Running DesktopBSD from USB stick
I found this article in German regarding running DesktopBSD (FreeBSD + KDE) as a live system from a USB stick:
Here is a translation to English and I encourage all readers to add to this thread with their own findings:
I have just completed booting a DesktopBSD Live from a USB stick on my Lenovo 3000 N200 notebook.
Pleasant surprise: the PCIe Broadcom BCM5906M ethernet card is now part of the current DesktopBSD-1.7-i386-SNAPSHOT-20081116.
The NIC can also be comfortably configured via the DesktopBSD KDE control menu.
Quite a fine thing! Thanks to the DesktopBSD team!
What I've done so far: configure the USB stick after the following guide:
and configured it as follows:
So I have only one large UFS2 partition on the inserted USB stick.
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/da0 bs=1k count=1
bsdlabel -Bw da0 auto
The DesktopBSD ISO image can be mounted to /mnt/iso with the following:
The complete contents of DesktopBSD ISO image has been copied on the freshly formatted and mounted partition UFS2.
mdconfig -a -t vnode -f DesktopBSD-1.7-i386-SNAPSHOT-20081116.iso -u 0 && mount -r -t cd9660 /dev/md0 /mnt/iso
BIOS has been set to boot from USB.
Immediately reported to the bootloader of DesktopBSD, the process halts when mounting the partition. So again I searched a bit and edited in /etc/fstab from DesktopBSD on the USB stick.
Originally it reads:
Which for my USB stick I have modified to:
/dev/iso9660/DesktopBSD / cd9660 ro 0 0
Unfortunately, the boot process still hung briefly, but continued when at the boot loader prompt I entered:
/dev/da0a/DesktopBSD / ufs ro 0 0
Runs after these little manual corrections just fine as a DesktopBSD Live USB stick.
I will dream perhaps about how to achieve a boot process without manual intervention from ufs:da0a.
I think this could maybe be the big hype around these small Netbooks, or this sweet little EeePC box, which just like the Netbook neither has a floppy nor CD or DVD drive, quite a bonus, perhaps because one would prefer to have with him his favorite thing to install or test.
Also this could be the favorite system so easily carried with you in your pocket as DesktopBSD live USB stick.
Small drawback: my old Socket A crate has difficulties when a USB drive is attached upon booting, no matter whether the USB disk or USB stick is inserted; it will crash, but that's what you have with the newer notebooks.
The "fat" KDE runs very smooth, incidentally, feels very "snappy" on the live USB stick.