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SOLVED headless serial console install on system without IPMI/VGA

Western Digital Drives - The Preferred Drives of FreeNAS and TrueNAS CORE

gsa-toolbox

Neophyte
Joined
Aug 21, 2015
Messages
6
Hello,
Looking to install TrueNAS on a headless platform (Atom C3958 16 cores with 32GB RAM, full virtualisation supports and plenty of network interfaces) but do not have IPMI or VGA.
I can install Debian via console or other distros like ProxmoxVE by first installing the headless Debian and then adding the repository?
Is there any way to deploy TrueNAS scale headless?
I could possibly try to install on a USB key on a different machine and then boot from that on the headless appliance but would like some guidance if that is the only way.
Cheers,

GS


BTW: yes I have checked the forum before and although there are a couple of entries, nothing really helpful.
 

Ericloewe

Not-very-passive-but-aggressive
Moderator
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
16,950
You ended up with a C3000 with no iKVM? That's a curious piece of hardware.

Generically, you have three options:
  1. Install elsewhere with compatible serial ports and move it back (I prefer this one)
  2. See if the installer is smart enough to default to a serial console if no VGA is present
  3. Customize the installer
1. Is straightforward and likely to succeed, but not very elegant. 2. is fairly likely to be a dead end. 3. is doable, but takes a lot more effort than 1.
 

Etorix

Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2020
Messages
177
Extremely curious to know what platform has a C3958 without IMPI…
 

Patrick M. Hausen

Dedicated Sage
Joined
Nov 25, 2013
Messages
2,751
It's FreeBSD, isn't it? Escaping to the loader prompt at boot and entering set console=comconsole should do the trick?
 

gsa-toolbox

Neophyte
Joined
Aug 21, 2015
Messages
6
Thanks mate.
I confirm indeed that the inelegant option 1 worked fairly easily.
To answer your question, the ppliance is a Lanner NCA-1515F (the white box version).
Regards,

GS

You ended up with a C3000 with no iKVM? That's a curious piece of hardware.

Generically, you have three options:
  1. Install elsewhere with compatible serial ports and move it back (I prefer this one)
  2. See if the installer is smart enough to default to a serial console if no VGA is present
  3. Customize the installer
1. Is straightforward and likely to succeed, but not very elegant. 2. is fairly likely to be a dead end. 3. is doable, but takes a lot more effort than 1.
 

Patrick M. Hausen

Dedicated Sage
Joined
Nov 25, 2013
Messages
2,751

Etorix

Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2020
Messages
177
To answer your question, the ppliance is a Lanner NCA-1515F (the white box version).
Thanks! So it it's this one? The specification says it "supports BMC" and there's a RJ-45 port labelled "console" which looks suspiciously like IPMI. Not much in the way of storage though.
 

gsa-toolbox

Neophyte
Joined
Aug 21, 2015
Messages
6
Thanks! So it it's this one? The specification says it "supports BMC" and there's a RJ-45 port labelled "console" which looks suspiciously like IPMI. Not much in the way of storage though.
I have the "white appliance" variant which doesn't come with IPMI. The Console port is definitely serial.
I installed TrueNAS scale on a USB key externally and moved the USB key to the system, it worked straight away :smile:
 
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