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 Forum index » House Training » Beginners Help ( Start Here)
Questions re hd install: frugal vs full, and which format?
Moderators: Flash, Ian, JohnMurga
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klu9

Joined: 27 Jun 2007
Posts: 345

PostPosted: Sun 05 Aug 2007, 11:57    Post subject:  

@ SHS

thanks for the explanation. Would it be OK to edit & copy it to the Puppy wiki?
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jonyo

Joined: 28 Dec 2006
Posts: 2725

PostPosted: Sun 05 Aug 2007, 12:49    Post subject:  

Flash wrote:
the main reason he developed Puppy as a compact OS wasn't to rescue old computers from the junk heap. It's great that Puppy does that, but it hardly demonstrates Puppy's talent and potential


I've read a few times in this forum (from waaaay higher ups..) that pup was meant, or designed mainly, or perhaps at the outset, to run live cd. Is that true or correct?

Though I haven't tried all the live cd stuff out there, haven't run across anything that does what pup can do runnin live cd. Tried out some of the heavy weights that in some ways offer easier stuff good to go & prob are more polished, but then you loose the Speed..big time.. boot times in particular.
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Sage

Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 5431
Location: GB

PostPosted: Sun 05 Aug 2007, 13:09    Post subject:  

Predictably, we see, once again, real problems in comprehension from our Country Cousins. What say you AJ? Perhaps they could send you on a sabbatical down to Arizona to help out with language studies?
And still the scamster postings persist, twelve hours on. Such a shame John refuses to take good advice, especially as he's such a great guy in all the other departments!
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Sit Heel Speak


Joined: 30 Mar 2006
Posts: 2595
Location: downwind

PostPosted: Sun 05 Aug 2007, 21:40    Post subject:  

klu9 wrote:
...Would it be OK to edit & copy it to the Puppy wiki?
If you think a wiki entry would be useful, then OK, but don't add a bunch of technical material about the initrd and pupmode and Hans Reiser's legal problems and so on. And preface it with this:

"I wrote this essay in mid-2007 in the hope that it will help new users of Puppy Linux to make informed decisions with confidence, when using partitioning software and the Puppy Universal Installer for the first time. --SHS."

Hankyknot, I'm working on an answer for you. Stay tuned.
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NinerSevenTango

Joined: 17 Jun 2007
Posts: 186

PostPosted: Sun 05 Aug 2007, 23:52    Post subject:  

SHS,

That was so well written, now I wish you would write another one-pager on fixing Grub install problems, with a few representative examples, so people could match their system, or see the differences between systems so that they could easily figure out what to change in the config file. I know the information is out there, but it's fragmented, and if I go a few weeks without reading it, I have to do the arduous process of looking it all up again when I do an install and get the infamous panic. I haven't tried 2.17 yet hopefully the routine has been polished up, but I know the values written by the installer in 2.16 are frequently wrong.

Sage,

Many of us have to use dual boot if we want to use Puppy without waiting for it to boot from CD. I like Puppy because it does a lot of things -- it boots fast, runs fast, does a lot of things very well, can be run from CD without bombing out an existing OS, can be used as a rescue disk, and it supports older hardware, too. It was Vista and the whole bloatware/hardware scenario that got me looking in the first place. But I need 3d cad and cam software too. And I have to program PLC's and HMI's and servo drives with special software, and none of the manufacturers that I have to use can devote the resources to deal with Vista AND Linux. And we have business websites that we absolutely must use that have activeX controls in their pages. Sadly, many of these special apps are going to be locked into Windows for the foreseeable future. So now that I'm learning Linux, and am switching certain of our business functions over to it, that means I get to be a Linux sysadmin as well as a WinBloze sysadmin! Wish it didn't have to be so, but that's the way things stand now. There's a sea change coming, but it will take a good long while. That's why a more robust Grub install wizard and a concise write-up for editing Grub will come in so handy.

Sorry for the long opinionated post,

--97T--
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Sage

Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 5431
Location: GB

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 02:48    Post subject:  

Yes, indeed, 97T. But you can't just swap between OSes on a dual-boot machine that is running - you have to reboot and select from the GRUB menu. In the time it takes to do that you might as well swap drives on caddies if the trouble&strife won't allow two boxes in your personal office, den, corner, shed, garage, doghaus. Instead of a Man for all Seasons approach, though, I advocate the concept of Proper Tools for the work at hand, ie half-a-dozen old boxes to run your compact distro and experimental stuff and a legacy box in the corner to run the defective Redmond suite. It's not as if you'll need to spend her shopping allowance on more boxes; your neighbours, friends and relations will pay you to take away kit that will be entirely happy running Puppy, DSL, Austrumi, etc. Then, all it takes is a network hub or wi-fi and a 15w hi-D switchbox or KVM.
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John Doe

Joined: 01 Aug 2005
Posts: 1689
Location: Michigan, US

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 03:21    Post subject:  

Sage wrote:
...ie half-a-dozen old boxes to run your compact distro and experimental stuff...


you want to help me get mosix going?
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Sage

Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 5431
Location: GB

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 03:30    Post subject:  

What are you thinking, JD?
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alienjeff


Joined: 08 Jul 2006
Posts: 2291
Location: Winsted, CT - USA

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 08:43    Post subject:  

jonyo wrote:
What's the diff with ext2, ext3 & reis..somethin..? A few options come up in gparted.


What's Google?

_________________
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quote: "The foundation of authority is based upon the consent of the people." - Thomas Hooker

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NinerSevenTango

Joined: 17 Jun 2007
Posts: 186

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 08:55    Post subject:  

Sage,

Good points all, but it becomes a consideration of real estate. My KVM switch at the office is all filled up (I don't mix 'em up on critical business machines). At home, I want to run whatever I run on my fast machine, plus there's only room for one in the living room.

--97T--
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Sage

Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 5431
Location: GB

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 09:10    Post subject:  

One box or one person?!!
Have you tried the loft?
I keep advising caddies - what's the problem? Have they invented yet another name for them across the water?
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 13110
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 11:05    Post subject:  

There's the consideration of power consumption. The oldest, slowest, lowest-power machine I have uses about 50 watts at idle (while I'm browsing the web for instance,) which is the same amount of power its newer sibling with a much faster CPU consumes under the same conditions. I suspect that if a computer is actually doing work most of the time, a new, fast computer will use less total energy to do the same job as an old, slow computer. The new multiple-core CPUs may use less power than old CPUs under all conditions. I don't know about their chipsets though.
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jonyo

Joined: 28 Dec 2006
Posts: 2725

PostPosted: Mon 06 Aug 2007, 11:17    Post subject:  

alienjeff wrote:
jonyo wrote:
What's the diff with ext2, ext3 & reis..somethin..? A few options come up in gparted.


What's Google?


Doubt that google'd 'spalain how it'd apply directly to pup?
Waay better info was provided here. No?
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klu9

Joined: 27 Jun 2007
Posts: 345

PostPosted: Tue 07 Aug 2007, 12:27    Post subject:  

Sit Heel Speak wrote:
klu9 wrote:
...Would it be OK to edit & copy it to the Puppy wiki?
If you think a wiki entry would be useful, then OK, but don't add a bunch of technical material about the initrd and pupmode and Hans Reiser's legal problems and so on. And preface it with this:

"I wrote this essay in mid-2007 in the hope that it will help new users of Puppy Linux to make informed decisions with confidence, when using partitioning software and the Puppy Universal Installer for the first time. --SHS."

Thanks, here's the wiki page: FrugalvsFullinstall

I left out the filesystem stuff (maybe could be put on a separate page) and did some minor editing.

In particular, could you or anyone confirm my "Short Version" comparison of the two install options is correct? Also I've written it's for hard drives, but does it also apply to flash drive installs?
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ICPUG

Joined: 24 Jul 2005
Posts: 1305
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed 08 Aug 2007, 20:19    Post subject:  

I do not disagree with SHS conclusions regarding Frugal v. Full Install, especially the bit about dual booting with Windows.

However, I think SHS is confused about the usage of pup_save.2fs. These three paragraphs need rewriting:

QUOTE

On a frugal install, they are placed inside a single file, the pup_save.2fs file, which itself contains an ext2 filesystem into which the Linux / dir is placed, with its subdirs inside it--the pup_save contains your full Puppy distro, minus the kernel itself (vmlinuz) and the initial ramdisk (initrd.gz). Thus you can conveniently back up everything to for example a USB key, by simply copying /mnt/home/pup_save.2fs plus vmlinuz plus initrd and your grub or linload bootloader marker and config files to the key (plus zdrv_2xx.sfs if you need it).

On a full hard disk install, pup_save.2fs does not contain the full contents of your Puppy distro, just any changes and additions you've made. vmlinuz is (usually) in /boot, firefox is in /usr/bin and so forth. On a frugal install vmlinuz is outside of pup_save.2fs somewhere on the "real" filesystem. firefox in frugal is also in /usr/bin, but /usr/bin itself is not directly on the disk but rather is in /initrd/pup_rw which in reality is pup_save.2fs on the disk's "real" filesystem, "union'ed" into the overall Linux / directory tree using special Puppy magic.

To avoid problems which might be caused by sudden power outages, Barry sees to it by means of a daemon that all work is saved at fixed, frequent intervals to the pup_save.2fs in the frugal install. I'm not sure how it works in the full hdd install. Don't know if there's a safety net or not.

UNQUOTE

From reading Barry's 'How Puppy Works take 2, I would suggest usage of puppy files is as follows:

On a full hard disk install there is no pupsave.2fs at all! All reads and writes are directly to the Linux filesystem on the hard drive.

On a frugal install, (and when operating Puppy from the CD), the pupsave.2fs is used to write CHANGES to any portion of the linux filesystem. (This is much like SHS says in the second paragraph but there he was referring to a full hard disk install - where a pupsave.2fs file does not exist).

On a frugal install the pup_xxx.sfs file holds the unchanged parts of the linux file system and is still important. The pupsave.2fs does NOT contain the whole Puppy distro as stated in SHS's first paragraph. You therefore need a copy of the pup_xxx.sfs file as well as all the other files SHS mentioned for the backup. However, you only have to update your backup copy of the pupsave.2fs to maintain the backup, as all the other files remain unchanged.

Another thing about the SHS first paragraph is that it says the linux / and all subdirectories are stored in the pupsave.2fs file. This is actually the wrong way round. The contents of the pupsave.2fs are layered onto the / of the linux filesystem. This is done by the unionfs or aufs system.

I get totally confused about the SHS second paragraph. vmlinuz is usually in /boot? I thought vmlinuz is the Linux kernel. On a frugal it might be in /boot on the real file system. The comment about /user/bin being in initrd/pup_rw is also a bit odd or maybe just a bit confusing. The initrd directory holds the contents of the initrd.gz (initial RAM disk on bootup). This makes it accessible after the pivot root occurs before the second stage of the boot process although it is only useful for developers. No applications added by the user will apear in here.

I am not sure about the SHS third paragraph. It may be right for a frugal install. Writes occur to the pupsave.2fs file directly but how often they are written from cache is unknown to me. As I said earlier there is no pupsave.2fs file on a full hard disk install. One thing I do know is that when the pupsave.2fs file is on a flashdrive then Barry does indeed use a tempory file in RAM for storage of changes. This is then saved to pupsave.2fs at fixed intervals to minimise the number of writes to the flash drive. Is this what SHS was referring to?

To sum up I think there are serious flaws in the referenced three paragraphs. I wouldn't care if it was solely in this thread. However, it has now been copied to the Wiki where everyone will take it as the truth. These paragraphs need amendment or removal from the wiki. I prefer the latter with perhaps a reference to Barry's How Puppy Works take 2 for users who really want to know how the file system works. I am not sure how the subtleties of pupsave.2fs and pup_xxxx.sfs help to make an informed decision on whether to do a frugal or do a full hard disk install.

With regard to the Wiki entry I wonder about the 'Short Version' comments on ease of upgrade. I have never used a full install, but I would have thought, when you have added your own applications, some people would think they are easier to upgrade than frugals . I guess this is a subjective judgement.

ICPUG
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