Home > DIY, networking, ThinStation, ubuntu > Preparing IDE Compact Flash drive for OS install

Preparing IDE Compact Flash drive for OS install

We are setting up some thin client machines for use in remote offices away from the tftp server. We are using 256 MB IDE CF drives and syslinux to get them up and going, then they will immediately use ICA or RDP from there. To the users it basically appears to be booting into Windows, but it is on a terminal server in Iowa city.

The build workstation is an Ubuntu 5.1 machine with a ThinStation 2.1.3 build environment on it.

First time:
Install syslinux and mtools packages.
In terminal:
sudo mkdir /mnt/cflash

(to be safe, do this from the end workstation)
Boot from Win98 or ME boot floppy
Run fdisk
If there is not a valid partition, create one.
Mark partition active
Shut down
Put CF in ThinStation build workstation, and start up
Make any required changes to thinstation.conf.buildtime file
run build

In terminal:
sudo mount /dev/hdc1 /mnt/cflash

cp boot-images/syslinux/* /mnt/cflash
umount /mnt/cflash
syslinux /dev/hdc1

Shut down and move compact flash to workstation, and it should boot up.

You can do this in assembly line fashion easily. Waiting for Ubuntu to start up and shut down are the bottlenecks. If you had to you could use a few build workstations at once. The build takes a minute or two, depending on the speed of the workstation. If you don’t need to customize anything then you don’t need to do that often. It is the most convenient place at the moment to store the ICA/RDP client settings though.

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Categories: DIY, networking, ThinStation, ubuntu
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