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Old 10-20-2018, 05:47 PM   #1
Didier Spaier
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Distribution: Slint64-14.2.1.2 on Lenovo Thinkpad W520
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[Request for testing] scripts for installing and updating a system on an USB drive with a generic kernel


EDIT Sun 21 Oct 13:56:38 CEST 2018:

Please hold on, I will enhance install_with_UUID.sh to cope with a limitation of liloconfig which either installs lilo on the MBR of the first disk (which we don't want) or on the root partition of the USB stick (which fails).

The solution will be not to run lilo during installation in this case, but let the install_with_UUID.sh script write lilo.conf then run lilo.

Stay tuned.

Hello,

the two scripts available here are intended to automatize all manual configuration tasks needed to:
  • allow a system installed on an USB drive (hard disk or SSD) to boot on most computers: install_with_UUID.sh
  • allow this system to continue booting after a kernel upgrade: update_with_UUID.sh
All the details are written down in README.TXT.

So please test and report your findings in this thread, with all needed details in case of failure.

Cheers,

Last edited by Didier Spaier; 10-21-2018 at 07:02 AM. Reason: Title corrected
 
Old 10-21-2018, 05:40 PM   #2
Didier Spaier
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I need more time for a proper fix. This post removes the thread from the zero reply list, I will post again when I will be ready.
 
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Old 10-22-2018, 04:03 PM   #3
Didier Spaier
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Please test.

Hello,

The scripts are now ready for testing. Please read the README.TXT first.

To auto-adapt the system post installation:
  • Download install_with_UUID.sh and write it on an USB stick.
  • Start the Slackware64-14.2 installer with the USB drive plugged in.
  • Install as usual but DO NOT install LILO. If you can install ELILO, do it.
  • At the end of installation, DO NOT REBOOT yet.
  • Plug in the USB stick with the script and mount it as /floppy.
  • type sh /floppy/install_with_UUID.sh
You new system should boot in Legacy mode, and in UEFI mode if you installed ELILO.

Caveat: booting will take a long time and seem to halt during roughly half a minute before continuing, this is to give the drive the time it needs to spin before trying to mount the root partition. You can shorten this delay, as indicated on top of the script.

Please report any issue in this thread.

Of course the initrd should be rebuilt after a kernel upgrade, and the boot loader re-installed (lilo) or re-configured (elilo). You won't have to do that manually either, just do this:
  • Download update_with_UUID.sh in your system on the USB drive.
  • Upgrade the kernel but DO NOT REBOOT yet.
  • Run the script as root.
Of course run the script again after each kernel upgrade.

Please report any issue, providing relevant information about the machines on which the system would not boot. For that, please try to boot it on as many machines as possible.

Cheers,

PS You may use grub instead of lilo or elilo, as indicated as the end of both scripts.

Last edited by Didier Spaier; 10-22-2018 at 04:22 PM.
 
Old 10-23-2018, 11:33 AM   #4
mralk3
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Distribution: Slackware 14.2 || Slackware-current && CentOS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Didier Spaier View Post
Hello,

The scripts are now ready for testing. Please read the README.TXT first.

To auto-adapt the system post installation:
  • Download install_with_UUID.sh and write it on an USB stick.
  • Start the Slackware64-14.2 installer with the USB drive plugged in.
  • Install as usual but DO NOT install LILO. If you can install ELILO, do it.
  • At the end of installation, DO NOT REBOOT yet.
  • Plug in the USB stick with the script and mount it as /floppy.
  • type sh /floppy/install_with_UUID.sh
You new system should boot in Legacy mode, and in UEFI mode if you installed ELILO.

Caveat: booting will take a long time and seem to halt during roughly half a minute before continuing, this is to give the drive the time it needs to spin before trying to mount the root partition. You can shorten this delay, as indicated on top of the script.

Please report any issue in this thread.
The machine I am using is a Dell Inspiron N4010. It only has two USB ports. Unfortunately the DVD-Rom is broken. Is it a requirement that "install_with_UUID.sh" be ran from the /floppy directory on an additional USB stick? I have the installer running usbboot.img for 14.2 in one USB port and the USB external HDD is in the other port. I copied the script to the root directory of the live file system and will be running it from there.

After I get this installed I will test the other script on the same system.
 
Old 10-23-2018, 11:47 AM   #5
Didier Spaier
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mralk3 View Post
Is it a requirement that "install_with_UUID.sh" be ran from the /floppy directory on an additional USB stick? I have the installer running usbboot.img for 14.2 in one USB port and the USB external HDD is in the other port. I copied the script to the root directory of the live file system and will be running it from there.
The script can be in any location accessible by the installer's shell, so the root of the live file system is OK.

On the other hand, you can just remove the installation USB stick once the installation is done as then it will no more be used.

Out of curiosity, why not just dd the ISO image to an USB stick? This makes the USB stick bootable as well, and you find in it all you need to proceed to installation as if you used a DVD or usbboot.img

Quote:
After I get this installed I will test the other script on the same system.
Great, eager of your feedback.
 
Old 10-23-2018, 12:07 PM   #6
mralk3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Didier Spaier View Post
The script can be in any location accessible by the installer's shell, so the root of the live file system is OK.

On the other hand, you can just remove the installation USB stick once the installation is done as then it will no more be used.
That's what I figured, I just wanted to be certain I used the correct test parameters so the script will work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Didier Spaier View Post
Out of curiosity, why not just dd the ISO image to an USB stick? This makes the USB stick bootable as well, and you find in it all you need to proceed to installation as if you used a DVD or usbboot.img
I currently do not have a USB stick large enough to hold the full Slackware ISO. I have a USB adapter I use that lets me plug in various SD Cards. I had a 2GB SD card that I used in this fashion. Let's just say that the kernel and initrd loaded by the installer takes a very long time with this adapter. I did a network install using a http mirror on my LAN.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Didier Spaier View Post
Great, eager of your feedback.
The hard disk was partitioned with a 4GB swap and I allocated the rest of the hard disk to the root partition. I figured that such a partitioning scheme would be the most basic test, while still applying to most average Slackware users. The install_with_UUID.sh worked like a charm. Upon reboot the system came up, with the slight delay described, and booted into 14.2.

Once I was logged in I configured slackpkg and executed:

Code:
slackpkg upgrade kernel-generic kernel-modules kernel-headers kernel-firmware
I did not upgrade any other system packages to keep the system as vanilla as possible.

I answered "No" when slackpkg offered to run lilo for me. After that I ran the update_with_UUID.sh script. Everything worked as you described it would in the README. I rebooted the system to verify.

Everything looks good on my end.

Last edited by mralk3; 10-23-2018 at 12:12 PM.
 
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Old 10-23-2018, 12:17 PM   #7
mralk3
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The only other system I have to test this on is an ancient Asus EEE PC 2g surf. It is still running 14.1 and has an extremely minimal installation due to the internal disk having 2GB capacity. My main system supports EFI, but it is in use. The rest of my systems are Raspberry Pis. I wish I could help test this with EFI.

It would be great if these scripts were added to Slackware. It would be a quality of life increase.
 
Old 10-23-2018, 01:08 PM   #8
Didier Spaier
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Thanks for testing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mralk3 View Post
My main system supports EFI, but it is in use. The rest of my systems are Raspberry Pis. I wish I could help test this with EFI.
I think that you can just use you main system, in UEFI mode, with the USB disk plugged in. Of course you would need to put an EFI system partition on the hard disk.
The installer shouldn't modify the hard disk where the main system is installed, provided that you do not run lilo when asked.
To be 101% safe, before proceeding you can "cp -a /boot/efi/EFI/Slackware /boot/efi/EFI/slackware.orig" and check before rebooting that the files in /boot/efi/EFI/Slackware have not been modified, else restore them from Slackware.orig
When asked "Would you like to install a boot menu entry so that you can easily select Slint when you boot your machine?", answer No as this boot entry would be for the system on the USB drive, not for your main system.
 
Old 10-24-2018, 04:45 PM   #9
Didier Spaier
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I just uploaded updated scripts (still not mentioning a version number).

They list the changes since 22 October, noticeably a workaround for an issue that prevented visually impaired users to have speech at time of logging in when using the speakup software synthesizer. This is a workaround, I will get in touch with the speakup developers to fix that.
 
Old 10-29-2018, 12:30 PM   #10
Didier Spaier
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Didier Spaier View Post
They list the changes since 22 October, noticeably a workaround for an issue that prevented visually impaired users to have speech at time of logging in when using the speakup software synthesizer. This is a workaround, I will get in touch with the speakup developers to fix that.
I did that, this is a bug for which a patch has been submitted, but too late to be included in the kernels shipped in Slackware 5.0, hence this request for -current.

I have also updated install_with_UUID.sh, including a bug fix and an added kernel module (also added to update_with_UUID.sh), so now you can safely upgrade to the kernel shipped in current then run this script.

Q. Why some people do not want to test a not yet released software?
A. Because they don't want to miss an occasion of complaining after it has been released.
 
  


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