Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

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BigBaaadBob
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by BigBaaadBob »

Ubuntu 8.10 (upon which Linux Mint 6 is based) has a element in the admin menu item called "create a usb startup disk" which automatically does persistence with a click or two. I'm wondering why this isn't in Mint 6? And can it be added to Mint 6 after the fact?

This really seems like the simplest and most right way to address this problem.

WoodCAT
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by WoodCAT »

Have you tried installing usb-creator through synaptic? I have not tried the "make up a usb startup disk" my self, but I will give it a try since hdd on my laptop has died :-(.
BigBaaadBob wrote:Ubuntu 8.10 (upon which Linux Mint 6 is based) has a element in the admin menu item called "create a usb startup disk" which automatically does persistence with a click or two. I'm wondering why this isn't in Mint 6? And can it be added to Mint 6 after the fact?

This really seems like the simplest and most right way to address this problem.

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newW2
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by newW2 »

Just open synaptic package manager and install usb-creator.

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Fred
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by Fred »

vl4dimir,

Do you have Windows installed on a 4 Gig flash stick? ... No? Does that mean you won't be using Windows anymore either? :-)

Fred
Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and each time expecting a different result.

Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on the menu. Liberty is an armed lamb protesting the electoral outcome. A Republic negates the need for an armed protest.

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AK Dave
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by AK Dave »

iTaO wrote:Anyone try usb-creator ?
Make persistent saves ?
Works great!

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AK Dave
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by AK Dave »

vl4dimir wrote:Anybody know any other distros with codecs and all and yet be installed persistent on the stick.?
Mint installs easily to a usb stick with persistent settings. Don't even need usb-creator.

All you need is a computer that can boot from its own optical drive AND can also boot from a usb stick. This is the key to it all!

1. Insert usb stick into usb slot (insert tab-A in slot-B).
2. Insert Mint CD in drive.
3. Boot computer with Mint CD.
4. On install, select Manual partitioning. Select the usb stick as your install drive. One partition, ext2 file system.
5. On install, select Advanced settings. Select the usb stick as the location for grub. You won't need it, but you don't want it on your hard drive.
6. Finish the install.
7. Remove the CD and reboot with the usb stick.

No need for usb-creator. I'll note that with Ubuntu, usb-creator doesn't work until you INSTALL the system to the hard disk. This method works without installing anything to your hard disk. Voila!

If the above is too difficult for you, you should confine yourself to using an etch-a-sketch.

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AK Dave
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by AK Dave »

iTaO wrote:Thanks AK Dave for your answer.
Why choose ext2 filesystem ? Why not ext3 ?
Install takes a while, no ?

Edit: Install with one ext3 partition takes a while & finally don't work... At boot grub start, choose linux kernel generic &...Error code 17: can't mount partiton!?
Try with one ext2 part... :roll:
Edit: Don't work for me with ext2 too... :cry:
If you MUST do it with ext3, fine. But you won't get any advantage of ext3 on a usb stick and in fact the repetetive read/writes involved in ext3 will (theoretically) decrease the lifespan of a flash drive faster.

I don't understand why your usb stick won't boot when configured like that. I've installed Ubuntu to usb that way before and had it work fine.

My preferred way these days is with usb-creator, but that just creates a usb version of the CD image (with persistent settings). Not quite the same as having a real install on a usb stick. The concept is sound: treat it as an actual hard drive. The concept works with a lot of other removable flash media also (esp Compact Flash cards). I'm baffled right now.

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Fred
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by Fred »

Do not try to format a flash drive as ext3. Due to the interface on the stick itself, you could break the stick. The interfaces are proprietary in most cases and were not meant to deal with ext3. Some will tolerate ext3 and others won't.

As AK Dave said, there is no advantage to ext3 on a flash stick. In fact it just slows the access and wears out the stick about 10 times faster than it otherwise would.

His method works just fine, if the BIOS can be and is set to boot from a usb stick, or/and you have the appropriate boot stanza in your hard drive menu.lst file. It just takes up more space than installing it as a compressed iso image.

If it didn't work for you it is probably because you:

1) Broke your usb stick by not following his instructions and trying to install ext3.

2) Didn't accurately interpret and follow his instructions.

3) Made a mistake on the install somewhere, maybe by miss-installing grub or not setting the hard drive menu.lst stanza properly.

Fred
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Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on the menu. Liberty is an armed lamb protesting the electoral outcome. A Republic negates the need for an armed protest.

Jeremy Johnson
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by Jeremy Johnson »

I saw this thread on mintCast, so I thought I would chime in. I have Linux Mint 6 x64 working on an 8GB USB drive. I posted the details at http://jertech.blogspot.com/2009/02/stick-of-mint.html but I'll give a quick summary of what I did here.

I parititioned the USB stick with a FAT32 partition to hold the .iso data and an ext2 partition for persistence. I used usb-creator to create a bootable drive on the FAT32 partition with a 128MB (minimum size) persistence file. I then deleted the casper-rw file and labeled the ext2 partition "casper-rw". To get persistence to work, I also had to modify /syslinux/syslinux.cfg on the FAT32 partition.

Using this method, I was able to get more than 7GB for persistent storage, and it works great.

By the way, I read somewhere that some flash drives will not boot if you do a direct install, but others will. Apparently, it just depends on what type of flash drive you have. Either way, I'd rather use the CD image with persistence because of fewer writes to the drive.

PeterV
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by PeterV »

Hello,

persistent storage does work with Mint Felicia (in a way). I used the instructions to be found here "http://www.pendrivelinux.com/usb-linux- ... n-windows/" to make a persistent Felicia installation on usb. It works like a charm.
But the real problem with a so called persistent installation is user programs like "opera" or "remastersys back-up" can be installed without any problems but not system and security updates with Mint Update. And that's what I'm looking for.
I tried to achieve it making an Iso-image of the Mint installation on my laptop with all the latest updates (system/security) using "Remastersys" and next using that iso-file as input for the instructions on "http://www.pendrivelinux.com/usb-linux- ... n-windows/" but that does not work unfortunately.

A question for the real Linux experts: why isn't that possible?

Kind regards,

PeterV

Jeremy Johnson
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by Jeremy Johnson »

How did you find that it's not working? It seems to work okay for me.

PeterV
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by PeterV »

Hello Jeremy,

"How did you find that it's not working? It seems to work okay for me."

Is that a comment on my post above yours? If it is, could you please explain how you made it work?

Kind regards,

PeterV

Jeremy Johnson
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by Jeremy Johnson »

It was for you, PeterV.

In your post, you said, "But the real problem with a so called persistent installation is user programs like "opera" or "remastersys back-up" can be installed without any problems but not system and security updates with Mint Update."

I would like to verify that I am checking the same thing you are. How exactly did you determine that the system and security updates were not working? Did you get an error when you tried updating them? Did they keep showing up as needed updates after you installed them, just like a non-persistent OS would? By "system and security updates" do you mean all updates, or just a certain category of updates?

You can see my blog (in my sig) for the procedures I used, but I would like to understand your problem more before I can say for sure that I don't have the same problem. It may be the case that you noticed something I did not.

PeterV
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by PeterV »

Jeremy Johnson wrote:It was for you, PeterV.

In your post, you said, "But the real problem with a so called persistent installation is user programs like "opera" or "remastersys back-up" can be installed without any problems but not system and security updates with Mint Update."

I would like to verify that I am checking the same thing you are. How exactly did you determine that the system and security updates were not working? Did you get an error when you tried updating them? Did they keep showing up as needed updates after you installed them, just like a non-persistent OS would? By "system and security updates" do you mean all updates, or just a certain category of updates?

You can see my blog (in my sig) for the procedures I used, but I would like to understand your problem more before I can say for sure that I don't have the same problem. It may be the case that you noticed something I did not.
Hello Jeremy,

by system and security updates I mean all Mint Updates up till level 3 (in my situation). When applied and rebooted I'm always able to login again but receive error messages from Mint Update and can't update again. That's why I tried the method of first making a complete back-up with Remastersys of my up-to-date Mint laptop and using the resulting Iso-file as input for the making of a pesistent USB stick installation described on the pendrivelinux web-site. But that's not working either.

Kind regards,

PeterV
Belgium

Jeremy Johnson
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by Jeremy Johnson »

PeterV,

I do not have the problem you mentioned. I installed all updates ranked 1 to 3, and it worked just fine.

I did not make my Mint Stick using Windows. Instead, I used an Ubuntu Live CD with the usb-creator program. The version I had was 8.04, but I had to install usb-creator because it doesn't come with 8.04 by default. If you create an Ubuntu 8.10 CD, it will have usb-creator installed by default. You can then follow the instructions on my blog. (You could also make a Mint 6 live CD, but you will have to install usb-creator during your live session because I heard it's not installed by default.)

Jeremy

jimnandrews
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by jimnandrews »

I realize that this is an old topic, and therefore possibly old news, but you might try "Super OS" http://hacktolive.org/wiki/Super_OS(formerly "Super Ubuntu") 9.04... It is a custom-rolled Ubuntu distro with all the common codecs and things like that pre-installed.

Also handy: Just mount the ISO file in windows, and from the menu that comes up (if you have autoplay enabled), choose the "Install to USB" item, and it will create, from Windows, a bootable (and persistent) install on *any* bootable USB media (I have one install on a 4gb thumbdrive, and one on a 6gb partition on a 250gb USB hard drive)...

(oh, yeah, if you're running Vista or Windows 7, open up the mounted ISO image, and run "Super_OS_Menu.exe" as Administrator, otherwise the installation of Grub to the USB drive will fail)

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hernando
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by hernando »

I also add to this old topic, in the hope that someone in my same situation can find this useful.

I was looking a lot trying to find a good way of creating a persistent bootable USB to hold my Linux Mint 7.
After trying some programs, with no success, I finally try the steps listed in http://www.pendrivelinux.com
... http://www.pendrivelinux.com/usb-linux- ... n-windows/

I transcript the steps here, but, you should go to the link in order to donwload the utility to do it. This tutorial is for creating this from Windows,, so it is targeted to people who have windows... or you can ask a friend to let you use his windows pc to do this.

You need:
- 2 GB (or larger) pendrive-usb formatted in FAT32.
- Linux Mint 7 ISO. I assume you already downloaded.
- the fixmint7.exe. You can download this file in the link above.

First:
Download the Fixmint7.exe, and run it. It will extract a folder (named: USBMint) with some files in it.
Copy your ISO image to that same folder created.
Connect your pendrive to the USB (duh!).
In the folder created you will find a file named: fixmint.bat... run it.
It will open a win32 (DOS ?? ) dialog (who said windows doesn't have a terminal ???? ) asking you a few things... carefully read what it says and follow the steps ....
The first thing it ask you is the letter of your pendrive... enter your letter and hit 'Enter'.
It will take a few minutes processing, don't be impatient, don't press any key.
It will then ask you someting else--> DO NOT PRESS ANY KEY AFTER YOU READ CAREFULLY, this step is very important, since if you mess it, it will mess your windows.... but nothing to be afraid of... just read carefully...
It says he will make the disc bootable, and ask you to confirm what drive is the correct one. Logically it shows you the drive letter you just set before, but you should double check it!
If the letter shown is the correct one, just press any key to continue.
Wait a few seconds,,, and voilà !
You have your bootable persistent USB with your favorite flavour of linux... exactly, Mint 7!

In my case I did this from a windows with no administrator privileges, and it didn't worked... also my ISO was not the ISO I dowloaded originally, but a ISO I created from the CD I had... So, I did this again, at home, with my windows with administrator privileges, and with the original ISO downloaded, and it worked !

I booted from the USB, created a document in the desktop and restarted to check it... no problemas!
Then I created a second user with password, and set the login to not automatically login to the user 'mint' (the user to run the live cd, with no password).
I restarted, and ... no problemas! it asked me to enter the user and password... Great!

I just need to have a bigger persitent file. That's another topic... and you can read about this in the same link above... you have to replace the casper-rw file created originally with a new one (you can download a bigger one there)... but it says that doing this you will lose all your installed programs... so i think this should be done before installing a lot of things... I haven't try that for the moment...

Well, this turned into a loooong post... i hope this could help someone,,, it helped me, practicing my english!
My best wishes to the Mint team!
Salut Clem and the others!

From Uruguay, South America.

shenandoah
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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by shenandoah »

All,

I've run Linux Mint KDE version 6 on a USB flash drive in persistent mode for awhile. I set the usb drive up manually through terminal following the instructions on pendrivelinux for Ubuntu. When I tried to load Linux Mint KDE version 7 (gloria), the usb drive won't launch in persistent mode. I haven't had time to dig around to see what's going on. It will run fine in "live" mode (not saving changes), just not in persistent mode

If anyone has found the solution WITHOUT using windows, please post. Thanks.

S

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Re: Installing to a usb drive with persistent storage

Post by SilverOne »

I know the last post was from last month but what the hey, not sure if this will help at all, but I did find a helpful "noob-proof" tutorial on how to install BackTrack4 onto a usb drive, even has videos of installation and it being used afterward, now since this "should" not be editing your main grub file on the hard drive of your pc, it should work to get a bootable usb drive created with LinuxMint.

Click Here for More

I am going to go test this right now... If you dont hear from me for a few days then I got a bit angry with having to reinstall my different OS's onto my laptop.
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