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Old 11-05-2013, 07:01 PM   #1
jon lee
Registered: Jul 2013
Posts: 111

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If anyone wants to try it, I would appreciate the feedback.

This is my second attempt at building a "live" version of a slackware 14 based JACK audio studio, using the linux-live scripts.

It's in very alpha stage.. test version.

The image is for booting from a USB key.

Make a 3 Gig ext4 first partition on your USB key , enable boot flag.
Extract the slackjack folder onto the created partition.
Go into /slackjack/boot and run 'sh'.
Boot from USB key, the user password is slackjack. root is root.
(although I think you have to use a console login and startx to be root.. and not through kdm).

Some things that some may find interest in, is that it uses what has been called a "lightweight KDE", meaning that it has been compiled without nepomuk/soprano/sonata/akonadi/shared desktop ontologies/kde-pim/kwallet. (I also recompiled some of the KDE core apps not to use those libraries.. K3B, kate, gwenview, etc).

It also has PAM built in. (Almost have to have a degree to set that up)

I've tried it out on all of three computers, all Intel chipset.
On two of those internet didn't work out of the box (driver issues?).
I know it works for sure on a Dell Latitude 2100.
YMMV. I may try to polish it up eventually.

Oh, yeah, screenshots:

I'm open for advice or criticism on it.

Partial app list:
ALSA Patch Bay, Jack Patch Bay, Calf Plugin Pack, Ingen, JACK Rack, JAMin, Patchage, Rakarrack, Sooperlooper, amsynth, Muse/musescore, Mixxx, Rosegarden, Hydrogen, Fluidsynth, Ladish, lv2rack, zynjacku, samplv1, synthv1, mplayer/smplayer, VLC, guitarix, Qtractor, Audacious, Clementine, Composite, Bristol organ synth, Openshot video editor, Aeolus organ synth, ALSA modular synth, Ardour3, LMMS, XBMC, Mx44 synth, zynaddsubfx, cadence, catia, carla, gparted, firewall builder, festige and wine (to load VST synths),and some others as well.

Last edited by jon lee; 11-05-2013 at 07:42 PM.
Old 11-08-2013, 12:16 PM   #2
Hannes Worst
Registered: Jul 2008
Location: Tilburg, The Netherlands
Distribution: Fedora, Slackware, NetBSD
Posts: 122

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Jon Lee,

thank you for your USB-image. I tried it on my Dell Optiplex GX270. Booting the image first gives a failure because it cannot find vesamenuC.32. After that further booting results in a kernel-panic, it isn't syncing: VFS: unable to mount rootfs on unknown block(0,0). It is a pity. I would love to have live slackware-on-a-stick very much, especially with Multimedia software (for my son, he likes to play with video's and music). Good luck with your build!
Old 11-08-2013, 01:51 PM   #3
jon lee
Registered: Jul 2013
Posts: 111

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I appreciate the feedback. I saw something similar when trying to boot from a DVD/ISO. It is a problem with isolinux bootloader on some hardware (or at least I believe this to be the case). Haven't delved in it too far yet, I have no solution as of yet.
What to do when nothing works...

Unfortunately, in what seems to be par for the course when dealing with contemporary BIOSes, there are still a fair number of (mostly older) systems on which ISOLINUX simply will not work.
Technically, If I stuck with USB only, I could just use lilo... anyway.

Last edited by jon lee; 11-08-2013 at 01:57 PM.
Old 11-08-2013, 03:41 PM   #4
LQ Newbie
Registered: May 2012
Location: Napier - New Zealand
Distribution: Slackware 64 Current
Posts: 19

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Tried it, followed the instructions and it works perfectly.
I'm running this off my Imitaion 500GB usb external HD.
All I have left now are small setup annoyances with kde that keep piling up.
Like to have a big ' SAVE settings' button instead of having to reconfigure on every boot.
Like to have dhcpcd program instead of gui - its not there.
Have not yet found a way to change background wallpaper, but i will -- eventually.
But other than these cosmetic problems, it works!.

Craig Miles
Old 11-08-2013, 03:58 PM   #5
jon lee
Registered: Jul 2013
Posts: 111

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Wallpaper is easy. Right click on desktop, "Default Desktop Settings". I change at least once a week, if not daily, depending on mood.
As far as saving settings, perhaps make another partition on your USB drive and mount it on /home/slackjack (Still not a painless, easy way of doing it every boot). Then if you wanted to get fancy with it, you could encrypt it as well, lol.

(I think it's Knoppix live that has the really cool utility that allows for the creation of a container to save changes and also allows you to encrypt it as well. Works great... as long as you remember the key.)

About the host name, I have three younger sisters, it actually started years ago from a band.. 'Big Brother and the Holding Company'. Maybe I should have kept it darkstar

For those not familiar with JACK, you can configure it with cadence, configure, driver, find your device, give it two output channels, force restart. (If working with midi, enable it).

A hint on Carla plugin host, unclick LADSPA, skip sooperlooper, and will find the rest of the plugins.

On dhcpcd, if you hit <ctl-alt-f2> and login as root there, you can issue a manual dhcpcd. PAM blocks some commands from root in an emulated terminal (like ldconfig, iptables, etc). Use <ctl-alt-f7> to return to gui.

Oh, and I'm glad to hear that it works for at least someone. Thanks for that.

Last edited by jon lee; 11-08-2013 at 07:12 PM.
Old 11-16-2013, 10:00 AM   #6
jon lee
Registered: Jul 2013
Posts: 111

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I've seen some people trying to lump PAM in the same category as systemd.
I don't feel that way. I've heard the PAM developers complain that *so far* any vulnerabilities that have arisen have been with external 3rd party modules (*ah-hem*, selinux). There was a very practical reason for me to use it, some audio apps want memory locking. That was the only way I knew to achieve it:

I, myself, do have some questions on how POSIX message queues work and kernel interaction thereof, anyway...

I was actually surprised at what a positive performance increase that came from the use of PAM caused.

And just as note, I've found that if wireless doesn't work on boot, you may have to go into wicd settings and change wlan0 to wlan1.
Old 11-24-2013, 03:32 PM   #7
jon lee
Registered: Jul 2013
Posts: 111

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I have uploaded a newer version.

Mainly this was an attempt to fix the network bug by removing the persistent udev rules that I accidentally left. Despite this, I have still found it necessary to adjust interface names in wicd settings at times for it to work.
It's also quite a bit larger than the first version because I was experimenting with different window and file managers.

I have added a rudimentary standalone compiz desktop selection along with the others. You can also go in the settings and add an icon for lancelot menu for it, but it enables half the kde suite (which is why I don't have it there by default).
To "log out" gracefully from compiz (to go back to kdm) you can issue a 'killall cairo-dock'.
Oh, btw, Cairo-dock communicates to the internet... don't blame me.

XFCE is broke in that the window decorator doesn't start. I thought I had fixed this before I made the image. The cure is to issue a 'xfwm4 --replace', you can also try out any of the other window managers/compositors (kwin, compiz, emerald, mutter, gala, compton) from xfce.

Let it be known that I purposefully broke some of gnome backends that allow some of these and other gnome-centric apps (like pantheon-files and the other file manager) to work.

For example, if you su in and cd /usr/libexec/store and issue a 'mv at-spi-bus-launcher ../' then you can try out mutter in xfce ('mutter --replace'). You'll have to do the same thing to try out some of other file managers that I installed (running in terminal will give you a good idea of what it's wanting). Instead of figuring out which ones I guess you could just 'mv * ../' in /usr/libexec/store...

This is going to be the last version, as it's already too bloated. It was a learning experience and experiment for me (eventually I would like to build a lightweight arm OS). I have cross compiled for arm before, but here I was exploring different interfaces/app options (processes involved, dependencies, etc) for that.

I also added a few more soundfonts in /usr/share/sounds/sf2.

This version takes about a 3.4-3.5 gig partition to install.
Oh, BTW, I failed to mention previously, I compiled to use SSE extensions.. IE. 686.
Old 11-24-2013, 03:56 PM   #8
Registered: May 2010
Location: Stumptown
Distribution: Slackware -current 32bit!
Posts: 537

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I don't think many people are aware of this, but....

The above links might help you, jon lee, in terms of seeing how this guy's doing it.
I have not tried slackex, but thought you all here might be interested.
Best regards!


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