setting PXE on a different net interface

Donald Becker becker at
Wed Apr 9 17:45:52 EDT 2003

On Wed, 9 Apr 2003, Lauro L. A. Whately wrote:

>    I would like to make the machines in the cluster boot from a remote 
> server. The mainboard of the nodes has a giga-ethernet interface 
> on-board. Also, each node has a pci fast-ethernet interface that I want 
> to use for administration and services (nfs, nis, monitoring, ...).
> The only configuration I find in the bios for the PXE is booting from 
> the on-board interface.

This one is pretty easy to answer: the on-board interface is the only
interface that the BIOS knows how to use.

> Does anyone know I way to reconfigure the (Intel) boot agent bypass the 
>  onboard interface and boot from the pci interface ?

The only way your add-on PCI NIC can support PXE boot is if it has its
own boot agent code.

Note that most PXE clients out there use the Intel framework as the basis
of their PXE boot.  If the add-on card can do PXE boot, it will have a
duplicate copy of the boot agent code.  It might have the same message
as the on-board NIC, but it's different boot step.

If you have multiple on-board NICs, the Intel boot agent will attempt to
PXE boot sequentially, rather than send requests out on all interfaces
simultaneously and then using the best response.  (If you read the PXE
specs you would expect the latter behavior.)

Donald Becker				becker at
Scyld Computing Corporation
410 Severn Ave. Suite 210		Scyld Beowulf cluster system
Annapolis MD 21403			410-990-9993

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