Casey Bralla on 24 Jun 2008 04:12:53 -0700

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[PLUG] Utility to image a linux host? - The Result

Thanks to all for the suggestions.  Here is what I used and how it worked.

Morgan's suggestion of partimage was perfect.   It did the job, but with a few 

Partimage has several options.  You can do it all from the command line, which 
is good for creating multiple copies of an imaged system.  It also works with 
it's own custom file server (to store the images) or can work with NFS or SMB 
mounts.   Unfortunately, it has some serious drawbacks too.  These are:

1.  The character GUI is terrible.  Almost any error will throw you out (exit 
the program) and you have to start over.
2.  You have to know the restored image's file name..  no browsing.  (and type 
it wrong, and the program exits and you have to start all over.)
3.  I got all kinds of weird "file is locked" errors, none of which made any 
sense at all. (some turned out to be a bug related to NFS.)
4.  The help forums are populated with dozens of un-answered questions, but 
not many answers.   Development of partimage seems to have stopped several 
years ago.
5.  The disk to be imaged has to be unmounted.  So you have to be running a 
live CD (I found Knoppix to be best). 
6.  I could not restore using an NFS mount to access the image file (got 
the "file is locked" error).  However, SMB mounts worked very well.

Bottom line:  Mission accomplished (with much sweating and cursing)

On Saturday 14 June 2008 11:14:17 am Morgan Jones wrote:

> It's funny that you asked about an iso because I came across this in my
> searching:
> sysimage is a little more complex that I'd like: ie client-server and
> focused around building an image server that can be used to create many
> clients.  It is flarcreate and jumpstart all wrapped up in a custom
> package..  It does seem to allow bare metal restores to a "golden image"
> though which is very handy.
> -morgan
> Casey Bralla wrote:
> > I was literally opening my eMail client to post a very similar request.
> >
> > I've got Gentoo pretty well where I like it, but it's a booger to get it
> > to here.  (Also takes a long time).  I'd like to create a ISO image of my
> > hard drive so that if I ever want to go back to this stage, I just boot
> > to the DVD, and presto, it's there.
> >
> >


Casey Bralla
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