[Tutorial] Live usb with persistence over 4GB

Write tutorials here
There are more tutorials here http://community.linuxmint.com/tutorial/welcome
Forum rules
Please don't add support questions to tutorials,start your own thread in the appropriate sub-forum instead. Before you post please read this
User avatar
Level 9
Level 9
Posts: 2998
Joined: Wed Jun 21, 2017 12:25 pm
Location: San Francisco

Re: [Tutorial] Live usb with persistence over 4GB

Post by pbear »

This came up in a couple of threads recently, so I decided to give mkUSB a whirl. Having done it both ways, I'd say they're pretty similar in terms of difficulty. And both work. On the whole, though, I agree with Spearmint2 that mkUSB is a better choice. Was developed by senior Ubuntu guru sudodus (Nio Wiklund) to do precisely this task and is now on version 12 ("dus"). Also, unlike MultiSystem, mkUSB can be installed to a live session, making this the only feasible method of which I'm aware to create a persistent Linux drive greater than 4 GB with a Windows machine.

Anyhoo, Linux is all about choice. As this is a tutorial, I thought it would be helpful to jot down the steps. Here is the path I found works best.

1. Install app. There are several options, but this is adequate for a single user looking for the current version:

Code: Select all

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mkusb/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install mkusb usb-pack-efi
2. Install to USB. Start app from Menu: System Tools (or type mkusb in Terminal), then select option “d” (for 12). Enter sudo password. Acknowledge overwrite warning. Select install, then ‘Persistent live’. Navigate to select source ISO; select target drive from list; “Use defaults” for drive settings. Select % of remaining space for persistence (I use 95%). Read warnings. Double check installation target. Hit “Go”. Confirm proceed even though not installing Ubuntu. For a nice walkthrough with screenshots, see answer by user Harsh halfway down this askubuntu page, starting with “I would like to expand on the answer … “.

3. Cleanup. The reason I only use 95% of the remaining space for the persistent partition is that I want to leave room for wear leveling. Quit mkUSB, open GParted and delete the usbdata partition on the USB drive (space becomes unallocated). Also, sudodus doesn't mention anything about not mounting the persistent partition, but I follow Laurent85's advice and disable automount for an mkUSB persistent drive (for "how to" in Mate, see here).

That should work for most folks. For more information, see official website (same link as Spearmint2 gave above), especially the discussion of persistence, the Quick Start Manual, and an omnibus thread on the app sudodus maintains on the Ubuntu Forum.

BTW, a large persistent drive has useful applications, but I still think the better solution for most situations is full install to USB hard drive.

[Edited to clarify link to askubuntu page.]
Last edited by pbear on Wed May 30, 2018 6:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
If your problem has been solved, please edit the thread title.

Post Reply

Return to “Tutorials”