Author Topic: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM  (Read 17431 times)

Techstyle

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gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« on: April 15, 2009, 10:32:22 pm »
This thread is a continuation of http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=6297.0 where the thread split.

I have been trying to find an easier way to PXE boot an MD that does not have a PXE Boot ROM.  I have been trying to make it easier than as described on the WIKI http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/GRUB_PXE_network_boot for those who are not as familiar with Linux or Grub.

The advantage here is that the website (http://rom-o-matic.net/) will spit out a pre-configured image for your particular NIC.

I have successfully downloaded an ISO file which I have burnt to CD and booted a test machine with.  I have been trying to do this onto a USB memory stick but so far have been unsuccessful.

I will add a WIKI page for the success with the CD and then add to it when the USB Memory stick is working

pigdog

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2009, 03:34:20 am »
Hi, Techstyle

I did not read the original thread, because I wasn't asked to in the post, and, I wanted to give an unbiased opinion about rom-o-matic.

At least from my perspective.

Rom-o-matic.  I had an older P4 1G system that didn't PXE boot.  I burnt a 3.5" floppy (needed to install a 3.5 drive).

It always booted, it always worked, it was quick (at least I didn't know any difference).

I was happy.


Techstyle

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2009, 03:57:25 am »
What commands/steps did you take to get from the downloading of the .dsk file to a working floppy disk boot?  I will then add this when I create the WIKI page for this

pigdog

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2009, 04:21:51 am »
Hi,

It was over a year/two ago but I'll go thru it again tomorrow, build another disk and re-post with instructions.

From what I remember (and it's probably outdated and doesn't support 1Gig E cards) the rom-o-matic site had O.K. instructions.

Cheers.

pigdog

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2009, 02:40:36 pm »
Hi,

Hope this is what you want....

The current homepage for Rom-o-matic is http://rom-o-matic.net/.

The current version is for an etherboot image generator is 5.4.4.  http://rom-o-matic.net/etherboot/etherboot-5.4.4/contrib/rom-o-matic/

Before creating a boot disk it is necessary to obtain your NIC/ROM information.

[The following are linux based commands.]

From a terminal/console workspace issue a "lspci" command.

This will return a description of the pci hardware on your system in the following format:

bus:device.function class: vendor. etc.

Record the ethernet controller information for the device you wish to PXE boot from.  For example: 00:11:0 Ethernet Controller: SIS 900 (rev 90)

Then issue  a "lspci -n" command which shows the PCI vendor and device codes as numbers.  For example: 00:11:0 0XXX: 1039:0900

Now go to the Rom-o-matic web page.

To create and download an Etherboot ROM image:

   1. Choose NIC/ROM type:

      PCI IDs for available NICs are documented here.
      You need to know this if you are going to burn/flash a ROM image because
      PCI IDs on the NIC and ROM must match. If you are making any other
      kind of image, you only need to match the family (family:rom_name)
      part of the identifier.

For our example we will enter Choose NIC/ROM type: sis900:sis900 -- [0x1039,0x0900]


   2. Choose ROM output format:

For our example we will go with the default setting: Floppy bootable ROM image (.zdsk)


   3. Step 3 is optional (used to customize ROM configuration)


   4. To generate and download a ROM image press: Get ROM


To make a bootable floppy on a GNU/Linux system, put a formatted floppy in your floppy drive and do:

    $ cat eb-5.4.4-yournic.zdsk > /dev/fd0

where "eb-5.4.4-yournic.zdsk" is where you stored your downloaded ROM image.

On a DOS/Windows system, use the RAWRITE program to write the .zdsk image to a formatted floppy.

RAWRITE is available on most GNU/Linux installation CDs or on the web.

I did " dd if=image-disk.zdsk of=/dev/fd0"


Cheers.

speedyone

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2009, 05:04:16 am »
Hi,

Hope this is what you want....

The current homepage for Rom-o-matic is http://rom-o-matic.net/.

The current version is for an etherboot image generator is 5.4.4.  http://rom-o-matic.net/etherboot/etherboot-5.4.4/contrib/rom-o-matic/

Before creating a boot disk it is necessary to obtain your NIC/ROM information.

[The following are linux based commands.]

From a terminal/console workspace issue a "lspci" command.

This will return a description of the pci hardware on your system in the following format:

bus:device.function class: vendor. etc.

Record the ethernet controller information for the device you wish to PXE boot from.  For example: 00:11:0 Ethernet Controller: SIS 900 (rev 90)

Then issue  a "lspci -n" command which shows the PCI vendor and device codes as numbers.  For example: 00:11:0 0XXX: 1039:0900

Now go to the Rom-o-matic web page.

To create and download an Etherboot ROM image:

   1. Choose NIC/ROM type:

      PCI IDs for available NICs are documented here.
      You need to know this if you are going to burn/flash a ROM image because
      PCI IDs on the NIC and ROM must match. If you are making any other
      kind of image, you only need to match the family (family:rom_name)
      part of the identifier.

For our example we will enter Choose NIC/ROM type: sis900:sis900 -- [0x1039,0x0900]


   2. Choose ROM output format:

For our example we will go with the default setting: Floppy bootable ROM image (.zdsk)


   3. Step 3 is optional (used to customize ROM configuration)


   4. To generate and download a ROM image press: Get ROM


To make a bootable floppy on a GNU/Linux system, put a formatted floppy in your floppy drive and do:

    $ cat eb-5.4.4-yournic.zdsk > /dev/fd0

where "eb-5.4.4-yournic.zdsk" is where you stored your downloaded ROM image.

On a DOS/Windows system, use the RAWRITE program to write the .zdsk image to a formatted floppy.

RAWRITE is available on most GNU/Linux installation CDs or on the web.

I did " dd if=image-disk.zdsk of=/dev/fd0"


Cheers.



Hi Pigdog,

I've been trying to ROM burn my Netgear GA311 PCI NIC card per the instructions at http://etherboot.org/wiki/romburning -- I used the http://rom-o-matic.net/ and I chose the ROM output as an USB disk image and I have the ROM image on a USB drive.

The next step says to:

Burning the image into ROM

To burn the image file into ROM, you will need to use a utility specific to your network card. Instructions are available for:

    *
      Most Intel adapters
    *
      Broadcom 57xx based adapters (tg3)
    *
      QEMU option ROM
    *
      VirtualBox LAN boot ROM


This is where I got stuck. I did a search for gPXE in Linuxmce forums and found this post.

I'm clueless on where to go from here. I'd really appreciate your help!

thx,
Speedyone  :)








jimmejames

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2009, 07:38:37 am »
I don't have much to add to this thread, other than when I was using a SOYO motherboard, I had to use a rom-o-matic bootdisk to get the nic to pxe boot:

http://wiki.linuxmce.com/index.php/SOYO_P4RC350

pigdog

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2009, 04:34:11 pm »
Hi speedyone,

I don't really think you want to over-write the ROM on your Netgear GA311 PCI NIC.

Now if you followed the instructions on ROM-O-Matic and you created a proper USB stick image for your PCI NIC then that's it.

You put the USB stick into a port on your PC.

You set the BIOS to boot from the USB stick - if the BIOS has this option.  You might have to enable USB function somewhere else first.

Then you boot with the USB installed, as the BIOS first choice (only choice) boot disk and if it was (PXE boot image) created properly your PCI NIC should then PXE boot.

Is there a reason why you didn't just make a 3.5" floppy ROM-O-Matic boot disk?

If your BIOS doesn't support USB boot this would be your simple answer.

Did you look at this wiki http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/GRUB_PXE_network_boot?

Cheers.

Techstyle

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2009, 07:00:52 pm »
Speedy,

I have been unable to get the USB stick working from the instructions given on the ROM-O-Matic website.  I do have the image on CD and boot from this on one machine (has no floppy) and pigdog boot's from a floppy on one of his.

if you just boot from the floppy/USB/CD there should be no need to flash your NIC's ROM.  This is easier IMHO than the instructions in the GRUB_PXE wiki page especially if you don't know Linux very well

speedyone

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2009, 11:12:37 pm »
Hi guys,

Thanks for clearing this up for me.....I'm almost there.

Remember I was trying to get my PCI NIC card up and running in my windows machine. Well, I've stopped the practice and put my netgear GA311 PCI NIC in my MD.

I installed a DVD drive in my MD and booted from the Ubuntu CD and got to a terminal command window. From there I did the lspci and found my PCI card identification. Which of course is now a different PCI card identification than when this card was in my windows machine.  Along way around the block.......but hey that's what learning is all about.

My MD is telling me that my PCI ID is RTL8169:10ec8169 - (10ec,8169).

The problem now is that http://rom-o-matic.net/. does not list this card specifically....it comes close with a r8169:10ec8169 -(10ec,8169).

Am I now challenged with "building from source" per http://etherboot.org/wiki/download?

I only chose the USB stick instead of a floppy because I currently don't have a floppy drive installed in the MD. If I trouble with the USB stick, I'll install a floppy drive in the MD and go from there.

thanks so much!

Speedy  :)



« Last Edit: May 02, 2009, 11:29:55 pm by speedyone »

pigdog

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2009, 04:59:55 am »
Hi speedyone,

The lspci gives info like bus:device.function class: vendor. etc.

In your case it said something like ...

00:0a.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL-8169 Gigabit Ethernet (rev 10)

Then using the bus id and rev the lspci -n said 00:0a.0 0200: 10ec:8169 (rev a10)

So your Netgear GA311 PCI NIC uses a Realtec chipset. 

NIC cards can have a brand name like MSI, ASUS, SONY, RCA, NETGEAR, etc but the actual device chipset could be Realtec, Broadcomm, etc.

The RTL8169 is the (10ec,8169) choice listed by ROM-O-Matic.

This is what you want to build your boot disk against.

Cheers.

speedyone

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2009, 06:12:42 am »
Hi Pigdog,

I've put a floppy drive in my MD and I copied the the pxe boot image from rom-o-matic on to a floppy disk. My MD will not boot from the floppy. It says it is not bootable. Do I have to add something else to floppy disk besides the pxe boot image file?

I'm almost about to go buy a new motherboard that will feature pxe booting. But then I'm afraid that I'll still have the issue I had when I was using my windows machine with pxe booting capabilities and that was   "ETH0 - no link during initialization".

I feel like I'm so close yet so far away!



speedyone  :)
« Last Edit: May 03, 2009, 06:37:51 am by speedyone »

Techstyle

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2009, 07:11:48 am »
I had a similar problem when trying to make the USB drive work.

Did you just copy the file across or did you follow pigdog's instructions? As below:

Quote
To make a bootable floppy on a GNU/Linux system, put a formatted floppy in your floppy drive and do:

    $ cat eb-5.4.4-yournic.zdsk > /dev/fd0

where "eb-5.4.4-yournic.zdsk" is where you stored your downloaded ROM image.

On a DOS/Windows system, use the RAWRITE program to write the .zdsk image to a formatted floppy.

RAWRITE is available on most GNU/Linux installation CDs or on the web.

I did " dd if=image-disk.zdsk of=/dev/fd0"

I used the CD version which is an ISO file and then I used Sonic Record Now! on a windows box to burn the image.

From what you have said it would not boot at all (like mine when I tried it) rather than it booted and then took a dump becasue it found the wrong NIC.  So it seems your struggle is getting it burnt to the media or getting you mobo to boot from that media.  judging by my experience it is burning it to media.  This is where I struggled with the USB drive and the original point to this thread

speedyone

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2009, 02:50:21 pm »
Hi Techstyle,

I think you're on the right track. Based on what you said, my problem right now is getting the media burnt properly becasue I did not follow all of Pigdog's instructions. I just copied the rom-o-matic file over to the floppy disk.

Thanks for reminding me of all the instructions!

I'll let you know how I do.

Kind regards,

Speedyone   :)

pigdog

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Re: gPXE - PXE booting without a PXE boot ROM
« Reply #14 on: May 03, 2009, 03:01:03 pm »
Hi speedyone,

To quote your earlier post...

"The problem now is that http://rom-o-matic.net/. does not list this card specifically....it comes close with a r8169:10ec8169 -(10ec,8169)."

... if you go a little further down the list in ROM-O-Matic there is a choice of RTL8169:10ec8168.

If you are building against r8169 that's is why your floppy is crashing.

Cheers.