Robert Blayzor rblayzor at
Sat Sep 16 06:57:43 PDT 2006

Danny Braniss wrote:
> we have been running diskless clients for a few hundred work stations, so
> i think i have some experience :-)
> 	1- setting a diskless freebsd is far easier than linux
> 	2- it's by far much easier to manage.
> btw, the majority of ws are running linux.
> being involved with the iSCSI initiator for FreeBSD, I can't see where
> this can help for a diskless host, or in other words, what's
> wrong with NFS?
> also, the TOE cards are not that cheep either :-)

TOE cards are no more expensive than putting a RAID card and two drives
in a box.  Is it more expensive than native FreeBSD diskless?  Sure.

I'm not saying that NFS is bad, we use it all over the place.  What's
nice about iSCSI is you can setup servers for anything and not care what
runs on the box.  Thus making almost any server diskless so long as it
supports the HBA.  This works great when you deploy things like Plesk,
etc, which don't support NFS or diskless environements.  Does it run?
Sure, but not without a lot of messing around.  Also, if you have the
one or two Windows servers you may be forced to have, you can run them
diskless as well using the same iSCSI system.

I agree that diskless is a nice system to consider, and it's one of our
alternate choices, but we do have some applications, virtual servers,
etc, which do not support running in native FreeBSD diskless fashion.

Robert Blayzor, BOFH
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