NOC-PS release v1.97 has just been released.
You can update by going to “start” -> “update” in the web interface.

 

This NOC-PS version includes experimental support for EFI Windows
installations.
Typical use cases in which you want to want to use EFI instead of legacy
BIOS for installing Windows is when:

  • ┬áthe boot drive is larger than 2 TB
  • or you are using a NVMe SSD as boot drive
  • or your installations fail displaying a “Setup was unable to create a
    new system partition or locate an existing system partition” error
    message. (caused by a BIOS bug, which doesn’t seem to be present in EFI
    mode).

 

Steps for activating UEFI boot

Dell servers

Enter system setup by pressing “F2” during boot, go to “System BIOS” ->
“Boot settings” -> set “Boot mode” to “UEFI”

Supermicro servers

  • Enter BIOS by pressing “del” during boot
  • Activate EFI PXE booting by going to: “Advanced” -> “PCIe/PCI/PnP
    configuration” -> set “Onboard LAN Option ROM Type” to “EFI”
  • Press “escape” to get back to main menu.
  • Activate EFI hard disk booting by going to: “Boot” -> set “Boot Mode
    Select” to “UEFI”
  • Go to “Save & Exit” -> “Save changes and reset”

For Supermicro servers it is also necessary to change the “IPMI type” of
the server in the NOC-PS webinterface server properties to “[EFI mode]
IPMI v2.0 with KVM”
This is due to Supermicro requiring different IPMI commands to be sent
when network booting a server in EFI mode, than when network booting in
legacy mode.

 

Supported OSes when EFI booting

It is only recommend to use EFI mode for provisioning servers with
Windows Server 2016.
Using EFI is NOT required for Linux to be able to boot from large hard
drives, and the number of Linux operating systems that support it
properly is limited.

 

  • EFI netbooting support in CentOS was broken until CentOS 7.4.
    To make sure you have the latest 7.4 and not an older CentOS version
    installed, you can go to the NOC-PS webinterface, click “start” ->
    “profiles” -> take the properties of the “CentOS 7 (latest)” profile and
    press “delete cached files”
  • Debian Stretch does support EFI, but may in some circumstances fail to
    remove previously installed Windows installations.
  • EFI does NOT work correctly when performing an automated installation
    of Ubuntu or OpenSuse
    This needs to be fixed by those distributions first, and is not
    something we can help.
  • Only 64-bit operating systems are supported.

 

EFI partition layouts

EFI booting requires the presence of an extra partition.
For Windows and CentOS installations the system automatically attempts
to add an EFI system partition to your “disk layout” if you do not have
one already, and an EFI boot is detected.
However this may fail if you have software RAID or some other
non-standard layout, in which case you may need to create EFI disk
layouts manually.

 

Other changes

New profiles:

– Clonezilla 2.5.2-31
– OpenSuse 42.3

 

As indicated, EFI support is EXPERIMENTAL.
Let us know if you experience any issues with it.