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15.2. Overview of the IBM Z Installation Procedure

You can install Red Hat Enterprise Linux on IBM Z interactively or in unattended mode. Installation on IBM Z differs from installation on other architectures in that it is typically performed over a network and not from a local media. The installation consists of two phases:
  1. Booting the Installation

    Connect with the mainframe, then perform an initial program load (IPL), or boot, from the medium containing the installation program. See Chapter 16, Booting the Installation on IBM Z for details.
  2. Anaconda

    Use the Anaconda installation program to configure network, specify language support, installation source, software packages to be installed, and to perform the rest of the installation. See Chapter 17, Installing Using Anaconda for more information.

15.2.1. Booting the Installation

After establishing a connection with the mainframe, you need to perform an initial program load (IPL), or boot, from the medium containing the installation program. This document describes the most common methods of installing Red Hat Enterprise Linux on IBM Z. In general, you can use any method to boot the Linux installation system, which consists of a kernel (kernel.img) and initial RAM disk (initrd.img) with at least the parameters in the generic.prm file. Additionally, a generic.ins file is loaded which determines file names and memory addresses for the initrd, kernel and generic.prm.
The Linux installation system is also called the installation program in this book.
The control point from where you can start the IPL process depends on the environment where your Linux is to run. If your Linux is to run as a z/VM guest operating system, the control point is the control program (CP) of the hosting z/VM. If your Linux is to run in LPAR mode, the control point is the mainframe's Support Element (SE) or an attached IBM Z Hardware Management Console (HMC).
You can use the following boot media only if Linux is to run as a guest operating system under z/VM:
You can use the following boot media only if Linux is to run in LPAR mode:
You can use the following boot media for both z/VM and LPAR:
If you use DASD and FCP-attached SCSI devices (except SCSI DVDs) as boot media, you must have a configured zipl boot loader.

15.2.2. Installation using Anaconda

In the second installation phase, you will use the Anaconda installation program in graphical, text-based, or command-line mode:
Graphical Mode
Graphical installation is done through a VNC client. You can use your mouse and keyboard to navigate through the screens, click buttons, and type into text fields. For more information on performing a graphical installation using VNC, see Chapter 24, Using VNC.
Text-based Mode
This interface does not offer all interface elements of the GUI and does not support all settings. Use this for interactive installations if you cannot use a VNC client. For more information about text-based installations, see Section 17.4, “Installing in Text Mode”.
Command-line Mode
This is intended for automated and non-interactive installations on IBM Z. Note that if the installation program encounters an invalid or missing kickstart command, the system will reboot. For more information about automated installation, see Chapter 26, Kickstart Installations.
In Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 the text-based installation has been reduced to minimize user interaction. Features like installation on FCP-attached SCSI devices, customizing partition layout, or package add-on selection are only available with the graphical user interface installation. Use the graphical installation whenever possible. See Chapter 17, Installing Using Anaconda for more details.