Projects / FAI


FAI (fully automatic installation) is a non-interactive system to install a Debian GNU/Linux operating system on a group of PCs or a Linux cluster. After installation, the systems are fully configured and ready to run. It is a scalable method for performing unattended installation and updating. Changes to the configuration files of the operating system are made by cfengine, shell, and Perl scripts.

Operating Systems

Recent releases

  •  18 May 2011 10:16

    Release Notes: A bunch of bugs were fixed. This release is ready to go for Debian squeeze and can also be used with Debian lenny. It supports the installation of CentOS and Scientific Linux Cern using an adjusted config space.

    •  07 Apr 2010 11:36

      Release Notes: Fixes were made for Ubuntu and upstart. Many fixes and enhancements were made for setup-storage. Installation was made faster by using a ramdisk.

      •  03 Nov 2009 18:09

        Release Notes: Now it's very easy to set up a FAI install server for i386 on a host running AMD-64 and vice-versa. Many bugs were closed, including many improvements in setup-storage. Automatic tests are now supported. There is support for apt keys using files named package_config/*.asc. Debian geo mirrors are used in the default configuration. The fai-guide is now written in AsciiDoc.

        •  13 Feb 2003 20:21

          Release Notes: There are many changes in the templates and example scripts. This release has kernel 2.4.20 support, uses a stand alone script for defining classes, and more.

          •  19 Jul 2002 18:15

            Release Notes: The default name for the FAI kernel-image package has changed to kernel-image-2.2.20_fai1_i386.deb, since the package fai-kernel >=1.4 contains install kernels which support both the BOOTP and DHCP protocol A wrong symlink for rcS_fai has been fixed. id_dsa* and id_rsa* files are copied in make-fai-nfsroot. use strict is enabled in the Perl scripts. "append ip=dhcp" has been added to pxelinux.cfg/default. There are minor changes in packages_config files. The setup_harddisks default filesystem type has changed from auto to ext2.

            Recent comments

            22 Aug 2005 14:27 atrixnet

            FAI not what I had hoped
            FAI is too bloody complicated man. I've spent two days on it with success in step by step trial and error, but what a waste of time. I could have had eight nodes up in my beowulf cluster by now, which is really all I need. FAI could use some serious improvement before laying claim to being "better than kickstart", which works great with minimal reading. Again, FAI was just a waste of time.


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