source volume from the Image Source pop-up
menu.
6 Click Save.
7 Reenable the image using Server Admin.
Choosing the Protocol Used to Deliver an Image
You can use either NFS or HTTP to send images from the server to a client. You can
choose the protocol when you create the image using System Image Utility or later
when the image is listed in Server Admin.
To choose the protocol when you create the image, choose either NFS or HTTP in the
General pane in System Image Utility.
To choose the protocol for an existing image, choose the NetBoot service in Server
Admin, click Settings, and choose a protocol from the pop-up list next to the image in
the Images pane.
From the Command Line
You can also change the delivery protocol by modifying the image’s
NBImageInfo.plist file using Terminal. For more information, see the system image
chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Compressing Images to Save Disk Space
You can create compressed images by setting a preference in System Image Utility.
To create compressed images:
1 Open System Image Utility.
2 Choose System Image Utility > Preferences and select “Compress image when creating
or editing.”
Be sure the volume on which you’re creating the image has enough free space for both
the uncompressed image and the compressed image.
From the Command Line
You can also compress images using the hdiutil command in Terminal. For more
information, see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
Changing How Mac OS X NetBoot Clients Allocate Shadow Files
By default, a Mac OS X NetBoot client places its shadow files in a NetBootClientsn share
point on the server. If no such share point is available, the client tries to store its
shadow files on a local hard disk.
For Mac OS X version 10.3 and later images set for diskless booting, you can change
this behavior by using a text editor to specify a value for the NETBOOT_SHADOW variable in
the image’s /etc/hostconfig file. These values are allowed:
Value of NETBOOT_SHADOW
Client shadow file behavior
-NETWORK-
(Default) Try to use a server NetBootClientsn share point for storing
shadow files. If no server share point is available, use a local drive.
-NETWORK_ONLY-
Try to use a server NetBootClientsn share point for storing shadow
files. If no server share point is available, don’t boot.
-LOCAL-
Try to use a local drive for storing shadow files. If no local drive is
available, use a server NetBootClientsn share point.
-LOCAL_ONLY-
Try to use a local drive for storing shadow files. If no local drive is
available, don’t boot.
Note: This value is set in the /etc/hostconfig file in the image .dmg file, not in the
server’s hostconfig file.
Creating Mac OS X Install Images
The following sections show how to create images you can use to install software on
client computers over the network.
Creating an OS Install Image
To create an image that will install Mac OS X software on a client computer, use System
Image Utility. You can find this application in the folder /Applications/Server/.
To create an OS install image:
1 Log in to the server as an administrative user.
2 Open System Image Utility and click New Install.
3 In the General pane, type a name for the image you’re creating.
4 Type an Image Index number.
Choose a number in the range 1–4095 for an image that will be available on a single
server, or 4096–65535 for an image that you plan to make available on multiple servers
but want to list only once in the client computer Startup Disk preferences.
Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
35
5 (CD source only) Choose the default language for the software. (Available only if you
have already inserted the CD and chosen it as the source.)
Note: This is the language used by the installed software only. The installer that runs
always appears in English (if this is not an automated install).
6 To serve the image on the server creating the image, choose Local. This will place the
image in the /Library/NetBoot/ folder on your server.
7 (optional) To store the image on a remote computer and offer it via NFS choose
Remote.
Note: Network Install images can be served only via NFS.
8 (remote service only) To deliver the image to users via NFS on a remote server,
complete the path pane with the IP address, image path where the file will be stored
on the server, and the NFS export setting (client, world, or subnet).
Important: System Image Utility will create the actual image on the local server.
By completing the information requested in the path pane, an indirect NFS path will be
created for your image. Once you create the image, the admin user of the remote
server must copy the image to and serve it from the exact remote path you specified.
9 On the Contents pane, choose the source for the image.
Choose an appropriate architecture-specific install CD, mounted boot volume, or
existing disk image.
10 (Optional) Click the Add (+) button below the list to add applications or post-install
scripts to the image.
11 To have the software install with limited or no interaction at the client computer, select
“Enable automated installation” in the Installation Options pane, then click Options.
Here you can set a specific volume name to install the contents of the image, the
option to erase the volume before installing, restart the client computer after installing,
and whether you want the client user to confirm the installation actions.
12 In the Installation Options pane, select “Verify destination after installing” to have the
installer verify the integrity of the image after it is installed. (For images from volume
source only.)
Selecting this option is highly recommended even though it slightly slows installation.
13 In the Installation Options pane, select “Change ByHost preferences to match client
after install” so that the ByHost preferences of the installed software match those of the
computer on which the software is installed.
14 (Optional) Click Model Filter, and select the radio button to allow only computers to
boot that are enabled in the list of models. If you want to allow any Macintosh
computer to boot, select Allow any Apple Computer.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
15 (Optional) Click Sharing Prefs and type the name in the Computer Name field that the
NetBoot or Network Install client gets after installation or booting.
Each client will have its computer name and local hostname set to the name you
supplied plus the MAC address (without the colons) of the client.
You can also type the path to a tab-delimited .txt or .rtf file that has a list of MAC
addresses and their corresponding computer names and local hostnames. Each client
will get the name that corresponds to its MAC address in the specified file.
16 (Optional) Click Directory Services and do the following:
If you are not using DHCP to provide NetBoot clients with Open Directory information,
use Directory Access to bind to a directory server, then select “Apply Directory Services
settings from this machine to all clients.”
If you want clients to bind to directory services that are available to the computer
you’re imaging, click Authenticate and authorize this selection.
Note: If the computer you’re imaging is not bound to directory servers, you’ll get an
error message when you click Authenticate.
17 Click Create Image.
If the Create button is not enabled, make sure you have entered an image name and
ID, and have chosen an image source.
18 In the Save As dialog, choose where to save the image.
If you don’t want to use the image name you typed earlier, you can change it now by
typing a new name in the Save As field.
If you’re creating the image on the same server that will serve it, choose a volume from
the “Serve from NetBoot share point on” pop-up menu.
To save the image somewhere else, choose a location from the Where pop-up menu or
click the triangle next to the Save As field and navigate to a folder.
19 Click Save.
To check progress, look in the lower-left corner of the window. If you need to insert
another CD, you’ll be prompted there. To create the image without including the
contents of a subsequent CD, click Finish when you are prompted to insert it.
Adding Software to Boot and Install Images
There are two basic approaches to including additional software in an image:
 Add additional applications and files to an existing system before creating an image
using that system as the source (see “Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image from an
Existing System” on page 33).
 Add packages containing the additional applications and files to an existing image
(see “Creating an Application-Only Install Image” on page 39).
Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
37
About Packages
If you plan to add application software or other files to an image at creation time
(instead of installing the applications or files on the image source volume before you
create the image), you need to group the applications or files into a special file called a
package.
A package is a collection of compressed files and related information used to install
software onto a computer. The contents of a package are contained within a single file,
which has the extension “.pkg.” The following table lists the components of a package.
File in Package
Description
product.pax.gz
The files to be installed, compressed with gzip and archived with
pax. (See man pages for more information about gzip and pax.)
product.bom
Bill of Materials: a record of where files are to be installed. This is
used in the verification and uninstall processes.
product.info
Contains information to be displayed during installation.
product.sizes
Text file; contains the number of files in the package.
product.tiff
Contains custom icon for the package.
product.status
Created during the installation, this file will either say “installed” or
“compressed.”
product.location
Shows location where the package will be installed.
software_version
(Optional) Contains the version of the package to be installed.
Creating Packages
To add applications or other files to an image (instead of installing them first on the
image source volume before creating the image), use PackageMaker to create
packages containing the application or files. PackageMaker is in the Utilities folder on
the Mac OS X Server Administration Tools CD that comes with Mac OS X Server.
For more information on creating packages, open PackageMaker and choose
PackageMaker Help, PackageMaker Release Notes, or Package Format Notes from the
Help menu.
After creating the packages, add them to your boot or install image using System
Image Utility. See “Creating an Application-Only Install Image” on page 39, or “Adding
Packages to a Boot or Install Image” on page 39.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
Adding Packages to a Boot or Install Image
To include additional application (.app) or file (.pkg) packages in an image, add the
packages to the image using System Image Utility.
You can add packages at the time you create an image or add packages to an existing
image.
To add packages to a new image you’re creating using System Image Utility, click the
Add (+) button after you select the image source in the Contents pane.
To add packages to an existing image, open System Image Utility, click Images, and
select the image in the list. Then click Edit, and click the Add (+) button in the Contents
pane.
In either case, you can drag package icons from the Finder to the Other Items list in the
Contents tab instead of using the Add (+) button.
Note: Using System Image Utility, you can add only embedded metapackages like
iTunes and Apple Remote Desktop, which contain the packages they reference. As for
unembedded metapackages (.mpkg files), you can’t add them to an image using
System Image Utility, but you can add the packages that they reference directly from
the Finder.
From the Command Line
You can also add packages to a boot or install image by modifying the image and its
associated rc.cdrom.packagePath or minstallconfig.xml file in Terminal. For more
information, see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Creating an Application-Only Install Image
To create an install image that contains application software but no operating system
software, deselect the Include Mac OS X option in the Contents pane in System Image
Utility.
Note: You can’t use System Image Utility to create an automated install image that
contains a metapackage or more than one regular package. You can do this using
commands in Terminal. For more information, see the system image chapter of the
command-line administration guide.
To add packages to a new image you’re creating using System Image Utility, click the
Add (+) button after you select the image source in the Contents pane.
You can drag package icons from the Finder to the Other Items list in the Contents tab
instead of using the Add (+) button.
Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
39
Automating Image Installation
To install Mac OS X software (along with any packages you add) with limited or no
interaction from anyone at the client computer, use System Image Utility to create an
automated install image. Otherwise, a user at the client computer will have to respond
to questions from the installer.
To set up an OS image for automated installation:
1 Open System Image Utility and click New Install.
2 Provide information in the General and Contents panes as usual.
3 In the Installation Options pane, select “Enable automated installation.”
4 Click the Options button.
5 For unattended installation, choose “Install on volume” next to Target Volume and type
the name of the volume on the client computer where the software will be installed.
To allow the user at the client computer to select the volume on which to install,
choose “User selects.”
6 To install the software on a clean drive, enable “Erase the target volume before
installing.”
7 To install without requiring user confirmation at the client computer, disable “Require
client user to respond to a confirmation dialog.”
8 If the installed software requires a restart, enable “Restart the client computer after
installing.”
If the name you provide for the install volume does not match the name of a volume
on the client computer, a user at the client computer must respond to an installer
prompt for another target volume.
From the Command Line
You can also set up an image for automated install by modifying the associated
minstallconfig.xml file using Terminal. For more information, see the system image
chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Viewing the Contents of a Package
To view the contents of a package, hold down the Control key as you click the package
in a Finder window and choose Show Package Contents from the menu that appears.
You use PackageMaker (in the /Developer/Applications/Utilities folder after you install
Xcode using the disc included with the Mac OS X client software) to create application
software packages to use with Network Install.
From the Command Line
You can also list the contents of a package using commands in Terminal. For more
information, see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
Installing Mac OS Updates
To use Network Install to install operating system updates on client computers, add the
system update package to an install image in the same way you would add any other
package. See “Adding Packages to a Boot or Install Image” on page 39.
You can download Mac OS updates from www.apple.com/support.
Adding Post-Install Scripts to Install Images
Post-install scripts let you make changes to software after it has been installed on client
computers. As the name implies, post-install scripts run at the end of the network
install process.
You can use the scripts to perform any tasks you want—within the limitations of the
scripts themselves. However, post-install scripts are typically used to make minor
changes to network-installed software when you don’t want to create additional install
images. For example, you may use post-install scripts to delete files, set startup items,
or create a user after installing software on a client computer.
Note: One good use of post-install scripts is to alter items in the ~/Library/Preferences/
ByHost folder to ensure that settings in the original image persist or to override them.
For example, you can create a script to replace the MAC address in the names of items
in the ByHost folder with the MAC address of the computer on which the image has
been installed. In this way, any imaged computer will retain the settings (such as
display and print preferences) in the original image.
Post-install scripts work only with install images created from volumes mounted on
your computer; they cannot be used with install images created from CDs. Post-install
scripts must be written as shell scripts. Perl scripts are not supported.
To add post-install scripts to a new install image you’re creating using System Image
Utility, click the Add (+) button in the Contents pane and select the scripts you want
to add.
To add post-install scripts to an existing image, open System Image Utility, click Images,
and select the image in the list. Then click Edit, click the Add (+) button in the Contents
pane, and select the scripts you want to add.
When you create an install image with post-install scripts, System Image Utility copies
the scripts to the /var/db/emptyScriptFolder/ directory. The Network Install application
runs the scripts in the order that you add them to the image in System Image Utility.
The order of the scripts is recorded in the text file /private/etc/emptyScript, which
contains a list of the paths to each of the scripts. To change the order the scripts are
executed, edit the text file, which you can do by mounting the image on your server.
Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
41
When you have rearranged the entries in the text file, save the file and eject the image.
The image is updated automatically. (If you cannot edit the text file because the image
is read-only, use Disk Utility to convert the file to read/write. Don’t forget to convert the
image back to read-only when you are finished.)
From the Command Line
You can also edit the /private/etc/emptyScript file from Terminal. For more information,
see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
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Chapter 2 Creating Boot and Install Images
3
Setting Up NetBoot Service
3
This chapter describes how to set up NetBoot service to make
boot and install images available to clients.
You set up NetBoot service using Server Admin as described in this chapter.
Configuring NetBoot Service
You use Server Admin to configure the Mac OS X Server NetBoot service.
To configure NetBoot:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click the Settings button, then click General.
3 Click Enable next to the network ports you want to use for serving images.
4 Click in the Images column of the Volume list to choose where to store images.
5 Click in the Client Data column of the Volume list for each local disk volume on which
you want to store shadow files used by Mac OS X diskless clients.
6 Click Save, then click Images.
7 Enable the images you want your clients to use, specify if they are available for diskless
clients, and choose the protocol for delivering them.
If you’re not sure which protocol to use, choose NFS.
8 Click in the Default column of the Image list to select the default image. You can select
separate default images for Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh clients.
Note: If your network includes Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh computers,
you need to provide separate architecture-specific NetBoot images. The architecture
column in the Images list displays the processor type that the image supports. See
“Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image” on page 29 for information about creating the
images.
9 Click Save.
10 (Optional) Click the Filters tab to restrict clients to a known group. For more
information, see “Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses” on page 49.
43
From the Command Line
You can also configure NetBoot service using the serveradmin command in Terminal.
See the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Starting NetBoot and Related Services
NetBoot service uses AFP, NFS, DHCP, Web, and TFTP services, depending on the types
of clients you’re trying to boot (see “Network Service Requirements” on page 24).
You can use Server Admin to start AFP, DHCP, Web, and NetBoot. NFS and TFTP start
automatically.
Note: NetBoot does not start automatically after server restart when you enable
NetBoot service in the Setup Assistant when you first install the server software.
Only the required share points are set up.
To start NetBoot service:
1 Open Server Admin.
2 If you’ll be booting diskless Mac OS X clients, start AFP service.
Select AFP in the Computers & Services list and click Start Service.
3 If your server is providing DHCP service, make sure the DHCP service is configured and
running. Otherwise, DHCP service must be supplied by another server on your network.
If your NetBoot server is also supplying DHCP service, you might get better
performance if you configure your server as a gateway. That is, configure your subnets
to use the server’s IP address as the router IP address.
4 Select NetBoot in the Computers & Services of Server Admin.
5 Click Settings.
6 Select which network ports to use for providing NetBoot service.
You can select one or more network ports to serve NetBoot images. For example, if you
have a server with two network interfaces, each connected to a network, you can
choose to serve NetBoot images on both networks.
7 Click Images.
8 Select the images to serve.
9 Click Save.
10 Click Start Service.
From the Command Line
You can also start NetBoot and supporting services using commands in Terminal.
For more information, see the system image chapter of the command-line
administration guide.
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Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
Enabling Images
You must enable one or more disk images on your server to make the images available
to client computers for NetBoot startups.
To enable disk images:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click Images.
3 Click in the Enable column for each image you want your clients to see.
4 Click Save.
Choosing Where Images Are Stored
You can use Server Admin to choose the volumes on your server you want to use for
storing boot and install images.
Warning: Don’t rename a NetBoot share point or the volume on which it resides.
Don’t use Workgroup Manager to stop sharing for a NetBoot share point unless you
first deselect the share point for images and shadow files in Server Admin.
To choose volumes for storing image files:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click General.
3 In the list of volumes in the lower half of the window, click the checkbox in the Images
column for each volume you want to use to store image files.
4 Click Save.
From the Command Line
You can also specify that a volume should be used to store image files using the
serveradmin command in Terminal. For more information, see the system image
chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
45
Choosing Where Shadow Files Are Stored
When a diskless client boots, temporary “shadow” files are stored on the server. You can
use Server Admin to specify which server volumes are used to store the temporary files.
Warning: Don’t rename a NetBoot share point or the volume on which it resides.
Don’t use Workgroup Manager to stop sharing for a NetBoot share point unless you
first deselect the share point for images and shadow files in Server Admin.
To use a volume for storing shadow files:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click General.
3 In the list of volumes in the lower half of the window, click the checkbox in the Client
Data column for the volumes you want to use to store shadow files.
4 Click Save.
From the Command Line
You can also specify that a volume should be used to store shadow files using the
serveradmin command in Terminal. For more information, see the system image
chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Using Images Stored on Remote Servers
You can store boot or install images on remote NFS or HTTP servers other than the
NetBoot server itself.
To store an image on a separate remote server:
1 Create the image on the NetBoot server with System Image Utility.
When creating the image, you need to specify where to store the image. To specify
where to store the image on a remote server:
a
b
c
d
In System Image Utility, click General.
Click NFS or HTTP.
Click Remote.
In the sheet that appears, provide the required information.
If storing images on an NFS server, provide the host name or IP address of the server,
the path of the mount point (NFS Export), and the path to the image relative to the
mount point.
If storing images on an HTTP server, provide the host name or IP address of the
server, the path to the image (the path of the root disk image relative to the .nbi
directory), a username and password for accessing the image, and a port number.
The NetBoot server assumes that the .nbi directory under NetBootSPn is exported via
HTTP using the following convention:
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Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
http://server_ip/NetBoot/NetBootSPn/image_path.nbi
Where server_ip is the IP address of the server, n is the volume number, and
image_path is the path to the image.
e Click OK.
2 Copy the image (.dmg) file from the .nbi folder on the NetBoot server to a shared
(exported) directory on the other server. Leave the .nbi folder and the other files it
contains on the NetBoot server.
You can also copy the image to the other server by selecting the image in the Images
pane of System Image Utility, clicking Export, and selecting the .dmg file to export.
Using the Export button is the safest way to copy the image to the other server
because it ensures that the image has the proper permissions.
If the image is already on the remote server, you can create the .nbi folder on the
NetBoot server by duplicating an existing .nbi folder and adjusting the values in its
NBImageInfo.plist file.
Moving Images to Other Servers
Use the Export feature of System Image Utility to move images to another server,
including servers without displays or keyboards.
To copy an image to another server:
1 Open System Image Utility and click Images.
2 Select the image in the list and click Export, and provide the target information.
Important: To avoid problems with file permissions, don’t use Terminal or the Finder to
copy boot or install images across the network to other servers.
Deleting Images
When you delete images, System Image Utility only moves them to the Trash and
doesn’t erase them from the drive.
To delete an image:
1 Open System Image Utility and click Images.
2 Select the image in the list and choose Edit > Delete.
Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
47
Editing Images
When you edit images, System Image Utility gives you the option to back them up.
To edit an image:
1 Open System Image Utility and click Images.
2 Select the image in the list and click Edit.
System Image Utility prompts you whether you want to back up the image. You can
back up the image to any drive on your computer.
3 When you’re done editing, click Save.
Specifying the Default Image
The default image is the image used when you start a client computer while holding
down the N key. See “Starting Up Using the N Key” on page 52. If you’ve created more
than one startup disk image, you can use the NetBoot service settings in Server Admin
to select the default startup image.
Important: If you have diskless clients, set their boot image as the default image.
If you have more than one NetBoot server on the network, a client uses the default
image on the first server that responds. There is no way to control which default image
is used when more than one is available.
To specify the default boot image:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click Images.
3 Click the checkbox in the Default column next to the image. You can select separate
default images for Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh computers. The
architecture column displays the image type.
4 Click Save.
From the Command Line
You can also specify the default image using the serveradmin command in Terminal.
For more information, see the system image chapter of the command-line
administration guide.
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Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
Setting an Image for Diskless Booting
You can use Server Admin to make an image available for booting client computers
that have no local disk drives. Setting an image for diskless booting instructs the
NetBoot server to allocate space for the client’s shadow files.
To make an image available for diskless booting:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click Images.
3 Click the box in the Diskless column next to the image in the list.
4 Click Save.
Important: If you have diskless clients, set their boot image as the default image.
For help specifying where the client’s shadow files are stored, see “Choosing Where
Shadow Files Are Stored” on page 46.
From the Command Line
You can also set an image to boot diskless using the serveradmin command in
Terminal. For more information, see the system image chapter of the command-line
administration guide.
Restricting NetBoot Clients by Filtering Addresses
The filtering feature of NetBoot service lets you restrict access to the service based on
the client’s Ethernet hardware (MAC) address. A client’s address is added to the filter list
automatically the first time it starts up from an image on the server, and is allowed
access by default, so it is usually not necessary to enter hardware addresses manually.
To restrict client access to NetBoot service:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click Filters.
3 Select either “Allow only clients listed below” or “Deny only clients listed below.”
4 Select “Enable NetBoot filtering.”
5 Use the Add (+) and Delete (-) buttons to set up the list of client addresses.
To look up a MAC address, type the client’s DNS name or IP address in the Host Name
field and click the Search button.
To find the hardware address for a computer using Mac OS X, look on the TCP/IP pane
of the computer’s Network preference or run Apple System Profiler.
Note: You can also restrict access to a NetBoot image by double-clicking the name of
the image in the Images pane of the NetBoot pane of Server Admin and providing the
required information.
Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
49
Changing Advanced NetBoot Options
You can control additional NetBoot options by running the bootpd program directly
and by modifying configuration parameters in NetInfo. For more information, read the
bootpd man page.
To view the bootpd man page:
1 Open Terminal.
2 Type man
bootpd.
Setting Up NetBoot Service Across Subnets
A network boot starts by a client computer broadcasting for any computers that will
respond to the Boot Service Discovery Protocol (BSDP). Routers are usually configured
by default to block broadcast traffic in order to reduce the amount of unnecessary data
flowing to other parts of the network. If you need to provide NetBoot service across
subnets you must configure the router to pass on BSDP traffic to the NetBoot server.
Check with your router manufacturer to see if your router is capable of passing
BSDP traffic.
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Chapter 3 Setting Up NetBoot Service
4
Setting Up Clients to Use NetBoot
and Network Install
4
This chapter describes how to set up client computers to start
up from or install software from images on a server.
Setting Up Diskless Clients
NetBoot makes it possible to configure client computers without locally installed
operating systems or even without any installed disk drives. “System-less” or diskless
clients can start up from a NetBoot server using the N key method. (See “Starting Up
Using the N Key” on page 52.)
After the client computer has started up, you can use the Startup Disk preference pane
to select the NetBoot disk image as the startup disk for the client. That way you no
longer need to use the N key method to start up the client from the server.
Removing the system software from client computers gives you additional control over
users’ environments. By forcing the client to boot from the server and using client
management to deny access to the client computer’s local hard disk, you can prevent
users from saving files to the local hard disk.
Selecting a NetBoot Boot Image
If your computer is running Mac OS X version 10.2 or later, you use the Startup Disk
System Preferences pane to select a NetBoot boot image.
To select a NetBoot startup image from Mac OS X:
1 In System Preferences select the Startup Disk pane.
2 Select the network disk image you want to use to start up the computer.
3 Click Restart.
The NetBoot icon appears, and then the computer starts up from the selected image.
51
Selecting a Network Install Image
If your computer is running Mac OS X version 10.2 or later, you use the Startup Disk
System Preferences pane to select a network install image.
To select an install image from Mac OS X:
1 In System Preferences select the Startup Disk pane.
2 Select the network disk image you want to use to start up the computer.
3 Click Restart.
The NetBoot icon appears, the computer starts up from the selected image, and the
installer runs.
Starting Up Using the N Key
You can use this method to start up any supported client computer from a NetBoot
disk image. When you start up with the N key, the client computer starts up from the
default NetBoot disk image. (If multiple servers are present, then the client starts up
from the default image of the first server to respond.)
Note: See the manual that came with the computer for additional information about
using the N key when starting the system. Some computers have additional
capabilities.
If you have an older client computer that requires BootP for IP addressing (a trayloading iMac, blue and white PowerMac G3, or older computer), you must use this
method for starting up from a NetBoot disk image. Older computers don’t support
selecting a NetBoot startup disk image from the Startup Disk control panel or
preferences pane.
The N key also provides a way to start up client computers that don’t have system
software installed. See “Setting Up Diskless Clients” on page 51.
To start up from a NetBoot disk image using the N key:
1 Turn on (or restart) the client computer while holding the N key down on the keyboard.
Hold the N key down until the NetBoot icon appears in the center of the screen.
2 If a login window appears, enter your name and password.
The network disk image has an icon typical of server volumes.
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Chapter 4 Setting Up Clients to Use NetBoot and Network Install
5
Managing NetBoot Service
5
This chapter describes typical day-to-day tasks you might
perform to keep NetBoot service running efficiently, and
includes information on load balancing across multiple
volumes on a server or across multiple servers.
Controlling and Monitoring NetBoot
The following sections show how to stop NetBoot service, disable individual images,
and monitor or restrict clients.
Turning Off NetBoot Service
The best way to prevent clients from using NetBoot on the server is to disable NetBoot
service on all Ethernet ports.
To disable NetBoot:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Stop Service.
To stop service on a specific Ethernet port, click Settings, click General, and deselect the
Enable checkbox for the port.
To stop serving a particular image, click Settings, click Images, and deselect the Enable
checkbox for the image.
To stop service to a particular client, click Settings, click Filters, select Enable NetBoot
Filtering, choose “Deny only clients listed below,” and add the client’s hardware address
to the list.
From the Command Line
You can also stop NetBoot service or disable images using the serveradmin command
in Terminal. For more information, see the system image chapter of the command-line
administration guide.
53
Disabling Individual Boot or Install Images
Disabling an image prevents client computers from starting up using the image.
To disable a NetBoot disk image:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click Images.
3 Deselect the checkbox in the Enable column for the image.
4 Click Save.
From the Command Line
You can also disable images using the serveradmin command in Terminal. For more
information, see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Viewing a List of NetBoot Clients
You can use Server Admin to see a list of clients that have booted from the server.
To view the client list:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Clients.
Note: This is a cumulative list—a list of all clients that have connected—not a list of
just currently connected clients. The last boot time is shown for each client.
Checking the Status of NetBoot and Related Services
You can use Server Admin to check the status of NetBoot service and the other services
(such as NFS and TFTP) that it uses.
To check NetBoot service status:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 To see a summary of service status, click Overview. To view the log file, click Logs.
From the Command Line
You can check the status of NetBoot and its supporting services using commands in
Terminal. See the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Viewing the NetBoot Service Log
You can use Server Admin to view a log containing diagnostic information.
To view NetBoot service log:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Logs.
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Chapter 5 Managing NetBoot Service
From the Command Line
You can see the log by viewing the contents of the log file in Terminal. For more
information, see the system image chapter of the command-line administration guide.
Performance and Load Balancing
For good startup performance, it is critical that the NetBoot server be available to the
client computer relying on it. To provide responsive and reliable NetBoot service, you
can set up multiple NetBoot servers in your network infrastructure.
Many sites using NetBoot achieve acceptable responsiveness by staggering the boot
times of client computers in order to reduce network load. Generally, it isn’t necessary
to boot all client computers at exactly the same time; rather, client computers are
booted early in the morning and remain booted throughout the work day. You can
program staggered startup times using the Energy Saver preferences pane.
Boot Images
If heavy usage and simultaneous client startups are overloading a NetBoot server and
causing delays, consider adding additional NetBoot servers to distribute the demands
of the client computers across multiple servers (load balancing). When incorporating
multiple NetBoot servers, it is important to use switches in your network infrastructure,
as the shared nature of hubs creates a single shared network on which additional
servers would have to vie for time.
Distributing Boot Images Across Servers
If you set up more than one NetBoot server on your network, you can place copies of a
particular boot image on multiple servers to distribute the load. By assigning the
copies the same image ID in the range 4096–65535, you can advertise them to your
clients as a single image to avoid confusion.
To distribute an image across servers:
1 Open System Image Utility on the server where the original image is stored.
2 Click Images (near the top of the window) and select the image in the list.
3 If the image’s Index is 4095 or lower, click Edit and give the image an index in the range
4096–65535.
4 Use the Export button to place copies of the image on the other servers.
5 On each of the other servers, use Server Admin to enable the image.
Clients still see the image listed only once in their Startup Disk preferences, but the
server that delivers its copy of the image is automatically selected based on how busy
the individual servers are.
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55
Smaller improvements can be achieved by distributing boot images across multiple
disk drives on a single server.
Distributing Boot Images Across Server Disk Drives
Even with a single NetBoot server, you might improve performance by distributing
copies of an image across multiple disk drives on the server. By assigning the copies
the same image ID in the range 4096–65535, you can advertise them to your clients as
a single image.
Note: Don’t distribute images across different partitions of the same physical disk drive.
Doing so does not improve, and can even reduce, performance.
To distribute an image across disk drives:
1 Open Server Admin and select NetBoot in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Settings, then click General.
3 Click in the Images column for each volume you want to use for storing images.
Choose volumes on different physical disk drives.
4 Click Save, then click Images.
5 If the image’s ID in the Index column is 4095 or lower, double-click the ID, type an index
in the range 4096–65535, and save the change.
6 Open Terminal, and use the secure copy, scp, command to copy the image to the
NetBootSPn share points on the other volumes. For example:
scp /Library/NetBoot/NetBootSP0/image.nbi [admin_name]@[ip_address]:/
Volumes/Drive2/Library/NetBoot/NetBootSP1
Where [admin_name] is an admin login and [ip_address] is the correct IP address for
that server. You will be prompted for the password of the admin login you supply.
Balancing Boot Image Access
If you add a second NetBoot server to a network, have your clients reselect their boot
image in the Startup Disk control panel or preferences pane. This causes the NetBoot
load to be redistributed among the servers. You can also force redistribution of the load
by deleting the file /var/db/bsdpd_clients from the existing NetBoot server. Similarly,
if you’re recovering from a server or infrastructure failure, and your clients have been
booting from a reduced number of NetBoot servers, you’ll need to delete the
bsdpd_clients file from the running servers so that clients can once again spread out
across the entire set of servers.
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Chapter 5 Managing NetBoot Service
The bsdpd_clients file on any given server holds the Ethernet Media Access Control
(MAC) addresses of the computers that have selected this server as their NetBoot
server. As long as a client has an entry in an available server’s bsdpd_clients file, it will
always boot from that server. If that server should become unavailable to those clients,
they will locate and associate themselves with an available server until such time as
you remove their entries (or the entire files) from their servers.
Note: If a client is registered on more than one server because an unavailable server
comes back on line, the client boots from the server with the fewest number of clients
booted off of it.
Distributing Shadow Files
Clients booting from Mac OS X diskless images store temporary “shadow” files on the
server.
By default, NetBoot for Mac OS X clients creates a share point for client shadow files on
the server boot volume. (You can change this behavior; see “Changing How Mac OS X
NetBoot Clients Allocate Shadow Files” on page 35.) You can use Server Admin to see
this share point and to add others. The share points are named NetBootClientsn where
n is the share point number. Share points are numbered starting with zero.
For example, if your server has two disk volumes, the default shadow-file directory is
NetBootClients0 on the boot volume. If you use Server Admin to specify that client data
should also be stored on the second volume, the directory is named NetBootClients1.
NetBoot stores the first client’s shadow files on NetBootClients0, the second client’s
shadow files on NetBootClients1, the third client’s shadow files on NetBootSP0, and so
on. Likewise, with three volumes selected and eight clients, the first, fourth, and
seventh clients will use the first volume; the second, fifth, and eighth clients will use
the second volume; and the third and sixth clients will use the third volume.This load
balancing is automatic and usually ensures optimal performance.
To prevent shadow files from being placed on a particular volume, use the General
pane in the NetBoot service settings in Server Admin. Deselect the client data
checkbox for any volume in which you don’t want shadow files placed.
You can also prevent the shadow files from being placed on a particular volume or
partition by deleting the hidden file /Library/NetBoot/.clients, which is a symbolic link,
from the volume, then stopping and restarting NetBoot service.
Advanced NetBoot Tuning
You can adjust a wide range of NetBoot options by running the bootpd program
directly and by modifying configuration parameters in specific NetInfo directories.
For more information, read the bootpd man page. To view the man page, open
Terminal and type man bootpd.
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Chapter 5 Managing NetBoot Service
6
Solving Problems with System
Imaging
6
This chapter provides solutions for common problems
you may encounter while working with NetBoot and
Network Install.
This chapter contains solutions to common problems.
General Tips
 Make sure a DHCP service is available on your network. It can be provided by the
Mac OS X Server DHCP service or another server.
 Make sure required services are started on the server. See “Network Service
Requirements” on page 24. Open Server Admin and make sure:
 AFP is started if you’re booting Mac OS X diskless clients
 Web service is started if you’re using HTTP instead of NFS to deliver images
A NetBoot Client Computer Won’t Start Up
 Sometimes a computer may not start up immediately because other computers are
putting a heavy demand on the network. Wait a few minutes and try starting up
again.
 Make sure that all the cables are properly connected and that the computer and
server are getting power.
 If you installed memory or an expansion card in the client computer, make sure it is
installed properly.
 If the server has more than one Ethernet card, or you’re using more than one port on
a multiport Ethernet card, check to see if other computers using the same card or
port can start up. If they can’t, check to be sure the Ethernet port you set up on the
server is the same port to which the client computer is connected. It’s easy to
mistake Ethernet port 1 for Ethernet port 4 on a multiport card. On the cards that
come preinstalled in Macintosh servers, the ports are numbered 4, 3, 2, 1 (from left to
right), if you’re looking at the back of the computer.
59
 If the computer has a local hard disk with a System Folder on it, disconnect the
Ethernet cable and try to start up the computer from the local hard disk. Then
reconnect the Ethernet cable and try to start up the computer from the network.
 Boot the client computer from a local drive and check that it is getting an IP address
from DHCP.
 On a diskless or systemless client, start up from a system CD and use the Startup Disk
preferences to select a boot image.
 Make sure that there is a architecture-specific image available on the server that the
client is using. See “Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image” on page 29 for information on
creating images for Intel-based and PowerPC-based Macintosh computers.
 Make sure that you have specified a default image for the architecture of the client
Macintosh computer. See “Specifying the Default Image” on page 48.
You’re Using Macintosh Manager and a User Can’t Log In to a
NetBoot Client
 Check to see if the user can log in to other computers. If the user can log in to other
computers, then the computer the user can’t log into may be connected to a
Macintosh Manager server on which the user does not have an account. If there is
more than one Macintosh Manager server, make sure the user has selected a server
on which he or she has an account.
 Open Macintosh Manager and make sure the user is a member of at least one
workgroup.
 Open Macintosh Manager and reset the user’s password.
The Create Button in System Image Utility Is Not Enabled
 Make sure you have entered an image name and ID in the General pane.
 Make sure you have chosen an image source in the Contents pane.
 For an image based on a CD or DVD source, make sure you have entered a default
user name with a password that is at least four characters long in the Default User
pane.
Controls and Fields in System Image Utility Are Disabled
Click New Boot or New Install at the top of the window, or close and reopen the
System Image Utility.
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Chapter 6 Solving Problems with System Imaging
Can’t Edit Image Name in System Image Utility
System Image Utility doesn’t let you edit the name of an image after you have created
it. There are, however, other ways to do that. This section describes how to change the
name of an uncompressed image that you have created using System Image Utility.
Changing the Name of an Uncompressed Image
1 Mount the image in the finder.
Open the .nbi folder containing the image and double-click it.
2 Open a Terminal window and type the following command to rename the image:
sudo diskutil rename /Volumes/<image> <new_name>
where <image> is the name of the image you want to rename and <new_name> is the
new name of the image.
3 Enter the root password when prompted.
The name of the image changes.
4 Unmount the image.
5 Remount the image to verify that it has been renamed.
Changing the Name of a Compressed Image
This section describes how to change the name of a compressed image that you have
created using System Image Utility.
To change the name of an compressed image:
1 Mount the image in the Finder.
Open the .nbi folder containing the image and double-click it.
2 Launch Disk Utility.
3 Select the image and click Convert.
4 Type a name in the Save As field.
5 Select a different location in which to save the image.
For example, save the image on the Desktop folder.
6 Choose read/write from the Image Format menu.
7 Click Save.
8 Unmount the image.
9 Mount the new image in the Finder.
10 Open a Terminal window and type the following command to rename the image:
sudo diskutil rename /Volumes/<image> <new_name>
where <image> is the name of the image you want to rename and <new_name> is the
new name of the image.
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61
11 Enter the root password when prompted.
The name of the image changes.
12 Unmount the image.
13 Remount the image to verify that the image has been renamed.
14 Unmount the image.
15 Remove the original image from the .nbi folder and store it somewhere else.
16 In Disk Utility, select the new image and click Convert.
17 Give the image the same name as the one it had inside the .nbi folder.
18 In the Where field, select the .nbi folder.
19 Choose compressed from the Format menu.
20 Click Save.
21 Test the new image to make sure that it mounts properly.
22 Discard the old image.
I Can’t Set an Image to Use Static Booting (NetBoot
version 1.0)
Static network booting, as provided by NetBoot version 1.0, is not supported in
Mac OS X Server version 10.3.
Downloading the “NetBoot for Mac OS 9” Disk Image and
Updating the Startup Disk Control Panel
If you’re using Mac OS X Server v10.3 or have upgraded to Mac OS X Server v10.4 and
want to provide NetBoot services to Mac OS 9 clients, you’ll need to replace the clients’
Startup Disk control panel with version 9.2.6 of the Startup Disk control panel, which
allows the clients to see available NetBoot disk images.
1 Download the “NetBoot for Mac OS 9” disk image from article 120243, “NetBoot for
Mac OS 9: Information and Download,” on the AppleCare Search & Support website at:
www.info.apple.com/kbnum/n120243
2 Mount the image and double-click NetBoot.pkg to begin the installation process.
3 Install the NetBoot package on your NetBoot server.
4 Once the installation is complete, navigate to the following folder:
/Library/NetBoot/NetBootSP0/MacOS92Default.nbi/
5 Double-click the “NetBoot HD.img” disk image file to mount it on the Desktop.
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Chapter 6 Solving Problems with System Imaging
6 Navigate to the following folder, which contains version 9.2.6 of the Startup Disk
control panel:
/Volumes/NetBoot HD/System Folder/Control Panels/
7 Use the Startup Disk control panel from the disk image to replace the Startup Disk
control panel in the “System Folder: Control Panels” folder on client Mac OS 9
computers.
Note: If you make a clean installation of Mac OS X Server v10.4, you won’t be able to
support NetBoot for Mac OS 9.
The Architecture Field in Server Admin Is Not Enabled
The Architecture field displays the image type. To create an architecture-specific image
see “Creating a Mac OS X Boot Image” on page 29
Server Admin Isn’t showing an Image for Intel-based Macs
Mac OS X Server 10.4.4 or later is required for supporting images for Intel-based
Macintosh computers. Mac OS X 10.4.4 or later and the latest System Image Utility are
required to create and maintain architecture-specific images.
A Network Install Image Burned to DVD Doesn’t Work
To create a DVD from a System Image Utility restore image, you must be using a
computer with the same architecture for which the image was created. For example,
use an Intel-based Macintosh to create a restore DVD for use with Intel-based
Macintosh computers.
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63
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Chapter 6 Solving Problems with System Imaging
Part II: Software Update
Administration
II
The chapters in this part of this guide introduce you to the
software update service and the applications and tools
available for administering the software update service.
Chapter 7
About Software Update Administration
Chapter 8
Setting Up Software Update Service
Chapter 9
Managing Software Update Service
Chapter 10
Solving Problems with Software Update Service
7
About Software Update
Administration
7
This chapter describes how to set up and administer Software
Update service as a controlled environment for updating
Apple software on your network.
Software Update service offers you ways to manage Macintosh software updates from
Apple on your network. In an uncontrolled environment, users may connect to the
Apple Software Update servers at any time and update your client computers with
software that is not approved by your IT group for use in your enterprise or school.
Using local Software Update servers your client computers access only the software
updates you allow from software lists that you control, thus giving you more flexibility
in managing computer software updates. For example you can:
 Download software updates from the Apple Software Update servers to a local server
for sharing with local network clients and reduce the amount of bandwidth used
outside of your enterprise network.
 Direct users, groups, and computers to specific local Software Update servers using
managed preferences.
 Manage the software update packages users can access by enabling and disabling
individual packages at the local server.
 Mirror updates automatically between Apple Software Update servers and your
server to ensure you have the most current updates available.
Note: You can’t use Software Update service to provide third-party software updates.
Inside The Software Update Process
This section describes how Software Update servers are implemented on Mac OS X
Server, including information on the protocols, files, directory structures, and
configuration details.
67
Overview
The process that starts Software Update service is SoftwareUpdateServer. When you
start Software Update service, it contacts Apple’s Software Update server and requests
a list of available software to download locally. You can choose to mirror (copy and
store packages locally) and enable (make the packages available to users) any of the
files presented in the list. You can also limit user bandwidth for updates and choose to
automatically mirror and enable newer updates from the Apple server.
Note: The Software Update service stores its configuration information in the file /etc/
swupd/swupd.conf.
Catalogs
When Software Update service is started, your Software Updates server receives a list
of currently available software updates from the Apple Software Update service.
Your server will automatically synchronize the contents of the software catalog with
Apple’s Software Update server when you restart your server or when you execute the
following command:
/usr/local/bin/swupd_syncd
To manually update the current catalog, select the Update Now button in the General
pane of the Software Update Server.
Install Packages
Software Update service supports only pkm.en file types recognized only by
Mac OS X v10.4 and later. As you mirror updates on your server, your server will
download and store update packages at the following location:
/usr/share/swupd/html/
While this path is static and can’t be modified to store the packages in an alternate
location, it is possible to modify the URL to access a different server.
Note: This version of Mac OS X Server supports only Apple-specific software packages
for use with your update server. Modified Apple and third-party update software
packages cannot be shared.
Once the packages are mirrored locally, you can choose to enable the packages for
users to update their software. Mac clients running Software Update will see only the
list of enabled packages in the list of available software for their computer.
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Chapter 7 About Software Update Administration
Staying Up To Date with the Apple Server
In order to keep your service synchronized with the most current information, your
Software Update Server must always remain in contact with the Apple server. The
Software Update service regularly checks-in with Apple’s Software Update servers to
update usage information and send lists of newly available software to your updates
catalog on your server as they become available. Apple’s Software Update server uses a
synchronization daemon, swupd_syncd that determines the time period between
updates to your server to ensure the latest update packages are available to you.
Limiting User Bandwidth
The Software Update service in Mac OS X Server lets you limit the bandwidth that
client computers may use when downloading software updates from your Software
Update server. Setting a limit on the bandwidth allows you to control traffic on your
network and prevents Software Update clients from slowing down the network.
For example, if you limit the bandwidth to 56 Kbps, each software update client will
download updates at 56 Kbps. If five clients connect simultaneously to the server, the
total bandwidth used by the clients will be 280 Kbps (56 Kbps x 5).
Revoked Files
On a rare occasion that Apple provides a software update and should want to remove
the package from circulation, Apple can revoke the update package and remove it
from your stored packages. When building the list of files available to users, any
revoked packages are not listed.
Software Update Package Format
You can’t make your own Software Update packages. For security considerations and to
protect attackers from faking packages, the Software Update package installer won’t
install a package unless its signed by Apple. In addition, Software Update service will
work only with the new package format supported in Mac OS X Server v10.4 or later.
Log Files
The log file for the Software Update Server is located at:
/Library/Logs/SoftwareUpdateServer.log
What Information Gets Collected
Apple’s Software Update server collects the following information from client Software
Update servers:
 Language
 Type
 Browser
Chapter 7 About Software Update Administration
69
Before You Set Up the Software Update Server
Before you set up a Software Update server, review the following considerations and
requirements.
What You Need to Know
To set up Software Update on your server, you should be familiar with your network
configuration. Be sure you meet the following requirements:
 You’re the server administrator.
 You’re familiar with network setup.
You might also need to work with your networking staff to change network topologies,
switches, routers, and other network settings.
Client Computer Requirements
Any Macintosh computers running Mac OS X v10.4 or later networked to a
Mac OS X v10.4 server can use Software Update service to update Apple software.
Network Hardware Requirements
The type of network connections you should use depends on the number of clients
you expect to serve software updates over the network:
 100-Mbit Ethernet (for providing regular updates to fewer than 10 clients)
 100-Mbit switched Ethernet (for providing regular updates to 10–50 clients)
 Gigabit Ethernet (for providing regular updates to more than 50 clients)
These are estimates for the number of clients supported. See “Capacity Planning” for a
more detailed discussion of the optimal system and network configurations to support
the number of clients you have.
Note: In Mac OS X Server, software update service automatically operates across all
network interfaces for which TCP/IP is configured.
Capacity Planning
The number of client computers your server can support accessing Software Update
service depends on how your server is configured, when and how often your clients
check for updates, the size of the updates, and a number of other factors. When
planning for your server and network needs, consider these main factors:
 Ethernet speed: 100Base-T or faster connections are required for both client
computers and the server. As you add more clients, you may need to increase the
speed of your server’s Ethernet connections. Ideally you want to take advantage of
the Gigabit Ethernet capacity built-in to your Mac OS X server hardware to connect
to a Gigabit switch. From the switch you should connect Gigabit Ethernet or
100-Mbit Ethernet to each of the Macintosh clients.
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Chapter 7 About Software Update Administration
 Hard disk capacity and number of packages: Software Update packages can occupy
considerable hard disk space on server volumes, depending on the size and
configuration of the package and the number of packages being stored.
 Number of Ethernet ports on the switch: Distributing Macintosh clients over multiple
Ethernet ports on your switch offers a performance advantage. Each port must serve
a distinct segment.
 Number of Software Update servers on the network: You may want to provide different
software updates to various groups of users. By configuring Directory Services you
can offer different update services by network or hardware type, each targeting a
different Software Update server on the network.
Note: You can’t configure Software Update servers to talk to one another.
Setup Overview
Here is an overview of the basic steps for setting up Software Update service.
Step 1: Evaluate and update your network, servers, and client computers as
necessary
The number of client computers you can support using Software Update service is
determined by the number of servers you have, how they’re configured, hard disk
storage capacity, and other factors. See “Capacity Planning” on page 70.
Depending on the results of this evaluation, you may want to add servers or hard disks,
add Ethernet ports to your server, or make other changes to your servers.
Update all client computers to Mac OS X v10.4 or later in order for them to use the local
Software Update service.
Step 2: Create your software update service plan
Decide which users you want to access your software update service. You may have
groups of users to whom you want to provide unlimited access while offering others a
more limited choice of software updates. Such a plan would require more than one
software update server with client machines bound via directory services to managed
user preferences.
Step 3: Configure the Software Update Server
Decide whether you want to mirror and enable software updates from Apple
automatically or manage them manually. Set the maximum bandwidth you want a
single computer to use when downloading update packages from your server.
Step 4: Start the Software Update Service
Your server will automatically synchronize with the Apple Software Update server by
requesting a catalog of available updates. If you chose to automatically mirror updates,
your server will begin to download all available software update packages.
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71
Step 5: Manually mirror and enable selected packages (optional)
If you do not mirror and enable all Apple software updates automatically, manually
select software update packages to mirror and enable.
Step 6: Set up client computers to use the correct Software Update Server
Set preferences in Workgroup Manager by user, group, or computer to access your
Software Update server. For more information on how to configure managed
preferences for the Software Update server, see the user management guide.
Step 7: Test your Software Update server setup
Test your software update service by requesting software updates from the server
using a client bound to preferences you set in Workgroup Manager. Ensure the desired
packages are accessible to your users.
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Chapter 7 About Software Update Administration
8
Setting Up Software Update
Service
8
This chapter provides step-by-step instructions to setup
Software Update service on your network for use with your
Mac OS X 10.4 clients.
You use the Software Update service in Server Admin to provide local software updates
service to networked client computers.
Before You Begin
Consider the following topics before you set up a Software Update server.
Consider Which Software Update Packages to Offer
Before you set up software updates service, you need consider whether you want to
provide all or only part of Apple’s software updates. Your client computers may run
application software that may require a specific version of Apple software in order for it
to operate correctly. You can configure your Software Update server with only the
software update packages you approve. Restricting access to particular update
packages might help prevent future maintenance and compatibility problems with
your computers.
You can restrict client access to only specific update packages through Software
Update server by disabling automatic mirror and enable functions in the General
Settings pane. You manage specific updates in the Updates pane of the Software
Updates Server.
Organize Your Enterprise Client Computers
In your organization, you might identify individuals, groups, or groups of computers
with common needs for only a few software update packages while others you may
allow unrestricted access to all software updates. To provide varied access to software
update packages, you’ll need to set-up multiple Software Update servers. Use managed
preferences to configure these computers to access a specific Software Update server.
For more information on how to configure managed preferences for the Software
Update server, see the user management guide.
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Setting Up a Software Update Server
This section describes:
 How to start Software Update service
 How to mirror and enable updates from Apple
 How to limit user bandwidth for software updates
 How to mirror and enable selected updates from Apple
You use Server Admin to accomplish these tasks.
Starting Software Update Service
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to start Software Update service.
To start Software Update service:
1 Open Software Update Server module in the Computers & Services pane in Server
Admin.
2 Click start service in the Server Admin toolbar.
Automatically Mirroring and Enabling Updates from Apple
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to mirror software updates automatically from Apple.
To automatically mirror software updates packages and enable them for download
by clients:
1 Open Software Update Server module in the Computers & Services pane in Server
Admin.
2 Click “Automatically mirror updates from Apple”.
3 Click “Automatically enable mirrored updates”.
4 Click Save.
Limiting User Bandwidth for Software Update Service
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to limit user bandwidth.
To limit user bandwidth for Software Update service:
1 Open Software Update Server module in the Computers & Services pane in Server
Admin.
2 Click “Limit user bandwidth for updates to.”
3 Enter the maximum rate of package download per user.
4 Select KB/second or MB/second from the pop-up menu.
5 Click Save.
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Chapter 8 Setting Up Software Update Service
Mirroring and Enabling Selected Updates from Apple
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to mirror software updates automatically from Apple.
To mirror selected software updates packages and enable them for download by
clients:
1 Open Software Update Server module in the Computers & Services pane in Server
Admin.
2 Make sure “Automatically mirror updates from Apple” is deselected.
3 Make sure “Automatically enable mirrored updates” is deselected.
4 Click Save.
5 Click the Updates button.
6 Select the individual software update packages you want to mirror by selecting the
checkbox in the mirror column of the package.
7 Select the individual software update packages you want to enable by selecting the
checkbox in the enable column of the package.
Pointing Non-Managed Clients to a Software Update Server
Use the following command to point non-managed client computers to a particular
Software Update server:
defaults write com.apple.SoftwareUpdate CatalogURL URL
Where URL is the URL of the Software Update server. For example:
http://su.domain_name.com:8088/
To remove a specific software update:
1 On the local Software Update server, open a Terminal window and type the following
command to list the folders that correspond to each software update:
grep swupd /etc/swupd/com.apple.server.swupdate.plist > ~/Desktop/
update_list.txt
This creates a file on your Desktop named update_list.txt. The file contains a list of all of
the software updates stored on the server.
2 Open the update_list.txt file. You’ll see that it contains information similar to the
following:
<string>/usr/share/swupd/html/061-2036/.../SecUpd2005-007Ri.tar</string>
<string>/usr/share/swupd/html/061-2048/.../SafariUpdate-2.0.1.tar</string>
Each update resides in a folder. In this example output, the folder /061-2048/ stores the
Safari 2.0.1 update.
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75
3 In Terminal, type the following command to delete a software update from the server:
sudo rm -rf /usr/share/swupd/html/updatefolder/
Note: Substitute updatefolder with the name of the folder that stores the software
update you want to delete.
For example, to remove the Safari 2.0.1 update, you would type the following
command:
sudo rm -rf /usr/share/swupd/html/061-2048/
Enter the administrator password when prompted.
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Chapter 8 Setting Up Software Update Service
9
Managing Software Update
Service
9
This chapter describes how to perform day-to-day
management tasks for software update server once you have
it configured and running.
The following sections show how to stop Software Update service, and monitor client
activity.
Manually Refreshing the Updates Catalog from the Apple
Server
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to manually update the updates catalog
To manually refresh the updates catalog from the Apple server:
1 Click Software Update Server in the Computers & Services pane in Server Admin.
2 Select the Setup button.
3 Select the Updates button in the setup pane.
4 Click the Refresh updates list now button.
Checking the Status of Software Update Service
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to check the status of Software Update service.
To check Software Update service status:
1 Open Server Admin and select Software Update Server in the Computers & Services list.
2 To see a summary of service status, click Overview. To view the log file, click Logs.
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Turning Off Software Update Service
You use the Software Update Server module from the Computers & Services pane in
Server Admin to stop Software Update service.
To disable Software Update service:
1 Open Server Admin and select Software Update Server in the Computers & Services list.
2 Click Stop Service in the Server Admin toolbar.
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Chapter 9 Managing Software Update Service
10
Solving Problems with Software
Update Service
10
This chapter provides solutions for common problems you
may encounter while working with software update server.
This section contains solutions to common problems.
General Tips
 Make sure required services are installed.
 Make sure the Software Update packages you have enabled are meant for the client
accessing them.
 Check the network load if you detect poor response from the Software Update
server. See “Capacity Planning” on page 70 for more information.
 Delete old updates to make space for new ones.
A Client Computer Can’t Access the Software Update Server
 Make sure that the client can access the network.
 Make sure that the client’s Software Update managed preference points to the
Software Update server.
 Make sure that the Software Update server is running.
Software Update Server Won’t Sync with the Apple Server
Make sure that the Apple server is accessible.
Software Update Server Has Update Packages Listed but They
Aren’t Visible to Clients
Make sure that the package are enabled.
79
80
Chapter 10 Solving Problems with Software Update Service
Glossary
Glossary
AFP Apple Filing Protocol. A client/server protocol used by Apple file service on
Macintosh-compatible computers to share files and network services. AFP uses TCP/IP
and other protocols to communicate between computers on a network.
address A number or other identifier that uniquely identifies a computer on a network,
a block of data stored on a disk, or a location in a computer memory. See also IP
address, MAC address.
administrator A user with server or directory domain administration privileges.
Administrators are always members of the predefined “admin” group.
Apple Filing Protocol See AFP.
automount To make a share point appear automatically on a client computer. See also
mount.
bit A single piece of information, with a value of either 0 or 1.
CIFS Common Internet File System. See SMB/CIFS.
client A computer (or a user of the computer) that requests data or services from
another computer, or server.
command line The text you type at a shell prompt when using a command-line
interface.
command-line interface A way of interfacing with the computer (for example, to run
programs or modify file system permissions) by entering text commands at a shell
prompt.
Common Internet File System See SMB/CIFS.
daemon A program that runs in the background and provides important system
services, such as processing incoming email or handling requests from the network.
81
DHCP Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. A protocol used to dynamically distribute
IP addresses to client computers. Each time a client computer starts up, the protocol
looks for a DHCP server and then requests an IP address from the DHCP server it finds.
The DHCP server checks for an available IP address and sends it to the client computer
along with a lease period—the length of time the client computer may use the
address.
directory Also known as a folder. A hierarchically organized list of files and/or other
directories.
directory domain A specialized database that stores authoritative information about
users and network resources; the information is needed by system software and
applications. The database is optimized to handle many requests for information and to
find and retrieve information quickly. Also called a directory node or simply a directory.
DNS Domain Name System. A distributed database that maps IP addresses to domain
names. A DNS server, also known as a name server, keeps a list of names and the IP
addresses associated with each name.
DNS domain A unique name of a computer used in the Domain Name System to
translate IP addresses and names. Also called a domain name.
DNS name A unique name of a computer used in the Domain Name System to
translate IP addresses and names. Also called a domain name.
domain Part of the domain name of a computer on the Internet. It does not include
the Top Level Domain designator (for example, .com, .net, .us, .uk). Domain name
“www.example.com” consists of the subdomain or host name “www,” the domain
“example,” and the top level domain “com.”
domain name See DNS name.
Domain Name System See DNS.
drop box A shared folder with privileges that allow other users to write to, but not
read, the folder’s contents. Only the owner has full access. Drop boxes should be
created only using AFP. When a folder is shared using AFP, the ownership of an item
written to the folder is automatically transferred to the owner of the folder, thus giving
the owner of a drop box full access to and control over items put into it.
file server A computer that serves files to clients. A file server may be a generalpurpose computer that’s capable of hosting additional applications or a computer
capable only of serving files.
File Transfer Protocol See FTP.
82
Glossary
FTP File Transfer Protocol. A protocol that allows computers to transfer files over a
network. FTP clients using any operating system that supports FTP can connect to a file
server and download files, depending on their access privileges. Most Internet browsers
and a number of freeware applications can be used to access an FTP server.
logical disk A storage device that appears to a user as a single disk for storing files,
even though it might actually consist of more than one physical disk drive. An Xsan
volume, for example, is a logical disk that behaves like a single disk even though it
consists of multiple storage pools that are, in turn, made up of multiple LUNs, each of
which contains multiple physical disks.
group A collection of users who have similar needs. Groups simplify the administration
of shared resources.
home directory A folder for a user’s personal use. Mac OS X also uses the home
directory, for example, to store system preferences and managed user settings for
Mac OS X users.
host Another name for a server.
host name A unique name for a server, historically referred to as the UNIX hostname.
The Mac OS X Server host name is used primarily for client access to NFS home
directories. A server determines its host name by using the first name available from
the following sources: the name specified in the /etc/hostconfig file
(HOSTNAME=some-host-name); the name provided by the DHCP or BootP server for
the primary IP address; the first name returned by a reverse DNS (address-to-name)
query for the primary IP address; the local hostname; the name “localhost.”
Internet Generally speaking, a set of interconnected computer networks
communicating through a common protocol (TCP/IP). The Internet (note the
capitalization) is the most extensive publicly accessible system of interconnected
computer networks in the world.
Internet Protocol See IP.
IP Internet Protocol. Also known as IPv4. A method used with Transmission Control
Protocol (TCP) to send data between computers over a local network or the Internet. IP
delivers packets of data, while TCP keeps track of data packets.
IP address A unique numeric address that identifies a computer on the Internet.
IP subnet A portion of an IP network, which may be a physically independent network
segment, that shares a network address with other portions of the network and is
identified by a subnet number.
MAC Media access control. See MAC address.
Glossary
83
MAC address Media access control address. A hardware address that uniquely
identifies each node on a network. For AirPort devices, the MAC address is called the
AirPort ID.
Mac OS X The latest version of the Apple operating system. Mac OS X combines the
reliability of UNIX with the ease of use of Macintosh.
Mac OS X Server An industrial-strength server platform that supports Mac, Windows,
UNIX, and Linux clients out of the box and provides a suite of scalable workgroup and
network services plus advanced remote management tools.
mount (verb) In general, to make a remote directory or volume available for access on
a local system. In Xsan, to cause an Xsan volume to appear on a client’s desktop, just
like a local disk.
Network File System See NFS.
network interface Your computer’s hardware connection to a network. This includes
(but isn’t limited to) Ethernet connections, AirPort cards, and FireWire connections.
NFS Network File System. A client/server protocol that uses Internet Protocol (IP) to
allow remote users to access files as though they were local. NFS exports shared
volumes to computers according to IP address, rather than user name and password.
Open Directory The Apple directory services architecture, which can access
authoritative information about users and network resources from directory domains
that use LDAP, NetInfo, or Active Directory protocols; BSD configuration files; and
network services.
open source A term for the cooperative development of software by the Internet
community. The basic principle is to involve as many people as possible in writing and
debugging code by publishing the source code and encouraging the formation of a
large community of developers who will submit modifications and enhancements.
owner The owner of an item can change access permissions to the item. The owner
may also change the group entry to any group in which the owner is a member. By
default the owner has Read & Write permissions.
password An alphanumeric string used to authenticate the identity of a user or to
authorize access to files or services.
pathname The location of an item within a file system, represented as a series of
names separated by slashes (/).
permissions Settings that define the kind of access users have to shared items in a file
system. You can assign four types of permissions to a share point, folder, or file: read/
write, read-only, write-only, and none (no access). See also privileges.
84
Glossary
port A sort of virtual mail slot. A server uses port numbers to determine which
application should receive data packets. Firewalls use port numbers to determine
whether data packets are allowed to traverse a local network. “Port” usually refers to
either a TCP or UDP port.
process A program that has started executing and has a portion of memory allocated
to it.
protocol A set of rules that determines how data is sent back and forth between two
applications.
QTSS QuickTime Streaming Server. A technology that lets you deliver media over the
Internet in real time.
QuickTime A set of Macintosh system extensions or a Windows dynamic-link library
that supports the composition and playing of movies.
QuickTime Streaming Server See QTSS.
server A computer that provides services (such as file service, mail service, or web
service) to other computers or network devices.
Server Message Block/Common Internet File System See SMB/CIFS.
share point A folder, hard disk (or hard disk partition), or CD that’s accessible over the
network. A share point is the point of access at the top level of a group of shared items.
Share points can be shared using AFP, Windows SMB, NFS (an “export”), or FTP
protocols.
short name An abbreviated name for a user. The short name is used by Mac OS X for
home directories, authentication, and email addresses.
SMB/CIFS Server Message Block/Common Internet File System. A protocol that allows
client computers to access files and network services. It can be used over TCP/IP, the
Internet, and other network protocols. Windows services use SMB/CIFS to provide
access to servers, printers, and other network resources.
TCP Transmission Control Protocol. A method used along with the Internet Protocol
(IP) to send data in the form of message units between computers over the Internet.
IP takes care of handling the actual delivery of the data, and TCP takes care of keeping
track of the individual units of data (called packets) into which a message is divided for
efficient routing through the Internet.
Transmission Control Protocol See TCP.
UID User ID. A number that uniquely identifies a user within a file system. Mac OS X
computers use the UID to keep track of a user’s directory and file ownership.
Glossary
85
URL Uniform Resource Locator. The address of a computer, file, or resource that can be
accessed on a local network or the Internet. The URL is made up of the name of the
protocol needed to access the resource, a domain name that identifies a specific
computer on the Internet, and a hierarchical description of a file location on the
computer.
user ID See UID.
user name The long name for a user, sometimes referred to as the user’s “real” name.
See also short name.
volume A mountable allocation of storage that behaves, from the client’s perspective,
like a local hard disk, hard disk partition, or network volume. In Xsan, a volume consists
of one or more storage pools. See also logical disk.
86
Glossary
A
Architecture-specific images 43, 48
automating Network Install 40
B
booter file 18
BootFile property 19
specifying for NetBoot image 19
BootFile
NetBoot image property 19
BootP Server 20
Boot Server Discovery Protocol
See BSDP
BSDP (Boot Server Discovery Protocol) 19
role in NetBoot 19
bsdpd_clients file
determining client NetBoot server 57
role and location 17
C
capacity planning
NetBoot 24
Software Update Server 70
client computers
start up using N key 52
client computers, Mac OS X
selecting NetBoot install image 52
selecting NetBoot startup image 51
D
Description
NetBoot image property 19
directory access
configuring in boot images 31, 37
disk images, NetBoot 16
creating 26, 27, 29
creating from existing clients 33
on an NFS server 20
unlocking 45, 46, 49, 50
updating Mac OS X 32, 33
Index
Index
disk images, Network Install
unlocking 45, 46, 49, 50
updating 41
diskless booting
and default boot image 48
required services 24
diskless client
setup 51
E
empty install images
See custom package install images
Ethernet
disabling NetBoot on ports 53
requirements for NetBoot 24
requirements for Software Update Server 70
I
image folder, NetBoot 18
Index
NetBoot image property 19
install image, selecting 52
Intel-based image 18, 19, 31, 63
IsDefault
NetBoot image property 19
IsEnabled
NetBoot image property 19
IsInstall
NetBoot image property 19
L
Language
NetBoot image property 19
load balancing
NetBoot and 55
M
mirror updates
automatically 74
87
88
N
P
Name
NetBoot image property 19
NBImageInfo.plist
NetBoot property file 18, 19
NetBoot 19
administrator requirements 22
administrator tools for 16
AirPort and 24
Boot Server Discovery Protocol (BSDP) 19
capacity planning 24
client computers 51, 52
configuring 43
creating images from existing clients 33
creating Mac OS X disk images 29
default image 48
disabling images 54
disabling on Ethernet ports 53
disk images 16
diskless clients 51
enabling 44, 45
feature overview 15
filtering clients 49
image folder 18
load balancing 55
monitoring Mac OS X clients 54
property lists 19
security 21
server requirements 23
set up client computer to use 28
setup overview 25, 27
shadow files 17
supported clients 22
Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) 20
updating Mac OS X images 32, 33
NETBOOT_SHADOW variable
table of values 35
NetBootClientsn share points
allocating shadow files 18
NetBootSPn share points
adding or removing 45
don’t rename volume 45
location 16
overview 16
Network Install
about packages 38
automating installation 40
creating an image 35, 41
creating custom packages 38
feature overview 15
PackageMaker
help for 38
where to find 38
packages
about 38
adding to an image 39
creating 38
viewing contents of 40
Index
R
RootPath
NetBoot image property 19
S
security
NetBoot 21
Server Status
monitoring Mac OS X NetBoot clients 54
shadow files
about 17
allocation options 35
distributing 57
overview 17
share points for 16
share points
for images 16
for shadow files 16
software update packages
mirror and enable 74
software updates catalog
refresh manually 77
Software Update Server
administrator requirements 70
capacity planning 70
check status 77
limiting bandwidth 74
mirror and enable selected updates 75
server requirements 70
setup overview 71
starting 74
turn off 78
starting up using N key 52
startup image, selecting 51
SupportsDiskless
NetBoot image property 19
synchronizing
image with source 33
System Image Utility 18
creating disk image 35
creating Mac OS X disk image 29
where to find 35
T
U
TFTP (Trivial File Transfer Protocol)
role in NetBoot 20
Trivial File Transfer Protocol
See TFTP
Type
NetBoot image property 19
unlocking disk images 45, 46, 49, 50
updating NetBoot images 32, 33
Index
89
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