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DIY DICE Install

The following instructions are for setting-up a user-managed machine that's as close as possible to a standard DICE configuration, but run by you.

1. Computing support preparation

Ask computing support to configure the environment for your DIY DICE machine. Computing Support will:

  • Ensure that your network port is on a network wire which supports DIY DICE
  • Add a dns entry for your machine (in the domain)
  • Create an lcfg stub profile
  • Create a DIY DICE directory for you on the LCFG server.

You might also need to get the BIOS and installation passwords from Computing Support.

2. Prepare the LCFG profile for your machine

  1. If you haven't already done so, create the directory to store the source files for your DIY DICE machine profiles
    mkdir -p ~/LCFG/source
  2. Create an LCFG source profile for your machine (in the above directory). This is a text file with the same (shortened) name as your machine; eg for you would create a text file called kluster.

    The following is an example source profile :-

    /* */
    #define _AUTH_USER      ascobie
    #include <diydice/os/sl5.h>
    #include <dice/hw/dell_optiplex_gx620.h>
    #include <dice/options/dhcp.h>
    /* eof */
    From this source profile, we can see that is a Dell GX620, will be running SL5 (Scientific Linux 5) and ascobie will be the user.

  3. Some of the settings in the file will need to be changed for your machine; for example, you will need to change the CPP definition _AUTH_USER and ensure that you are using the correct include file for the model of your machine.

  4. Submit the source profile using the diysubmit command.

  5. The profile should compile within a minute or so. Check the profile's status on the LCFG status web page at Click on the machine's name for further details. A red insect icon against your machine's name means that there are bugs in the LCFG profile. Edit the profile source to eliminate the bugs then diysubmit again, and repeat until all the bugs have been eliminated.

  6. Once the profile has compiled successfully, you are ready for the installation to begin.

Install your machine

Power on or reboot your machine, and select to boot (F12 on Dell PCs) from the 'Integrated NIC' (PXE booting) or 'Onboard Network Controller' option. You might need to go to the BIOS to add this option to the Booting Sequence (if that is the case, you might need to get the BIOS password from Computing Support)

The following boot options are available

sl5:- boot to the sl5 install system
sl564:- boot to the sl5_64 install system
fc6serial - boot to the fc6 install system with serial console

Type "sl5" at "boot:" prompt.

Loading /kernel-pxe-install-sl5/vmlinux...............
Loading /kernel-pxe-install-sl5/initrd.gz.............
Linux version 2.6.18-53.1.13.el5.lcfg.2 ( (gcc 8
BIOS-provided physical RAM map:
 BIOS-e820: 0000000000000000 - 00000000000a0000 (usable)
 BIOS-e820: 00000000000f0000 - 0000000000100000 (reserved)
 BIOS-e820: 0000000000100000 - 000000003f686c00 (usable)
 BIOS-e820: 000000003f686c00 - 000000003f688c00 (ACPI NVS)


Listening on LPF/eth0/00:13:72:cf:65:b8
Sending on   LPF/eth0/00:13:72:cf:65:b8
Sending on   Socket/fallback
DHCPDISCOVER on eth0 to port 67 interval 4
DHCPREQUEST on eth0 to port 67
bound to -- renewal in 361 seconds.
Hostname is
LCFG client: install                                    [OK]

(I)nstall, (D)ebug, (S)hell, (P)atchup, (R)eboot : 

Work In Progress - this section needs updating - Work In Progress

You should now be presented with a menu .....

  1. You'll be now presented with a 3-option menu: Boot Hard Disk Install Dice FC3 Install Dice via Serial Console Select the second option. Again, you'll be prompted for one of the passwords you got from computing support earlier on.

  1. A new menu will be shown to you shortly afterwards: (I)nstall, (D)ebug, (S)hell, (P)atchup, (R)eboot: Enter (I), and let the installation continue.

-- AlastairScobie - 02 Oct 2008

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Topic revision: r3 - 07 Oct 2008 - 11:38:00 - AlastairScobie
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