Nexenta currently lacks the ability to do automated network based installs via Jumpstart. The recent alpha6 version added KickStart ability, but it’s limited to CD based installs as far as I know. I am in the process of deploying multiple production machines at work and wanted to leverage my existing Jumpstart framework. I’ve managed to come up with a working solution that involves a Jumpstart begin script and debootstrap. All that’s really necessary for this is a standard SX:CR jumpstart miniroot, DHCP and TFTP server. My script extracts a tarball and does everything necessary to setup the debootstrap environment, all without modifying the miniroot. In addition to the jumpstart, I also use BCFG2 as a configuration management tool within the new chroot’ed environment so the system comes up pre-installed for its given purpose.

This is still quite hackish, but I intend to clean it up and hopefully make a .deb package that will ease the setup. It should be possible to do away with the SX:CR miniroot requirement and have a native Nexenta jumpstart miniroot instead.