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Re: is it possible to install a custom initramfs USB bootable system?


On Sat, Feb 21, 2009 at 7:58 AM, Miernik <public@public.miernik.name> wrote:

I have a computer with 10 GB of RAM, but no hard disks. I want to
install Debian to make it work this way:

 1. Debian is installed in RAM (maybe from PXE netboot)

 2. with some command a compressed squashfs image is created of the
   current system, and saved on an USB flash stick

 3. the next time the system needs to be booted, it is booted from this
   USB flash stick, fetched and uncompressed totally into RAM, and then
   this flash stick is removed (it should not be needed for this stick
   to stay inserted while the system works, only for boot)

 4. when (after) the system is upgraded (in live initramfs), a command
   (from point 2.) is run again to update the compressed squashfs image
   on the USB stick

Something similar to
for Gentoo portage tree (but for the whole system).

Is Debian Live the right way to go, or maybe there is a better method to
achieve this setup?

Debian Live can be configured and booted in many ways. On the Debian Live list I suspect you should expect comments on how to utilize Debian Live to achieve what you want.

I've seen http://wiki.debian.org/DebianLive/Howto/USB

Is RAMboot something I need to use?

Mileage may vary, so you should test the boot param of:

           Adding this parameter, live-initramfs will try to copy the whole
           read-only media to the computer´s RAM before mounting the root
           filesystem. This could need a lot of ram, according to the space
           used by the read-only media.

I use it on server(s) that I netboot. Someone else might have more comments.

I would also like all programs to be executed in place (with XiP) and
not copied into another portion of RAM for execution (which would be a
waste of memory and time).

Pointers for the most efficient way to go apprecieated.

First I think you could just make a usb-hdd image of Debian Live image and use persistence. See:


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