Anyone Tried to use iPXE to boot with iSCSI?

Bill Tillman btillman99 at
Sat Sep 22 00:22:12 UTC 2012

----- Original Message -----
From: Paul Wootton <casper at>
To: Bill Tillman <btillman99 at>
Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2012 4:08 AM
Subject: Re: Anyone Tried to use iPXE to boot with iSCSI?

On 09/20/12 01:42, Bill Tillman wrote:
> Interesting project you've got there. I can't say mine is similar but I do have a machine which I'm using as a router which boots disklessly. Running 8.3-STABLE amd64, in fact I just rebuilt the world on both the server which serves this puppy it's OS and the /diskless partition where this puppy get's it's boot up from. Booting by pxe is not an easy thing to do. The docs are terrible and out of synch with the latest versions of the OS. I think there may have been some improvments on that end but it's still kind of a seat of the pants operation. I had several contacts in #FreeBSD on FreeNode who told me they had many diskless servers running yet when pressed for how they did it the answers they gave were vague and ambiguous, that is if they answered at all. I did finally find a site which explained most of it in an almost clear manner, but even that site was filled with typos and out of date information. The router I've built is disks at all
>   and until the reboot a few weeks ago it had been running 24/7 for 276 days...without one failure. We watch lots of NetFlix movies here, sometimes two or three at a time with my teenage kids here with their laptops. And I can still enjoy a quick download or two in my lab while all this bandwidth is being served.
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Hi Bil,,

I am actually looking at doing something very similar with my soekris box. Currently it boots from a CF card, but the card is getting old and I think it is coming to the end of it's life.

Can you please shed a little light on what you did?


This is the website where I found the best and most accurate information on diskless booting.

The authors appear to have updated this just a few months ago as well. I had trouble with it until I understood what the conf/ folders were all about. It's easy for a novice to read this and get confused because the authors assume the reader knows as much about it as they do or they are just lazy hacks like me and don't want to type all the real meat of the setup. I wrote an e-mail to them and explained several typos they had in their article in 2010 when I first found this article. The guy who replied back was very cool and he thanked me for helping with some of the corrections. I read lots of other stuff, including the FreeBSD handbook but as usual it was not in synch with the newest releases and I couldn't get it working. I'm happy to say that now I have a wonderful diskless setup which I can update when I want to....I don't think I'm going to go past 8.3-STABLE with it. The new 9.x-RELEASE uses a new drive format which has created
 problems for me with the older equipment I have around here. I'm finally throwing out most of the old stuff I've had for years around here. Just built two new Windows 7 workstations with i7 Quad cores and 16 GB RAM. These older servers are still working fine for me and I plan on using them until they drop.

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