Installing Groovy via PXE boot


for years I’ve been using the method of installing Ubuntu desktop machines by putting the netboot image on a TFP server, then booting the desktops via PXE and automating the Debian installer using a preseed file.

For Groovy, no netboot image is available anymore and the download page points me here.

I could not find proper documentation for booting the new installer via PXE. There are several problems with what I could find:

  1. Post 1 at Netbooting the live server installer has some kind of steps, however they require you to download pxelinux.0 from Eoan(!).
  2. Post 6 at Netbooting the live server installer mentions that the kernel and initrd will be published separately, so we don’t have have to extract them from the ISO. Publishing the kernel and initrd separately doesn’t seem to have happenened, at least I could not find it.
  3. The method described in post 1 requires each client to download the full ISO into a ramdisk when booting. This is already problematic for the server image at about 900 MB, but is much worse for the desktop image with a size of almost 3 GB.

Consequently, some questions arise:

  1. Does anybody know where to get pxelinux.0, kernel and initrd for Groovy for booting via PXE?
  2. Is there some way around each client having to download the full desktop image?

To me it seems that the new installer does not take established workflows and use cases into consideration at all. Having to load almost 3 GB instead of a few MB when booting a client is madness.

I hope that somebody can shed some light on this. Since the linked posts were made by @mwhudson I’m mentioning you here, I hope you can help.


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I share your dissapointment.

The mini.iso with pxeboot should be revived for newer releases.
Check out the for reasons behind the bug.

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Thanks for the reply and the link!

I’d still be really interested in @mwhudson’s input regarding this topic. Are you going to publish kernel and initrd separately? Are there any plans to make installing Ubuntu via PXE viable again?



Same request here, I need kernel/initrd to automate my PXE installations, will you provide it ?

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Definitely this is very important… The kerne and initrd are required for network installation via PXE or uEFI netboot. Could you please continue providing that?


For people who don’t mind booting and installing via UEFI netboot, you may also be interested in this step by step instruction (applicable to Groovy on arm64/x86) Netbooting the Live Server Installer via UEFI PXE on Arm (aarch64, arm64) and x86_64 (amd64)


In the meantime I also managed to get a working PXE setup for Groovy that runs the Subiquity installer with an autoinstall configuration.

I documented my findings in detail at

My solution can be used both for UEFI and BIOS systems and also mentions how to install a desktop system.

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