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Old 12-27-2010, 05:11 PM   #1
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Post Puppy & Xbuntu experiences

Um, well, a follow up to my earlier posting. Duh; it's the wrong direction really, although frugal install of Puppy, into a pre-existing hard disk installation of Puppy, works; the problem I just twigged is (yes all you clever people knew this all along) that the frugal install while loading from the hard disk, is actually being booting into the RAM. So my reason for using Puppy (slightly faster that Xubuntu) is hampered by the frugal installs running in RAM, I would guess. Particularly if trying to watch DVD's.

Any how or the above to work you need a formated disk in ext2. You must set the boot flag, ticked in the box, via GParted now or it will not boot at all. The initial installation to hard drive is from the live CD, but when you close this down DO NOT save the file it suggests, as this is the lupu file for the live CD. If you save this then the live CD boots the file from the hard drive each time and you cannot then change the hard drive disk space or re-format the hard drive from the live CD, due to the fact the hard drive is in use. So close withouth saving this first time, and remove the CD.

Start up again and choose "sda1" from the boot opitions. Do not load again from the live CD. This second boot from "sda1" will load and ask you for location, language and time zone in three seperate boxes, and when you then close this these settings are saved.

Reboot from the hard drive and when Puppy is on screen, only then put in the live CD and make sure it is mounted by clicking once on the logo that should appear in the bottom of the screen (a green dot will appear over part of the logo, showing it is mounted) choose the "instal" logo on the screen at the top left, and this will create a lupu save file in a new folder and load files from the live CD, rename both the folder and lupu file when asked and it should then talk you through putting the extra settings in the Grub Boot loader text file. When you reboot again (again without the live CD) you should be able to choose between the orginal hard disk installation and the new lupu file in a new folder on the hard drive.

Follow this proceedure if you want a second frugal instal for other settings.

Now if you want to try to boot from the live CD it will search (as long as you did not initially save the live CD file when closing the live CD in the first instal) for all lupu save files on the computer and give you a choice of them, or the choice to start it up from none of them (type the numeral 0). Vola. You may need to boot from the CD to use GParted to change the hard drive.

This seems to work, if you saved the Grub bootloader to either the MBR or linux superblock. But I have noticed that when I set up Grub in the MBR for Windows98 with a ext2 extended partition, it was very hard later to work out how to reformat the drive, as some sort of code remained in the MBR and was stubborn. I had to get my Windows 2000 installation disk and repartition that way, and that got rid of the hidden stubborn code. Or load Xubuntu in the live CD mode, as I think that version of GParted could cope with this issue too.

So I may have to scrap the idea of frugal installs on top of Puppy being faster, but interesting that it works. May be it has a use in some other way? Puppy and all live CD booting disks are a security risk, as you can log on to any computer that first searches for the CD drive to boot from it.... So you think your kids are safe upstairs because you put a rigorous version of NetNanny on the hard drive?...think again. A CD of a Linux and a dongle is all they fact why bother: they have mobile phones that do it all now!

What I need I suppose is three partitions of ext2 on the same hard drive, one boot partition and two partitions in an extended partition??? And then install Puppy three times, one on each drive and then load which ever I need from the Grub Boot Loader? But this may not work due to only one partition being bootable (flag settings in GParted)???

Also keeping a clean installation with printer and scanner settings on it only on a disk to clone from if the need arises?

I have not tried this yet. If it works for me, it may work for this is an attempt to answer the question stated in a obscure sort of way. Puppy is not fully house trained yet, or is Puppy training me?

Mother of Puppy, if you're out there listening...copy Xubuntu's method soon, please!

Settings for Orange contract dongle mobile broadband, that I found:

APN: orangeinternet
number: *99#
username: orange
password: orange
pin: ------------- (not applicable, just leave blank)

Settings for Vodafone contract dongle mobile broadband, that I found:

APN: internet
number: *99#
uername: web
password: web
pin: ------------- (not applicable, just leave blank)
Old 12-28-2010, 08:22 AM   #2
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and finally....

Well I tried lower screen resolution on a hard drive install of Puppy, to test how the DVD played. Can't say it was any better than on the higher resolution settings; player controls still froze up so you could only watch the DVD beginning to end, and pause once or twice before it got bloated up somehow.

Copying the DVD to hard drive first may help. Open the DVD file system and look for the larger Vob files: these usually are the main story, the lower sized Vob files are usually menu systems and connecting black screens. So check the large ones first. Play them by simply clicking on them to see what they are. Just copy the bits you need. This will copy faster to the hard drive, and take up less space on your hard drive too. No problems so far with this approach. Some sort of nit-picking technical infrigement I guess over copyright; but if you delete them again from the hard drive after watching, I think that is in the spirit of the law still. You had to find a way to watch the DVD you bought, after all. But the player works fine enough without having to waiste time doing this...but your computer may be even lower spec than mine.

Also internet searching still had same problem a the on lower resolution settings on a frugal install... lines and gaps appear on internet pages, going across the page, making it impossible to read all the text.

Incidentally, and I am writing as a beginner to other beginners of course, if you find you cannot get the CD or DVD out of the DVD player or CD player, check that the disk is not still "mounted". Unmount the disc by right clicking on the disk icon on the bottom of the screen, if it shows a green dot on the icon, and choose "unmount..." from the list. That should cure that little mystery.

What "mount" means is a mystery, but of course I have seen dogs in parks try why should Puppy not grow up fast?!

Being slightly dislexic (I realise I have just mis-spelled that word...does it have a "y" in it...oh why choose such a difficult ironic word to spell such a condition!?)is a problem. Anyhow sometimes aggrieved at Puppy's games, when I have almost endlessly rebooted, I have often misread the closing comment "puppy is now sh*tting down"....quite!

Quite a naughty Puppy then?
Old 12-28-2010, 07:21 PM   #3
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a bit more about Puppy and Xubuntu before I blow a fuse!

I suggested you change operating system to Xubuntu, Puppy or Ubuntu if you found it hard to get online with your software choice. Here's a bit more as I am learning as I go along.

Puppy only seems to use RAM, even if installed on a hard drives. This means it is about the same in performance whether booted from a live CD, from a frugal install, or from a hard drive installation. Could this could be addressed as a design problem by you clever folk?

Puppy is a great idea in the making, as a live CD, but what I realise is I think, that even on a hard drive it still loads everything into RAM to operate? This is why the DVD player is so limited (as described earlier in my posts). I have just tried using the Xsane scanner and the same problem of it not coping with normal demands appeared, even when installed on a hard drive. The red areas in the RAM usage box at the bottom left of screen shows that even with over 500 RAM is is nearly all used up with a simple scan. I accept the scanner settings may be set high, and images do take up memory, but I used the default settings.

Could not Puppy have the feature, if installed to hard drive, of setting up a swap file on the hard drive? Would this cure the DVD/Scanner problems? I notice Xubuntu does have a swap file.

One of the joys of Puppy was the notion that you could "re-activate" older computers with it. Well you can, but only if you just want to surf and do simple stuff...DVD or scanning is too much for it as it uses too much RAM, without a swap file, I suppose. Bah humbug!

On the other hand Xubuntu will not see my printer or scanner due to them being old, but Puppy will, but Puppy can't actually scan properly. However Puppy is marginally quicker than Xubuntu, on my old machine, for internet searching. So sadly I accept that upgrading the computer is the only way forward, which feels like defeat...Puppy held out the hope of ressurecting old Pentium III's.

So my solution is sadly, to have Windows 98 installed alongside Puppy. Do my scanning and DVD's on Windows, and use the Puppy for internet searches, untill (if!) I have enough money to get a better computer and newer scanner/printer combo.

Oh well. But you can get online this way.
Old 12-28-2010, 07:30 PM   #4
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security issue with live CD boots

With this live CD bootable thing, the important thing is to make sure your BIOS settings are set, once you have set up how your computer to be, so that it does not seek to first boot from the CD player, and then if nothing is found tries the hard drive. Set the BIOS to boot only from the hard drive.

Then make sure you have password protected your BIOS so no one can change your settings.

Of course computers are vunlerable to various attacks, via online attacks, keystroke loggers, and simply removing the computer case and taking out the hard drive and plugging it into another as a slave drive. Even removing the BIOS battery can get around a BIOS password.

But it seems to me many companies may not be aware of this weakness, and that BIOS settings may just run through the normal pattern at boot up. A very simple way to steal your data! Come in early to work, put in the CD, and have a pen drive...see you later chum.
Old 12-30-2010, 05:49 AM   #5
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getting triple boot using Win98, Lucid Puppy, Xubuntu

My posts are a bit off-topic, but as I started here (apart from one earlier post...please see my list of posts to find this earlier one) I feel it is better that the discussion stays in one place. So I am posting again. May be it might help someone?

My main interest was in finding a Linux that was easy to connect by mobile broadband, and chose this person's question about wireless cards as it was close to the same issue. But as I worked on the issue, other issues arose.

But finally, I think I may have found a way of getting a triple-boot using Win98, Lucid Puppy and Xubuntu. The reason for this is found in my earlier postings, but basically Puppy cannot play DVD well, nor Scan well, but will see my old printer and scanner. Xubuntu does not see my printer or scanner. Puppy also can see the Win98 (fat32) drive, and also see the Xubuntu (ext4) drive. So with Puppy I can move files from Windows to Xubuntu and visa versa. Neither Xubuntu or Windows can see each other, nor can they see Puppy. So I had to have Puppy if I was forced to scan in Win98 (which does this fine), because what if I wanted to work on the images in Linux or send them via internet? I cannot get on the internet in Win98 with a dongle, so needed Puppy to move files.

So I installed Win98 on a 40 GB drive using about 4Gb in a fat32 primary partion and made sure the flag box showed this partition was ticked as the boot partion. Then, using Puppy live CD, used GParted and created another 4Gb ext2 primary partion next to the fat32 partion. I then loaded the Xubuntu CD and installed Xubuntu, NOT side by side to the fat32 (click the correct buttons on the screen to change this if you try it) but asked Xubuntu to install into the largest free space...which was the remaining unallocated space on the drive (about 30 GB). This then set up an extended ext4 partion of about 28 Gb automatically, with a linux-swap file of 1.25 Gb.

When I closed down and rebooted I found Xubuntu had also automatically installed a Grub bootloader menu for Windows and Xubuntu. This worked. But if you get a problem booting you could try loading the Widows Startup disk, which should be on a floppy disk. Once this is loaded and at the A/ prompt, then type: sys C: (and press Enter, of course) this should reload the Windows system files, if any got hurt by the installation of Xubuntu. If you go for a side by side installation of Win98 and Xubuntu only (perhaps that's all you want) then I did find I had to run sys C: at the command prompt, via the start up disk, to get it all booting again from the menu.

I then reloaded the live Lucid Puppy Cd and installed this to the 4 Gb ext2 partition.

So sda1 was Win98, sda2 was Puppy, and sda5 was Xubuntu.

Using the Grub Bootloader in Puppy I saved the menu.lst file to /dev/sda2, when it asked and saved the grub to MBR. When I booted I found Window could load, and so could Puppy, but Xubuntu would not. By making a guess, I checked what the name of the file really was in Xubuntu, and I edited the text in the grub (press "e" when you have highlighted the Xubuntu menu option and you can edit it). I change the name of the file (vmlinuz) to the longer name of "vmlinuz-2.6.32-21-generic". Now all three boot okay. I am typing this using Xubuntu right now.

The problem is the limitations of each Operating System, and my needing to use a low spec machine which cannot cope with more recent Windows versions nor the full Ubuntu version.

So what is needed was to combine one Operating System which has good capability in playing DVD, and scanning, another that can see old printers, is fast like Puppy for internet searching, but is as clear as Xubuntu about what is going on when it downloads files. (yesterday I downloaded the VLC player for Win98, using Puppy, and it certainly did download it. HOwever it gave not information about file name (so I could not search easily for it, and did not find it) nor what folder it was saved to. So for downloading I prefer use Xubuntu which has a clear folder called "download".

This has nearly drove me mad! About a weeks work trying things out. This all takes time and energy, but is anyone able to put all three operating systems in a great big melting pot, and see if you can get all the advantages of each without the problems????? Then Pentium III's will rule the world! Lol.

I notice now when Puppy loads, is sees the Xubuntu sway file as /dev/sda6, but whether it can use it to make it scan and play DVD's better I am not sure. I just tried watching my test video (The Professionals, Volume 3) and the DVD player menus just gave me black squares where the menus should drop no noted improvement there. Pause may have worked a little bit more resposively, but not much. Have not tried scanning yet in Puppy now it appears to load the linux-swap file. I am not hopefull. So I still need that fix of Windows... One-up for them on this point then.
Old 12-30-2010, 10:17 AM   #6
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I have moved your posts to a new thread. Your posts were not helpful to the OP and warranted a new thread.
Old 01-18-2011, 05:37 AM   #7
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BongoRebound interesting to read all the effort you have put into this.

I hope the guys at Murga Puppy forum can help you with understanding if a Swap file would help and how to set it going for scanning and such.

Try to search on Puppy forum at murga.

As I get it you have a full install of Puppy. I only use frugal install of puppy so I know too little about swap files. But do a search about dual booting and swap file on their forum. You can do that search without joining if you want to concentrate on LQ which is a good forum also for puppy questions. One only need the luck that somebody read the thread so it is a bit like a lottery.

I have the same experience as you that puppy can see a lot of drives and files on them while Ubuntu need sudo and permissions an passwords and such.

Puppy is great as frugal install though. You can try out many different distros in frugal and it only take a few minutes to set up. At most 5 minutes doing the manually from within puppy while I totally fail doing such using ubuntu.

Knoppix 6.2 live is different in that way too. Let you see drives that other distros need root access passwords to be able to read. At least that is how it looks like for me.

murga puppy forum is here
Old 01-18-2011, 07:26 AM   #8
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Puppy only seems to use RAM, even if installed on a hard drives
Sorry to pop your bubble.

title MacPup Foxy3 430 full sda7
root (hd0,6)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz root=/dev/sda7 pmedia=atahd nosmp acpi=force pfix=noram
Linux version (root@puppypc) (gcc version 4.2.2) #1 SMP Tue Sep 1 15:48:26 GMT-8 2009
# free
              total         used         free       shared      buffers
  Mem:      1033760       231092       802668            0         4172
 Swap:      1020116            0      1020116
Total:      2053876       231092      1822784


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