Cobbler and the HP SmartStart Scripting Toolkit #2

Cobbler and the HP SmartStart Scripting Toolkit was a quick example of getting the SSSTK set up to boot via Cobbler. This post will add the ability to automatically register the system with cobbler and assign it to a hardware-specific profile. When you have a bunch of systems automatically added to Cobbler, you will just have to apply those configurations that make each host unique (like hostname and IP address).

Once this step is mastered, we can go a bit further in the next post and add customization of the BIOS, BMC, and RAID configurations.

The methods being used here, with separate directories for each tool, allow for, well… separation. You could make one directory, download all the RPMs, extract them, and create one big script to copy them to the booted SSSTK environment. The below method better allows for upgradability, separates out dependencies, and is self-documenting.


  • Instructions in the first post were followed.
  • Tools like wget and rpm2cpio are installed.
  • Your workflow for kickstarting systems is a little more complex than: netboot the new server, pick a Cobbler menu item, enjoy your new system. *

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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.