FAI (Fully automatic installation) 2.0 released !

Thomas Lange lange at informatik.Uni-Koeln.DE
Fri Jun 1 02:50:43 PDT 2001

After four month of hacking, I'm very happy to release the next major
version of FAI before I'm going on vacation.

FAI is a non interactive system to install a Debian GNU/Linux
operating system on a PC cluster. You can take one or more virgin PCs,
turn on the power and after a few minutes Linux is installed,
configured and running on the whole cluster, without any interaction
necessary. Thus it's a scalable method for installing and updating a
cluster unattended with little effort involved. FAI uses the Debian
distribution and a collection of shell- and Perl-scripts for the
installation process. Changes to the configuration files of the
operating system are made by cfengine, shell and Perl scripts. Using
FAI, an unattended and fully automated installation of a Linux cluster
which consists of 16 dual Pentium PC's and a beowulf cluster with 20
1GHz AMD nodes was performed.

FAI's target group are system administrators how have to install
Debian onto one or even hundreds of computers. Because it's a general
purpose installation tool, it can be used for installing a beowulf
cluster, a rendering farm, a web server farm or a linux laboratory or
a classroom. Also large-scale linux networks with different hardware
and different installation requirements are easy to establish using

These are some major changes I made:

- added fcopy and ftar commands for easy copying files and extracting archives
- kernel 2.2.19 support
- less cfengine scripts, more shell scripts
- FAI is now more portable, tests on SUN Sparc went well
- package_config can use dpkg --get-selections format
- log file saving via rcp or scp
- much better manual
- new description of all classes available
- new cvs location (now at cvs.debian.org)
- the log files of two sample installations with FAI 2.0 are available
  on the FAI homepage.
- beowulf cluster support

And a lot of other things changed, so have a look at the changelog
file below. Many thanks to all, who gave bug reports, suggestions how
to enhance FAI or other feedback.

The main change is, that FAI is now an official Debian package. It's
available on all Debian mirrors or FAI's homepage:



            Thomas Lange
Institut fuer Informatik        mailto:lange at informatik.Uni-Koeln.DE
   Universitaet zu Koeln
            Pohligstr. 1        Telefon: +49 221 470 5303
             50969 Koeln        Fax    : +49 221 470 5317

1024D/AB9B66FD AEA6 A8C1 BD8E 67C4 8EF6  8BCA DC13 E54E AB9B 66FD

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