LinuxQuestions.org
Go Job Hunting at the LQ Job Marketplace
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Distributions > Linux From Scratch
User Name
Password
Linux From Scratch This Forum is for the discussion of LFS.
LFS is a project that provides you with the steps necessary to build your own custom Linux system.

Notices

Reply
 
LinkBack Search this Thread
Old 11-09-2007, 07:02 AM   #1
Pytus
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Posts: 8

Rep: Reputation: 0
What's the best Distro to use as a host?


As some of you may know, I'm trying to get my own LFS running.

I've read the book, so I could anticipate what I was going into, I've been a successful Ubuntu user for around a year and a half, off course I'm well aware that this probably is not long enough to build experience and technical knowledge to build a Linux Distro from scratch.

However I was willing to give it a try, but I failed miserably, even reading the book line by line, and countless google searches further, I've not been able to resolve my issues.
I'll make a small list with the issues I've been currently annoyed with:

As far as I understand the book, all the applications I've compiled should've been in the

'$LFS/tools/'
Well, I'm facing the problem that there's absolutely nothing in the tools directory, I've compiled 'Binutils-2.17', 'GCC' and the 'Linux API headers'.

So I feel kind-of out of my place here, since I seem to be able to do (to me) everything line-by-line what the book says, yet I'm still having issues.
I know it's probably not a 'LFS for Dummies', but it's not mentioned in the book that all the applications should be unpacked into the '$LFS/source/' directory.

I know pretty much 70% of what the book does and want, but it seems that the overall other 30% is lacking, and is critical to accomplish this project.

However, I'm using Ubuntu 7.10 --- am facing compiling errors, could it be that Ubuntu 7.10 would not be the preffered Distro to use with building a LFS.
I'm well aware that the LFS LiveCD would be the best possible option, but using that I couldn't even begin compiling, since I lack the knowledge of some basic command I need to throw out to even copy the lfs-sources directory in the $LFS mount, and unpacking them.

So as a question; Is there any Distro out there, that would be a better choice to use with building this LFS project.

Or would Ubuntu 7.10 do as it is, and am I that weakest link?
Also as a last note I only installed 'build-essential' to the clean Ubuntu 7.10 so I didn't do any alterations to the Ubuntu installed applications, and haven't installed anything other.

I hope there's a possible solution, other than put this project on hold for 3 years till I have enough knowledge to build the LFS without even needing the book (so to speak).

Any help will be received with open arms.

Thank you in advance.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 07:36 AM   #2
indienick
Senior Member
 
Registered: Dec 2005
Location: London, ON, Canada
Distribution: Arch, Ubuntu, Slackware, OpenBSD, FreeBSD
Posts: 1,853

Rep: Reputation: 65
Don't feel too put out. I struggled to get my first Gentoo install happening. After several f***ups, I finally got it installed. Now, anytime I try to install Gentoo, it's a breeze.

However, LFS is something I've given quite a few shots, and I still haven't been able to successfully build a system. I also don't really have the time to put into building an LFS system, so that kind of puts a damper on my chances for success.

My only suggestion would be to learn basic commands (structures, syntax, etc.), and learn them well. Once you get that down (should take less than a week, supplying you don't get caught up in the "OH SNAP - THAT WAS SO COOL!"...and then have your learning period degenerate into 2 weeks of messing about with screen. heheheheh ) I'm digressing here.

Learn the command line. Make sure your system is up to snuff for compiling LFS - make sure the proper dev-packages and lib-packages are installed. And if you're having a problem with a certain compilation, post a jist of the issue and any errors you may get, and the rest of us will try our best to help you along the way.

Good luck.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 07:49 AM   #3
Pytus
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Posts: 8

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by indienick View Post
Don't feel too put out. I struggled to get my first Gentoo install happening. After several f***ups, I finally got it installed. Now, anytime I try to install Gentoo, it's a breeze.

However, LFS is something I've given quite a few shots, and I still haven't been able to successfully build a system. I also don't really have the time to put into building an LFS system, so that kind of puts a damper on my chances for success.

My only suggestion would be to learn basic commands (structures, syntax, etc.), and learn them well. Once you get that down (should take less than a week, supplying you don't get caught up in the "OH SNAP - THAT WAS SO COOL!"...and then have your learning period degenerate into 2 weeks of messing about with screen. heheheheh ) I'm digressing here.

Learn the command line. Make sure your system is up to snuff for compiling LFS - make sure the proper dev-packages and lib-packages are installed. And if you're having a problem with a certain compilation, post a jist of the issue and any errors you may get, and the rest of us will try our best to help you along the way.

Good luck.
Thanks for the reply, I don't want to stop, definantly not, the only thing that I want is a clean Linux install, that I than can polute with forensic tools, I'm currently following a Forensic study, and we use Linux daily, so both as a milepole myself, AND to impress my many teachers I wanted to create my own Distro, my own boot screen, my own name in the about section.

I'm definantly not stopping, I was just wonderin;' where to start with my knowledge and the best tools to use.

Thank you so much for your input
 
Old 11-09-2007, 08:10 AM   #4
weibullguy
ReliaFree Maintainer
 
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Kalamazoo, Michigan
Distribution: Slackware-current, Cross Linux from Scratch, Gentoo
Posts: 2,676
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 204Reputation: 204Reputation: 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pytus
it's not mentioned in the book that all the applications should be unpacked into the '$LFS/source/' directory.
I see things like this fairly often from people who are struggling to build (C)LFS and claim they have read the entire book line for line. Yet it clearly states in section 3.1
Quote:
Originally Posted by LFS Book
A working directory is also required to unpack the sources and build them. $LFS/sources can be used both as the place to store the tarballs and patches and as a working directory.
(C)LFS does assume a certain level of knowledge and experience. If you don't have that knowledge/experience, you're going to struggle with the steps that are intuitive to those individuals that do have the requisite knowledge/experience. It can be done, just be prepared to be frustrated.

If you execute the script in the "Host System Requirements" section and everything is OK, then your host system is OK. I've never used Ubuntu to build LFS, but I'm sure others have. I used Gentoo to build my first LFS system and then used that LFS system to build subsequent (C)LFS systems.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 08:20 AM   #5
Pytus
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Posts: 8

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by weibullguy View Post
I see things like this fairly often from people who are struggling to build (C)LFS and claim they have read the entire book line for line. Yet it clearly states in section 3.1(C)LFS does assume a certain level of knowledge and experience. If you don't have that knowledge/experience, you're going to struggle with the steps that are intuitive to those individuals that do have the requisite knowledge/experience. It can be done, just be prepared to be frustrated.

If you execute the script in the "Host System Requirements" section and everything is OK, then your host system is OK. I've never used Ubuntu to build LFS, but I'm sure others have. I used Gentoo to build my first LFS system and then used that LFS system to build subsequent (C)LFS systems.
Thank you very much for your input, if I even have failed to see that part of the book, I might aswel read over a lot of other parts, I assume, that it's time for me to 'learn' the book, instead of 'read' it.

After that I'll just carefully find my way back up into Chapter 5 and give it a go.
I have found an older version of LFS but it's from 2000, and uses (logically) much older versions of the software to be compiled.

I presume you are a more advanced user, so a question;

Would I be able to use the older guide, while only changing the versions of the software to their up-to-date parts, or would that give me problems?

The reason, I would want to use the older guide, is that it's a little more detailed on many places, and I think, that building the LFS with that book, might be somewhat easier (I could be very wrong).

Some of the commands seem to have altered with the versions of the book, that's why I'm wondering, since I lack the knowledge of some of the commands.

Anyhow thanks, for the input, and pointing me out, that I have indeed 'read' the book line by line, instead of understanding it, and learning it.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 08:33 AM   #6
weibullguy
ReliaFree Maintainer
 
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Kalamazoo, Michigan
Distribution: Slackware-current, Cross Linux from Scratch, Gentoo
Posts: 2,676
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 204Reputation: 204Reputation: 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pytus View Post
Would I be able to use the older guide, while only changing the versions of the software to their up-to-date parts, or would that give me problems?
If you don't understand what you're doing, why would you even consider deviating from the book? Follow the book AS WRITTEN until you understand what is written and use the latest stable release, not an older version.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 08:41 AM   #7
David1357
Senior Member
 
Registered: Aug 2007
Location: South Carolina, U.S.A.
Distribution: Ubuntu, Fedora Core, Red Hat, SUSE, Gentoo, DSL, coLinux, uClinux
Posts: 1,300
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 107Reputation: 107
Re: What's the best Distro to use as a host?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pytus View Post
As some of you may know, I'm trying to get my own LFS running.

I've read the book, so I could anticipate what I was going into, I've been a successful Ubuntu user for around a year and a half, off course I'm well aware that this probably is not long enough to build experience and technical knowledge to build a Linux Distro from scratch.

However I was willing to give it a try, but I failed miserably, even reading the book line by line, and countless google searches further, I've not been able to resolve my issues.
I'll make a small list with the issues I've been currently annoyed with:

As far as I understand the book, all the applications I've compiled should've been in the

'$LFS/tools/'
Well, I'm facing the problem that there's absolutely nothing in the tools directory, I've compiled 'Binutils-2.17', 'GCC' and the 'Linux API headers'.
Did you create a tools directory? Is LFS set for all shells (e.g. in system wide startup script)? If the previous sentence does not make sense to you, then you probably want to abandon your efforts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pytus View Post
So I feel kind-of out of my place here, since I seem to be able to do (to me) everything line-by-line what the book says, yet I'm still having issues.
I know it's probably not a 'LFS for Dummies', but it's not mentioned in the book that all the applications should be unpacked into the '$LFS/source/' directory.

I know pretty much 70% of what the book does and want, but it seems that the overall other 30% is lacking, and is critical to accomplish this project.

However, I'm using Ubuntu 7.10 --- am facing compiling errors, could it be that Ubuntu 7.10 would not be the preffered Distro to use with building a LFS.
Ubuntu out of the box is woefully inadequate for compiling anything from source. Installing build-essential does not get you everything you need to compile most projects from source. You need autoconf and several other items. If you are unable to determine what packages you need from looking at the build errors, you should probably abandon your efforts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pytus View Post
I'm well aware that the LFS LiveCD would be the best possible option, but using that I couldn't even begin compiling, since I lack the knowledge of some basic command I need to throw out to even copy the lfs-sources directory in the $LFS mount, and unpacking them.

So as a question; Is there any Distro out there, that would be a better choice to use with building this LFS project.
Fedora Core and SUSE will come with everything you need to build and install projects. However, they are much more difficult to setup and maintain than Ubuntu. If you do not have a lot of experience setting up and maintaining those distributions, you should probably abandon your efforts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pytus View Post
Or would Ubuntu 7.10 do as it is, and am I that weakest link?
Also as a last note I only installed 'build-essential' to the clean Ubuntu 7.10 so I didn't do any alterations to the Ubuntu installed applications, and haven't installed anything other.

I hope there's a possible solution, other than put this project on hold for 3 years till I have enough knowledge to build the LFS without even needing the book (so to speak).

Any help will be received with open arms.

Thank you in advance.
I hate to respond in a discouraging manner, but LFS is really something to be tackled by experienced *nix users. I have been using various flavors of *nix since 1988 and I still would not want to tackle the challenge of LFS. There are so many distros out there that have such good support that I just do not see any benefit. Even for the embedded systems that I work on, we use uClinux instead of trying to roll our own minimal distribution.

When you decide to cut your own path through the brush and ignore existing trails, you often find out very quickly why the existing trails are there: They are the easiest and safest way to get where you are going.

If you still decide you want to tackle this project, go ahead and keep posting your questions, and we will do our best to answer them.

The first thing you should do is install the autoconf and automake tools. You should also make sure bison and flex are installed (they may be symbolically linked to yacc and lex). Perl will also be required by many packages, but that should already be there.

Best of luck.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 03:27 PM   #8
Pytus
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Posts: 8

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by David1357 View Post
Did you create a tools directory? Is LFS set for all shells (e.g. in system wide startup script)? If the previous sentence does not make sense to you, then you probably want to abandon your efforts.



Ubuntu out of the box is woefully inadequate for compiling anything from source. Installing build-essential does not get you everything you need to compile most projects from source. You need autoconf and several other items. If you are unable to determine what packages you need from looking at the build errors, you should probably abandon your efforts.



Fedora Core and SUSE will come with everything you need to build and install projects. However, they are much more difficult to setup and maintain than Ubuntu. If you do not have a lot of experience setting up and maintaining those distributions, you should probably abandon your efforts.



I hate to respond in a discouraging manner, but LFS is really something to be tackled by experienced *nix users. I have been using various flavors of *nix since 1988 and I still would not want to tackle the challenge of LFS. There are so many distros out there that have such good support that I just do not see any benefit. Even for the embedded systems that I work on, we use uClinux instead of trying to roll our own minimal distribution.

When you decide to cut your own path through the brush and ignore existing trails, you often find out very quickly why the existing trails are there: They are the easiest and safest way to get where you are going.

If you still decide you want to tackle this project, go ahead and keep posting your questions, and we will do our best to answer them.

The first thing you should do is install the autoconf and automake tools. You should also make sure bison and flex are installed (they may be symbolically linked to yacc and lex). Perl will also be required by many packages, but that should already be there.

Best of luck.
I understand your post completely, and I have to admit that I'm a pretty unexperienced user when it comes to the very core of Linux, while I am pretty familiar with SUSe and Fedora, I always used Ubuntu since it was widely used, and it was endorsed for my study, however I had the assumption that because Linux is pretty popular there was bound to be thousands of tutorials how to set-up a LFS.

I know (now) that LFS is a pretty spicy project to just undertake if there's still a lot you don't understand, I never felt the need to go into every detail how the system works, as I have with Windows and Mac OS.

Not to say, it would be easier if everything is GUI based, but I must admit that LFS is an excellent way to measure whether your current knowledge is sufficient to create a LFS.

Thanks for the input, and answering few of my questions, I'll keep it in mind.
 
Old 11-09-2007, 06:20 PM   #9
osor
HCL Maintainer
 
Registered: Jan 2006
Distribution: (H)LFS, Gentoo
Posts: 2,450

Rep: Reputation: 69
I think as long as you have the patience to read thoroughly, you will be able to complete LFS (but you will most probably learn a lot along the way).

Speaking of reading thoroughly, I would like to direct you to a section of the book devoted to your very question (yes, Ubuntu with build-essentials is good enough, and no, autotools is not required).
 
Old 11-11-2007, 01:15 PM   #10
Michael Fearon
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Oct 2007
Posts: 8

Rep: Reputation: 0
Hey Pytus!

I recently built my first LFS system using the Live CD. It seems you're pretty committed to building with a host Distro. But I would recommend a re-think. The live CD comes with everything you need to build LFS. The correct sources, the CD as a good host and you can either build from terminals or Xfce (an X windows desktop similar to Ubuntu's gnome).

While command line experience is useful, you don't need to be an expert. I myself have only been using Linux for about 6 months now. Visit this website linuxcommand.org, it's great tutorial that taught me a lot of the basic bash commands. Don't worry too much about the scripting sections. LFS will tell you the correct scripts and commands needed to build and install the sources. Just make sure you understand the basics, ls, cp, rm these should all mean something to you by the time you've completed the tutorials.

A final point. Enjoy the process of learning through the LFS book, and your mistakes!
It's unlikely you'll build a successful LFS straight away, it took me three attempts.

Good look

Michael
 
Old 11-12-2007, 01:29 AM   #11
jowa45
Member
 
Registered: Apr 2007
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Distribution: Slackware11&12
Posts: 94

Rep: Reputation: 15
Hi,
Following a number of failures I have started again with the live CD as a host. It is worth trying just for itself. There are a couple of commands by the name of hibernate and resume. Hibernate pushes stuff to your swap space and resume brings it back. All your own config stuff like users and keyboard are there after a shutdown. Screen looks just like it did before you stopped. You even see where you hibernated. Starts up faster than a distro even on my slow old CD drive. It can not be corrupted because its burnt in.
All this assumes of course that your computer can boot from a CD rom. The instructions are in the CD rom. I am not sure that the LFS team have updated their site yet.

John
 
Old 11-16-2007, 11:05 AM   #12
dirk_m
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Distribution: none yet! working on lfs...
Posts: 2

Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Fearon View Post
A final point. Enjoy the process of learning through the LFS book, and your mistakes!
It's unlikely you'll build a successful LFS straight away, it took me three attempts.

Good look

Michael
Hey I'll take a little of that luck too Michael, thanks
I think I'm heading into my own attempt #2, so I'm curious, how far did you "back up" for your second and third attempts?

David1357 - thanks too for sharing your insight on distributions; there is another viewpoint, however, where you'd want to be as hands-on as possible. Often that's the best way to learn and there's no substitute for experience.
 
Old 11-17-2007, 06:58 PM   #13
Michael Fearon
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Oct 2007
Posts: 8

Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirk_m View Post
Hey I'll take a little of that luck too Michael, thanks
I think I'm heading into my own attempt #2, so I'm curious, how far did you "back up" for your second and third attempts?
I did a complete restart, both times. Complete screwed up the gcc build (twice) hence, two restarts. Both times because I didn't pay attention to the details in the book. All the info is there. Just follow it carefully!
 
Old 11-18-2007, 10:02 AM   #14
dirk_m
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Distribution: none yet! working on lfs...
Posts: 2

Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Fearon View Post
All the info is there. Just follow it carefully!
Well maybe not *all* the info, like the instructions say, the user supplies "a reasonable knowledge of using and installing Linux software." After going through it, my opinion is that LFS is not a best first distro.
 
Old 11-19-2007, 10:07 PM   #15
indienick
Senior Member
 
Registered: Dec 2005
Location: London, ON, Canada
Distribution: Arch, Ubuntu, Slackware, OpenBSD, FreeBSD
Posts: 1,853

Rep: Reputation: 65
Hah - nor is it a good 5th or 6th distro (in my case).
 
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
which distro is the most desirable for the host zapcojake Linux From Scratch 4 11-04-2006 11:40 PM
Host distro (not the live cd) Davno Linux From Scratch 6 08-01-2006 08:11 AM
Host my distro nalyd357 General 9 11-05-2005 05:32 AM
mepis as host distro? mugwump84 Linux From Scratch 3 06-18-2005 11:53 AM
Best Host Distro to use cyris Linux From Scratch 6 04-12-2002 08:35 AM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:22 PM.

Main Menu
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
identi.ca: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration