Booting off a DMG

jimsowden

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 6, 2003
1,766
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NY
I want my demo computers at work to boot off internal disc images. The reason for this is so they can be seemingly changes by customers, sales reps, etc. yet when rebooted all the changes are undone. Now I know I could use Netboot, but our networt couldn't handle it. Anyone know of a way to do this? Or another way to achieve the same results?
 

Littleodie914

macrumors 68000
Jun 9, 2004
1,813
7
Rochester, NY
I'd really like to know how to do this too. I have a linux DMG that is too large to be written to CD's, but I don't have a DVD burner in my Mac. And no, neither transferring it to a PC and burning to a DVD or even converting to an ISO and burning have worked. Is there any way (as posted above) to boot from a disk image residing on the hard drive? TIA! :)
 

yellow

Moderator emeritus
Oct 21, 2003
16,033
1
Portland, OR
http://rsug.itd.umich.edu/software/radmind/

If memory serves me correctly (sometimes it does not) RadMind can be wrangled to create an "image" that can be fiddled with, but when you reboot, the system goes back to the way it was.

Another idea is to pop into your local Apple Store and ask what they use to lock down their Macs.
 

Mechcozmo

macrumors 603
Jul 17, 2004
5,215
2
yellow said:
Another idea is to pop into your local Apple Store and ask what they use to lock down their Macs.
They made the Terminal into an encrypted .sitx file so that you can't use it. Then every day or so they wipe the internal images with something off of a server. I saw an Xserve RAID once at our Apple Store, in a mobile 5U box. That was neat. I think that's what they use to store the images on.

You may want to look into making a "Master Disk" that you use to Restore the hard drives from. (Disk Utility, start off of a external FW hard drive with Panther maybe?)

Oh, I know what to do!

Take your iPod or other FW hard drive. Install Panther onto it. Also create a master disk image. Place the master image onto the external disk. Then every night, just start off the external disk and restore from disk image.
 

jimsowden

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 6, 2003
1,766
16
NY
Mechcozmo said:
They made the Terminal into an encrypted .sitx file so that you can't use it. Then every day or so they wipe the internal images with something off of a server. I saw an Xserve RAID once at our Apple Store, in a mobile 5U box. That was neat. I think that's what they use to store the images on.

You may want to look into making a "Master Disk" that you use to Restore the hard drives from. (Disk Utility, start off of a external FW hard drive with Panther maybe?)

Oh, I know what to do!

Take your iPod or other FW hard drive. Install Panther onto it. Also create a master disk image. Place the master image onto the external disk. Then every night, just start off the external disk and restore from disk image.
Imaging is not a bad idea. But I'm not liking the system. Something a bit more automatic I think is in order. Like a drive I can boot off of and automatically replicates a dmg onto the drive in the machine.
 

jimsowden

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 6, 2003
1,766
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NY
Netbook was my first instinct. I tried it and it was super slow openeing the files in the likes of Final Cut HD. No good. We need to show off macs.
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,757
133
Harrogate
jimsowden said:
Netbook was my first instinct. I tried it and it was super slow openeing the files in the likes of Final Cut HD. No good. We need to show off macs.
This is probably a really stupid question, I have never had access to a Netboot environment! Can you boot the OS (and applications too) off Netboot and use faster local storage (or fast network storage if appropriate) for user file and video stuff?
 

Mitthrawnuruodo

Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
13,805
174
Bergen, Norway
Could it be a work around to make a clean install, set up one admin account, tune the machine how you want it to be, then make a set of managed user accounts (with very limited installation and application permissions)? Then when (or even better: before) the users have messed it up, just delete the managed user account and make a new one... this way the sales rep. and customer cannot do any really harm to the system, but still test the "basics"...
 

jimsowden

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 6, 2003
1,766
16
NY
Mitthrawnuruodo said:
Could it be a work around to make a clean install, set up one admin account, tune the machine how you want it to be, then make a set of managed user accounts (with very limited installation and application permissions)? Then when (or even better: before) the users have messed it up, just delete the managed user account and make a new one... this way the sales rep. and customer cannot do any really harm to the system, but still test the "basics"...
I tried this and people didn't like it. I want them to have full access to do whatever "except change the startup disk and maybe access terminal" and then when it reboots anything they did hasn't affected the machine. They got pissed when I locked the machines down.
 

Mitthrawnuruodo

Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
13,805
174
Bergen, Norway
jimsowden said:
I tried this and people didn't like it. I want them to have full access to do whatever "except change the startup disk and maybe access terminal" and then when it reboots anything they did hasn't affected the machine. They got pissed when I locked the machines down.
Then the only thing I can think of is to make a mop-up-script, which runs upon logout, which replaces all relevant preferances with a pre-made set of defaults, e.g. a fixed version of the entire ~/Library and /System/Library, and maybe even the /Applications that you have prepared and put on a disk image... not a complete reinstall, but just back to your original settings... (shouldn't take to long to wipe and replace upon logout...) ;)
 

spasticmutant

macrumors member
May 2, 2004
50
0
Santa Clara
You could also use a combination of a DVD boot disk or an external read-only boot drive and rsync other files down from a remote machine to keep the system clean. The read-only DVD takes care of the system boot, and rsync in reverse keeps the files from shifting on you by restoring the original files.

Anne Marie
 

Mechcozmo

macrumors 603
Jul 17, 2004
5,215
2
Spinoff of my original idea...

Have a disk image on a server. Have your Final Cut clips on this image too. Every night start off of your iPod and connect to the server. Then "reflash" the internal drive of the Mac with the server's image. You could probably do this with ARD, and eliminate the iPod step.

Ooooh. Netboot them with a minimal system. Then that netboot image rewipes the internal drive with the "real" image. That can go on for all the different computers overnight as it may take awile. Or have them on rotating schedules, like "this half tonight, the other half tomorrow night."
 

Eastend

macrumors 6502
Aug 1, 2004
376
7
Nara, Japan
spasticmutant said:
You could also use a combination of a DVD boot disk or an external read-only boot drive and rsync other files down from a remote machine to keep the system clean. The read-only DVD takes care of the system boot, and rsync in reverse keeps the files from shifting on you by restoring the original files.

Anne Marie
Really, how does one go about makin a DVD boot disk?

Brian
 

yellow

Moderator emeritus
Oct 21, 2003
16,033
1
Portland, OR
(still) TMK, there's no (easy) way to make a boot DVD. Clearly Apple has accomplished it, but no one else has (again, TMK).
 

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