Netbooting Altra from an x86_64 provisioning server

Hello Ampere community,

I am attempting to netboot a 2U Mt. Collins server to install RHEL 9.3 from a DHCP/provisioning server that has only installed x86_64 hosts thus far. The provisioning server itself is also x86_64. I’ve imported the aarch64 ISO to the server and set up a separate distro/profile that points at the imported kernel/initrd.

When trying to netboot the server using the new distro/profile, it accepts the DHCP request, loads the NBP, and loads the kernel/initrd. However, it then boots to a blank screen with a blinking cursor, where it hangs indefinitely instead of starting the installer and loading the preconfigured kickstart. The same server boots fine using the ISO on a USB stick.

I realize that this problem is not necessarily specific to Altra/Ampere, but any advice would be appreciated.

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What bootargs are you using? Do the tftp logs show it picking the right kernel and initrd?

The architecture of the boot host does not matter. What matters is that the DHCP server points at the right files.

Sorry for the delay. Yes, the right kernel and initrd are being picked. The bootargs consist of sending the system’s MAC address, and our customized kickstart/repo:

echo ‘Loading kernel …’
linux /images/rhel9-9.3-aarch64-aarch64/vmlinuz inst.ks.sendmac inst.ks=http://(server IP)/cblr/svc/op/autoinstall/system/(system name) inst.repo=http://(server IP)/cblr/links/rhel9-9.3-aarch64
echo ‘Loading initial ramdisk …’
initrd /images/rhel9-9.3-aarch64-aarch64/initrd.img
echo ‘…done’

Have you checked the serial port? I assume by blinking cursor you mean on a monitor attached to the server. possibly adding “console=tty0” may help you also

Adding “console=tty0” worked - I now see output after the kernel is loaded. Thanks so much - it looks like the reason install is halting is because of it asking for some input, which I’ll work on tweaking the kickstart to fix.

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