Osmc boot from network

Hi all/ Sam,

Just reading through various posts around getting rid of the sd card for osmc and network booting it. I’ve a few running at family members houses now and seem to be getting through sd cards with other things on them (dhcp server, octoprint etc)

I just wanted to check there wasn’t a recent documented process for this anywhere. I can work it out from posts on the forum but just in case someone had done the legwork already.

I’ve already pxe booted windows/ Linux machines so not too worried about that side but wanted to see if anyone had collected the osmc specific parts

Many thanks

You still need the SD card for booting.

Ah, thanks Sam. My mistake as not the first time you’ve said that, but glad I checked.

Can I just check it’s not on the radar? No worries if not but a gentle +1 for it please

Appreciate you coming back so quickly.

It’s quite low down on the list. I don’t see a compelling reason to implement this yet.


Completely understand.

For me, supporting remote non technical people, anything I can do to deploy/ fix/ backup remotely helps. I’d still have to visit for a corrupted SD, probably some updates.

That said I haven’t tried it with just the boot on SD yet and imagine it would be much more robust and can post them an sdcard if needed.

Would a DD copy/ backup of the card whilst it’s turned on work as it’s only the boot?

You imply that you are having large numbers of SD card corruption/failures. This is a bit unusual. Sure, SD cards have a limited lifetime, but I have cards that are 3+ years old still working fine.

You should investigate why you are having a large number of failures. Are your buying quality SD cards (like this one: OSMC 32GB SD card - OSMC or a good SanDisk. Just don’t buy them from Ebay as there is a big problem with counterfeit cards sold there)

I just notice that the osmc card comes with Lifetime warranty !

Does this mean you will replace it every time it fails for free ?

The wear rate on the SD card of an nfsroot-based Pi will be significantly less since there is virtually no write activity to the card except during the monthly update.


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Thanks Bmillham,

I don’t want to overplay it. I’ve had a couple go recently (nearly always use Sandisk) but as I haven’t kept track of where they’ve all moved so they could be old ones. They’ve been in machines running DHCP servers and suspect it’s got something to do with the large number (of very small sized) writes.
Purely ad-hoc view there, don’t quote me on it. To be clear it’s not an osmc thing.

As we’re on it, could I just check the tools people use to to test cards these days please? Win or *nix. I do often use amazon so could have picked up bad ones without knowing it. Still h2wtestw?
I appreciate actual recovery is a bit harder, if even possible.

That said I didn’t know about the osmc ones. Will get those next time by way of supporting the team. Would only invoke the lifetime warranty if it failed within an unreasonable timescale.

Yes — this is the best.