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  1. #1
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    Mate to flash drive


    I have a cd of pclos-mate-2014.05

    Can I do a full install to a 8gb flash drive and have it be persistance

    I want to be able to take it to any pc run it and save the changes save back to the usb

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Roxoff's Avatar
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    Yes you can. If you have your chosen LiveCD/DVD image to hand, you can put it on a memory stick and create an overlay filesystem which stores changes from the original disk image.

    There are loads of ways and tools to do this. The one I use is the Fedora LiveUSB Creator. It's part of the Fedora tools, but it'll write any live CD image you have available and it'll create an overlay filesystem of the size you specify. And they've got a version for the major commercial OS too. And its wholly free Open Source, in line with the Fedora project's principles.

    There are other tools that do the same thing - I believe the Debian has one too.
    Linux user #126863 - see http://linuxcounter.net/

  3. #3
    Can I do a full install to a 8gb flash drive
    Full install which I have done is for only one computer.
    What you want is a live install with persistence. Roxoff pointed you in the right direction for that. Just another road to travel and see.

    What is Persistent Linux | USB Pen Drive Linux

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  5. #4
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    Easier way to Install Linux to stick or drive, godsend to XP users

    Quote Originally Posted by phil66 View Post
    I have a cd of pclos-mate-2014.05

    Can I do a full install to a 8gb flash drive and have it be persistance

    I want to be able to take it to any pc run it and save the changes save back to the usb
    If you use something like LiveUSBCreator you only get 4 GB of persistence. I was doing that a few years back, and it made me curse Linux, because the repository has HUNDREDS of programs, and that extra 4GB isn't enough even for a home folder.

    There is, happily, a better way to get what you want, and I found it by accident, because all of explanations on the web about how to install Linux to a stick, are horribly inaccurate: they all mention LiveUSBCreator or Unetbootin, or equivalents (i.e., Fedora has its own version): and NONE of them work well. You either can't get persistence past 4GB, or it doesn't really work, or the structure is so convoluted, you can't tell WHY it works. Which means, when it fails, you won't know why.

    Solution? It's so easy, it's embarrassing: INSTALL THE DISTRO TO AN EXTERNAL HARD DRIVE or stick, using the distro's own install program (which is usually an icon in the middle of the desktop when the LIVE version loads). Preferably, both: the stick runs much slower than the drive will. Having two is better. Read on, if you want to know more.
    Last edited by brainout; 06-22-2015 at 08:33 AM. Reason: re-organizing post

  6. #5
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    So again, the solution is: run the LIVE install to the external drive or stick, FIRST. As if that WERE the hard drive for installation.

    What size stick or external drive? Pick any size you like, but if you also want to install to a stick (ANY stick can be made with full persistence if you do what follows below) -- if you want TWO copies, then make sure your hard drive is smaller than the stick. In each case, the persistence will be as big as the capacity of the drive/stick. I suggest no smaller than 60GB for drives, and no smaller than 64 GB for sticks: Linux won't recognize 2GB of 64GB, and Windows will only recognize 58 of it. Why, I don't know.

    You can get a 128 (really 115) GB stick at Amazon for $50, 3.0 Kingston. Or if you prefer 2.0, same Data Traveller (which is oddly a tad pricier). Read on, if you want more...

  7. #6
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    Now, each Linux installer is unique, and imo most of them are very buggy and even dangerous, but the following caveats will keep them at bay:

    1. DO NOT be connected to the internet when you install. You can connect later.

    2. DO NOT have your hard drive mounted or better still, have no hard drive in the computer. You can install using a laptop, and slide out the drive prior to running the LIVE session.

    This caveat is especially important with distros like Fedora, who if detecting a hard drive on the machine automatically write GRUB CODE to it (wrecked my Dell Latitude 6510 last year, but fortunately I had just finished cloning it with Clonezilla). Some distros ASSume that you want to install to a hard drive, that's why.

    Same is true if you make the mistake of being connected to the internet at the time of installation.

    So get a computer on Ebay or something which has no hard drive but has other stuff you like, or just remove your hard drive prior to running the install.

    Example: I did Mint 13, Mint 17, Fedora 22 and PCLinuxOS each on external hard drives, following the above caveats: 60GB for my 64 GB Kingston sticks, and 250 GB for my desktops. So I have three sets each (well, haven't finished making them all yet).

    Sticks run slower than external drives. You can also buy an internal drive and hook it up EXTERNALLY using Plugable at Amazon (search there, I'm not allowed to post links yet).

    Clonezilla (latest version) will clone stick to stick, hard drive to stick, stick to hard drive. Takes all night for stick to stick clone of 64GB, takes maybe 20 minutes though if you use 3.0 port or a 3.0 stick from stick to external drive (I did both, tested on Dell Latitude 6510).

    The kicker with Clonezilla is that the DESTINATION aka TARGET drive be bigger than the source. It used to not matter, but later editions of clonezilla don't 'smart' clone like the earlier ones did (i.e., if space is unused in last partition, then the destination drive could be smaller to the extent of that unused space). I really wish I could find my earlier downloads of that software, because they worked better with 'smart' targets.

    Read on, if you want to know why I claim Linux is a godsend to XP users.

  8. #7
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    Why Every Windows XP user needs Linux:

    I've written many posts on the internet about this, so you can just search on my nickname plus 'Linux' and 'XP' to find them. Most are in PC World forums, which are now read-only. I'm trying to recap the meaning in my own PC World Alumni forum (tiny place, anyone can join and I don't monitor anything but spam).

    So here I'll just summarize: everything Windows can't do well, Linux does well. Everything Linux doesn't do well (and there is a LOT Linux doesn't do well, sorry) -- Windows does well. Especially for XP, which most know and want to keep, this fact applies.

    For example, now you can't surf as safely with XP, but if instead you have a Linux external drive or stick -- like I do, with the distros mentioned prior -- then you just plug it into your XP machine, boot, and you have full access to all your XP files. So now you can surf in safety, too, using (my fav) Firefox or whatever. Since that one syncs, in seconds I have all my bookmarks and history in Firefox that I have on the XP machine. Trick there is to download an EARLIER esr of Firefox first (24.5 esr is best), sync and THEN upgrade to the latest Firefox. Else, you can't sync.

    Wine works really well in PCLinuxOS. I can't get it to work elsewhere. So there's another advantage to XP users: all your files AND PROGRAMS are already on the same machine, you can navigate to them and use them. Wine won't handle everything, and it's kinda weirdly organized, but if you play around with 'wine tricks' first (takes a full weekend, k) -- you can duplicate your XP themes, have MS Office 2003 and prior run on it just as on your XP (same for Win7, really), plus a number of other programs.

    Wine is tricky to use, because it's subdivided into separate functions which are all termed with jargon. After four years of trying to install Wine, I only got it running this past weekend. So I'll have to talk more about it later when I know it better.

    Other stuff is more easily discernible:

    A. Windows can't write to DVD, but Linux can. So if your stick/drive is booted on your XP machine, you can FINALLY write to DVD, using the files on that same machine you couldn't handle via XP directly.

    B. Windows is abysmal at file management. Linux overcomes Windows' obstacles. Windows copying etc. is a nightmare, if you have whole directories (aka 'folders') you want to move, copy, etc. Reason is, there are system files which 'stop' Windows from copying/moving. Linux isn't Windows, so those restrictions don't apply (but DO apply, if you try to do the same thing to the distro's own folders, so in that sense Linux is just like Windows).

    C. CLONE CLONE CLONE is far better than backup or copy. Linux has Clonezilla, a bootable standalone program (or you supposedly can get it to run within Linux, but I've not had luck with it yet). So you can CLONE your XP drive entire. That means, it's a LIVE SET of your files exactly in the same places as on your internal hard drive, so it's BOOTABLE.

    However, if you actually try to boot it on a machine which already has a hard drive, Windows will think it's a 'repair' and set up a dual boot (lol, that happened to me by mistake, but maybe it's a good mistake). Or, it just won't run.

    HOWEVER, if your internal drive dies, then you just clone the clone back to it, and you're up and running in 20 minutes (70 GB hard drive took 20 minutes to clone back to internal, tested on Dell Optiplex 780).

    So now you can take that clone to any machine too, and instead of having to do 'restore', the files are all live.

    The only other program that works this well is Retrospect 6.0, which you can still buy in Amazon (old program, great for Win98 and XP duplicate copying so can avoid 'backup' compression and 'restore' delays).

    There's more I could say, but again you're better off just Googling on my nickname, plus 'Linux' to find my posts re Linux being Windows' best friend.
    Last edited by brainout; 06-22-2015 at 09:13 AM. Reason: typos

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