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[SOLVED] Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

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abbreviatedman
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[SOLVED] Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#1 Post by abbreviatedman » Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:41 pm

Hi! I'm trying to make a live USB with persistence using the MX Tools. I got a little confused by the Dolphin Oracle video -- probably my fault, having trouble translating between making one in a VM and on "bare metal".

Here's what I do. I'm sure there's something really basic and foolish I'm missing here!

1. Make a live USB using an MX Linux ISO. (Can a snapshot work?)

2. Boot up from that live USB.

3. Set the persistence option (using the F5 sub-menu I believe) to Persist Static.

When I do this, I get an error that it can't find a suitable USB. Am I not supposed to make the persistence USB from/to the same USB? That sounds like my problem; what am I supposed to do instead?

Thanks for any help! I've been loving MX for the last few months as my daily driver, looking to expand my usage even more!

Cheers,
-abbreviatedman
Last edited by abbreviatedman on Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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fehlix
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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#2 Post by fehlix » Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:51 pm

1. Make a live USB using an MX Linux ISO. (Can a snapshot work?)
Easiest way: you have a writable usb-stick made with MX Live USB Maker from ISO MX-Snapshot or MX-orig!
EDIT: On this stick you can than have persistence enabled!

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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#3 Post by dolphin_oracle » Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:55 pm

you cannot use any method that leads to a read-only stick, like etcher or dd or gnome-disks makes. our own tool (mx-live-usb-maker), or tools like unetbootin, should allow you to create a persistence file because they do not create read-only sticks.
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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#4 Post by abbreviatedman » Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:04 pm

Okay, cool. I'll try it with a writeable method tomorrow morning. Thanks for the tip, hopefully that was the only foolish thing I was missing!
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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#5 Post by tascoast » Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:31 am

I would also recommend, having created a bootable Live USB (from the 32 or 64 bit *.iso your hardware requires), that you get a bit of a feel for using the GUI MX tools to create a homefs and rootfs [See User Manual: 6.3 Live remaster/persistence (RemasterCC)], before going the F-5-Persist_all (the persist option I prefer) command line approach . Either way works fine but enabling persistence while already running MX live (ie. GUI tools) is perhaps easier to follow initially.

Then, when you are happy with running a Live USB and have customized the persistence mode (eg. F-5, as I recommend and use), having added some applications, customised the desktop, imported your bookmarks, updated via Synaptic etc., you will want to progress to remastering, thus incorporating various changes and conserving USB storage (and hardware RAM, I think).

MX Live USBs are a really good opportunity to have several trial runs if needed, until you optimise MX for personal needs, without excess 'bloat'. Cleaning up outdated rootfs and homefs files, to free up USB space after Remastering, is the main thing to bear in mind for this process, I believe.

I tend to make snapshots of an installed system, using remaster for a Live USB.
I certainly do make a Live USB from system snapshots, from time to time and this works very well, although in practice, I tend to keep system snapshots as backups which may be run using Virtual Box (bypassing live USB creation) if needed, keeping another 'ground-up' built custom MX Live USB for emergencies or as an installer.
Enjoy and welcome. :happy:
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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#6 Post by abbreviatedman » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:44 am

So I'm still confused about how to make a writeable live usb system. I tried the dd option in the mx-live-usb-maker GUI front-end, but that (I now realize) creates a read-only live USB. Which option creates a live system? I don't want to clone an existing live system, right? I don't have one yet, unless my hd system counts.

I feel like I'm still missing a step. The DO videos I watched have him booting into the menu that has live usb options, but from a write-capable usb. I've booted into that menu from a dd-created read-only disk. Do I need to have two usbs, one blank, one with an iso?

Thanks for the advice about getting comfortable with live USB systems before playing with persist! Having grown up with Macs and then Windows (only because Macs sucked for online poker!), I think there's a don't-play-with-the-system-too-much-you'll-break-something mentality that a lot of people fall into, and that's hard to get away from. Borking systems you can afford to bork is something I should try for more often. : )
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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#7 Post by Adrian » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:59 am

So I'm still confused about how to make a writeable live usb system. I tried the dd option in the mx-live-usb-maker GUI front-end, but that (I now realize) creates a read-only live USB. Which option creates a live system? I don't want to clone an existing live system, right? I don't have one yet, unless my hd system counts.
Yes, don't use dd that's only for read-only. "Clone an existing live system" is a bit confusing, but you don't want that if you "burn" an ISO. So you start with an ISO, (either MX-17.1 release ISO or a monthly snapshot, or even a personal one that you created with MX Snapshot), then you create the USB with the MX Live USB Maker, the default options should be fine, you probably don't need to select anything, just the ISO and the flashdrive you want to write to. Then you boot from the newly created flashdrive, at boot time you need to press F5 to select the type of persistence you want to use.

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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#8 Post by fehlix » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:03 am

abbreviatedman wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:44 am
I feel like I'm still missing a step.
You know the answer yourself already: Just don't use dd to create a writeable USB!
That's it! :happy:

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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#9 Post by tascoast » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:19 am

In your case, just boot MX from HDD, have recent MX-17 *iso (or snapshot handy somewhere like the HHD), insert empty 8-16GB USB, run MX Live USB maker, selecting the appropriate *.iso file and USB device as destination.

When completed, reboot from the live USB (ensuring hardware bios selects USB as first boot option initially if required/using interrupt to manually select boot sequence as appropriate). You can choose an F-5 option initially to create persistence, but as I mentioned earlier, just select the default entry and run MX, setting up persistence from within MX live. Obviously, you reboot the Live USB when completed. Rebooting the Live USB will then prompt for any details when you select an F5 option. This completes the creation of user home and root file systems required for persistence and new user passwords.
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Re: Basic Newbie Question About Creating A Persistence USB

#10 Post by abbreviatedman » Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:09 pm

What a fool; I didn't realize that you could select NONE of the options (not dd, not any of the clone options). I guess I was thinking of it like radio buttons?

Still dealing with an annoying thing where none of the USB 3 ports on my ThinkPad (or dock) will recognize it, but it's working with USB 2, and now that my senior moment is over, I'm marking this as solved.

Thanks everyone for the support! I now have several things I can work on when playing with live USBs.

Cheers!
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