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Author Topic: VectorLinux LiveCD  (Read 3397 times)
vectoruser
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« on: October 25, 2010, 05:42:49 am »

I apologize if this is well known or topic covered in other threads. I am a new Vector user and could not find a clear info on the following questions:

- Is there a XFCE Live latest version of VL, I believe the latest would mean 6.0...
- KDE (Classic) version appears to be missing Live Re-mastering tool, which is included in the Live Lite version. How do you remaster VL Live KDE version then, to include custom settings?
- The LiveCd re-mastering tool included in the Lite Live version appears to insist on storing the resulting ISO in memory (/temp). This means memory requirements for the Live Lite is very high to be successful in re-mastering (at least 1GB?). Is there any way to set the target iso to /mnt/..., so it stores the resulting iso in storage media?
Otherwise, VL appears to be very efficient in resource utilization...
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nightflier
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« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2010, 07:03:00 am »

There is no LiveCD version of VL6-XFCE. You can create your own version by installing this package:
http://vectorlinux.osuosl.org/Uelsk8s/vl-live-tools-1.0.7-i586-1vl59.tlz
When your system is the way you want it, run the tool to create the Live CD.
The same will work for KDE-Classic.

Whenever I have used this tool, it has used /tmp (on the hard drive) for the ISO and temporary files.
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vectoruser
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« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2010, 07:23:44 am »

Thank you for quick response.
Just to clarify myself: I am using the VL LiveCD. No Linux installed on hard drive, just LiveCD, therefor no /tmp on hard drive. I understand /tmp will be in memory of the LiveCD run, therefore quite limited by ram size, making this very hard to re-master.
Second question, to install XFCE (e.g. from Live Light CD), suppose I download and install the package you advise, how do I activate XFCE on LiveCD instance, please clarify (e.g. log-off and re-startx or something else) and re-master a new ISO?...
Thanks very much again...
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nightflier
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« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2010, 06:25:00 pm »

The live-script is intended for use on a system installed to a hard drive. Don't know how, or if, it would work when running live. It makes sense to work from an installed system. Gives you storage space and the ability to reboot without losing all your changes.

Once xfce is installed, it should show up as an option on the login screen.
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vectoruser
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« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2010, 04:29:54 am »

Nightflier,

Thanks very much for your response. This clarifies.
Just one more question if I can bother you, as I am trying to learn Vector:
The re-mastering utility included already on VectorLive Lite - my understanding was that the purpose is to re-master VectorLive, which is LiveCD. It still stores the working files and ISO in /tmp.
My question is whether my understanding is correct, that this remastering utility indeed re-masters VectorLive, and not customizes Vector just for installation.
I understand your assessment that it is easier to run Vector from installed system, however the most advantage of Vector is that you can put VectoLive CD in any computer and run a reasonable system with modest resources, able to run in small ram and processor power.
Therefore creating a custom LiveCD is so important. No other Linux can run Live with such modest resources, except the most optimized run all in memory modular systems as Tiny Core Linux, SliTaz or Austrumi.
This emphasizes the importance of good remastering utility for VectorLive, similar to one Zenwalk 5.2 had.
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nightflier
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« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2010, 05:41:00 am »

VL-LiveCD began life as a regular system installed to a hard drive. The vl-live-tools then created the Live version. When running Live, several tricks are employed to make it possible, and there are limitations on what it will do.

Re-mastering of the LiveCD is done using a hard drive install as an intermediate step. The installer is separate from the live tools. You will be making your customizations to, and running off, the hard drive. When the system is the way you want it, repeat the above cycle using the vl-live tools, to create your own version.

It can be a little confusing. That is why, on KDE-Classic Live, the live tools are deleted or hidden. The result is a more a traditional like system without the constant reminders of its "Live" heritage.
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vectoruser
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« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2010, 06:55:27 am »

Nightflier,

Thanks very much for your insight info. Now I understand (I think) what can be expected from re-mastering tool. Looks like installing the Vector Linux is a necessary step for re-mastering LiveCD...
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vectoruser
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« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2010, 07:03:10 am »

Nightflier,

Good news is that re-mastering appears to work directly from LiveCD, when it is done with sufficient memory. I was able to test this last night using VectorLive Lite. As soon as I have some time I will test this using the KDE version after installing Live Tools, of course.
It will be a significant asset if VectorLive is able to be re-mastered without requirement of being installed, although I understand and respect your strategy requiring installation.
One question though, I think I saw it some place experienced by others but cannot find that thread now: After re-mastering VectorLive (Lite in this test) the resulting LiveCd boots fine, but to command prompt requiring entering user and password, and then startx rather than booting to gui login as in the original VectorLive... Am I missing some setting in re-mastering? How the gui login can be preserved in re-mastering?
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nightflier
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« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2010, 04:13:34 am »

Cool, glad you got it working  Grin. This is the kind of fun stuff that Linux lets you do. Appreciate your feedback, it is a valuable addition to our knowledge base.

As far as the boot-up goes.. do you get the same boot menu and graphics as before, or just pure text directly to the login prompt?
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vectoruser
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« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2010, 05:29:27 am »

Nightflier,

Thank you.
Before I answer your question: Another test I performed last night, where I subjected the kde-classic version of VectorLive to the same test as Lite before. I installed LiveTools (Which are not included this time), customized desktop and Firefox, ran re-mastering process.
Booted such re-mastered VL CD just fine in a target computer with the same (successful) result as previously with the Lite version,with the exception that wen logged on to desktop, a Wicd window pops up asking for root password, (hich happens to be empty). Upon clicking 'OK' an error message pops up indicating it could not find hardware. From that point Wicd is not able to find wireless networks at all. This has probably nothing to do with remastering process, which appears to work successfully, but rather perhaps that booting was on a different machine that re-mastering, therefore some Wicd configuration residual from the old machine may have been saved and attempted to re-connect to the same hardware. Next I will try to delete *.conf files from /etc/Wicd and re-master again to see if this time it starts fresh.

In summary of my testing, the re-master process is working fine directly from VectorLive, both Lite and kde version, does not require installation.

Now to answer your question...
- The customized, remastered VectorLive starts booting the same way as the original VectorLive, except the first menu, where the original has default of probing video, the kde-version (re-mastered) appears to have default of xvesa. I do not remember if the Lite version had this issue, at least I did not notice. Will check tonight... The menu appears to be shorter at the first glance - apparently the probing video menu selection is missing. For the lack of time I could not confirm
- Boot proceeds in graphic mode as the original, loading components and drivers, with usual big graphic messages at the bottom.
- At the end instead of the usual graphic login selection screen with 'root' and vl, the re-mastered VL gets to the $ prompt, asking for login. At that point I entered 'vl' as user and password empty (if I remember correctly). Login appeared to be accepted.
- Executed startx, upon which I got the expected desktop with all customizations, proving re-mastering worked.

Would you know how to:
- Get the usual graphic login screen, instead of $ prompt.
- Get the usual video probing default on the first menu (I will re-check if this was working fine in the Lite).
- Get this Wicd working in the re-mastered as it is working in the original (I will try to delete these /etc/*conf files prior to re-mastering)

To stress again, the remastered VL was booted in a different machine. I will test in the same to narrow down the issue.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2010, 05:38:46 am by vectoruser » Logged
vectoruser
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« Reply #10 on: October 29, 2010, 10:59:27 am »

Greetings Nightflier,

In case you wonder why I am so keen on VectorLive and remastering capability, I should explain that officially portrayed 'Try Live before you install' is severe underestimating the importance of successful Live capability. The importance of Live version goes far beyond 'trying', which is not that important use. The importance is capability of using Live for regular 'production' use, if Live version is good enough for this purpose. The primary reason is that unlike the installed version, the LiveCD is completely immune from so called 'System Rot', which is gradual deterioration of the traditional installation in result of installs, uninstalls, inadvertant detrimental changes etc, not speaking of any possibility of viruses and other malware, unwanted cookies -spyware and other infestation in the background, without the user's knowledge. Avoiding/preventing this completely from happening in traditional installation is very difficult...
Live version on the other hand is immune to system rot. If any infestation happens it is only for the session. Rebooting brings the system to the original, clean, pristine shape.
Having tested capabilities of various Linux LiveCDs, such as Zenwalk, Wolvix, Austrumi, SliTaz, TinyCore, Xubuntu, Salix, etc. at this point I see Vector as the best capable ready-to-go distro. TinyCore and SliTaz are smaller and faster (They run in memory) but they require some work on the user's part to have it ready-to-go...
Salix has all pieces and good re-mastering but Live hardly works in 256M, while Vector does with no problem in my testing.
Re-mastering capability of live system (preserving desktop customizations, cookies, etc.), which is key, appears to be rather simple in Vector comparing to Salix and Zenwalk 5.2, but does its job. None other can do it right...
In a word, Vector is being greatly underestimated and the value of VectorLive tremendously downplayed. In reality it is great asset to Vector Linux.
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vectoruser
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« Reply #11 on: October 29, 2010, 11:11:55 am »

Hi Nightflier,

I forgot to mention, in anticipation of questioning the usefulness of LiveCD for 'production' use: It is slower when loading apps. When apps are loaded in memory it is no longer issue. What you gain is stability and reliability of your system.
I had a laptop running continuously for many years with Skype and other communication tools.  The problem is always hard disk failure, it is known to die unexpectedly and then you have to replace it.
Tired of this, I have switched to LiveCD to run this 'production' communication with peace of mind now.
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nightflier
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« Reply #12 on: October 29, 2010, 01:03:02 pm »

I understand your reasoning for running Live. Again, Linux allows you to do so much more than the closed systems do. You are the master of your computer.

The boot menu was changed between the Light and KDE versions, they are not identical.

I do not know why KDM does not run on your re-mastered discs, if I get some extra time I'll try your method and look into it.

Wicd creates some files when run. Before you create the live image you need to shut down both the client and the server. Use command "killall wicd wicd-client" (as root). Also, delete the file "/var/run/wicd/wicd.pid", if present.
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vectoruser
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« Reply #13 on: October 29, 2010, 02:25:01 pm »

Nightflier,

Thanks for the Wicd tip. Sounds like a solution.
Update from addional testing: the re-mastered kde live bootd to the graphical login screen in the same computer it was re-mastered.  In a different computer it ends up with text login prompt, necessitating then startx, which starts kde desktop.
Looks to me like it remembers some config from the re-mastering machine, because the original kde live does not have this behavior - boots to kde desktop.
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vectoruser
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« Reply #14 on: November 03, 2010, 05:30:39 am »

Nightflier,

I did some more re-mastering tests of VectorLive, both from booted as LiveCD and installed to hard disk prior to re-mastering, using the live version of kde classic and the classic kde install version.
Result:
Remastering works fine in both boot modes.

As it appears to me you are leading the VectorLive project, I want to thank you for such good VectorLive version as kde-classic live. It is greatly appreciated and I hope a VectorLive will be available soon for the 7.0 version of Vector.

Just one quick question, in regards to my next step:
I have installed now KDE-Classic Vector from the VectorLive Classic 6.0 (May 2010). It appears to work fine, except minor issues I experience:
- The boot process graphic ('Vector' screen with boot process messages) is low resolution (Perhaps 800x600 or vga). How can I fix this? After booted, the desktop is fine - correct resolution. The LiveCd does not have this issue - boot process is the correct resolution.
- The sound volume is low or none. Re-mastered 6.0 Live version (From the 6.0 kde installed does not have this issue. Sound is fine.

I will greatly appreciate your tips. I understand though you might be busy with Vector 7.0 Live edition...
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