Linux by Trial and Error

A repository of the things I learn about Linux

RHN Satellite Base Channels

Recently, I have been working on developing a Red Hat Satellite Kickstart profile to build servers using RHEL 6. Thus far, we have been continuing to build any newly commissioned servers using RHEL 5. I started out by creating a RHEL 6 profile and copying basically every screen from our RHEL 5 profile and changing anything that referenced the older version so that it would point to the newer one.

At first, I was having difficulty getting the newly built server to register with our Satellite server. Once I got that worked out, I found that every time I did a Kickstart build, it was registering with my Satellite, but it was setting it to subscribe to a RHEL 5 base channel.

Google…here I come!

Most of the hits on Google that I came across pointed me to RH’s documentation on Kickstart. Unfortunately, for what I was looking for, that was not as helpful as I would have liked it to be. Essentially, all it mentioned with regard to base channels was to open the Kickstart profile and navigate to Kickstart Details –> Operating System and setting the Base Channel value.

The problem with that was, I had that pointing to a RHEL 6 base channel but when the server was built, it still ended up subscribing to a RHEL 5 channel.

At this point, I’m glad that I had someone I could call upon who had been involved in setting up our Satellite and so was more familiar with where certain settings were than I am. I would have never guessed this one…

So, he took me into the Kickstart profile and navigated to Activation Keys. The only one we had selected was the RHEL 6 x64 key. The listed keys should all be hyperlinks, so he clicked on the key that I had selected and, sure enough, the fourth entry down was a setting for “Base Channels” and was set to “RHN Satellite Default.”  I changed it to the new RHEL 6 channel that I had created and updated the key.

Now, it is probably important to note, at this point, that there is a known bug with RHN Satellite having to do with cloned channels and changing the base channel for the Activation Key. From what I have read, this should be taken care of if you’re up to date on your patches for Satellite. If you are not, this will only work if you do not clone a channel and create one from scratch instead. Also, if you had a cloned channel prior to this bugfix, it will only work on newly cloned channels. Ones you’ve already cloned that hit against this bug will not automagically be fixed.

Well, that’s about all for today. One more lesson learned about Red Hat Satellite that I will not likely forget any time soon.

If this helps you in any way, please feel free to share your feedback as it always makes me feel better to know that I am not the only one who struggles with this kind of thing.

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May 24, 2012 - Posted by | red hat, satellite | , ,

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