HOWTO Netboot a Sun machine using RARP

This article was first written in June 2005 for the BeezNest technical
website (

This article will explain how to netboot a Sun machine using RARP with a Debian/GNU Linux server.

Install package rarpd:

$ sudo apt-get install rarpd

Configure your TFTP server:

Adapt the options in /etc/init.d/rarpd to match the directory where you TFTP server delivers its files from.

Create a /etc/ethers file:

xx.xx.xx.xx machine

Take care of «machine» name being resolvable from /etc/hosts or whatever other name-resolution system on your server.

Put the boot image in the TFTP-served directory, and rename it to the IP-address of the machine in hexa. Utility sipcalc can do the conversion for you.

$ sudo apt-get install sipcalc

Reboot the machine and stop-a (if on the console) or break (if on a serial console) to get the «ok» prompt. There, type «boot net», enter, and it will happily load your image from the TFTP server.

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