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Build RHEL or CentOS Respin DVD

The KVM Hypervisor for RHEL or CentOS 6 has a problem with the out of data kernel not supporting pair bonding, VLAN tagging, and KVM bridging all at the same time. The following CD or DVD respin image provides access to the updated kernel and initscripts to better support such hypervirsors.  The following directions from Greg Haygood at are quite good, and these notes are based on them.

Obtain Complete DVD Contents

This example is working with the current RHEL 6 installation DVD, and assumes that the documents will go in "/var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin"

  • Download a copy of the relevant installation DVD
    • We'll work with the RHEL 6.3, x86_64 DVD for this example, referred to as "rhel-server-6.3-x86_64-dvd.iso"
    • If working with CentOS DVD's, try to work only with the first DVD., 
  • Mount the DVD image locally
    • mkdir /var/tmp/iso
    • sudo mount -o loop,ro rhel-server-6.3-x86_64-dvd.iso /var/tmp/iso
  • Copy the contents to a local working directory
    • mkdir $HOME/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin
    • rsync -av /var/tmp/iso/ /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin
  • Clear out TRANS.TBL files
    • find /var/tmp/iso/ /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin -name TRANS.TBL -exec rm -f {} \; -print
  • Unmount the DVD image
    • sudo umount /var/tmp/iso
  • Make sure the that the .discinfo file is available.
    • cat /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin/.discinfo

Download Packages to build Respin Itself

Building resin DVD's requires some additional system packages.

  • sudo yum install anaconda anaconda-help anaconda-runtime createrepo /usr/bin/yumdownloader /usr/bin/mkisofs

Download Additional Packages to Add to Respin

  • cd /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin
  • cd Packages
    • rm -f initscripts*rpm
    • yumdownloader initscripts
    • rm -f kernel*rpm
    • yumdownloader kernel-debug-devel kernel-debug kernel-devel kernel-doc kernel-firmwar kernel-header kernel

Update repodata

  • cd /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin
    • discinfo=`head -1 .discinfo`
    • compdata=`find repodata -name *comps*xml`
  • createrepo -u "media://$discinfo" -g $compdata .

Add Kickstart Files

  • cd /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin
    • cd isolinux
  • Download kickstart files
  • These files will be available at kickstart with this command:
    • linux ks=cdrom:/kvm-server.cfg

Build ISO

Select appropriate names and settings, especially "PACKAGER" and "ISONAME" and "ISODATE".

  • cd /var/tmp/rhel-server-6.3-kvm-respin
    • ISOFILE=$PWD.iso
    • PACKAGER="Your Name"
    • ISONAME="RHEL 6.3 x86_64 KVM Respin"
    • ISODATE="2012/12/28"
  • mkisofs -r -R -J -T -v -no-emul-boot \
        -boot-load-size 4 \
        -boot-info-table \
        -V "$ISONAME" \
        -p "$PACKAGER" \
        -A "$ISONAME - $ISODATE" \
        -b isolinux/isolinux.bin \
        -c isolinux/ \
        -x "lost+found" \
        --joliet-long \
        -o $ISOFILE .
  • implantisomd5 $ISOFILE

Test the Respin DVD

Boot the DVD as a "rescue" or installation medium.

  • To test kickstart, select these options when booting with the DVD.
    • linux ks=cdrom:/tusk-vm.cfg
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