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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Puppy Projects
Universal (non-bootable) USB Puppy
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pupnoob

Joined: 19 Nov 2019
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 04:04    Post subject:  Universal (non-bootable) USB Puppy
Subject description: Cross platform USB puppy
 

I just wondered if there are plans to make a truly portable USB puppy that can be ran without booting it on: macOS, Windows and Linux?

I remember many years ago when a friend first introduced me to puppy he had it on a USB stick, plugged it in my running windows machine and launched it. I thought that's quite impressive. If the same USB stick could be used to launch on macOS, Win 7 /10 and Linux that would be even better.

Apologies if this has already been asked, or there's a workaround that achieves the end result; (if there is I can't see it here on the forum or in google).

I like the idea of carrying around a single USB stick that can be used anywhere as an additional current 'on the go' OS. But for work and hobby reasons I've no choice but to use the operating systems mentioned above on about 5 different machines. And in each location they're often always on running various tasks which is why booting with USB doesn't interest me.

thanks in advance
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Lobster
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Joined: 04 May 2005
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PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 06:48    Post subject:  

Very Happy Linux and Windows that runs on x86 (usually Intel and AMD chips) can also run Puppy (click on the install icon and choose Bootflash/USB installer).
You still may also need to get into the BIOS to change settings ...

MacOS for various reasons not available.

Run Wild
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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 12801
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 06:53    Post subject:  

Quote:
which is why booting with USB doesn't interest me.

Quote:
You still may also need to get into the BIOS to change settings ..
.
Does nobody around here bother to read any more?
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rufwoof


Joined: 24 Feb 2014
Posts: 3671

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 06:59    Post subject:  

Quote:
I remember many years ago when a friend first introduced me to puppy he had it on a USB stick, plugged it in my running windows machine and launched it. I thought that's quite impressive.

Imagine going around to your mates house and pressing the power on button, waving your hands over the keyboard whilst chanting a magic spell, and a while later up pops a Puppy like desktop on their system.

Some years back I knocked out a XVesa PXE server system
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=101588. With that you can boot other systems on the same LAN (behind the same router) using PXE boot. Not all network cards support PXE booting and it does require that the target system to be booted is hardwired to the net (ethernet), but the server (your laptop) can be wifi connected.

With the above installed/available on your laptop you go around to a mates house, boot your laptop and wifi connect to their network (usually WPA key protected so you enter a ssid and password to get a connection), start the PXE server (desktop icon) [that does require that you 'remaster' first if you want to boot the same on the target system, or otherwise have a boot system (vmlinuz/initrd) that is appropriate for the target system] ... and with that up and running you then power on the target system and (usually) repeatedly press F12 to get access to the systems Boot Menu, select the 'PXE' (or network boot) option, press enter .... and a while later they'll be booted into that Xvesa Puppy style gui desktop.

PXE/network booting is somewhat slow, repeated dots being seen one by one for a whole line or two, you just have to be patient (maybe a couple of minutes to fully boot). You can set PXE to 'send' (boot) any vmlinuz/initrd (system), you can even set up menu of choices as to which vmlinuz/initrd to serve/boot. The above system only serves itself (hence having to 'remaster') as that keeps the package small whilst still being usable 'out-of-the-box'.

Yes being able to plug in a usb and boot that on your mates PC impresses some. However just pressing a few keys and minutes later having a Puppy type system booted on their PC, especially if they're unaware that you'd already wifi net connected your laptop to their network beforehand ... seems like voodoo magic.

That all boots into the target systems ram. The HDD partitions are visible, but best not to mount/access those as the last thing you want to do is screw up their normal system, excepting that is if you're looking to try and fix a broken system. Also, the above system doesn't auto net connect, so when booted (both on the laptop and on the target system), you'll have to click the network tray icon and select 'setup' ... and go through the Simple Network Setup (or whatever) process to get a network connection. Also, PXE booting may not be set in the target systems boot list - requiring that the systems configuration be changed to include PXE as a boot option.

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rufwoof


Joined: 24 Feb 2014
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PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 07:03    Post subject:  

Lobster wrote:
MacOS for various reasons not available

https://drbl.org/faq/fine-print.php?path=./2_System/121_pxe_boot_mac_machine.faq#121_pxe_boot_mac_machine.faq

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jamesbond

Joined: 26 Feb 2007
Posts: 3387
Location: The Blue Marble

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 11:02    Post subject:  

I just wondered if there are plans to make a truly portable USB puppy that can be ran without booting it on: macOS, Windows and Linux?

Quote:
I remember many years ago when a friend first introduced me to puppy he had it on a USB stick, plugged it in my running windows machine and launched it. I thought that's quite impressive. If the same USB stick could be used to launch on macOS, Win 7 /10 and Linux that would be even better.

You are talking about qemu-puppy.

Quote:
I like the idea of carrying around a single USB stick that can be used anywhere as an additional current 'on the go' OS. But for work and hobby reasons I've no choice but to use the operating systems mentioned above on about 5 different machines. And in each location they're often always on running various tasks which is why booting with USB doesn't interest me.

What you want is a portable virtual machine. Puppy can then run inside the said virtual machine.

I know we have portable version of qemu for Windows, although it is relatively slow. This was how the original qemu-puppy came to be. You can have fast qemu in Windows but you need to install special drivers; and installing drivers in Windows usually involves rebooting - which you don't want. So how usable it is depends on how fast your computer is. I used to carry stick like this, where I booted Puppy on library computers, on a-dollar-an-hour-for-hire computers, etc. But eventually I got tired of it.

As for Linux, with enough persistence it is possible to build a portable qemu that should run in most versions of Linux (and run it quite fast too, if you have root access and proper kernel support). Not sure if anyone has actually spent the effort to do so, though.

I'm not sure about macos. But the key answer is the same. If you can find a portable version of macos-qemu that can be installed on a stick, then you're good to go.

It doesn't even have to be qemu, but I know of no other mainstream virtualisers which can be made portable.

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pupnoob

Joined: 19 Nov 2019
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 11:14    Post subject:  

Lobster wrote:
Very Happy Linux and Windows that runs on x86 (usually Intel and AMD chips) can also run Puppy (click on the install icon and choose Bootflash/USB installer).
You still may also need to get into the BIOS to change settings ...

MacOS for various reasons not available.

Run Wild
Run with Puppy


Yes, I'm aware I can do this on Win / Linux. Unfortunately for various applications / use cases I'm stuck with using MAC's for some tasks. And despite preferring Linux; (Debian / Gentoo) macOS laptops are reliable portable machines despite some of their annoyances.

What are the various reasons for this not being possible on a MAC ? It's just standard Intel hardware. I guess something proprietary in macOS? Or is it the massive amount of coding effort involved?
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pupnoob

Joined: 19 Nov 2019
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 11:24    Post subject:  

jamesbond wrote:
I just wondered if there are plans to make a truly portable USB puppy that can be ran without booting it on: macOS, Windows and Linux?

Quote:
I remember many years ago when a friend first introduced me to puppy he had it on a USB stick, plugged it in my running windows machine and launched it. I thought that's quite impressive. If the same USB stick could be used to launch on macOS, Win 7 /10 and Linux that would be even better.

You are talking about qemu-puppy.

Quote:
I like the idea of carrying around a single USB stick that can be used anywhere as an additional current 'on the go' OS. But for work and hobby reasons I've no choice but to use the operating systems mentioned above on about 5 different machines. And in each location they're often always on running various tasks which is why booting with USB doesn't interest me.

What you want is a portable virtual machine. Puppy can then run inside the said virtual machine.

I know we have portable version of qemu for Windows, although it is relatively slow. This was how the original qemu-puppy came to be. You can have fast qemu in Windows but you need to install special drivers; and installing drivers in Windows usually involves rebooting - which you don't want. So how usable it is depends on how fast your computer is. I used to carry stick like this, where I booted Puppy on library computers, on a-dollar-an-hour-for-hire computers, etc. But eventually I got tired of it.

As for Linux, with enough persistence it is possible to build a portable qemu that should run in most versions of Linux (and run it quite fast too, if you have root access and proper kernel support). Not sure if anyone has actually spent the effort to do so, though.

I'm not sure about macos. But the key answer is the same. If you can find a portable version of macos-qemu that can be installed on a stick, then you're good to go.

It doesn't even have to be qemu, but I know of no other mainstream virtualisers which can be made portable.


Thanks for the info. Is qemu-puppy still a thing for use in modern versions of puppy? Perhaps there's a modern virtualiser that is faster / better supported?

I suppose I could just use virtualbox, which would get all my machines working, but the downside is that would be no use on machines that aren't mine for ad-hoc use where installing virtualbox wouldn't be feasible.
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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1688
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 12:22    Post subject:  

pupnoob wrote:
I suppose I could just use virtualbox, which would get all my machines working, but the downside is that would be no use on machines that aren't mine for ad-hoc use where installing virtualbox wouldn't be feasible.
That's issue number 1, is there a single useful virtualiser available on all the target machines?
I'm not sure there is any virtualiser on Windows 10 Home.

It would be great if we could produce a "Puppy trial" file that could just be downloaded and run on Windows 10 Home, without asking the user to install anything, or rebooting.
Using a virtualiser should make it doable, but issue number 1???

The closest I can come to that ideal is a ".zip" file that has to be extracted to a usb stick, but then the user has to boot the usb stick.

gyro
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Burn_IT


Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 3601
Location: Tamworth UK

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 12:29    Post subject:  

There is a portable Virtualbox!!!

It would work with Puppy under any Windows

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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1688
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 13:02    Post subject:  

Burn_IT wrote:
There is a portable Virtualbox!!!

It would work with Puppy under any Windows
I just looked at https://www.vbox.me/, it looks promising.
Quote:
Portable-VirtualBox is a free and open source software tool that lets you run any operating system from a usb stick without separate installation.
although
Quote:
VirtualBox needs several kernel drivers installed and needs to start several services: if the drivers and services are not already installed you'll need administrator rights to run Portable-VirtualBox.
is perhaps not quite so promising, but could still be a good start.

Questions?
1. Does it run on only Windows?
2. Does the resultant VM run on only Windows?
3. Has anyone here used it?

gyro
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fredx181


Joined: 11 Dec 2013
Posts: 4205
Location: holland

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 15:21    Post subject:  

To add to previous suggestions: "colinux" (for Windows), although it's not Puppy and updated long time ago.

Colinux google search:
https://www.google.com/search?ei=njXUXYVAzLSTBdm4hqgB&q=%22colinux%22&oq=%22colinux%22&gs_l=psy-ab.3...0.0..11663...0.0..0.0.0.......0......gws-wiz.AEwzg8KAxBU&ved=0ahUKEwiFh4n59PblAhVM2qQKHVmcARUQ4dUDCAo&uact=5

Colinux on Sourgeforge:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/colinux/

Just to mention, but probably very much outdated (based on old Ubuntu version), "andlinux" (based on colinux) worked well for me on Windows XP (didn't test on a later windows version)
http://www.andlinux.org/

Fred

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rufwoof


Joined: 24 Feb 2014
Posts: 3671

PostPosted: Tue 19 Nov 2019, 15:49    Post subject:  

Linux is increasingly Winux, avoid the dark (Win) side and embrace the ux (unix) side - and a terminal session on any system can yield your 'desktop'.
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goingnuts

Joined: 07 Dec 2008
Posts: 922

PostPosted: Mon 25 Nov 2019, 13:32    Post subject:  

qemupuppy is a unique solution to do a portable OS. The system is described in detail here: qemupuppy

It still works on Windows 7 without problems - I haven't tested newer versions.

Puppy is the OS but the booting is done by qemu and the main setup is basically based on EEE:
The allinoneqemu_linux and allinoneqemu.exe which provide the virtualization of booting Puppy are "packed" with EEE - qemu and its needed additional files.
You can download eee_linux and view the content of allinoneqemu_linux with this command:
Code:
./allinoneqemu_linux --eee-list

This will yield the following list:
Code:
d bin
f bin/libSDL-1.2.so.0 (387592)
f bin/qemu (965524)
d share
f share/bios.bin (131072)
f share/linux_boot.bin (512)
d share/keymaps
f share/keymaps/da (2576)
f share/keymaps/en-gb (2581)
f share/keymaps/et (1121)
f share/keymaps/fr (2588)
f share/keymaps/fr-ch (2471)
f share/keymaps/is (3075)
f share/keymaps/lt (1096)
f share/keymaps/modifiers (274)
f share/keymaps/no (2576)
f share/keymaps/pt-br (1354)
f share/keymaps/sv (1013)
f share/keymaps/ar (2239)
f share/keymaps/de (2467)
f share/keymaps/en-us (609)
f share/keymaps/fi (2685)
f share/keymaps/fr-be (2876)
f share/keymaps/hr (2699)
f share/keymaps/it (2462)
f share/keymaps/lv (2840)
f share/keymaps/nl (1107)
f share/keymaps/pl (2672)
f share/keymaps/ru (2554)
f share/keymaps/th (3123)
f share/keymaps/common (2078)
f share/keymaps/de-ch (2542)
f share/keymaps/es (2236)
f share/keymaps/fo (907)
f share/keymaps/fr-ca (934)
f share/keymaps/hu (1866)
f share/keymaps/ja (2121)
f share/keymaps/mk (2366)
f share/keymaps/nl-be (43)
f share/keymaps/pt (2450)
f share/keymaps/sl (2293)
f share/keymaps/tr (2649)
d share/License
f share/License/LICENSE (346)
f share/License/README-SDL.txt (425)
f share/License/README.TXT (5177)
f share/vgabios-cirrus.bin (35328)
f share/vgabios.bin (37888)
f share/video.x (12192)
c PATH=%tempdir%/bin:$PATH ; export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=%tempdir%/bin:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH ; chmod +x %tempdir%/bin/* ; %tempdir%/bin/qemu -L %tempdir%/share -no-kqemu %quotedparms%


Unpack and pack works without problems too:
Code:
./allinoneqemu_linux --eee-justextract

to unpack and
Code:
./eee_linux app.eee allinoneqemu_linux

to pack.

So in short the request from OP should be possible:
* Puppy version can be upgraded/modified.
* Qemu version could be changed/upgraded/static linked etc.
* Qemu has been build to run on MAC OS and I guess that MAC OS can read a VFAT/FAT32 usb partion.
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