Simple install for users of non-Windows and non-Linux x86_64 systems

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Zerotetration
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Simple install for users of non-Windows and non-Linux x86_64 systems

Post#1 by Zerotetration » 17 Mar 2019, 19:51

Hello,

I read about Porteus on Wikipedia. It looks like a nice, lean system. The problem I am having is that the install instructions seem to assume everybody already uses Linux or Windows. I don't. I use OpenBSD. I would rather not have to install a full fledged, bloated Linux system just to make a bootable Porteus Desktop flash drive...it would kind of defeat the purpose of trying to use Porteus in the first place...i.e. as a quick solution to run specific third party binary Linux software without having to set up a full system or configure a virtual machine.

Is there not just a Porteus image I can download and go

dd if=~/porteus.img of=/dev/sd2c and reboot and be set to go???!!!

I see such an image IS available for Porteus Kiosk...but this edition is locked down to a browser...which prevents me from achieving my goal of qucikly establishing a Linux environment to run third party software...

Before people say Porteus may not have this or that library that my software may require, the software includes the necessary libraries bundled with it. I just need quick desktop (e.g. X11) Linux environment to run it in. Is this possible?

Thanks
Last edited by Zerotetration on 19 Mar 2019, 00:06, edited 1 time in total.

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Post#2 by Ed_P » 17 Mar 2019, 20:23

The Porteus ISOs can be burned to CDs and run. http://build.porteus.org/
Ed

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Post#3 by ncmprhnsbl » 17 Mar 2019, 22:34

i could be wrong, but i was under the impression that the porteus iso could be dd'd to usb as is .. and be bootable ..?
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Post#4 by Ed_P » 17 Mar 2019, 22:44

^ Maybe Zerotetration will try that and report back the outcome. :)
Ed

Zerotetration
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Post#5 by Zerotetration » 18 Mar 2019, 23:58

Thanks for the reply.

My machine does not have a CD ROM drive. It is an IBM Thinkpad X61 (older, thin form factor laptop, X86-64, non-EFI, BIOS boot).

I tried dd'ing the desktop ISO to a flash drive (the raw device, equivalent to e.g. /dev/sdb for example on Linux. Other ISO images boot off the USB flash drive without issue. So the problem seems to be with how modern Linux distributions configure their ISOs (maybe they assume EFI boot by default?).

What I need to know is what files/data to dd to the start of my flash drive to get a valid MBR/boot sector pointing to the Porteus bootloader (Lilo or GRUB)...

It is beyond me to understand why the Porteus developers chose to provide platform specific installers (only available for Windows and Linux: the (NON-PORTABLE!) bash script for Linux depends on Linux only utilities like 'sfdisk') for BIOS boot scenarios instead of just providing a valid boot disk image that could be dd'd...it seems so much simpler...

Here is my post on stackexchange...detailing the same problem with Knoppix...but also discussing Porteus...
https://unix.stackexchange.com/question ... t-from-usb

Thanks in advance for your help.

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Post#6 by Ed_P » 19 Mar 2019, 03:37

Well, based on my limited time here it appears the developer(s) develop their system to work with the systems they have access to and maybe to the systems the majority of their users have access to. Having limited resources and limited time to spend on their system I think they have created an impressive distro for us Windows users.

Having a different OS I would think you would have found or developed an app to convert ISOs to a bootable format for your hardware. Something like this maybe? http://bootableusb.net/make-non-bootabl ... -bootable/


Or from what I have read OpenBSD has bash and mkisofs and according to this webpage https://calomel.org/bootable_openbsd_cd.html a script to make bootable ISOs. Maybe it could be tweaked to make a bootable Porteus ISO for you that you could write to a flash drive.
Last edited by Ed_P on 19 Mar 2019, 05:49, edited 1 time in total.
Ed

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Post#7 by ncmprhnsbl » 19 Mar 2019, 07:21

Zerotetration wrote:
18 Mar 2019, 23:58
it is beyond me to understand why the Porteus developers chose to provide platform specific installers
beyond what Ed said, it seems you're the first BSD user seen in these parts ;)
it is a fair point though, with cd drives becoming a rarity, that we should provide a hybrid ISO.
i did a quick test by running isohybrid on one our isos and dd'ing it to usb, which worked no problem.
so i can do that for you if you like and upload it someplace. do you have a preference of DE? (the smallest one suits me best ;) )

note: the downside of this method is the whole usb is used, and is read only.. (you know this)
of course, you now have a running linux system that you can then install whereever,however you want...

also: a workaround in this situation, might be, if you use grub to boot your usual system, to boot the iso directly via grub(add a menu entry).
this is how Ed_P rolls, so he could explain how to do this better than i..
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Post#8 by reisub » 19 Mar 2019, 16:09

Sounds like the owner of the Thinkpad doesn't want it used for unauthorized stuff. :happy62:

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Post#9 by Ed_P » 19 Mar 2019, 18:35

Zerotetration have you looked at the make_iso.sh script in the Porteus ISO's /porteus/ folder? It looks like it will do what you want.

BTW I don't see any live files for OpenBSD here: https://www.openbsd.org/faq/faq4.html#Download. All appear to be only for installs. :( You should write to them and tell them they need to make live versions of their system so people can try it and see if they like it before committing to installing it.
Last edited by Ed_P on 19 Mar 2019, 21:35, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Noted OpenBSD distribution limitation.
Ed

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Post#10 by ncmprhnsbl » 20 Mar 2019, 02:38

@Zerotetration, if you're still with us, here is a hybrid iso that you can dd to a flash drive:
Porteus-XFCE-v4.0-x86_64-hybrid.iso
md5sum= 84a29562437530112976e71f9c2a7252
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Zerotetration
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Post#11 by Zerotetration » 24 Mar 2019, 14:08

Ed_P wrote:
19 Mar 2019, 18:35
Zerotetration have you looked at the make_iso.sh script in the Porteus ISO's /porteus/ folder? It looks like it will do what you want.

BTW I don't see any live files for OpenBSD here: https://www.openbsd.org/faq/faq4.html#Download. All appear to be only for installs. :( You should write to them and tell them they need to make live versions of their system so people can try it and see if they like it before committing to installing it.
Hey Ed_p thanks for the advice. I am not sure if I stated in my OP that the make_iso.sh script is not portable...It depends on Linux specific utilities like sfdisk and gparted. So I assume that users of FreeBSD / NetBSD / MacOS X would all have trouble using it...

Zerotetration
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Post#12 by Zerotetration » 24 Mar 2019, 14:13

ncmprhnsbl wrote:
20 Mar 2019, 02:38
@Zerotetration, if you're still with us, here is a hybrid iso that you can dd to a flash drive:
Porteus-XFCE-v4.0-x86_64-hybrid.iso
md5sum= 84a29562437530112976e71f9c2a7252
Thanks a lot, ncmprhnsbl. I'll try that today. I was very busy this week so did not get to check replies until today. I would question whether I should trust a random mediafire link but since you are on the DEV Team I guess I'll risk it. You guys should provide a dd ready bootable ISO or image on the Porteus.org website...thanks again. As poster mentioned above probably fewer people burn CDs nowadays than use flash media...

Zerotetration
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Post#13 by Zerotetration » 24 Mar 2019, 14:34

If you want to try a "live" version of OpenBSD it is very simple. You download and dd the install file system image to a flash drive. The image file might be something like install64.fs Then you boot to the installer from the flash drive. The installer is a "ramdisk" image (bsd.rd) so you can install the OS on the same flash drive (overwriting the installer) or any other media (e.d. a hard drive) that you want. That said OpenBSD is not very friendly to inexperienced Unix users: to get a usable desktop system to try out you have to know what packages to install e.g. XFCE and Firefox, etc. Not much is installed by default. I think the base install of OpenBSD with X windows is still less than 500 mb. However, once you get the hang of things it is a very sane and extremely well documented system. I have preferred it to Linux for years because everything just works as intended out of the box and you don't get the bloat of several thousand installed packages, most of which you will never use, in the base install. Also security and networking capabilities are the best out there IMO.

OpenBSD is great for older systems, since it is so lean...

The reason I am interested in Porteus is I need to run a specific binary Linux application. OpenBSD (unlike NetBSD or FreeBSD can't run Linux binaries natively or through a compatibility layer). They would need to be run on a Linux install running in a virtual machine on OpenBSD. I figured using a Live Linux distribution like Porteus or Knoppix would be quicker and would run faster a full Linux install and configuration on a virtual machine.

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Post#14 by Ed_P » 24 Mar 2019, 19:35

Zerotetration wrote:
24 Mar 2019, 14:08
Hey Ed_p thanks for the advice. I am not sure if I stated in my OP that the make_iso.sh script is not portable...It depends on Linux specific utilities like sfdisk and gparted. So I assume that users of FreeBSD / NetBSD / MacOS X would all have trouble using it...
You need to look at that script again Zerotetration because it does not reference sfdisk or gparted when I look at it, in any of it's 30 lines.
Zerotetration wrote:
24 Mar 2019, 14:34
If you want to try a "live" version of OpenBSD it is very simple. You download and dd the install file system image to a flash drive. The image file might be something like install64.fs Then you boot to the installer from the flash drive. The installer is a "ramdisk" image (bsd.rd) so you can install the OS on the same flash drive (overwriting the installer) or any other media (e.d. a hard drive) that you want.
As I said, no live systems, everything is set to install the system. I want something I can download and run and see what it does. I download ISOs and boot them directly with grub2; no CD, no flash drive, no install.

Do you know how to boot the install64.iso that I downloaded? This is what I have hacked together so far.

Code: Select all

menuentry " OpenBSD ISO"  --class debian --class icon-linux {

     set iso='/ISOs/install64.iso'
     set bootparms='set image /6.4/amd64/bsd.rd '

     search -f $iso --set=root
     loopback loop $iso
#     linux (loop)/boot/generic livemedia=/dev/sda6:/$iso $bootparms
     linux (loop)/kopenbsd /6.4/amd64/bsd.rd  #Boot-NoEmul.img $bootparms
#     initrd (loop)/6.4/amd64/bsd.rd
     }
Ed

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Post#15 by ncmprhnsbl » 24 Mar 2019, 20:36

Ed_P wrote:
24 Mar 2019, 19:35
You need to look at that script again Zerotetration because it does not reference sfdisk or gparted when I look at it, in any of it's 30 lines.
you appear to talking at cross purposes: Zerotetration was referring to /boot/Installer-for Linux.com script, not make_iso.sh (which in any case, just make another iso, just the same, not hybrid) certainly, a BSD compatible installer would be best, feel free to suggest the required tools if you have the time and inclination..
Zerotetration wrote:
24 Mar 2019, 14:13
You guys should provide a dd ready bootable ISO or image on the Porteus.org website...thanks again.
all future isos will be hybrids from now on.
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