Anaconda Customization Guide

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7

Customizing and enhancing the installer

Vratislav Podzimek

Abstract

Anaconda is the installer used by Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora, and their derivatives. This document contains information necessary for customizing it.
Developers who wish to expand the base functionality of the installer will find information about Anaconda architecture, its add-on API and provided helper functions, and examples which will help in creating custom add-ons.
This guide also provides instructions for those wishing to customize visual aspects of the installer, such as the boot menu color scheme and background or branding and chroming within the graphical user interface.

1. Introduction to Anaconda Customization

The Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Fedora installation program, Anaconda, brings many improvements in its most recent versions. One of these improvements is enhanced customizability. You can now write add-ons to extend the base installer functionality, and there are also more options for changing the appearance of the graphical user interface.
This document will explain how to customize the following:
  • Boot menu - pre-configured options, color scheme and background
  • Appearance of the graphical interface - logo, backgrounds, product name
  • Installer functionality - add-ons which can enhance the installer by adding new Kickstart commands and new screens in the graphical and textual user interfaces
Some of the topics discussed in this book require significant pre-existing knowledge. In particular, developing custom Anaconda add-ons requires knowledge of Python, making changes to the boot menu requires involves editing plain text configuration files, and visual customizations of the installer require familiarity with computer graphics and cascading style sheets (CSS).
Also note that this document only applies to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 and Fedora 17 and later.

Important

Procedures described in this book are written for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 or a similar system. On other systems, the tools and applications used (such as genisoimage for creating custom ISO images) may be different, and procedures may need to be adjusted.