F.3 Understanding ZENworks Partitions and Command Line Parameters

The following sections provide an understanding of the ZENworks partition and imaging commands that are used when updating Linux drivers:

F.3.1 The ZENworks Partition

The ZENworks partition is used to store the files required to load Linux into RAM, making the result similar to using a CD or PXE boot method. The ZENworks partition has a similar boot media layout as an imaging CD. It has a minimum size of 150 MB.

The files stored on the ZENworks partition are linux, initrd, and root, which are the same as the directories as on the imaging CD (see the tables in Section F.2, Understanding Device Boot Processes in a ZENworks Imaging Environment). In ZENworks, the boot loader is grub for BIOS and elilo for UEFI, which loads Linux as described under Section F.2, Understanding Device Boot Processes in a ZENworks Imaging Environment. The driverupdate and settings.txt files are searched for and loaded from the ZENworks partition.

If you need to modify the Linux files, you must modify the initrd or root file sets the same way as you would for other boot methods. For information, see Section F.4.2, Adding Files to the Initrd or Root File Systems.

F.3.2 Command Line Parameters and Variables

There are four types of command line parameters that can be used with the ZENworks imaging process. They are entered on the command line when booting from a CD or they can be placed in the isolinux.cfg file located in the /boot/i386/loader or /boot/x86_64/loader directory. The commands are also located in the *.cfg files for PXE and are located in the %ZENWORKS_HOME%\share\tftp directory on the Windows Imaging Server and the /srv/tftp directory on the Linux Imaging Server.

  • Kernel Parameters: The valid parameters for the Linux kernel are found in the /Documentation/kernel-parameters.txt file that is installed with the kernel source.

    Some devices have a faulty BIOS, where you must turn off ACPI processing for the kernel to load properly. To do this, use the kernel parameter acpi=off. For more information, see Novell Support.

  • Linuxrc Parameters: These parameters affect the way linuxrc detects hardware or sets hardware settings. They are described briefly in the /usr/share/doc/packages/linuxrc/linuxrc.html file in a Linux system.

    Linuxrc parameters can be found in the /linuxrc.config or /info files that reside in the initrd file system. Some parameters can be placed in the settings.txt file that is located on the root of the imaging CD or ZENworks partition, or in the /srv/tftp/boot file for PXE booting.

    Parameters that can be placed in the settings.txt file (the easiest file to edit) are limited. During PXE booting, parameters that affect the network are not processed from settings.txt, because by the time linuxrc loads the settings.txt file, the network is already set up. Network settings can be placed in the settings.txt file when booting from an imaging CD, because it is loaded early enough in the process to take effect.

  • ZENworks Variables: Some environment variables affect the way imaging performs. They can be configured in any file, but should normally be configured in the settings.txt file.

    If you add variables to the settings.txt file that were not originally defined there, you must export the variable. For example, in the settings.txt file, enter:

    export IMGCMD="myscript"

    A list of all image engine or script variables is listed under Section F.6, Variables and Parameters.

  • Other Variables: Environment variables that you might want in your script can be added in the same manner as described for the ZENworks variables.