Cobbler and the HP SmartStart Scripting Toolkit

This is an example of how to get HP’s SmartStart Scripting Toolkit to work with Cobbler. This will allow you to configure the BIOS, BMC, and RAID via commandline tools.


  • Cobbler is already set up.
  • NFS exports are already configured. This example assumes that the Cobbler server is also the NFS server, but they can be different with a little work on your part. There are two exports: Read-Only (/srv/nfs/ro) and Read-Write (/srv/nfs/rw).

Download the toolkit: ss-scripting-toolkit-linux-8.50.tar.gz

Untar the SSSTK archive and rename the directory to a shorter version:

cd /srv/nfs/ro
tar zxvf ss-scripting-toolkit-linux-8.50.tar.gz
mv ss-scripting-toolkit-linux-8.50 sstk-8.50

Add the SSSTK as a distro in Cobbler (substitute the IP of your NFS server):

cobbler distro add --name=sstk-8.50 \
--arch=i386 --breed=debian \
--kernel=/srv/nfs/ro/sstk-8.50/boot_files/vmlinuz \
--initrd=/srv/nfs/ro/sstk-8.50/boot_files/initrd.img \
--kopts "root=/dev/ram0 rw ramdisk_size=184248 ide=nodma ide=noraid pnpbios=off network=1 sstk_mount=${NFSIP}:/srv/nfs/ro/sstk-8.50 sstk_mount_type=nfs sstk_mount_options=ro,nolock"

Create a Cobbler profile:

cobbler profile add --name=sstk-8.50-shell --distro=sstk-8.50

You should now be able to boot your HP server via the network to the Cobbler menu and choose “sstk-8.50-shell”. You should end up with a shell with the SSSTK environment on the server’s console.


About Michael Arnold
This is where I write about all of my unix hacking experiences so that you may be able to learn from my troubles.

3 Responses to Cobbler and the HP SmartStart Scripting Toolkit

  1. romaindu91 says:

    Hi Michael and thanks for this great article and your session i saw on youtube about SSSTK …
    How would you adapt this work using razor/puppet ? Is this something that could be performed from your point of view ?

    • I sat down with Tom McSweeney last year to discuss doing this, but I simply have not had the time or energy to work on it. It does seem possible to cause Razor to chain-load the SSSTK before loading the OS.

  2. Pingback: Confluence: Deployment

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