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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Puppy Projects
Kids web-kiosk running entirely in RAMDISK
Moderators: Flash, JohnMurga
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xerxesb

Joined: 19 Mar 2013
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 07:54    Post subject:  Kids web-kiosk running entirely in RAMDISK  

Hi everyone

I want to build a kid friendly web-kiosk for my 3yo to play one of his favourite websites.

I've toyed with puppy the last few nights, and I think it's fantastic for this purpose, but the only catch is that there's no guarantee he'll shutdown the operating system cleanly. In fact if anything there's a guarantee he WON'T shutdown properly, and so far the system has failed to boot on a couple of occasions because the HDD wasn't cleanly unmounted.

What i'd like to do is install and run puppy from the local HDD, but unmount the HDD after everything has been loaded into the ramdisk. That way if he turns off the machine, it won't be a problem.

I've tinkered a bit with the config but had no success thusfar. Hoping I could get some guidance on what I need to do to make sure that the filesystem is unmounted after it's loaded everything.

cheers!
x

ps. I've thought about Live CD/USBs, but there's no guarantee he wont snap off those components hanging off the side of the laptop, so installing to HDD is preferable. Wink
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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 9060
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 08:28    Post subject: Re: Kids web-kiosk running entirely in RAMDISK  

xerxesb wrote:
What i'd like to do is install and run puppy from the local HDD, but unmount the HDD after everything has been loaded into the ramdisk.

Contrary to what you may have read, the save file that acts as your persistent storage is NOT loaded into RAM. It is mounted, so you cannot unmount it during a session.

Read here for some ideas.
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11029
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 08:41    Post subject:  

If the computer will boot from a CD or DVD, then that might be the preferred way. Just teach the kid to turn off the computer when he's done, instead of shutting it down the Windows way. The disk stays in the computer at all times and nothing ever sticks out to break off. When the computer boots, it boots from the CD or DVD and runs entirely in RAM with the Puppy CD or DVD still in the drive.

If that operating method is acceptable to you and the computer, you could either create a multisession CD or DVD (if the computer will work with a multisession disk; some laptops won't) to include the programs and settings you want, or remaster a CD or DVD to include the programs and settings you want.

I would try the multisession approach first, as that is by far the easiest way if it will work. Use a CD-RW or DVD-RW if you can. Puppy works fine from rewritable disks. Use Burniso2cd to burn the multisession disk.
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nooby

Joined: 29 Jun 2008
Posts: 10557
Location: SwedenEurope

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 09:16    Post subject:  

If you fail with setting up Puppy
then try this Kiosk version of
Slax named Porteus Kiosk.
Only 37 M file so that would be okay.

unless the kid needs to get access to some games
you have on the HD it is all Firefox online as I get it.

http://distrowatch.com/?newsid=07751
Download from here
http://ponce.cc/porteus/i486/packages/kiosk/porteus-kiosk-v2.0-i486.iso

_________________
I use Google Search on Puppy Forum
not an ideal solution though
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ally


Joined: 19 May 2012
Posts: 838
Location: lincoln

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 09:28    Post subject:  

there is a kiosk thread going on here:

http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?search_id=1754360862&t=81701

there are a couple of kiosk builds:

http://puppylinuxnews.org/puplets/haro-puplet-for-internet-cafe/

and

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=53531

Smile
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xerxesb

Joined: 19 Mar 2013
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 16:57    Post subject:  

Lots of great responses - thanks Smile

Probably should clarify that once configured, I don't want any of his session changes to be persisted, so if the save files were loaded into RAM that would be fine for me. If I then needed to tweak some changes, I'd boot off the livecd and mount the drive to make necessary changes.

@rcrsn51 - I think your post in that link might be the trick - i'll have to try it later tonight

@Flash - He knows how to eject the CD-try from the laptop, so my plan was to remove it altogether.

@nooby, @ally - Thanks for the links - i'll check them out Smile
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muggins

Joined: 20 Jan 2006
Posts: 6683
Location: lisbon

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 19:11    Post subject:  

Have you tried getting your configuration right, then adding whatever pets you want, then running Menu>Setup>Remaster Puppy live-CD?

It might take a few attempts for you to get it right, but, when successful, you'll have a version specific to your laptop which can be powered off without any problems. (sans save-file)
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xerxesb

Joined: 19 Mar 2013
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 19:24    Post subject:  

i didn't know about it!

Will that force me to remaster onto a CD/DVD or can I still boot off the HDD?
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Ted Dog


Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 2314
Location: Heart of Texas

PostPosted: Tue 19 Mar 2013, 20:25    Post subject:  

use a frugal install with grub

title Precise Puppy 5.5
kernel (hd0,5)/precise/vmlinuz pfix=ram
initrd (hd0,5)/precise/initrd.gz

add pfix=ram to grub line as shown above in bold

in /etc/rc.d/rc.local add:

Code:
umount /dev/sda6



this example hd 0,5 is the sixth partition to match /dev/sda6 grub starts counting at zero for first partition.

get the setup however you like then run my sloppy remaster script

http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=84742
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xerxesb

Joined: 19 Mar 2013
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat 23 Mar 2013, 20:30    Post subject:  

@ted - I just tried running your script from the other thread, and I get the error message "Destination not block device or regular file"

What I did was to boot from Live USB, set up everything perfectly. Rebooted and saved my changes. After reboot, I copied the script from http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=690327#690327 and ran it from rxvt

Do you know why this error might occur? It seems to be happening on or after the call to squash
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Ted Dog


Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 2314
Location: Heart of Texas

PostPosted: Sat 23 Mar 2013, 21:20    Post subject:  

xerxesb wrote:
@ted - I just tried running your script from the other thread, and I get the error message "Destination not block device or regular file"

What I did was to boot from Live USB, set up everything perfectly. Rebooted and saved my changes. After reboot, I copied the script from http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=690327#690327 and ran it from rxvt

Do you know why this error might occur? It seems to be happening on or after the call to squash


unknown never came across this error before are you using wary/racy 5.5 without the /tmp patch?

Did you run it from command line? then it could have been a warning that some special file types are not squashable like /dev /proc etc. But should still work to finish OK.
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xerxesb

Joined: 19 Mar 2013
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Wed 27 Mar 2013, 06:22    Post subject:  

i'm actually using BrowserLinux, which is based on Lupu 510.

Instead of the remaster script you linked to, I used the remaster LiveCD util and that built the SFS, but the drive still boots with sda1 mounted to /initrd/pup_ro1...

any thoughts?
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Ted Dog


Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 2314
Location: Heart of Texas

PostPosted: Wed 27 Mar 2013, 12:39    Post subject:  

Before remaking SFS

in /etc/rc.d/rc.local add:

Code:
umount /dev/sda1



this example if booting hd 0,0 is the first partition to match /dev/sda1 grub starts counting at zero for first partition.
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xerxesb

Joined: 19 Mar 2013
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu 28 Mar 2013, 20:54    Post subject:  

Yep - i have done that.

when i boot off my lupu-510.sfs image, my rc.local contains the line to unmount /dev/sda1, but it starts up mounted.
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Ted Dog


Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 2314
Location: Heart of Texas

PostPosted: Fri 29 Mar 2013, 16:59    Post subject:  

rename the savefile, boot with pfix=ram first
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