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Remastering - Getting it right (Solved)
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Rattlehead


Joined: 11 Sep 2008
Posts: 206
Location: Madrid, Spain

PostPosted: Thu 03 Mar 2011, 14:40    Post subject:  Remastering - Getting it right (Solved)  

I am very happy with my Puppy 4.3.1 frugal, and I have working several things difficult to install/configure, so I've made several attempts to remaster my system, just in case, without success so far. The issue has risen again recently because my laptop screen has started to do weird things now and then.

Here is a report of the latest things I've tried. I used the Pupremaster script that allows rename options (http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=46739&start=15), to prevent some sort of problem with a "_" that should be a "-". I thought that was the key problem, but I didn't get it right this time either.

Attempt 1:

I follow the instructions.
Set recording area to mnt/home (there is enough space to create the iso)
When it reaches the burning moment, a message via console (not GTK message) says something like 'the device is not a recognized burning device' and quits immediately; without a message I'm taken back to the desktop, there is no pupremaster process in execution, and there is no /mnt/home/puppylivecdbuild directory anymore.

Attempt 2:

Repeat process but, when it offers the options to burn a cd, a dvd or create the iso, I open pburn and manually burn the files contained in /mnt/home/puppylivecd.
The dvd gets recorded fine, but it fails to boot. The unit moves, attempts to read, and then Puppy starts a normal boot using the usual 4.3.1. frugal files installed in the hard disk.
Inspecting the files burnt inside the dvd and comparing it to my 4.3.1. original cd (the one downloaded as an iso from the Puppy Linux Web), i discover that some files are missing in the dvd:

boot.cat
boot.msg
help.msg
logo16

Attempt 3:

Repeat process but, when prompted, I select 'create an iso' instead of burning, and then burn it to DVD via burniso2cd.

The resulting DVD boots, with no puppy logo, only the line saying 'normal boot will start in 5 seconds'.
Previously, the remaster script warned that, as the sfs files have been added to the new iso, it could create problems with the ones in the computer memory, so I select the pfix=ram option
Boot process goes along until this message pops up: 'pup-431.sfs file not found'

As I mentioned above, the remaster script I use starts with an option to rename the pup-431.sfs file, which I did (to 'bkpup-431.sfs').That makes me think maybe that could be the cause of this error, although it seems a bit strange that a program allows you to rename a file only to tell you later that it can't find it. Anyway, I have to try it so...

Attempt 4:

Repeat process but, when prompted at the beginning of the script, I do not modify the name of the sfs to be created (which thus remains: 'pup-431.sfs').
I create an iso
I burn it with burniso2cd
I boot
I set the 'puppy pfix=ram' option
booting fails here:

copying to ram...
Setting up the layered filesystem
Performing a "switch_root" to the layered system... kernel panic - not syncing: attempt to kill init!

(Arg!)

I've invested a considerable amount of time and DVDs and this time I'd like to get right once and for all this remaster feature, unique to puppy AFAIK. Previously, I used puppy 2.16. and I didn't succeed either. I don't remember what happened then exactly, but I can say I tried both the in-built create live CD option and Dougal's script. It's been some time now and I can't remember the exact problems, but I can say they happened while trying to boot the newly created live CD or DVD: I never got to boot a copy of my system via DVD reader.

So, what am I doing wrong? Did I skip something previous to execute the script? Maybe someone can tell me the bash instructions to make a manual copy? I'd greatly appreciate help because I find the information on the issue quite scattered; try multiplying the number of puppy versions mentioned by the 3 different scripts around, and then take it to the eighth power due to English not being my mother tongue... Smile I'd like to have the final, 'official' version once and for all. Thank you, and sorry for the long post, but I wanted to provide as much information as possible, and I'm sure it could be useful for other users too.

Last edited by Rattlehead on Fri 18 Mar 2011, 15:24; edited 1 time in total
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emil

Joined: 10 Nov 2009
Posts: 611
Location: Austria

PostPosted: Thu 03 Mar 2011, 15:15    Post subject:  

I know that remaster procedure is not always so easy.

Without going in detail, just about one of your issues:
creating an iso does not mean to create a bootable iso!
I use something like:
mkisofs -R -b grldr -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -o MyPupplet.iso /mnt/home/test
this is for grub4dos bootloader, a similar command creates a bootable iso for isolinux (default bootloader for puppy 4.31)

Some links:
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=55381
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=61132
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=64353&sid=34558cd3cab8bf9031f1f1f3a80ea800

Maybe a suggestion - before burning a CD or DVD i usually:
a) test remaster as a normal frugal install
b) test the iso in a virtual machine (Qemu, Virtualbox or VMware)

Good Luck
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Dougal


Joined: 19 Oct 2005
Posts: 2505
Location: Hell more grotesque than any medieval woodcut

PostPosted: Thu 03 Mar 2011, 16:58    Post subject:  

I find the best way is to do it manually...

First, copy the filesystem to the harddrive:
Code:
mkdir /mnt/home/puppyfilesystem
cp -a  /initrd/pup_ro2/* /mnt/home/puppyfilesystem

Then just modify /mnt/home/puppyfilesystem the way you want it (look at the contents of the pup_save -- /initrd/pup_rw with pupmode 12, /initrd/pup_ro1 with pupmode 13 -- and just copy from there what you think is relevant: what you want will likely be in /root, /etc or /usr).

Then create a new sfs:
Code:
mkdir /mnt/home/puppylivecdbuild
cd /mnt/home
mksquashfs puppyfilesystem puppylivecdbuild/pup-431.sfs

Then just copy into /mnt/home/puppylivecdbuild the files from the cd and make the iso:
Code:
cd /mnt/home
mkisofs -D -R -o "puppy_remaster.iso" -b isolinux.bin -c boot.cat -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table puppylivecdbuild

Then just burn the iso (with pburn)...

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oui

Joined: 20 May 2005
Posts: 1847
Location: near Woof (Germany) :-) Acer Laptop emachines 2 GB RAM AMD64. franco-/germanophone, +/- anglophone

PostPosted: Thu 03 Mar 2011, 17:49    Post subject:  

Hi Rattlehead

The method given by Dougal is really good.

Thank you Dougal.

If Puppy is already installed (frugal, of course) ...

... you don't need to continue until the ISO or to burn a DVD or CD!

It is enough to remaster the main *.SFS file of Puppy and to interchange it (rename the old before you interchange; don't write on it!) in the directory where puppy is installed

and you can preserve the content of your temporary directory

/mnt/home/puppyfilesystem

a certain time to have the possibility to change directly some details like links etc. depending what you are changing in Puppy. diverse applications are declared as default application and need to be adapted in the certain situations in the directory /usr/local/bin and /usr/bin or /usr/lib!

and I recommend you to better start RAM only to be certain don't to save private things in the new *.SFS if you transmit it to other persons!

in that case the system is clean at beginning time and you have no risk to include things you would regret later...

good luck

bye

PS I find the distribution of linux live systems having mainly to run in RAM as frugal system as ISO file not optimal and would prefer a ZIP archive better because it is non sens to use a fresh CD each time you will test a new puppy, quirky, wary etc... windows and linux can both use wget to download the zip, unzip and start the frugal installation directly in the partition where you are, probably a windows system (reason of my precedent link)! no CD no rest in the environment! only install grub4dos and restart. nothing to burn
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Lobster
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Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 15117
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PostPosted: Thu 03 Mar 2011, 23:28    Post subject:  

Dougals method and more links here:
http://puppylinux.org/wikka/Remastering Smile

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rjbrewer


Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 4422
Location: merriam, kansas

PostPosted: Thu 03 Mar 2011, 23:54    Post subject:  

oui wrote:


PS I find the distribution of linux live systems having mainly to run in RAM as frugal system as ISO file not optimal and would prefer a ZIP archive better because it is non sens to use a fresh CD each time you will test a new puppy, quirky, wary etc... windows and linux can both use wget to download the zip, unzip and start the frugal installation directly in the partition where you are, probably a windows system (reason of my precedent link)! no CD no rest in the environment! only install grub4dos and restart. nothing to burn


Get 1 or 2 cd-rw; they're cheap.
I haven't burned a permanent cd for a year.
Small flash drives work well too.

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Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11049
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Fri 04 Mar 2011, 02:27    Post subject: Re: Remastering - Getting it right
Subject description: I've tried round 20 times and no success yet
 

Rattlehead wrote:

So, what am I doing wrong?


You are getting frustrated, if you want to be a successful hacker, you
need a big frustration threshold

More importantly, much more importantly is: You are asking the wrong
question. Take the 'I' out of the question. Ask, why isn't this working? Or
ask, what's wrong?

How many times have we ran into such things as bad directions.? As an
example.

I've remastered with my own scripts, no problems.

Usually, I cheat and use ISOMaster.

With computers there are often many ways to achieve the end result.

The people who succeed persist. If you are going to persist, then have
fun doing it.

Frankly, I think the reason most of us do things like re-mastering is we
want to satisfy our need to tinker and learn and avoid things we should
otherwise be doing. Let your pass times be enjoyable.

~

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Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11049
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Fri 04 Mar 2011, 02:32    Post subject:  

Also, ISO images can be easily mounted in Linux or Windows. Then the
contents copied out of them.

With this in mind, the zip archive doesn't offer any advantage, especially
because the ISO gives a dual option, to burn or just copy files out of it.

~

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Rattlehead


Joined: 11 Sep 2008
Posts: 206
Location: Madrid, Spain

PostPosted: Fri 11 Mar 2011, 12:33    Post subject:  

Thank you very much people, what a bunch of great resources are here. This forum is gold.

Sorry for the time it took me to answer. Now I have a decent time slot to try out these instructions, and find the first hurdles:

1)
@Dougal:
Quote:
look at the contents of the pup_save -- /initrd/pup_rw with pupmode 12


What Pupmode is can be found here http://puppylinux.com/development/howpuppyworks.html, but how to set its value? Changing the etc/rc.d/PUPSTATE file? rc.d is not a folder easy to tackle with, mostly when you don't know exactly what you're doing.
And after changing PUPSTATE what's the next step, rebooting?

2)
Quote:
just copy from there what you think is relevant: what you want will likely be in /root, /etc or /usr).


A remaster, AFAIK, is a snapshot of the system "as-is", i.e., with all the software installed so that you don't have to configure it again from scratch. What does "copying from there what's relevant" mean in that context? Wouldn't be easier to just copy everything? As Linux programs don't have a standard installation folder (it can be /bin, /usr/bin, etc... and sometimes a combination of several), it would be easy to skip something and make the remastered program useless.
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Dougal


Joined: 19 Oct 2005
Posts: 2505
Location: Hell more grotesque than any medieval woodcut

PostPosted: Fri 11 Mar 2011, 16:39    Post subject:  

Rattlehead wrote:
1)
@Dougal:
Quote:
look at the contents of the pup_save -- /initrd/pup_rw with pupmode 12


What Pupmode is can be found here http://puppylinux.com/development/howpuppyworks.html, but how to set its value?

No. PUPMODE is calculated by the init script, based on how you are running.
- If your pup_save is on a flash drive, then the top unionfs later is a tmpfs and pup_save is mounted on /initrd/pup_ro1 (PUPMODE=13)
- If your pup_save is on a normal drive, then it is mounted on /initrd/pup_rw and is the top unionfs later. (PUPMODE=12)

So it's just a question of where to look for the files that you modified/added.

Quote:
2)
Quote:
just copy from there what you think is relevant: what you want will likely be in /root, /etc or /usr).


A remaster, AFAIK, is a snapshot of the system "as-is", i.e., with all the software installed so that you don't have to configure it again from scratch. What does "copying from there what's relevant" mean in that context? Wouldn't be easier to just copy everything? As Linux programs don't have a standard installation folder (it can be /bin, /usr/bin, etc... and sometimes a combination of several), it would be easy to skip something and make the remastered program useless.

Yes, theoretically it's true, but since it fails for you...
You need to keep in mind that there are various "state" files -- indicating a program is running etc.
For example, /etc/.XLOADED is created when X is running and deleted when you exit properly.
So if you don't delete it, your remaster won't start X automatically, as it assumes that X has crashed.

You can pretty safely copy the entire /usr directory (a;so /bin and /sbin), but /root and /etc have configuration files in them that might need looking through (you can look at the remaster scripts and see that they have all kinds of drudgery for copying/deleting files in /root and /etc).

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RetroTechGuy


Joined: 15 Dec 2009
Posts: 2635
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri 11 Mar 2011, 16:46    Post subject: Re: Remastering - Getting it right
Subject description: I've tried round 20 times and no success yet
 

Rattlehead wrote:

Set recording area to mnt/home (there is enough space to create the iso)


Without digging in deeper, why kind of partition is /mnt/home?

If you do the standard unpack, modify, and rebuild .iso remaster (i.e. the built in remastering tool), the file system unpack must be done on a Linux compatible partition (I first tried it on Fat32, which didn't work -- I then moved over to one of my ext2 partitions, which worked perfectly).

If all of your working partitions are Fat32/NTFS, you may need to format a flash drive to ext2 to work on.

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`f00


Joined: 06 Nov 2008
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Location: the Western Reserve

PostPosted: Fri 11 Mar 2011, 19:10    Post subject:
Subject description: spitballing (again/still)
 

Another option is using a swapfile (it rarely gets used on most 'endowed' machines but can be handy for largish operations like this). I use one on the usb sticks - pretty dumb as stick is definitely not as fast as hdd .. but it does work albeit a tad slow .. hmm, dumb and slow pup looks a lot like the 'master', but they're all good loyal dogs Wink
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Flash
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Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 10662
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Sat 12 Mar 2011, 00:33    Post subject:  

Rattlehead. Dude, I really think multisession Puppy will solve all your problems. Just burn the Puppy iso of your choice to a DVD using Burniso2cd. Boot the newly burned DVD in a DVD burner in a computer with at least 512 MB of RAM, install whatever programs you want, get Puppy all set up the way you want, then save to the DVD when you shut down. That's all there is to it. Puppy's layered filesystem takes care of the details each time you boot the multisession DVD.
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trio


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PostPosted: Sat 12 Mar 2011, 00:48    Post subject:  

This link might help you:

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=64864

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Rattlehead


Joined: 11 Sep 2008
Posts: 206
Location: Madrid, Spain

PostPosted: Tue 15 Mar 2011, 14:20    Post subject:  

Thanks again for the info, and the suggestions, and the patience. Sorry I've been so busy these days.

I followed step by step Dougal's instructions but I did not succeed. My kernel panicked again when booting from the new DVD. (My installation is in the hard drive, btw).

While copying the files, I just skipped some obsolete programs or minor text files; with my current level of knowledge I could not take the risk of deleting something else that might be important.

So, unless someone has a pretty straightforward and simple idea, I guess I'll have to climb the whole learning curve about Linux system files and variables before I can take a snapshot of the system... See you in a year and a half or so, then Smile

Re: multisession. Thanks for the suggestion, Flash, I guess I'll finally have to do that, although it defies my whole initial purpose (like my fellow countryman Salvador Dalí, I'm going to quote myself: Smile )

Quote:
I have working several things difficult to install/configure


What I intended to avoid was going again through installing things like: Lyx (reason of my movement to 4.3.1), Vim and Vim Outliner (very difficult to find and configure right), Audacity (requires one zillion support files), etc...

Thanks again for your patience and support people.
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