I was installing some servers in Seattle recently, when I was informed that it was not company policy to allow their servers to have Internet access, of any sort, ever. This was a bit of a blow for me, because my Gladstone script (which I use to configure production Red Hat boxes as Oracle database servers) relies on being able to do various “yum install …” commands to get the software prerequisites correct.
It was irritating, though quite understandable -and we worked around the issue by giving me temporary access to the Internet, swiftly revoked once the installs were complete. But the incident made me realise that Gladstone’s reliance on Internet connectivity was misguided.
In fact, it’s never been strictly necessary for Gladstone to have Internet access at all: every one of the software prerequisites are available on the DVD installation media fordistros, so it’s always been possible to install entirely from locally-available media. I used the ‘yum install’ method simply because it was easier: for one thing, it ensured all software dependencies were satisfied automatically.
Well, I have now resolved that particular issue.
My new Kickstart Configurator tool will now output a kickstart file which will perform a completely local installation (i.e., no Internet downloads) that nevertheless satisfies all Oracle software prerequisites. Of course, there’s still the Palmerston script which needs to be downloaded and run to finish things off in an interactive fashion, but if you download that ahead of time and store it on your Kickstart server, you can transfer that internally, still without recourse to the wider Internet.
Kickstart + Palmerston… perfect results every time, and not an external network in sight. My man in Seattle would be happier, I think!