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GUI (graphical user interface) metod preferred. For example - can the new remote login feature be used for the purpose if the remote person has Ubuntu live cd and know how to boot it? The built-in remote login feature in question has been described here Ubuntu 12.10 Login Screen Adds Remote Desktop Access Remmina maybe?

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This is very simple to do, I do it all the time. First you need to boot into some kind of environment.

  1. Boot the system "somehow." Here is a older document on bootp. You could also use a live CD and choose "try Ubuntu" to get a running Linux. I recomend the Alternate install cd for this.
  2. Next setup your disks with fdisk or whatever you like (again your on ssh when you do this).
  3. Get debbootstrap sudo apt-get install debootstrap && sudo apt-get install build-essential
  4. Bootstrap the box debootstrap --arch i386 percise /mnt/new_disk
  5. Get into the system and make it actually work chroot /mnt/new_disk /bin/bash
  6. Next make your interfaces, fstab, etc.
  7. Install a Kernel
  8. Fix sudoers
  9. Reboot and pray. (Don't forget to make the partition bootable)

With a little work you can make a script to do all this for you, and have a rapid deployment setup that is really quite handy. Here is a guide that should help get you going.

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I don't see it as something simple ;) Can't I just tell the remote guy to boot into ubuntu Live CD 'Try Ubuntu' so we could set up the ubuntu built-in remote feature, then click on 'Install ubuntu' on his desktop and take itfrom there? – Bucic Dec 5 '12 at 13:45
that's certainly not the way I would go, but I guess you could run Kickstart or just forward the installer over ssh. Maybe it's just because I already have the script to do it. Integrate it with bootp and you have a really simple/fast install Ubuntu anywhere on my network setup. Here is another link that is more up to date – coteyr Dec 5 '12 at 13:51
It's all to taste though, there's always more then one way to do something in Linux. – coteyr Dec 5 '12 at 13:54
Please mind the Word 'easy' in the question. If it's possible without terminal,please cover that first. We can expand the answers later to include slightly more difficult methods. But first things first. – Bucic Dec 5 '12 at 15:57
Easy is subjective I find this method very easy. – coteyr Dec 5 '12 at 16:19

i don't think a remote installment of ubuntu from a live cd is available, as the new install wizard requires the GUI to navigate trough the setup.. before there was a preseed function, but it has been compleetly removed.

the best shot you may have, is to try to temp install sshd on the live version, and see if you have any chance there

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If you boot from live CD and the sistem get's an ip, then he could activate Desktop Sharing and you will be able to continue the installation. All you have to do is install on your computer an VNC viewer and guide that person to configure access to the target computer on port 5900.

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  • install Ubuntu locally with all the bells and whistles
  • ask your friend to issue:

    nc -l 12345 | dd of=/dev/sda

note: port 12345 should be open in the router

  • you boot live ubuntu
  • issue:

    dd if=/dev/sda | nc fiends_IP 12345

adjust sda with your cases

Depending on disk size and the speed of the connection it will take a while.

You can pipe to tar -xzpsf - to compress the flow

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Are you talking about cloning or alike? I'm not sure. – Bucic Dec 5 '12 at 18:03
That's like remote "ghosting". I have never done it, but it should work. Make sure the networks is private though. I can think of several problems, but in theory at least, it should work. – coteyr Dec 5 '12 at 21:33
@bucic - yes it is a clone because you don't have control over remote machine - so install it on some machine locally. Linux in most of the cases doesn't have problems "moving" the OS between machines, even with different hardware. – jet Dec 6 '12 at 2:09
@jet So your method is invalid if my and the remote machines are not identical I.e. it's valid only in a special case. – Bucic Dec 6 '12 at 11:22
it is valid - Linux doesn't care too much about hardware differences, because all the drivers are in the kernel (except some cases) – jet Dec 7 '12 at 18:44

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