Registering SUSE Liberty Linux Clients

This section contains information about registering clients running SUSE Liberty Linux operating systems. SUSE Liberty Linux clients are based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux or CentOS.

SUSE Liberty Linux clients are sometimes also called SUSE Linux Enterprise Server with Expanded Support (SLESES), Liberty, RES or Red Hat Expanded Support.

The SUSE Liberty Linux software channels provided by SUSE only provide updates to packages, they do not provide the packages themselves. To register SUSE Liberty Linux clients, you need to register the SUSE Liberty Linux Product (outlined below) to create the necessary base channel, then import any required Red Hat or CentOS packages as custom child channels. You must obtain the initial packages directly from Red Hat or CentOS before you can apply the updates provided by the SUSE Liberty Linux software channels.

  • SUSE Liberty Linux repository URLs are available from SUSE Customer Center

  • Packages and metadata are provided by SUSE

  • For supported products, see the support table and the release notes

You are responsible for arranging access to Red Hat or CentOS base media repositories and installation media.

You must obtain support from SUSE for all your SUSE Liberty Linux systems.

1. Add Software Channels

For SUSE Liberty Linux clients, some required packages are contained on the Red Hat Enterprise Linux or CentOS installation media. You must have these packages installed before you can register a SUSE Liberty Linux client.

The SUSE Liberty Linux product is provided by SUSE Customer Center. This also includes the client tools package.

Before you register SUSE Liberty Linux clients to your SUSE Manager Server, you need to add the required software channels, and synchronize them.

You need to select two different sets of channels, one for SUSE Liberty Linux and the other for the Client Tools.

You need an activation key associated with the correct SUSE Liberty Linux channels. For more information about activation keys, see Activation Keys.

In the following section, descriptions often default to the x86_64 architecture. Replace it with other architectures if appropriate.

The products you need for this procedure are:

Table 1. ES Products - WebUI
OS Version Product Name

SUSE Liberty Linux 9

RHEL or SLES ES and Liberty 9 x86_64

SUSE Liberty Linux 8

RHEL or SLES ES or CentOS 8 Base and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server with Expanded Support 8 x86_64

SUSE Liberty Linux 7

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server with Expanded Support 7 x86_64

SUSE Manager requires tools channels that contain additional software. This procedure creates these tools channels:

Table 2. ES Tools Channels
OS Version Base Channel Tools Channel

SUSE Liberty Linux 9

RHEL and Liberty 9 Base

EL9-Manager-Tools-Pool for x86_64 and EL9-Manager-Tools-Updates for x86_64

SUSE Liberty Linux 8

RHEL or SLES ES or CentOS 8 Base

RES8-Manager-Tools-Pool for x86_64 and RES8-Manager-Tools-Updates for x86_64

SUSE Liberty Linux 7

RHEL Expanded Support 7

RES7-SUSE-Manager-Tools x86_64

Procedure: Adding Software Channels
  1. In the SUSE Manager Web UI, navigate to Admin  Setup Wizard  Products.

  2. Locate the appropriate products for your client operating system and architecture using the search bar, and check the appropriate product. This will automatically check all mandatory channels. Also all recommended channels are checked as long as the include recommended toggle is turned on. Click the arrow to see the complete list of related products, and ensure that any extra products you require are checked.

  3. Click Add Products and wait until the products have finished synchronizing.

The channels you need for this procedure are:

Table 3. ES Channels - CLI
OS Version Base Channel Client Channel Tools Channel

SUSE Liberty Linux 9

el9-pool-x86_64

-

el9-manager-tools-pool-x86_64

SUSE Liberty Linux 8

rhel8-pool-x86_64

-

res8-manager-tools-pool-x86_64

SUSE Liberty Linux 7

rhel-x86_64-server-7

-

res7-suse-manager-tools-x86_64

1.1. Add Base Media

The base SUSE Liberty Linux channel does not contain any packages, because SUSE does not provide Red Hat Enterprise Linux or CentOS base media. You need to obtain base media from Red Hat or CentOS, which you can add as a child channel to the SUSE Liberty Linux parent channel. To ensure you have all the packages you need, use a full DVD image, not a minimal or JeOS image.

You can use SUSE Manager custom channels to set up the Red Hat Enterprise Linux or CentOS media. All packages on the base media must be mirrored into a child channel.

You can freely choose the names for the channels.

Procedure: Creating Custom Channels
  1. On the SUSE Manager Server Web UI, navigate to Software  Manage  Channels.

  2. Click Create Channel and set the appropriate parameters for the channels.

  3. In the Parent Channel field, select the appropriate base channel.

  4. Click Create Channel.

  5. Repeat for all channels you need to create. There should be one custom channel for each custom repository.

You can check that you have created all the appropriate channels and repositories, by navigating to Software  Channel List  All.

For Red Hat 8 clients, add both the Base and AppStream channels. You require packages from both channels. If you do not add both channels, you cannot create the bootstrap repository, due to missing packages.

If you are using modular channels, you must enable the Python 3.6 module stream on the client. If you do not provide Python 3.6, the installation of the spacecmd package will fail.

Procedure: Adding Base Media to Custom Channels
  1. On the SUSE Manager Server, at the command prompt, as root, copy the base media image to the /tmp/ directory.

  2. Create a directory to contain the media content. Replace <os_name> with either sll7, sll8, or sll9:

    mkdir -p /srv/www/htdocs/pub/<os_name>
  3. Mount the image:

    mount -o loop /tmp/<iso_filename> /srv/www/htdocs/pub/<os_name>
  4. Import the packages into the child channel you created earlier:

    spacewalk-repo-sync -c <channel-label> -u file:///srv/www/htdocs/pub/<os_name>/<repopath>/

1.1.1. OPTIONAL: Add Base Media from a Content URL

Alternatively, if you have access to a content URL provided by Red Hat CDN or CentOS, you can create a custom repository to mirror the packages.

The details you need for this procedure are:

Table 4. ES Custom Repository Settings
Option Parameter

Repository URL

The content URL provided by Red Hat CDN or CentOS

Has Signed Metadata?

Uncheck all Red Hat Enterprise repositories

SSL CA Certificate

redhat-uep (Red Hat only)

SSL Client Certificate

Entitlement-Cert-date (Red Hat only)

SSL Client Key

Entitlement-Key-date (Red Hat only)

Procedure: Creating Custom Repositories
  1. On the SUSE Manager Server Web UI, navigate to Software  Manage  Repositories.

  2. Click Create Repository and set the appropriate parameters for the repository.

  3. Click Create Repository.

  4. Repeat for all repositories you need to create.

When you have created all the channels, you can associate them with the repositories you created:

Procedure: Associating Channels with Repositories
  1. On the SUSE Manager Server Web UI, navigate to Software  Manage  Channels, and click the channel to associate.

  2. Navigate to the Repositories tab, and check the repository to associate with this channel.

  3. Click Update Repositories to associate the channel and the repository.

  4. Repeat for all channels and repositories you need to associate.

  5. OPTIONAL: Navigate to the Sync tab to set a recurring schedule for synchronization of this repository.

  6. Click Sync Now to begin synchronization immediately.

2. Check Synchronization Status

Procedure: Checking Synchronization Progress from the Web UI
  1. In the SUSE Manager Web UI, navigate to Admin  Setup Wizard and select the Products tab. This dialog displays a completion bar for each product when they are being synchronized.

  2. Alternatively, you can navigate to Software  Manage  Channels, then click the channel associated to the repository. Navigate to the Repositories tab, then click Sync and check Sync Status.

Procedure: Checking Synchronization Progress from the Command Prompt
  1. At the command prompt on the SUSE Manager Server, as root, use the tail command to check the synchronization log file:

    tail -f /var/log/rhn/reposync/<channel-label>.log
  2. Each child channel generates its own log during the synchronization progress. You need to check all the base and child channel log files to be sure that the synchronization is complete.

The SUSE Liberty Linux channels can be very large. The initial channel synchronization can sometimes take up to several hours.

When the initial synchronization is complete, we recommended you clone the channel before you work with it. This gives you a backup of the original synchronization data.

3. Register SUSE Liberty Linux Clients

To register your clients, you need a bootstrap repository. By default, bootstrap repositories are automatically created, and regenerated daily for all synchronized products. You can manually create the bootstrap repository from the command prompt, using this command:

mgr-create-bootstrap-repo

For more information on registering your clients, see Client Registration.

4. Migrate Enterprise Linux (EL) clients to SUSE Liberty Linux

If an Enterprise Linux (EL) client such as RHEL and all clones (like CentOS, AlmaLinux, Rocky Linux, and Oracle Linux) is already registered as a minion on SUSE Manager and users want to migrate it to SUSE Liberty Linux they can use a re-activation key to apply the activation key that drives the migration.

For more information about re-activation keys, see client-configuration:activation-keys.adoc#reactivation.

The re-activation key is per minion, and can be generated with the Web UI or using the API. For more information, see https://documentation.suse.com/suma/5.0/api/suse-manager/api/system.html#apidoc-system-obtainReactivationKey-loggedInUser-sid.

To re-activate a client, the user can run the bootstrap script on the client and pass the re-activation key as an environment variable. Example:

REACTIVATION_KEY=<KEY> ./bootstrap_liberate9.sh

Another method is to add some special flags to the Salt client configuration file located at /etc/venv-salt-minon/minion.d/susemanager.conf (or /etc/salt-minon/minion.d/susemanager.conf) the following content (join this content with the already existing one):

grains:
    susemanager:
        activation_key: "<KEY_ID>"
        management_key: "MINION_REACTIVATION_KEY"

After changing the susemanager.conf file, the salt-minion service needs to be restarted on the Salt server. By default with:

systemctl restart venv-salt-minon

Or for legacy Salt with:

systemctl restart salt-minon

4.1. The liberate formula

Migrating Enterprise Linux (EL) clients to SUSE Liberty Linux with the liberate formula. For more information, see Liberate Formula.