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RTCarman 06-16-2017 05:06 PM

Linux Lab for Charity - Installation Problem on old CPUs
Hi - I am trying to set up a Linux computer lab at a local charity. I would like to use Peppermint OS 7 on most of the machines. However, a few of the old machines do not allow booting from a Flash drive and do not have a DVD drive. Is there some way of making a multi-CD installation package? I tried an external USB DVD drive, but no luck. Any ideas?

wagscat123 06-16-2017 05:25 PM

This will enable you to use a floppy or CD drive to boot a thumb drive image, in theory:

yancek 06-16-2017 05:27 PM

They don't have a DVD drive but do have a CD drive, is that the case? Problem with that is the iso for the current Peppermint as well as most major Linux distributions are well over 700MB and won't fit on a CD. You might try a network install, the link below has some info on that for Ubuntu and since Peppermint is derived from Ubuntu, the steps should apply.

jefro 06-16-2017 07:52 PM

Plenty of ways to do this maybe.

What is easy I can't say. On really old stuff I use G4U to move an image over network. Old machines may take a while.

You could boot to almost any distro and use nc (netcat) or other means to dd or copy over an image.

You could use a clone computer to copy to blank drives. That could also work as usb to ide adapter in subject box. (don't mix power supplies)

There are ton's of pxe ways to get either some clone OS or that OS on it.

Once in a while you can use a netboot iso cd and point it to some shared or local resource. I used to install opensuse from usb on old systems that wouldn't boot to a usb by booting to the netboot iso.

Before you get too far.
512 MB of RAM
Processor based on Intel x86 architecture
At least 3.8 GB of available disk space"

jmgibson1981 06-16-2017 08:48 PM

Find out if the machines can pxe boot. You might be better served with a central install with something like LTSP instead of individual installs on each machine. This would have the added benefit of peoples user accounts being accessible from any workstation instead of a specific one. Unless you were gonna NFS share /home or something? I'd use Debian for it personally.

Barkester 06-16-2017 10:20 PM

Unetbootin' has worked well for me for many and it ain't alone. Many more apps are available on

You are looking for the ones that install from the net, they have many listed and you simply pick a distro from a hundred or so and click "make". easily cd-able.

Best 'o luck.

RTCarman 06-17-2017 10:44 AM

Wow! Thank you all for the quick response! Everyone supplied some good suggestions.
I will get working on them and let you know how it works out.
Thanks for all your support and advice.
- Rich
"Be well, be safe and be happy!"

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