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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Puppy Derivatives
Puppeee 4.4 revisited
Moderators: Flash, JohnMurga
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Mon 18 Feb 2013, 22:47    Post_subject:  Puppeee 4.4 revisited
Sub_title: A love story
 

Hi, and cheers to everybody in the Puppy Derivatives Group!

This is a thank you note more than anything else. I'm new to this forum, new to Puppy Linux, and relatively new to Linux. But I felt the need to thank the people in this group who have unknowingly helped me. And I thought that my recent experience with Puppeee 4.4 might be interesting and amusing to some of you.

I have an Asus EeePC 1000HA with the original WindowsXP SP3 on the hdd. It's been my only computer for six years. I've never owned anything besides laptops or netbooks because I travel a lot. My first was a Z88, designed by Clive Sinclair back in 1987 before the days of the laptop PC. I also worked for five years in the early 2000s at a Solaris mainframe terminal that did everything in emacs (no x-windows), so I'm not a total newbie to Unix.

Anyway, I figured that after six years of use the hard disk on my Asus 1000HA must be getting close to failure. I love this machine, though, and don't want a different one. So I've been looking for a solution via USB flash drive.

After studying the Wikipedia pages on EeePC-compatible live Linux distros, which linked me to the Puppeee pages of this forum, I decided to download rokytnji's file (at http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=72190&start=30) of Puppeee 4.4 Atom, the only file of this last Puppeee distro that is still available on the Web, I believe.

OTOH, it isn't the iso file it was supposed to be. It's Atom 4.4.tar.bz2. I never heard of such a file before. But I got hold of something called Bitzipper, which turned it first into Atom 4.4.tar, and then into puppeee4.4-beta1-atom.zip, which I extracted onto a 4Gb USB flash drive.

Now what? Everything I'd been reading says you have to use a program like Unetbootin or Universal-USB-Installer from PendriveLinux to make a bootable flash drive from within Windows. But I remembered reading somewhere that PuppyLinux, and maybe the Puppeee distros too, could make bootable flash drives themselves.

Looking through the extracted files, the first one I found that looked like a boot file is bootinst.bat. I opened it with Windows Notepad. It says: "Welcome to Fluppy boot installer. . . This installer will setup disk %DISK%: to boot only Fluppy. . . Warning! Master Boot Record (MBR) of the device %DISK%: will be overwritten." Well, I didn't know what to make of the "only Fluppy" stuff, but writing the MBR of the flash drive sounded like a good thing.

Reading on, bootinst.bat says:

if %OS% == Windows_NT goto setupNT
goto setup95
:setupNT
\boot\syslinux\syslinux.exe -maf -d . %DISK%:

Looked to me like a DOS script for booting syslinux.exe. So, still in my flash drive in Windows Explorer, I double-clicked bootinst.bat, which ran and ended by saying "Disk %DISK%: should be bootable now. Installation finished." Cool!

I unplugged the flash drive, shut down my computer, plugged the flash drive back in, powered on and did F2 to get the Asus boot menu, changed it to boot from the flash drive, saved and exited to the boot. Eureka! Puppeee 4.4 booted up!!!

Great first boot configuration experience ever. Absolutely transparent. Then a beautiful desktop, with everything necessary there plus a lot more.

I'd read in this forum and elsewhere that people had all sorts of problems with Puppeee, like not being able to connect to the Internet. Not me. Puppeee 4.4 found all the wi-fi signals within range and seemlessly connected me to the one I usually use. I did my webmail, then spent three hours running through most of the marvellous apps that let you monitor and configure everything in the system, something that it took me years to figure out how to do in Windows. Plus all my function keys worked, and for the first time I had the relief of being able to monitor the cpu temperature right from a pre-configured icon on the desktop tray.

What more could I ask for?

So, thank you, rokytnji. Thank you, Jemimah. Thank you to the person who wrote bootinst.bat and set up all the other installation files. And thank you to everyone else on this forum. You made my day and saved my a$$.

Mike
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cthisbear

Joined: 29 Jan 2006
Posts: 3431
Location: Sydney Australia

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 04:54    Post_subject:  

Mike7:

Hey! mate....welcome to Puppy.

Thanks for posting your good experiences.

Plenty of other great Puppies around to try.

Anyway thanks again for posting....

Chris.
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 05:54    Post_subject: Bad News
Sub_title: No second boot of Puppeee4.4 on flash drive
 

I spoke too soon in my first post. I have not been able to boot again from the flash drive. The first boot worked fine, the second time I just got a "Boot Error" message. Tried again, same thing.

I reformatted the flash drive amd ran through the whole setup process again, and the same thing happens.

Any suggestions?

Cheers!

Mike
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ally


Joined: 19 May 2012
Posts: 851
Location: lincoln

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 07:34    Post_subject:  

hey mike

not sure if it applies but my eee's only boot usb's from the RIGHT HAND usb ports

HTH

Smile
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 19:28    Post_subject:  

Hi, Ally. I'll certainly give that a try, although I did get it to boot once or twice from the left side. I also read somewhere that you should always plug them into the same port, and that it should be the one where you installed to.

BTW, any suggestions about a better Puppy distro for my 1000HA? Maybe Breezy?

One last thing. Do all the versions of Puppy have built-in persistence like Puppeee 4.4 does? That was what first attracted me to Puppeee rather than the other EeePC distros.

Thanks.

Cheers!

Mike
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ally


Joined: 19 May 2012
Posts: 851
Location: lincoln

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 19:39    Post_subject:  

hey mike

I run the original puppeee 1.0 celeron but there is also legacy os 4 mini which john biles created for the 900

many of the distro's will work well, slacko works well on all my hardware (suggest 5.3.3 as stable) but there are many

it's a matter of personal choice

don't understand the 'persistence' query

Smile
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 23:05    Post_subject:  

Hi again, Ally.

Persistence is the nice feature where you can save configuration changes and stuff like that when you shut down. Far freom all Linux live distros let you do that, it seems. Since I will be running my Linux op sys from a USB flash drive rather than a full hard disk drive installation, this persistence feature is especially important to me.

Puppeee 4.4 created a huge .5 Gb file called eeesave.2fs on my flash drive. Maybe all Puppy versions and derivatives do the same. Is that right, do you think?

I was wondering myself if it might be best to go for the original Puppeee 1.0 Atom. Puppeee 4.4 is full of files and applications I don't need. Way too much stuff in there for me. It seems like it's got three of everything, three editors, three media players, three file managers, etc. The only real reason I've been trying to use 4.4 is that it's got the right drivers for my wireless adaptor, and what I mainly use a computer for is the Internet.

Do you think a more recent, bigger non-eee-specific distro like Slacko would work on my 1000HA? I don't know if all these newer distros are such a good idea for a tired old 2008 netbook. Ubuntu doesn't do an eee-specific distro any more, and neither does Fedora. They say it's not necessary because their regular distros are compatible now with netbooks. But maybe they're thinking of more recent and powerful netbooks.

It's a thorny question and I've spent a hundred hours trying to find some answers, but so far I haven't got a clue <grin>.

Cheers!

Mike
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ally


Joined: 19 May 2012
Posts: 851
Location: lincoln

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 23:29    Post_subject:  

yes they all have the save file option

I'm running 701 and 901 eee's and they still run quickly with puppy, even an old IBM T21 is quite usable with puppy

the newer puppies will be fine, it's a matter of preference, wary, racy, precise, slacko, upup, legacy, so many to choose from

they will all have loads of apps installed, puppeee 1.0 is abundant with kit and around 128mb

you can select the size of the savefile when you create it, 512mb is a good choice as your browser cache will fill this space

if you haven't already grab a usb cdrom and try a few and see how you get on, it's part of the fun!

Smile
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rokytnji


Joined: 20 Jan 2009
Posts: 1366
Location: Pecos/ Texas

PostPosted: Tue 19 Feb 2013, 23:50    Post_subject:  

Quote:
I spoke too soon in my first post. I have not been able to boot again from the flash drive. The first boot worked fine, the second time I just got a "Boot Error" message. Tried again, same thing.


Next time that happens. Make another Pendrive with Live Puppeee on it. Boot into that one. Plugin the Puppeee that won't boot. Open Gparted in Puppeee and find the drive that won't boot.

It will probably show the pen drive shaded all in yeloow. At least that has been my experience. It comes from not unmounting a pen drive properly through improper shutdown

Anyways. While in Gpartedf. Right click on the pendrive that won't boot. Pick check from the menu. Hit apply. Let it run ckdisk on the pendrive. When done. Shutdown everything. Then try the pendrive that did not boot.

It should boot OK now. Thanks for the thanks Mike7. Rok
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raffy

Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 4776
Location: Manila

PostPosted: Wed 20 Feb 2013, 00:32    Post_subject: Saluki  

If you have not heard of it yet, Saluki is the continuation of Jemimah's work. Gray produced a NOP (no office) for Saluki at
http://download.tuxfamily.org/nop/

Next trick to using save file is using office sfs - copy it to where you have your save file and start bootmanager. Next boot will make that sfs useful.

_________________
Puppy user since Oct 2004. Want FreeOffice? Get the sfs (English only).
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songzi

Joined: 22 Jan 2010
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Wed 20 Feb 2013, 08:44    Post_subject:  

My EeePC 900 is working very well with puppies like Lxpup Slacko, Saluki/Carolina and LazY Puppy.
_________________
Puppy Linux | Arch | antiX
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Wed 20 Feb 2013, 23:00    Post_subject:  

Hi, Ally.

Glad to hear they all have persistence. That’s fundamental, running from a flash drive. Puppeee 4.4 saves RAM to the save file every hour automatically. Clever.

I finally got Puppeee 4.4 running again. Maybe it fixed itself. I wouldn’t put it past this amazing op sys.

I’ve fallen in love with it. Since the boot got fixed I haven’t booted Windows and maybe never will again. I like the desktop, so nice and clean, and most of the apps work great. Especially Pwireless2 together with Chrome, which are twice as fast as Firefox on WindowsXP was. I’m also getting the hang of the file system and the terminal. It’s like being back on that Unix mainframe. Really cool.

As to getting a USB CD/ROM, I haven’t had a CD/ROM for so long that it’s become a case in point with me: I’m gonna do without it! Heck, you can get a 32Mb USB flash drive for $10, and they are RAM, not like CDs.

What I think I’ll do is use one of the multiboot iso boot installers like YUMI and just put around ten Linux distros on a 32Gb flash drive along with Kaspersky and Bitdefender antimalware. Then I’ll be able to relax <grin>.

Cheers!

Mike
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Wed 20 Feb 2013, 23:24    Post_subject:  

Rok! I’m knocked out to hear from you. I owe it all to you for keeping that download link for Puppeee 4.4 Atom still good. I searched for two days, and yours is truly the only one.

I had no idea you were still around in this forum. What a cool place the Puppy Linux world is!

Thanks for the instructions on using Gparted. I did get 4.4 to boot again, or maybe it fixed itself. Anyway, once it was running I tried to back it up on another memory stick by using the built-in apps, but neither of them worked. They’re not very good, I’m afraid to say (sorry about that <grin>). So your rundown on using Gparted to fix things is much appreciated. I’ve never used a partition program. They kinda scare me.

On the subject of boot sectors and partitions and all that, do you know if re-formatting a pendrive (in WindowsXP or Linux) clears the MBR as well as the partitions? I’ve been wondering if my pendrives might end up inoperable from all this playing around and changing what’s on them.

Cheers, and thanks once agan for Puppeee 4.4. If you know who put it together please give them my thanks, too.

Mike
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Thu 21 Feb 2013, 01:01    Post_subject:  

Hi, Raffy.

I’ll download Saluki and check it out. That’s an interesting download site. There’s a ton of stuff in the parent directory. I found the madwifi for my atheros5 adaptor, in case I ever need it.

BTW, you don’t know anything about running Slitaz on an Asus 1000HA, do you? (Maybe I should ask that in another forum, huh?)

I need to figure out how bootmanager works. However, I think I’ll stay away from office. I never use anything except text files.

Thanks for the tuxfamily URL.

Cheers!

Mike
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Mike7

Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Thu 21 Feb 2013, 01:26    Post_subject:  

Hi, Songzi.

Interesting, although there’s a lot of difference between one eee pc and another. Still, those distros as well as lots of others might work okay on a 1000HA.

The thing about some of the eee-specific distros, so far as I can see, is that they preserve eee-specific functions. Puppeee 4.4 maintains almost all of the 1000HA’s special functions, like screen control keys and such. I’m very impressed with the easy transition to it. Plus it’s very light for all the apps it’s got, and is easy-going on cpu use and power consumption, crucial things on a heavily-used old computer.

I would tend to get a few smaller distros, even the minimal ones like Tiny Core Linux, and try them out. I’m a minimalist at heart. I hate upgrading anything. For example I haven’t changed the sort of clothes I wear since I was fifteen and now I’m sixty-nine.

Cheers!

Mike
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