Automatic CentOS 6 Installation DVD With Kickstart

Automatic custom CentOS 6 Installation DVD With Kickstart

This is how to add and remove packages from a Centos or like iso and create a automated install image. This should work with any rpm distro that uses anaconda as its installer. Anaconda/UX that ships with Fedora 18 and newer may have some differences.

You will need the install images and a workstation running a rpm anaconda based distro. I used Fedora 17 as my workstation and the Centos 6.3 dvd images. The DVD images can be found at []

The first step it to create a directory to work in. I used /home/centos_rebuild for my repackaging because I had a lot of space in home. You will need about 20Gb of free space.

Set up the environment

You will need the createrepo, isomd5sum and genisoimage
sudo yum install createrepo isomd5sum genisoimage

Place the iso or iso’s in the directory you just created and add a couple mount points for the iso.
sudo /home/centos_rebuild/DVD1_mount
sudo /home/centos_rebuild/DVD2_mount

Mount the iso’s
sudo mount -o loop /home/centos_rebuild/CentOS-6.3-x86_64-bin-DVD2.iso /home/centos_rebuild/DVD2_mount
sudo mount -o loop /home/centos_rebuild/CentOS-6.3-x86_64-bin-DVD1.iso /home/centos_rebuild/DVD1_mount

Next you need a working directory for what will be the new install image.
sudo mkdir -p /home/centos_rebuild/kickstart_build/{isolinux,images,ks,CentOS}

Fix permissions so you dont have to do the rest with sudo
sudo chown -R $USER: /home/centos_rebuild

Now you can work from /home/centos_rebuild
cd /home/centos_rebuild

Move some files around

cp -R DVD1_mount/isolinux/* kickstart_build/isolinux
cp DVD1_mount/.discinfo kickstart_build/
cp -R DVD1_mount/images/* kickstart_build/images/
chmod 664 ./kickstart_build/isolinux/isolinux.bin
chmod 664 ./kickstart_build/isolinux/isolinux.cfg
chmod 664 ./kickstart_build/ks/ks.cfg
cp DVD1_mount/Packages/*.rpm kickstart_build/CentOS/
cp DVD2_mount/Packages/*.rpm kickstart_build/CentOS/

You need a comps.xml for anaconda. I just pulled one from a centos repo.

cd kickstart_build
unzip 5543021d0abe9b87103b25a5107ca4881a1c7e889aba73a6744ee1d02990b06a-c6-x86_64-comps.xml.gz
mv 5543021d0abe9b87103b25a5107ca4881a1c7e889aba73a6744ee1d02990b06a-c6-x86_64-comps.xml comps.xml


Next create the kickstart file. You can use system-config\-kickstart or pull /root/anaconda\-ks.cfg form a install to get a start for the kickstart config.
A good example can be found at and the doc can be found at]

You should create the kickstart file as /home/centos_rebuild/kickstart_build/ks/ks.cfg

Place any rpm and dependencies you would like to add the the image. Example rpl
You can pull the rpm from the repo or from a Centos6 server you can use yumdownloader
On Centos6 server yumdownloader rpl
Move rpm to workstaion and place it in /home/centos_rebuild/kickstart_build/CentOS/

Make sure you have the new packeg added to the ks.cfg package section.
This is a good time to remove some unnneded packages. You list might be differnt and Im missing a few ferom this list.

cd /home/centos_rebuild/kickstart_build/CentOS
for X in $(ls -a |grep -iE "gnome|kde|libreoffice|tiger|tomcat|java|log4|gimp|evolution|firefox|thunderbird|eclipse"); do rm -f $X; done

Next edit /home/centos_rebuild/kickstart_build/isolinux/isolinux.cfg so the install will atomaticaly use the kickstart file.

Add label ks group and move menu default from linux to ks.

It should look something like this (this might not be w hat you want because it will wipe everything)
default vesamenu.c32
#prompt 1
timeout 600

display boot.msg

menu background splash.jpg
menu title Cabelas OLS Image CentOS 6.3!
menu color border 0 #ffffffff #00000000
menu color sel 7 #ffffffff #ff000000
menu color title 0 #ffffffff #00000000
menu color tabmsg 0 #ffffffff #00000000
menu color unsel 0 #ffffffff #00000000
menu color hotsel 0 #ff000000 #ffffffff
menu color hotkey 7 #ffffffff #ff000000
menu color scrollbar 0 #ffffffff #00000000

label linux
menu label ^Install or upgrade an existing system
kernel vmlinuz
append initrd=initrd.img
label ks
menu label Install with included Kickstart file
menu default
kernel vmlinuz
append ks=cdrom:/ks/ks.cfg initrd=initrd.img
label vesa
menu label Install system with ^basic video driver
kernel vmlinuz
append initrd=initrd.img xdriver=vesa nomodeset
label rescue
menu label ^Rescue installed system
kernel vmlinuz
append initrd=initrd.img rescue
label local
menu label Boot from ^local drive
localboot 0xffff
label memtest86
menu label ^Memory test
kernel memtest
append -


Starting the uild proccess.
The first step in the rebuild is to creat a new repo list

cd /home/centos_rebuild/kickstart_build
declare -x discinfo=$(head -1 .discinfo)
createrepo -u “media://$discinfo” -g comps.xml .

Next build the image

cd /home/centos_rebuild/
mkisofs -r -N -L -d -J -T -b isolinux/isolinux.bin -c isolinux/ -no-emul-boot -V ols_cent6.3_v1 -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table -o ols_cent6.3_v1.iso kickstart_build/

You now have a installable iso named ols_cent6.3_v1.iso but its missing the md5 check sums. To add the checksums to the iso run

implantisomd5 ols_cent6.3_v1.iso

Now the iso is done. I used virtual box for a quick test of the iso.

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