Sunday, March 22, 2009

Debian Live LXDE persistent mode

I was very happy that Debian Lenny had Live LXDE Desktop CD. I had tried it briefly earlier. Today I decided to use the persistent mode i.e. changes saved in live-rw file and used on reboot.

As always I copied the contents of Debian Live LXDE iso to a 1 GB partition and edited /boot/grub/menu.lst to make following entries:
title Debian Live LXDE
root (hd0,7)
kernel /live/vmlinuz1 boot=live union=aufs ip=frommedia swapon timezone=Asia/Kolkata persistent noprompt
initrd /live/initrd1.img
Explanation of boot parameters:
boot=live union=aufs This is copied from live.cfg file in isolinux directory
ip=frommedia This tells the system to read configuration from /etc/network/interfaces saved from earlier boots.
persistent This tells the system to look for live-rw home-rw partitions or files on the hard disk
noprompt This tells the system not to wait for removing Live CD on shutdown/restart

For persistent media I created live-rw on one partition (mounted at /media/disk) as follows:
$ dd if=/dev/null of=live-rw bs=512M seek=1
$ /sbin/mkfs.ext2 -F live-rw
$ sudo mv live-rw /media/disk
Just to check that persistent includes the installed .debs I installed ttf-indic-fonts:
$ sudo apt-get install ttf-devanagari-fonts
and the fonts are available on reboot.

All my personal settings are available, although, I did not create separate home-rw because live-rw includes changes to /home/user
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