3 Replies Latest reply: Aug 1, 2011 8:12 AM by mberardinelli
mberardinelli Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)

Hi everyone,


I recently set up a new Mac Mini as a stand-alone server for the Apple Service Toolkit Diagnostic Gateway. Here are the specs of the Mini, if needed by anyone:


Mac OS X 10.6 Server (patched to 10.6.8)

2.66GHz Core 2 Duo



I have followed Apple's instructions on how to install/configure AST Diagnostic Gateway from the Service Source page to the T. Installation was no problem and everything went smoothly.


In Server Admin, I turned on only NFS and NetBoot services (as per the instructions) and configured NetBoot to work via Ethernet with the AST image as the default. Both services are running. I DO NOT have DHCP turned on on this machine, namely because:


a.) We have a district DHCP server supplying IPs to all our machines, and

b.) The instructions from Apple actually say to avoid running any services on the AST Gateway machine besides NFS and NetBoot.


I gave the server a static IP and reserved it in our DHCP server. I also registered my Gateway Manager with my Apple ID and ASP location, etc. so it can connect to the repositories.


However, when I plug in a remote host on the same network segment (same subnet), it will not netboot. I get the flashing globe for about 20 - 30 seconds and then the system boots normally into the OS. When going into System Preferences > Startup Disk, it does not see the AST server.


If I turn AFP on, I can connect to it that way and view the image files, etc. The permissions are set so that everyone can read the image files.


What am I missing? The only thing I have been able to find so far are these entires in the NetBoot log within Server Admin:


Jul  6 13:06:48 localhost servermgrd[58]: servermgr_dhcp:bootp config:Error:Failed to create default subnet records

Jul  6 11:47:43 localhost configd[32]: bootp_session_transmit: bpf_write(en1) failed: Network is down (50)


It appears that the remote host is not getting a proper DHCP address and therefore cannot see the netboot server..?


Any suggestions or help would be greatly appreciated!

Apple Certified Macintosh Technician, Mac OS X (10.6.7), MacBook Pro 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo, iPhone 3GS
  • John Lockwood Level 5 Level 5 (6,700 points)

    The NetBoot service does not need to run on a server also running DHCP so you are ok on that front, you will only need AFP if you are going to use diskless NetBoot. Can you however provide more details as to your NetBoot configuration, e.g. what Interfaces have you enabled it to serve on, what archictectures are supported, have you configured any restrictions as to models that can connect, have you configured a filter for MAC addresses, etc.?


    The first thing to do is to get things so the NetBoot image does show up in Startup Disks, then worry later about actually trying to NetBoot.


    The error you listed of "Jul  6 11:47:43 localhost configd[32]: bootp_session_transmit: bpf_write(en1) failed: Network is down (50)" might be suggesting you have enabled the NetBoot service on a network interface which is not in use. Some models of Mac such as the Mac Pro and XServe have two Ethernet interfaces. Even on the Mac mini you are using the built-in Ethernet and built-in AirPort (WiFi) still count as two interfaces. On the Mac mini normally en0 is the built-in Ethernet and en1 is the AirPort.

  • mberardinelli Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)

    Hi there and thanks for the reply!


    At the moment I have the NetBoot service serving on built-in Ethernet (which makes that error on en1 all the more strange - I don't even have Airport turned on). In fact, the en0 port is the only one that populates in the list of available interfaces to use.


    I have not configured any restrictions or filters or anything. Currently it is set to allow any connected host. I have logging set to High so I can catch anything that happens to come up.


    I was just talking with our network admin and he's thinking we'll have to configure our DHCP server with some settings to point the Macs to the image file. (for example, we have some LTSP machines with reserved IPs in a group on the DHCP server that get PXE-boot settings from the group and thus are able to netboot to a terminal server session).

  • mberardinelli Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)

    So we figured out that we need to create a group within our DHCP server such that any Mac that is also part of the group will be able to netboot to the AST image.


    Does anyone know the root path I need to put in for the AST image? I'm looking through the gateway server and I cannot find a .sparseimage file within the AppleServiceToolkit.nbi folder.


    Any ideas?