David Spigelman's picture

I'm having some confusion with the Turnkey Appliance model here. To me, the idea of a turnkey appliance is basically, "you plug it in and it works." And that was my initial experience with it. When I downloaded the ISO for the File Server, I was able to boot it to a machine with an empty drive, and it created the entire Linux install, complete with everything it needed to run the Samba server, which was perfect. A little bit of configuring shares and users, and we're off to the races!

With the LXC appliance ISO, though, it's not at all that "turnkey" - at least not so far. I took an empty drive, plugged in a USB stick with the ISO, and it won't install. Oh, it boots and goes through the installation process, but in the end, it says that it can't find a file system on which to do the installation. To me that implies that I need an existing underlying OS running there. And while that's fine, if that's what I need to do, it's definitely not the same kind of "turnkey appliance" as the File Server is.

So I guess my question is whether that's correct, or whether I was correct in my first assumption, so I might have an issue with my hardware or something?

Note: I've looked at the documentation, and the HowTos. I've even looked at YouTube videos. Nobody seems to address this specific question, and everyone seems to assume that LXC is to be run in some virtual environment, like VirtualBox or ProxMox, which do, in fact, require an underlying OS to be installed.

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Jeremy Davis's picture

We haven't abandoned it, but there are/were significant issues getting it working with the current base (i.e. v16.x). As such it has not (and probably won't ever be) released for v16.x. The only available version is from our previous major release (i.e. v15.x).

As for the installation process, I'm not sure why the ISO is not installing to your drive in the way that you expect. It should install just as you suggest (exactly as your Fileserver did). My guess is that there is some weird edge case bug related to the hardware you have (maybe doesn't have required driver or something?). Perhaps see if one of our other v15.x appliances installs to test that (I would expect it to display the same problem).

As for the fact that most tutorials, etc use some sort of virtual environment, that is the general use case of TurnKey (i.e. it's usually installed as a VM). And whilst a VM by definition requires some sort of underlying OS, it provides virtual hardware to any running VM. So once installed, a VM must include a full OS. To circle back to TurnKey, whilst we have made some effort to support bare metal install, the hardware support is somewhat limited.

In an absolute worst case scenario, you could manually partition the drive and unpack the squashfs filesystem in the ISO to the new partition. That's hardly "turnkey" though!

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