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Old 10-01-2006, 10:20 PM   #1
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Compact Flash Installation

I am new to Linux - but old to computers. I would like to create a kiosk-like system to run one java application all of the time, full screen. I have this working well using Kubuntu on a VIA M600 board with 1 gig ram. I would like to transfer this to run off of Compact Flash - figuring solid state would be nice and quiet, and since this app does not need to write - why not? I have two 4 gig CF cards to play with and a IDE/CF reader. I am hoping this is as simple as using dd to copy the hard drive (hda) to the cf card (hdc). Is this naive? Suggestions welcome.

Old 10-02-2006, 05:41 AM   #2
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I have a similar set up, i used the Live Linux scripts. They compress the FS with squashfs and then use unionfs to make a rw file system that doesnt write to the card. It makes a cdrom which you could mount on the loopback and then run some scripts on the disk to write to the live disk to the CF. Hope that helps.
Old 10-02-2006, 05:54 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by robotissues
I would like to create a kiosk-like system to run one java application all of the time, full screen....... I am hoping this is as simple as using dd to copy the hard drive (hda) to the cf card (hdc). Is this naive? Suggestions welcome.

Hello Robotissues,

"dd" should work. You have to think about the filesystem on the cf-card (maybe ext2. Naive is everytime a good way to grow. I didn't do such a project like you. I think, the best way is to boot from solide flash and than remount the root to cf-card. For this you have to do a Kernel without modules. To realise this, you can use your hardware in a normal system and run "hwinfo" - surche for the components and configure your kernel.
You have also to configure your bootmanager like Grub (here better then Lilo) - *RTMF*

If you are in the situation, the system come up to init... you only have to do makeups (beauty...*g*)...

I know this from my inofficial Projekt before 5 years. Here I create a scrip, is building a bootable CD with a System like Knoppix from scratch (means: I build my own linux to understand the system)

Have fun and don't frustrate...
Old 10-02-2006, 09:29 AM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback - unfortunately I am getting a bit hung up on all of the jargon. Is there a good explanation of the boot process somewhere that might help?

Old 10-02-2006, 10:51 AM   #5
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This one's a little outdated, but gives a good overview of the after the bootloader:

Here's one that gets into the nitty-gritty (I assume you're using x86):

Here's something on UnionFS:

And some resources on using it:
Old 10-02-2006, 04:37 PM   #6
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Hi, I tend to not try and reinvent the wheel. To that end I would give DSL (damn small linux), finger gear or knoppix a try first. DSL has a live CD that has an option to install itself to a flash disk. It only takes up about 50 meg so even on the smaller (ie cheeper) flash drives you should have room for your files.
There is also a util that comes in handy (HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool (HPUSBFW.EXE)) it's a windows program that has the same options as the windows disk format.

Last edited by; 10-02-2006 at 04:38 PM.


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