Chapter 7. Booting the Installation on AMD64 and Intel 64 Systems

You can install Red Hat Enterprise Linux from the ISO images stored on hard disk, or from a network using NFS, FTP, HTTP, or HTTPS methods. Booting and installing from the full installation DVD is the easiest method to get started with. Other methods require some additional setup but provide different advantages that might suit your needs better. For example, when installing Red Hat Enterprise Linux on a large number of computers at the same time, the best approach is booting from a PXE server and installing from a source in a shared network location.
The following table summarizes the different boot methods and recommended installation methods to use with each:

Table 7.1. Boot Methods and Installation Sources

Boot method Installation source
Full installation media (DVD or USB) The boot media itself
Minimal boot media (CD or USB) Full installation DVD ISO image or the installation tree extracted from this image, placed in a network location or on a hard drive
Network boot (PXE) Full installation DVD ISO image or the installation tree extracted from this image, placed in a network location
To create a boot CD-ROM or to prepare your USB flash drive for booting or installation, see Section 3.2, “Making Installation USB Media”.
This chapter covers the following topics:

7.1. Starting the Installation Program

To start, first make sure that you have all necessary resources for the installation. If you have already read through Chapter 5, Planning for Installation on AMD64 and Intel 64 Systems, and followed the instructions, you should be ready to start the installation process. When you have verified that you are ready to begin, boot the installation program using the Red Hat Enterprise Linux DVD or any boot media that you have created.

Important

Excessive input (for example, clicking the mouse repeatedly) during the boot sequence can cause the installer to ignore keyboard input later in the installation process.

Note

Occasionally, some hardware components require a driver update during the installation. A driver update adds support for hardware that is not otherwise supported by the installation program. See Chapter 6, Updating Drivers During Installation on AMD64 and Intel 64 Systems for more information.

7.1.1. Booting the Installation on AMD64 and Intel 64 Systems from Physical Media

To start the installation program from a Red Hat Enterprise Linux DVD or from minimal boot media, follow this procedure:

Procedure 7.1. Booting the Installation from Physical Media

  1. Disconnect any drives which you do not need for the installation. See Section 5.6.3, “USB Disks” for more information.
  2. Power on your computer system.
  3. Insert the media in your computer.
  4. Power off your computer with the boot media still inside.
  5. Power on your computer system. Note that you might need to press a specific key or combination of keys to boot from the media or configure your system's Basic Input/Output System (BIOS) to boot from the media. For more information, see the documentation that came with your system.
After a short delay, the boot screen appears, which contains information on a variety of boot options. Installation program automatically begins if you take no action within the first minute. For a description of the options available on this screen, see Section 7.2, “The Boot Menu”.

7.1.2. Booting the Installation on AMD64 and Intel 64 Systems from the Network Using PXE

To boot with PXE, you need a properly configured TFTP server, and a network interface in your computer that supports PXE. For information on how to configure a PXE server, see Chapter 23, Preparing for a Network Installation.
Configure the computer to boot from the network interface. This option is in the BIOS, and can be labeled Network Boot or Boot Services. Also, ensure that the BIOS is configured to boot first from the correct network interface. Some BIOS systems specify the network interface as a possible boot device, but do not support the PXE standard. See your hardware's documentation for more information. Once you properly enable PXE booting, the computer can boot the Red Hat Enterprise Linux installation system without any other media.
Follow the procedure below to boot the installation program from a PXE server. Note that this procedure requires the use of a physical network connection, for example Ethernet. It will not work with a wireless connection.

Procedure 7.2. Booting the Installation from the Network Using PXE

  1. Ensure that the network cable is attached. The link indicator light on the network socket should be lit, even if the computer is not switched on.
  2. Switch on the computer.
  3. Depending on your hardware, some network setup and diagnostic information can be displayed before your computer connects to a PXE server. Once it connects, a menu is displayed according to the configuration of the PXE server. Press the number key that corresponds to the desired option. If you are not sure of which option to select, ask your server administrator.
At this point, the installation program starts successfully and the boot screen appears, which contains information on a variety of boot options. Installation program automatically begins if you take no action within the first minute. For a description of the options available on this screen, see Section 7.2, “The Boot Menu”.