Talcon Information Systems
With disk space becoming less expensive (100GB Western Digital 7200rpm available for US $195 in January 2002), it is viable to use an Open Source software-based CD Server solution, instead of paying $800-$4,000 for a software, thin-server, or CD Jukebox solution.
I've setup my CD Server on a Pentium 200 with 64MB RAM, using one of these large drives.
This HOWTO is specifically directed toward System Administrators and uses Linux for the examples. It should work with other flavors of Unix provided that they have a loop device or a method of mounting a CD image file within the directory tree as a block device using the iso9660 file system.
The commands and utilities needed to setup your own CD Server are already included in most (if not all) Linux distributions.
SMB HOWTO by: David Wood, dwood (at) plugged.net.au. Part of the Linux Documentation Project. This document describes how to use the Server Message Block (SMB) protocol, also called the Session Message Block, NetBIOS or LanManager protocol, with Linux using Samba.
Using Samba by: Robert Eckstein, David Collier-Brown, Peter Kelly 1st Edition November 1999, O'Reilly and Associates, Inc. ISBN 1-56592-449-5,
The Linux CD-ROM HOWTO by: Jeff Tranter, tranter (at) pobox.com. Part of the Linux Documentation Project. How to install, configure, and use CD-ROM drives under Linux. It lists the supported hardware and answers a number of frequently asked questions. This HOWTO also gives some information on using multi-platter CD-ROM drives with Linux.
CD-Writing HOWTO by: Winfried Trümper, winni (at) xpilot.org. Part of the Linux Documentation Project. This document explains how to write CD-ROMs under Linux. This HOWTO also includes information on making 1:1 image copies of CD-ROMs.
CDServer-HOWTO, Copyright © 2000-2002, by Randolph J. Tata, All Rights Reserved
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in Appendix A entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".
Use the information in this document at your own risk. I disavow any potential liability for the contents of this document. Use of the concepts, examples, and/or other content of this document is entirely at your own risk.
All copyrights are owned by their owners, unless specifically noted otherwise. Use of a term in this document should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark.
Naming of particular products or brands should not be seen as endorsements.
You are strongly recommended to make a backup of your system before major installation and should make backups at regular intervals.
As always, check the revision history at the top of this document.
DocBook XML source for this document is available. Any additions/changes should be made to the DocBook XML source, not derivative formats.
This documents home page is at the CDServer-HOWTO site page in case you need the latest version, or there is a problem with the page format you are viewing.
My thanks go the readers of this HOWTO and those willing to share their experiences and knowledge with me. I have the pleasure of acknowledging:
If you have the capacity it would be nice to make the CDServer-HOWTO available in a number of formats and languages.
If you've translated this document, please send to me:
Summary of Steps
Choose (or create) a file system with the largest available disk space on it. Keep in mind that CD-ROM's can hold around 640MB of data, so if you want to share 8 full CD's on your network, you'll need 5.1GB of space available.
Login as root or "su" to root.
Here the /home filesystem has the most available space, so it is the most suitable filesystem to use for dumping the CD images to.
Now, copy the CD to an ISO image. You must know the device name of your CD-ROM drive (usually /dev/cdrom, it could be /dev/scd0 for SCSI CD-ROM's) I'll use the Mandrake distribution CD-ROM as an Example:
My thanks to Giblhauser Carl Michael for the runoutblock information.
The next step is to mount the ISO image file. Let's create a directory under /mnt to place the mounted file.
Now mount the ISO image file to this newly created directory
Thanks to Amar Chaouche for pointing out the unhide option for the mount command.
Now you can:
You should see a listing (ls) of the files and directories that are on the actual CD (only now they're inside the ISO image file, and that's what you're currently looking at!)
Now that we've manually mounted the image, and made sure it works, an entry needs to made in the /etc/fstab file so that the image is remounted on the next system startup. It's important to make the entry AFTER the entry for the parent filesystem, e.g. /home (I use vim, but emacs, joe, pico or jed will work just as well):
After the line that looks like the following (or whichever filesystem you've placed your images):
Insert the following line with your text editor:
You'll need to have Samba installed and working to perform the next steps (that's outside the scope of this instruction, see Section 1.3). If it's not yet installed, consult your Linux distribution's instructions for installing the Samba package. Or you can visit the Samba website at http://us1.samba.org/samba/samba.html for installation instructions, binaries, and/or the source code.
To share your mounted CD's on a windows network, simply create a stanza in the /etc/smb.conf file similar to the following:
This will share all the subdirectories under the /mnt/iso directory on the network. To mount the share to a local drive (in this case the I: drive), bring up an MS-DOS Prompt on the Windows machine and type the following:
Each CD image will now appear as a subdirectory on the I: drive of your Windows machine.
To mount ONLY the Mandrake CD image to a drive letter (we'll use M:, the root drive of which, will correspond exactly to the CD as if it was just inserted in the CD-ROM drive), create the following stanza in the /etc/smb.conf file.
Then, at your MS-DOS Prompt, mount it with the following command:
Make sure that NFS is running and configured correctly on your Linux machine, then add the following to the /etc/exports file using your own preferred options:
Now try running:
This should re-export everything in your /etc/exports file.
Now, when typing "showmount -e yourlinuxmachine" you should see that the /mnt/iso directory is included in the exports list.
Newer Linux kernels (2.4) allow you to add more loop devices easily by editing /etc/modules.conf or through the use of a boot parameter.
Older kernels (2.2 ?) only had support for 8 loop devices compiled into the kernel. In short, you were only able to share 8 CD's on a network with this default value. In order to support more than that default, you needed to modify the kernel source and recompile a new kernel.
Use the following methods to determine which version of the kernel you are running.
Current kernels allow you to set the number of loop devices supported without recompiling the kernel. One of these methods is to add an options line to /etc/modules.conf. This method will only work if your loop support has been configured as a loadable kernel module (which is how most major Linux distributions come preconfigured now).
Edit /etc/modules.conf and add the following line.
After making the above change, simply reboot. Or you can try to use rmmod and insmod to make the change on the fly - but this will not work if you currently have any loop devices mounted (you'll get an error saying loop: Device or resource busy).
Continue with Section 3.4.
Thanks to Paul A. Sand for pointing out the /etc/modules.conf option.
If your loop support has been compiled directly into the kernel (in other words, it is not loaded as a module), you can append the number of loop devices you would like to support at the linux boot prompt.
Or, if you are using LILO, you can edit your linux boot stanza in /etc/lilo.conf and add/modify the append= line. Here is an example stanza showing append= (note: only add or modify the append line, don't change your whole stanza to look like this one or your system may not boot). For more information about LILO, consult the LILO mini-HOWTO at http://www.linuxdoc.org/HOWTO/mini/LILO.html.
After changing /etc/lilo.conf, you need to run the lilo command for your changes to take effect.
Next restart your system. After your system restarts, you can check your boot command line by typing the following:
Continue with Section 3.4.
Thanks to Tony Melia for the boot prompt info.
If you have an older kernel (v. 2.2) or if you are completely comfortable recompiling the kernel, you can increase the number of loop devices supported by editing the /usr/src/linux/drivers/block/loop.c file.
Change the number in the following line to however many loop devices you'll need.
Compile the new kernel or module as the case may be. If you need some help getting started with this, read /usr/src/linux/README or consult The Linux Kernel HOWTO.
Continue with Section 3.4.
You should check how many /dev entries you have for loop devices.
The mknod command creates the devices in the /dev directory. The loop devices have a major number of "7", and the minor numbers begin at "0". If your MAX_LOOP was defined as "8" in /usr/src/linux/drivers/block/loop.c, you should have /dev/loop0 through /dev/loop7. To create the /dev/loop8 device, use the following command (subsitute the appropriate number you need for both the "8's" in the example below).
Check Owner/Group & Permissions on the new file (using ls -l). You can change the owner and group with the following command:
You can change the permissions using the following command:
Be sure to check the suggested reading in Section 1.3.
I finally had to create this section - Frequently Asked Questions. Although, I sometimes think it should be called Frequently Answered Questions (at least I try to answer them all).
A: In a word - Yes.
A: Not yet. However there is much interest in this.
This section is devoted to instructional materials that others have written or have sent to me.
Richard Black (Compaq) has some good pages about Saving CD-ROM's to files and mounting them in Red Hat Linux.
Thanks to Richard Black for permission to add this info and for linking back to this document.
A script to automate the creation of ISO images and share them via Samba
by Bradley Wendelboe [krakken (at) icehouse.2y.net] and James Mumm [dart (at) windeath.2y.net]
This software is covered under the GPL See http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html for details.
Thanks to Bradley Wendelboe for forwarding this script to me.
These are things I'm currently looking into, trying to figure out, or planning to get done.
Version 1.1, March 2000
The purpose of this License is to make a manual, textbook, or other written document "free" in the sense of freedom: to assure everyone the effective freedom to copy and redistribute it, with or without modifying it, either commercially or noncommercially. Secondarily, this License preserves for the author and publisher a way to get credit for their work, while not being considered responsible for modifications made by others.
This License is a kind of "copyleft", which means that derivative works of the document must themselves be free in the same sense. It complements the GNU General Public License, which is a copyleft license designed for free software.
We have designed this License in order to use it for manuals for free software, because free software needs free documentation: a free program should come with manuals providing the same freedoms that the software does. But this License is not limited to software manuals; it can be used for any textual work, regardless of subject matter or whether it is published as a printed book. We recommend this License principally for works whose purpose is instruction or reference.
This License applies to any manual or other work that contains a notice placed by the copyright holder saying it can be distributed under the terms of this License. The "Document", below, refers to any such manual or work. Any member of the public is a licensee, and is addressed as "you".
A "Modified Version" of the Document means any work containing the Document or a portion of it, either copied verbatim, or with modifications and/or translated into another language.
A "Secondary Section" is a named appendix or a front-matter section of the Document that deals exclusively with the relationship of the publishers or authors of the Document to the Document's overall subject (or to related matters) and contains nothing that could fall directly within that overall subject. (For example, if the Document is in part a textbook of mathematics, a Secondary Section may not explain any mathematics.) The relationship could be a matter of historical connection with the subject or with related matters, or of legal, commercial, philosophical, ethical or political position regarding them.
The "Invariant Sections" are certain Secondary Sections whose titles are designated, as being those of Invariant Sections, in the notice that says that the Document is released under this License.
The "Cover Texts" are certain short passages of text that are listed, as Front-Cover Texts or Back-Cover Texts, in the notice that says that the Document is released under this License.
A "Transparent" copy of the Document means a machine-readable copy, represented in a format whose specification is available to the general public, whose contents can be viewed and edited directly and straightforwardly with generic text editors or (for images composed of pixels) generic paint programs or (for drawings) some widely available drawing editor, and that is suitable for input to text formatters or for automatic translation to a variety of formats suitable for input to text formatters. A copy made in an otherwise Transparent file format whose markup has been designed to thwart or discourage subsequent modification by readers is not Transparent. A copy that is not "Transparent" is called "Opaque".
Examples of suitable formats for Transparent copies include plain ASCII without markup, Texinfo input format, LaTeX input format, SGML or XML using a publicly available DTD, and standard-conforming simple HTML designed for human modification. Opaque formats include PostScript, PDF, proprietary formats that can be read and edited only by proprietary word processors, SGML or XML for which the DTD and/or processing tools are not generally available, and the machine-generated HTML produced by some word processors for output purposes only.
The "Title Page" means, for a printed book, the title page itself, plus such following pages as are needed to hold, legibly, the material this License requires to appear in the title page. For works in formats which do not have any title page as such, "Title Page" means the text near the most prominent appearance of the work's title, preceding the beginning of the body of the text.
You may copy and distribute the Document in any medium, either commercially or noncommercially, provided that this License, the copyright notices, and the license notice saying this License applies to the Document are reproduced in all copies, and that you add no other conditions whatsoever to those of this License. You may not use technical measures to obstruct or control the reading or further copying of the copies you make or distribute. However, you may accept compensation in exchange for copies. If you distribute a large enough number of copies you must also follow the conditions in section 3.
You may also lend copies, under the same conditions stated above, and you may publicly display copies.
If you publish printed copies of the Document numbering more than 100, and the Document's license notice requires Cover Texts, you must enclose the copies in covers that carry, clearly and legibly, all these Cover Texts: Front-Cover Texts on the front cover, and Back-Cover Texts on the back cover. Both covers must also clearly and legibly identify you as the publisher of these copies. The front cover must present the full title with all words of the title equally prominent and visible. You may add other material on the covers in addition. Copying with changes limited to the covers, as long as they preserve the title of the Document and satisfy these conditions, can be treated as verbatim copying in other respects.
If the required texts for either cover are too voluminous to fit legibly, you should put the first ones listed (as many as fit reasonably) on the actual cover, and continue the rest onto adjacent pages.
If you publish or distribute Opaque copies of the Document numbering more than 100, you must either include a machine-readable Transparent copy along with each Opaque copy, or state in or with each Opaque copy a publicly-accessible computer-network location containing a complete Transparent copy of the Document, free of added material, which the general network-using public has access to download anonymously at no charge using public-standard network protocols. If you use the latter option, you must take reasonably prudent steps, when you begin distribution of Opaque copies in quantity, to ensure that this Transparent copy will remain thus accessible at the stated location until at least one year after the last time you distribute an Opaque copy (directly or through your agents or retailers) of that edition to the public.
It is requested, but not required, that you contact the authors of the Document well before redistributing any large number of copies, to give them a chance to provide you with an updated version of the Document.
You may copy and distribute a Modified Version of the Document under the conditions of sections 2 and 3 above, provided that you release the Modified Version under precisely this License, with the Modified Version filling the role of the Document, thus licensing distribution and modification of the Modified Version to whoever possesses a copy of it. In addition, you must do these things in the Modified Version:
If the Modified Version includes new front-matter sections or appendices that qualify as Secondary Sections and contain no material copied from the Document, you may at your option designate some or all of these sections as invariant. To do this, add their titles to the list of Invariant Sections in the Modified Version's license notice. These titles must be distinct from any other section titles.
You may add a section entitled "Endorsements", provided it contains nothing but endorsements of your Modified Version by various parties--for example, statements of peer review or that the text has been approved by an organization as the authoritative definition of a standard.
You may add a passage of up to five words as a Front-Cover Text, and a passage of up to 25 words as a Back-Cover Text, to the end of the list of Cover Texts in the Modified Version. Only one passage of Front-Cover Text and one of Back-Cover Text may be added by (or through arrangements made by) any one entity. If the Document already includes a cover text for the same cover, previously added by you or by arrangement made by the same entity you are acting on behalf of, you may not add another; but you may replace the old one, on explicit permission from the previous publisher that added the old one.
The author(s) and publisher(s) of the Document do not by this License give permission to use their names for publicity for or to assert or imply endorsement of any Modified Version.
You may combine the Document with other documents released under this License, under the terms defined in section 4 above for modified versions, provided that you include in the combination all of the Invariant Sections of all of the original documents, unmodified, and list them all as Invariant Sections of your combined work in its license notice.
The combined work need only contain one copy of this License, and multiple identical Invariant Sections may be replaced with a single copy. If there are multiple Invariant Sections with the same name but different contents, make the title of each such section unique by adding at the end of it, in parentheses, the name of the original author or publisher of that section if known, or else a unique number. Make the same adjustment to the section titles in the list of Invariant Sections in the license notice of the combined work.
In the combination, you must combine any sections entitled "History" in the various original documents, forming one section entitled "History"; likewise combine any sections entitled "Acknowledgements", and any sections entitled "Dedications". You must delete all sections entitled "Endorsements."
You may make a collection consisting of the Document and other documents released under this License, and replace the individual copies of this License in the various documents with a single copy that is included in the collection, provided that you follow the rules of this License for verbatim copying of each of the documents in all other respects.
You may extract a single document from such a collection, and distribute it individually under this License, provided you insert a copy of this License into the extracted document, and follow this License in all other respects regarding verbatim copying of that document.
A compilation of the Document or its derivatives with other separate and independent documents or works, in or on a volume of a storage or distribution medium, does not as a whole count as a Modified Version of the Document, provided no compilation copyright is claimed for the compilation. Such a compilation is called an "aggregate", and this License does not apply to the other self-contained works thus compiled with the Document, on account of their being thus compiled, if they are not themselves derivative works of the Document.
If the Cover Text requirement of section 3 is applicable to these copies of the Document, then if the Document is less than one quarter of the entire aggregate, the Document's Cover Texts may be placed on covers that surround only the Document within the aggregate. Otherwise they must appear on covers around the whole aggregate.
Translation is considered a kind of modification, so you may distribute translations of the Document under the terms of section 4. Replacing Invariant Sections with translations requires special permission from their copyright holders, but you may include translations of some or all Invariant Sections in addition to the original versions of these Invariant Sections. You may include a translation of this License provided that you also include the original English version of this License. In case of a disagreement between the translation and the original English version of this License, the original English version will prevail.
You may not copy, modify, sublicense, or distribute the Document except as expressly provided for under this License. Any other attempt to copy, modify, sublicense or distribute the Document is void, and will automatically terminate your rights under this License. However, parties who have received copies, or rights, from you under this License will not have their licenses terminated so long as such parties remain in full compliance.
The Free Software Foundation may publish new, revised versions of the GNU Free Documentation License from time to time. Such new versions will be similar in spirit to the present version, but may differ in detail to address new problems or concerns. See http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/.
Each version of the License is given a distinguishing version number. If the Document specifies that a particular numbered version of this License "or any later version" applies to it, you have the option of following the terms and conditions either of that specified version or of any later version that has been published (not as a draft) by the Free Software Foundation. If the Document does not specify a version number of this License, you may choose any version ever published (not as a draft) by the Free Software Foundation.
To use this License in a document you have written, include a copy of the License in the document and put the following copyright and license notices just after the title page:
If you have no Invariant Sections, write "with no Invariant Sections" instead of saying which ones are invariant. If you have no Front-Cover Texts, write "no Front-Cover Texts" instead of "Front-Cover Texts being LIST"; likewise for Back-Cover Texts.
If your document contains nontrivial examples of program code, we recommend releasing these examples in parallel under your choice of free software license, such as the GNU General Public License, to permit their use in free software.