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Creating a Local ISO Storage Repository in XenServer 7.0.0

I recently installed XenServer 7.0.0 to check out its capabilities around unikernels & running native Docker containers. Unfortunately, one major limitation — at least for lab use — is that XenServer does not let the administrator create a storage repository (SR in XenServer terms) right on the machine, to store ISO images for the various operating systems you’re going to install. Normally it requires that your ISO SR live on either a CIFS or NFS share, which is impractical for the home hobbyist who doesn’t want to maintain yet another piece of infrastructure.

Fortunately, there’s a way you can hack a local ISO SR onto the server. The directions have changed a little bit for XenServer 7.0.0, since by default it sets the LVM groups’ metadata as read-only, which inhibits you from adding a volume group to store ISOs. So, in between steps 1 and 2 on the instructions page, you need to edit /etc/lvm/lvm.conf and change the metadata_read_only setting from 1 to 0. Then, after performing step 6, change it back.

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  1. To do the fstab in XS 6.5 you use to have to:

    nano /etc/rc.sysinit

    Then uncomment:

    #if [ -x /sbin/lvm.static ]; then

    # action $”Setting up Logical Volume Management:” /sbin/lvm.static vgchange -a y –ignorelockingfailure


    To have it activate the manually created LVM on boot.

    I cannot figure out a way to get XenServer 7 to auto activate the new LVM on boot. I think all the heavy lifting is done by xensource python code.

    They have lvmetad ( turned off and when I edited lvm.conf and turned it on it killed my system. systemd could not fully bring the system up and for some reason journalctl does not have any freaking logs. I was going to keep going but I need to look into more how to get systemd not to manage everything and just bring up this single LVM volume on boot.

  2. thx for the instructions, was working like a charm!

    thoug I noticed the changes made in the /etc/lvm/lvm.conf with the metadata_read_only setting, you can only change them back AFTER Step 9.

    otherwise xen wont let you