Speech:Fall 2014 RedHat

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  • Installed new Dell Power Edge 2900 server to replace Caesar (Brutus)
  • Installed Redhat 6.5 64bit on Brutus
  • Installed new Dell Power Edge 2950 server (lutetia)
  • Installed Redhat 6.5 64bit on lutetia
  • Removed Rome (really old desktop)
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on obelix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on miraculix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on traubadix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on majestix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on idefix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on automatix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on methusalix
  • Installed Hedhat 6.6 32bit on verleihnix
  • Solved start-up "bug 8254 timer not connected to io-apic" issue
  • Solved Dell PowerEdge 1750 network driver issue
  • Configured host files for new redhat installations
  • updated methusalix's bios


RedHat 6.5-6.6 Enterprise Installation process

Step 1: OS Installation

To begin, acquire a RedHat installation disk from the UNH IT. IT will provide you with the required activation key for your RedHat distribution.

If you are attempting to install Redhat from a DVD on a UNH PowerEdge 1750, YOU WILL NEED A DVD DRIVE!!!!

As of this documentation, there is a DVD drive installed on verlihnix. Place HDD you wish to install the OS on into verlihnix's HDD bay and boot from the installation DVD.

1. To install RedHat boot from the DVD. When prompted, select "install or upgrade an existing system." Hit enter.

2. On the following screen, you will be prompted to test media. (I usually skip this). The click hit enter.

3. On the following screen splash screen.Click next.

4. Select the installation language (English) Click next.

5. Select your keyboard set up (U.S. English). Click next.

6. On the following screen, select "Basic Storage Devices". Click next.

7. Enter the HostName (aka caesar, verlihnix, obelix...). Click next.

8. Select time zone. (Eastern Time). Click next.

9. Enter Root Password. This will be the machine's local root password. Ask Dr. Jonas. Click next.

10. For the installation type, select "Use All Space". Click next.

11. On the following screen, since we would like a nice UI, select Desktop. Next, go down and select the "customize now" radio button. Click next.

12. On the customize installation screen. Select "base system" then check the following options: "compatibility libraries", "Legacy UNIX compatibility", and "Network Tools". Optional. if this server will host NFS, perform the following. Next, In the left drown down menu, select "server". Check "NFS file Server. Click next.

13. Congratulations! You've successfully installed Redhat! Click Reboot when the installation process finishes.

Step 2: Network setup

Each server has two NICs. Ceasar (the main server) uses one to connect to the internet and once for the local drone network. The drones are currently only using 1 NIC.

Host File Configuration

First, let's configure the host file. To configure the host file, navigate to /etc/ and open the file named hosts.

Add the IP address and corresponding host name for each machine.    caesar caesar    asterix asterix    obelix obelix    miraculix miraculix    traubadix traubadix    majestix majestix    idefix idefix    automatix automatix    methusalix methusalix   verleihnix verleihnix   lutetia lutetia   brutus brutus

For more information on configuring hosts, check out this link

(optional) change a hostname after installation

To change a host name after installation, Open the network file in the vi editor.

vi /etc/sysconfig/network

In the editor, set the hostname


NIC setup

1. Open a terminal, this can be done by right clicking on the desktop and clicking "Open in Terminal"

2. Enter
ifconfig -a
to view all network cards.

3. Copy MAC address for the NIC you wish to use. e.g. 00:21:70:XX:XX:XX. You will need this to configure the Ethernet Adapter.

4. Navigate to /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/. In here you should find a file named ifconfig-ethX where X represent the Ethernet number relative to the OS.

Note If you installed Redhat on a one server (the one with DVD drive) and moved the hard drive to a different server, the X value will increase to 3 and 4 (e.g. eth3 and eth4) the OS will not create a new config flle. Solution Rename the file to the appropriate Ethernet X value. e.g ifconfig-eth3

5. Configure the network card. Example is for setting up Ethernet adapter 4 for obelix.


It is important that you set NM_CONTROLLED=no. This lets the network manager know that it will not configure the ethernet adapter.

For the static IPs, please refer to the host file above.

For more information about configuring NICs, check out this link

Configure DNS Server on Drone

To configure Caesar as a drone's DNS server, add the following to /etc/resolv.conf:


When completed, restart the network service:

service network restart

The drones network settings should be good to go!

Step 3: Activate Redhat

Note: External network access is required to active RedHat. if this is a drone, use the secondary NIC to connect to the internet.

Log in as root and enter the following command. Replace <key> with the appropriate key value. If you don't have the key, ask Dr. Jonas or UNH IT.

rhnreg_ks --activationkey=<key>


  • The --force parameter is supported if it doesn't work the first time.
Step 4: Mount Caesar NFS on Drones

Since we don't want to install sphinx on every drone, Caesar is set up to host /mnt/main to share resources and save disk space.

For this, NFS utilities will be required. If it was not installed during the initial installation, install it with this command:

yum install nfs-utils

Next, create a /mnt/main directory on the drone to mount Caesar's on:

mkdir /mnt/main

Then, try mounting Caesar using the following command.

mount -t nfs caesar:/mnt/main /mnt/main

Since we don't want to have to mount Caesar network drive every time we reboot the system. Add the following command to /etc/fstab:

caesar:/mnt/main        /mnt/main               nfs     defaults        0 0

When you're done, save the file.

Next, add a cron job to automatically mount the file-system periodically just in case the connection between the drone and Caesar is lost. Open the terminal as root user and enter the following:

crontab -e

Once the editor opens, enter the following:

0 0,6,12,18 * * * mount -a
Step 5: NO APIC bug - Fix

Most modern Linux operating systems have an issue with the location of the old dell poweredge 1750 APIC timer, you'll notice this issue at boot when you see "MP-BIOS BUG 8254 timer not connected." The system periodically hangs waiting for user input to continue. This is problematic because users normally ssh into the machines. If a user reboots the machine it may hang at the bios and never reboot until IT physically prompts the system to continue.

To avoid this issue, we can simply ignore the apic interrupt at boot.

Add the noapic parameter to the /boot/grub/grub.conf file.


This is added into the string starting with kernal /vmlinuz... Add it after the "rhgb" and before "quiet"

        kernel /vmlinuz-2.6.32-504.el6.i686 ro root=/dev/mapper/vg_idefix-lv_root rd_NO_LUKS LANG=en_US.UTF-8 rd_NO_MD SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 crashkernel=128M rd_LVM_LV=vg_idefix/lv_root  KEYBOARDTYPE=pc KEYTABLE=us rd_LVM_LV=vg_idefix/lv_swap rd_NO_DM rhgb noapic quiet