After insalling SLAX or Knoppix to a USB device accorging to the
guides on this website, you should boot your computer with the flashdrive attached
and observe the start-up sequence. The computer should do these things:
- Briefly show your computer\'s BIOS screen.
- Seek an operating system to load. If your BIOS is properly configured,
it should find the flashdrive and start GRUB. If not, go into your BIOS settings
and set USB devices in the start sequence above local hard disks.
- Display the GRUB menu with operating systems on the boot device. It should
select the default system unless you have a multiboot flashdrive and pick a
different onf from the menu.
- Display a Linux boot logo (for example, the TUX penguin) for each CPU core. If you
are using a quad core computer, expect four little logos on the top of your screen.
- Show lines of start-up events, then load your new Linux desktop.
If during boot there are GRUB errors, the boot loader, GRUB, is probably not
finding necessary boot files. Recheck all steps, and
LinuxMigration.com for more info on setting up
Grub. For errors encountered after the live system
starts to load, check the forums and wikis for your
particular linux distro. Someone else has probably had
the same problem and fixed it, with comments posted
online. Sometimes the "X Server" needs configuring for
video to show properly. Also, minor tweaks may be
needed for proper operation of the audio system.
Persistant changes for SLAX based
- Navigate into the /slax folder and create a new
folder called "changes."
- Navigate into /boot/grub and open the "menu.lst"
- Add the text "changes=/slax/changes" prior to the
"autoexec" entry in the SLAX boot instructions.
- See the SLAX Customization page for details on
creating modules containing your personalized settings and applications
Persistant changes for Knoppix based
Knoppix has a convenient "Persistant Home" feature,
enabled through the Knoppix menu on the panel. A good
way to implement this feature is to create a separate
partition to hold the special files Knoppix creates for
saving your data and configuration.
- Enter the text "home=scan" into the Knoppix boot
options in the "menu.lst" file.
- Click the Knoppix menu in the Panel.
- Point to "Configure".
- Click "Create persistent KNOPPIX home directory".
- Click "Yes".
- Choose the partition that corresponds to your flash
drive (for example, /dev/sda1).
- If you want to encrypt the persistant home file,
flash drive, click "yes." Otherwise, click "No".
- Choose a size for the file. For example, enter
"100" for 100 megabytes, then click "OK."
- Knoppix will create the file knoppix.img on your
flash drive, and change it whenever you change settings
or save files to your desktop or home folder.
- You will be asked if you want to use the entire
partition. Click "No". This will leave existing files
on the flash drive alone.
- Wait while Knoppix completes the setup process.
- Persistance will be effective upon your next
- Other configuration can be saved in a similar fashion;
follow the menus to activate the feature. Also enter the
boot option "config=scan" into the GRUB menu.lst file.
Setting up a multiboot system:
Installing multiple Linux distributions on a USB stick
isn\'t much more complex than installing one. Keep in
mind that most frugal installs use the pair of folders
found on the CD or DVD. The key is making sure GRUB
finds files needed for booting, and ensuring the system
can find its other files and finish start-up.
- Give a unique name to each distro\'s "boot" folder,
such as "slaxboot," "knoppixboot," "backtrackboot,"
- Put these unique folders into one folder called
- Alongside the plethora of unique boot folders,
place the "grub" folder.
- The menu.lst file needs editing. Each entry for the
initrd and vmlinuz files MUST point to the distro\'s
unique boot folder, for example:
Consider the many things you can do with a choice of
distros to install on one drive. One for software
defined radio, anither with good maintenance and
recovery tools, and maybe another with the hottest
custom kernel and wireless drivers! It is all up to you
and your bootable Linux USB stick.
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