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Old 12-24-2008, 11:45 PM   #1
PenguinnPower
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Needed - Distro that supports wireless internet, ability to run from 8 GB USB drive


My brother's laptop hard drive died. Since it couldn't be saved, I bought him an 8 GB USB Drive.

I need to know a good distro that I can:
  • be somewhat easy to use (he's new to Linux)
  • install the full OS to the USB drive with room to add a few apps. (Firefox, if not already installed for example)

I tried to install Ubuntu on it since that's what I use, but there wasn't enough space on the 8 GB drive I guess. It would boot up and get juuust past the login screen, but then it would display error messages and be unusable.

What do you recommend? Can you give me the link to where I can download the ISO / image file for the install/Live CD?

Thanks!

Happy Holidays!
 
Old 12-25-2008, 12:32 AM   #2
htnakirs
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Try puppylinux, it also has many "puplets" one of which NOS I highly recommend. Once booted with the live CD, it can be installed on the USB drive.
There is also pendrivelinux

You need to post the errors that you get on booting with Ubuntu. Ubuntu does not require 8 GBs to install and run. There could be some other reason.
 
Old 12-25-2008, 12:52 AM   #3
PenguinnPower
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Quote:
Originally Posted by htnakirs View Post
Try puppylinux, it also has many "puplets" one of which NOS I highly recommend. Once booted with the live CD, it can be installed on the USB drive.
There is also pendrivelinux

You need to post the errors that you get on booting with Ubuntu. Ubuntu does not require 8 GBs to install and run. There could be some other reason.
I liked Ubuntu better, but it was definitely frustrating trying to boot that to a USB drive..

I'm installing Puppy right now, but so far I'm not a big fan.

It doesn't seem to let me copy multiple files at once (?) and the default action for mouse clicks - single clicking opens/runs everything. I'll give it a try, but so far I'd rather try to diagnose the Ubuntu.. Let me get out the laptop..

Do you know how much Ubuntu generally takes for a normal install?
 
Old 12-25-2008, 01:16 AM   #4
PenguinnPower
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Upon logging in with my USB Flash drive Ubuntu install, I get this error:

"Internal Error
failed to initialize HAL!"
[ X Close ]

Last edited by PenguinnPower; 12-25-2008 at 01:18 AM.
 
Old 12-25-2008, 08:51 AM   #5
FewClues
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bootable USB OS

If you want your brother to have the full effect of Linux you might want to consider Mandriva. They actually sell USB drives with Mandriva installed. You can install it fairly quickly yourself.

I'm in the Ubuntu / Mint class and really prefer them, but if they don't work well for you Mandriva is a good second choice.

Puppy is great for a small Linux system, but it doesn't have the graphic interface that the current run of OS's have.
 
Old 12-25-2008, 12:02 PM   #6
PenguinnPower
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FewClues View Post
If you want your brother to have the full effect of Linux you might want to consider Mandriva. They actually sell USB drives with Mandriva installed. You can install it fairly quickly yourself.

I'm in the Ubuntu / Mint class and really prefer them, but if they don't work well for you Mandriva is a good second choice.

Puppy is great for a small Linux system, but it doesn't have the graphic interface that the current run of OS's have.
Thanks.. I downloaded Mandriva also. I really disliked the PuppyLinux, I deleted the ISO that I downloaded for that.

I decided to re-install Ubuntu for him. I think the error was due to an incomplete install, but I forget since it was done so long ago. I decided to dust it off and set it up for him as an additional Christmas present.

The USB drive previously had 5.x GB / 2.x GB partitions on it, and I just reformatted the whole drive to only have one partition so that Ubuntu could utilize the whole thing. I installed it around 3 am last night, and after an additional hour this morning I had it all up and running for him. Ndiswrapper is an awesome utility, it picked right up on the old wireless settings.

Thanks!
 
Old 12-25-2008, 12:04 PM   #7
PenguinnPower
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If anyone has any additional recommendations for USB flash drives, I'd love to hear them, I'm always looking into new things.
 
Old 12-26-2008, 06:35 PM   #8
computer_freak_8
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Lightbulb Re: Other USB Flash Drive ideas

Quote:
Originally Posted by PenguinnPower View Post
If anyone has any additional recommendations for USB flash drives, I'd love to hear them, I'm always looking into new things.
I myself modified a copy of the Ultimate Boot CD to include Thinstation, NimbleX, and GParted. It would still fit on a 512MB flash drive, if I remember correctly, but I know it all fit on one CD. I chose the UBCD because it already has a lot of diagnostic utilities, and I just wanted those three more.

However, those are all "Live", that is, they don't save anything. If you wanted an installed Linux system, I'd mention Damn Small Linux; it's particularly good for old hardware - which is kind of ironic, considering that it works very well with UFDs (as small as 64MB), yet older computers won't boot from them.

You could always do a multi-boot flash drive, maybe Ubuntu and Kubuntu. As another alternative, you could use virtual machines on something installed to a UFD. I know that Moka5 has some interesting tools that could set it up with VM images on a UFD and run a minimal OS on the computer, or both on the UFD.

Depending on how big the UFD is, what I would probably do is run NimbleX on a small partition, and Ubuntu loaded with VirtualBox on a large partition.

Keep in mind, though, that if you need the UFD to be read in Windows computers, Windows will only be able to use the first partition, and only if it is FAT/NTFS formatted.
 
Old 12-26-2008, 06:59 PM   #9
Allen614
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I'm posting off a remastered dvd of PC Linux OS,MiniMe. I also have a thumb drive that works with PCs that will boot off USB.

They're both just under a gig. It's like carrying a laptop in your pocket.
 
Old 12-26-2008, 07:03 PM   #10
billymayday
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Fedora does a usb install from the liveCD
 
Old 12-27-2008, 08:34 AM   #11
IndyGunFreak
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Laptop hard drives are pretty cheap on Ebay, and usually not that difficult to install... What model is your laptop? I just got a 2.5in SATA hard drive on ebay for $69. I personally have just never had a lot of luck installing to USB drives.

IGF

Last edited by IndyGunFreak; 12-27-2008 at 08:42 AM.
 
  


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