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Thread: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

  1. #21
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Hi Ublondie:

    After Oldfred's reply I noticed that the computer I was using was set to Legacy boot, duh.

    The latest version of UNetbootin, 583, sets up an UEFI Live system ok.
    But as you say it is not Persistent out of the box.

    There are several places where adding " persistent" will make the system look for casper-rw and home-rw when booting.
    text.cfg, txt.cfg, grub.cfg and syslinux.cfg, depending if the Flash drive was made using Startup Disk Creator or UNetbootin.

    Yes, you can make the casper-rw partition as large as the drive will hold and you can also have a separate home-rw partition.
    By make writable I meant edit as su.

    I will rewrite the step by step as you suggest, and keep my eye out for a new method to remove try/Install, Thanks.

    Cork
    Last edited by C.S.Cameron; May 20th, 2013 at 04:56 PM.

  2. #22
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Quote Originally Posted by sudodus View Post
    Congratulations

    I'll just add a few tips and comments.

    - In a standard USB 2 pendrive, the flash hardware is usually slower than the USB interface. So if you get a USB 3 pendrive, it will be much faster in a USB 3 port, but it will also be significantly faster in a USB 2 port.

    - It could be useful to add a menuentry without persistence (everything else being the same) to get a quick-boot basic live system.

    - I prefer an installed system (installed into a USB 3 pendrive) to a persistent live system because it can be updated and upgraded like any installed system. Lubuntu has a light foot-print and suits well for this purpose. But persistent live systems are flexible and useful for many situations.
    I am using USB 3 pendrives which I think is a good idea.

    I did also read about doing a complete install of Ubuntu on the flash drive, but read that it wouldn't be so good for them because of the frequent writing to the memory??

    Either way, at least I've got it working now which I'm happy with.

  3. #23
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Yes, a complete install will write more to its root partition than a persistent system will write to its casper-rw file/partition. We should add the mount option noatime into /etc/fstab for the root partition in order to reduce wear due to (unnecessary) writing.

    It is true, that a flash drive will wear faster than a HDD, and pendrives have no built in methods to spread the wear like SSDs. So we have an extra reason to make regular backups

    But the flash drives last quite long nowadays. I have not worn out any of mine yet.

    -o-

    Inspired by your efforts and success ublondie, I'm starting to figure out a way to make a boot USB pendrive, that should work for most (intel-amd) computers. I'm thinking of a choice with one 32-bit iso file and one 64-bit iso file (the latter for UEFI systems). I don't know enough to tell yet, if it is possible or not. I'm afraid some new computers are too locked for such a system anyway, but I would like a system that can boot most computers without switching from UEFI or other changes in the BIOS menus.
    Last edited by sudodus; May 21st, 2013 at 06:42 AM. Reason: new pendrives are better than I thought

  4. #24
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Most good flash drives do have wear leveling, see link below.
    I figure if you do the math based on a life of 10000 writes at 10MB/s a 16GB drive will last years of normal use.
    http://www.bress.net/blog/archives/1...rive-Last.html

    Following creates a Persistent USB install of *buntu, usable on both Legacy and UEFI systems, Thanks Ublondie:

    Boot Live 64 bit CD, (or 64 bit Live USB).
    Plug in flash drive.
    Start Partition Editor

    Create 1 GB FAT32 partition, (on the left side of the bar). (size is optional, you can use excess to move files between computers)
    Create a 1.5 - 31 GB ext2 partition to the right of this, label it "casper-rw". (ext3 and ext4 also work).
    Create a partition in the remaining space and label it "home-rw". (optional, creates a separate home partition)
    Close Partition Editor.

    Un-mount and re-mount flash drive.

    Start "Startup Disk Creator".
    Select "Discard on shutdown".
    Press "Make Startup Disk.
    When Startup Disk Creator finishes,

    Edit Boot/grub.cfg by adding "<space>persistent" as shown below:

    Code:
    file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper persistent quiet splash --
    Next

    Replace the contents of syslinux.cfg with:

    Code:
    default persistent
    label persistent
      say Booting an Ubuntu persistent session...
      kernel /casper/vmlinuz.efi
      append  file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper persistent initrd=/casper/initrd.lz quiet splash noprompt --

    Shutdown, remove CD/USB, reboot.

  5. #25
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Thank you C.S.Cameron for writing up this short tutorial to make a Persistent USB install of *buntu, usable on both Legacy and UEFI systems.

    And the link about levelling in pendrives was nice reading

  6. #26
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    There is a bug (1159016) which the persistent USB's don't have persistence when booted on a UEFI machine. There is a workaround in the bug for editing the grub.cfg file's linux lines, adding the word "persistent".

  7. #27
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Quote Originally Posted by ubfan1 View Post
    There is a bug (1159016) which the persistent USB's don't have persistence when booted on a UEFI machine. There is a workaround in the bug for editing the grub.cfg file's linux lines, adding the word "persistent".
    Are you saying that the bug is fixed by adding "persistent" to grub.cfg in the appropriate place?

  8. #28
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Quote Originally Posted by timjavins View Post
    Are you saying that the bug is fixed by adding "persistent" to grub.cfg in the appropriate place?
    To get persistence in UEFI mode you need to add the word "persistent" to grub.cfg per post 24 above.

    To get persistence in non UEFI mode you can overwrite syslinux.cfg per post 24 above.

  9. #29
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Quote Originally Posted by C.S.Cameron View Post
    Most good flash drives do have wear leveling, see link below.
    I figure if you do the math based on a life of 10000 writes at 10MB/s a 16GB drive will last years of normal use.
    http://www.bress.net/blog/archives/1...rive-Last.html

    Following creates a Persistent USB install of *buntu, usable on both Legacy and UEFI systems, Thanks Ublondie:

    Boot Live 64 bit CD, (or 64 bit Live USB).
    Plug in flash drive.
    Start Partition Editor

    Create 1 GB FAT32 partition, (on the left side of the bar). (size is optional, you can use excess to move files between computers)
    Create a 1.5 - 31 GB ext2 partition to the right of this, label it "casper-rw". (ext3 and ext4 also work).
    Create a partition in the remaining space and label it "home-rw". (optional, creates a separate home partition)
    Close Partition Editor.

    Un-mount and re-mount flash drive.

    Start "Startup Disk Creator".
    Select "Discard on shutdown".
    Press "Make Startup Disk.
    When Startup Disk Creator finishes,

    Edit Boot/grub.cfg by adding "<space>persistent" as shown below:

    Code:
    file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper persistent quiet splash --
    Next

    Replace the contents of syslinux.cfg with:

    Code:
    default persistent
    label persistent
      say Booting an Ubuntu persistent session...
      kernel /casper/vmlinuz.efi
      append  file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper persistent initrd=/casper/initrd.lz quiet splash noprompt --

    Shutdown, remove CD/USB, reboot.
    An alternative to a persistent live system is a portable installed system. I made an Ubuntu wiki page describing how to make a
    portable installed system that boots in UEFI as well as BIOS mode. See this link

    https://help.ubuntu.com/community/In.../UEFI-and-BIOS

    This is a portable installed system that boots in UEFI as well as BIOS mode. It can be installed into a USB pendrive and is a good alternative to a persistent live system, because it can be updated and upgraded without limits.

    It is uploaded and available at this web page

    http://phillw.net/isos/linux-tools/uefi-n-bios

    The method described and the 'final product' as a compressed image file work for me in a Toshiba notebook according to the following specification.

    http://www.toshiba.se/laptops/satell...e-pro-c850-19w

    I don't know how specific or portable it is until tested in other computers with UEFI.

    I think the method is more important than the 'final product' in this case, and it will be interesting to find out how portable it is.

  10. #30
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    Re: Persistent USB on windows 7 UEFI

    Using Win32 DiskImager is preferred if you have to make the USB live media compatible with both, UEFI and Legacy Modes.
    Proof: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XoINdNWVgYo

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