5.8. Automating the Installation with Kickstart
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 offers a way to partially or fully automate the installation process using a Kickstart file. Kickstart files contain answers to all questions normally asked by the installation program, such as what time zone do you want the system to use, how should the drives be partitioned or which packages should be installed. Providing a prepared Kickstart file at the beginning of the installation therefore allows you to perform the entire installation (or parts of it) automatically, without need for any intervention from the user. This is especially useful when deploying Red Hat Enterprise Linux on a large number of systems at once.
In addition to allowing you to automate the installation, Kickstart files also provide more options regarding software selection. When installing Red Hat Enterprise Linux manually using the graphical installation interface, your software selection is limited to pre-defined environments and add-ons. A Kickstart file allows you to install or remove individual packages as well.
For instructions about creating a Kickstart file and using it to automate the installation, see Chapter 27, Kickstart Installations.