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AIX Version 4.3 Network Installation Management Guide and Reference

Installing an Alternate Disk with a mksysb Image on a NIM Client

NIM allows you to install an AIX 4.3 mksysb image (mksysb resource) on a NIM client's alternate disk. This allows for less down time than a normal mksysb installation, because the client system is running while the installation is taking place.


  1. The NIM master must be configured, and the mksysb resource must be defined. See "Configuring the NIM Master and Creating Basic Installation Resources".
  2. The NIM client must already exist in the NIM environment and must be running. To add the client to the NIM environment, see "Adding a Standalone NIM Client to the NIM Environment".
  3. The bos.alt_disk_install.rte fileset must be installed on the NIM client. To install a new fileset on a NIM Client, see "Customizing NIM Clients and SPOT Resources".
Note: This task is not currently supported by Web-based System Manager.


  1. To install a mksysb image on an NIM client's alternate disk, enter the smit nim_alt_mksysb fast path from the NIM master.
  2. Select the Target Machine or Target Group to Install.
  3. Enter the Target Disk or Disks on the Target machine.
  4. In the displayed dialog fields, supply the correct values for the installation options or accept the default values. Use the help information and the LIST option for guidance.
  5. The alternate disk installation will be initiated on the client, and progress can be seen with the lsnim command (smit lsnim). If the "Reboot when complete?" option is set to yes and the "Phase to execute" is all or includes Phase 3, the client will reboot from the newly installed disk when the alt_disk_install command is complete.

From the Command Line

  1. To initiate the alt_disk_install operation to install a mksysb on a client's alternate disk, enter:
    nim -o alt_disk_install -a source=mksysb -a mksysb=Mksysb \
    -a disk='diskname(s)' ClientName

    Specify the mksysb resource to be used and any additional options for customizing the installation. To perform a simple alternate disk mksysb install, specify the source, mksysb, and disk resources.

  2. The alt_disk_install command will then be initiated on the target system, and progress will be shown with the lsnim command. In addition, a log kept on the target system, /var/adm/ras/alt_disk_inst.log, contains progress messages and any error or warning messages that might occur. The /var/adm/ras/nim.alt_disk_install log will contain debug information, if requested.


The client machine machine1 is a running system with a disk, hdisk2 , that is not currently occupied by a volume group. To install this disk with a mksysb resource named 43mksysb , enter:

nim -o alt_disk_install -a source=mksysb -a mksysb=43mksysb \
-a disk=hdisk2 machine1
Note: For a complete description of the different ways that an alternate disk mksysb installation can be customized by NIM, see "alt_disk_install" NIM operation.

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