From Fedora Project Wiki

Support installation to image files


Do not limit installation to physical storage media. Support installation to disk image files.


Current status

  • Targeted release: Fedora 15
  • Last updated: 2011-01-06
  • Percentage of completion: 90%
  • Remaining work items
    • network device configuration
      • currently impossible to configure an interface that is not available/present
    • sanity-checking of installer environment

Detailed Description

Support installation to files representing disk images.

commit cb387c67eb351f97664b7f0b3150c1619fe41425
Author: David Lehman <>
Date:   Tue Nov 16 13:21:44 2010 -0500

    Add support for installing onto block device image files.
    Multiple image files can be specified via "--image=/path/to/image[:name]"
    on the anaconda command line. The name cannot contain colons.
    Whenever disk images are specified, they automatically become the
    only disks visible to anaconda, as if "ignoredisks --only-use" had
    been used.
    Fow now, only normal disk images are supported. Do not try to build
    a fwraid or mpath in image files and expect anaconda to handle it
    Don't log to system log for disk image installs. For one thing, it adds
    a huge amount of text to /var/log/messages. It also has some problem
    that prevents subsequent attempts to connect to the syslog socket (from, anyway) to fail.
    Don't allow configuration of network devices during disk image installs.
    Also, don't write anything in /etc/sysconfig on the host system
    when doing image installs.
    Don't start auditd when doing an image install.
    Don't run setupTimezone if installing to disk image file(s). We don't
    want to change settings on the host system.
    Don't start or stop iscsi, fcoe, dasd, or zfcp during image installs.

Benefit to Fedora

Provides a method to generate virt images and, potentially, a way to create live images using anaconda.


Initially, only raw image files are supported. At some point it might be nice to support qcow or other image formats.

No support is present or planned for images mimicking firmware RAID or multipath devices.

No support is present for iSCSI and FCoE at this time, and it is undecided whether or not it will be added at a later time.

Test Plan

User Experience

Users will have to set up an environment including an installed anaconda package. By specifying disk image files as command line arguments to anaconda you are indicating that anaconda should behave as if the images were the only storage devices visible to the installation process. No additional device filtering will be offered.


Contingency Plan


Release Notes