Introduction: Using Netinstall OS X 10.9 and Others

Using Netinstall OsX 10.9 and Others

Image and package installation on OsX is kind of a cryptic thing. People often think of Apple as being not Enterprise class, but really that isn’t the case. Most of these people just do not know the operating system or especially the server and what it can do.

Netinstall can

Create a boot image to boot systems over the network to a server hosted image.

Create a restore image to a machine over the network.

Create an image to run the installer on new machines.

It can probably do more, but these are the primary items I have used it for.

Lets boot a computer over the network.

Download the installer app for the version of OS X you are using. Put it in applications folder on your server.

Next lets setup a NetBoot image set. Open the System Image Utility in the server app.

Click on the install OS X (version) and select NetBoot Image.

Click continue, give it a name description and set the username and password for the NetBoot.

Click generate and agree to the terms and conditions.

Select a location to store the disk image and click save.

It might take a bit to setup the NetBoot, wait a few and when it is finished go to setup the Netinstall Service.

Go back to the server app. Go to Netinstall.

Define which disk will host boot the images. I like to make this a striped device. Click edit storage options, then select the volume that client data will go on. Note that the client data are items that change on a client machine that can be stored in their image.

Once you have set your image disk storage location lets move the disk image into the /Libary/NetBoot/NetBoot### folder. Click the edit button and enable the netinstall image from whichever device you want to serve the images over. Click ok to save your settings.

Click Images, red light means off, green means on, double click on the image you want to serve.

Check the make available over box and select the protocol you are going to use. You can restrict and control access by mac adress in this area too. You can also make an image available to boot diskless clients as well here.

The image will get a green light after you are done now click the settings wheel and Use as Default Boot Image if you want it to be the default boot image that computers boot to. Usually this is done with the newest operating system if that is what you are pushing. Click On to start the service.

That is it, you are good to go!

You can use the serveradmin command line interface commands to check various statuses.


Joe Murphy

AKA Grehyton

Special thanks to for giving me some tips.