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Thread: Data storage on USB boot stick.

  1. #1
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    Data storage on USB boot stick.

    Hello:

    I am a n00bie. I have run Puppy Linux a little. I have downloaded Ubuntu 10.04 to a USB stick and am running it on my Emachines/Win7 computer from USB. Not installed to HDD. System runs well. There are a few small problems to work out but not many. So far 10.04 has let me avoid command line, of which I have a minimal understanding.

    First problem is data storage on the boot USB stick. I tried partitioning a USB stick with Gparted Then making a boot stick from that. No joy. The program that makes the boot stick from the DVD wants to erase the disk (USB stick, including partitions) to make a boot stick. The storage option on the boot disk (stick) program only goes to 4G. I would like to run a 16G stick. This leaves a lot of un used memory on the stick. I would like to store My Documents and stuff from the Win7 on the boot stick. How does one do it? I have run searches but find no specific answer.

    Thank you.

    Jeffrey Tooker

  2. #2
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    Welcome to the forums.

    You can increase the amount of persistence by using casper-rw and home-rw partitions.
    Windows only sees the first partition on a flash drive and a disk image install must be on the first partition.
    You can put stuff from Windows on this partition with out messing up the Ubuntu install.
    When booted from the USB you need to go to File System/cdrom to find the stuff. It will be locked, so use Alt F2 then gksu nautilus to access it.

    To add persistent partitions to a Startup Disk Creator install:


    Boot Live CD.
    Plug in flash drive.
    Start Partition Editor
    Create 1 GB FAT32 partition, (on the left side of the bar). (size is optional)
    Create a 1.5 GB ext3 partition to the right of this, labeled it "casper-rw". (ext2 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 usb-creator finishes, run "gksu nautilus"
    Select disk / syslinux / text.cfg and added "persistent" as shown below:
    append noprompt cdrom-detect/try-usb=true persistent file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper initrd=/casper/initrd.gz quiet splash --
    Shutdown, remove CD, reboot.

    If you prefer to make an UNetbootin install persistent let me know.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    C.S. Cameron:

    I made the three required partitions. I un plugged the USB and re inserted it. The three partitions appeared on the desk top. An individual paine also appeared for each partition. I chose "discard on shutdown" on SU disk creator and chose make startup disk. Immediate error "installation failed" "failed to install boot loader". First partition on left of bar in gparted has no data in it. The other two do. Proper nomenclature appears for all three partitions in the list below the bar.

    Jeffrey Tooker
    ?????

    Quote Originally Posted by C.S.Cameron View Post
    Welcome to the forums.

    You can increase the amount of persistence by using casper-rw and home-rw partitions.
    Windows only sees the first partition on a flash drive and a disk image install must be on the first partition.
    You can put stuff from Windows on this partition with out messing up the Ubuntu install.
    When booted from the USB you need to go to File System/cdrom to find the stuff. It will be locked, so use Alt F2 then gksu nautilus to access it.

    To add persistent partitions to a Startup Disk Creator install:


    Boot Live CD.
    Plug in flash drive.
    Start Partition Editor
    Create 1 GB FAT32 partition, (on the left side of the bar). (size is optional)
    Create a 1.5 GB ext3 partition to the right of this, labeled it "casper-rw". (ext2 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 usb-creator finishes, run "gksu nautilus"
    Select disk / syslinux / text.cfg and added "persistent" as shown below:
    append noprompt cdrom-detect/try-usb=true persistent file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper initrd=/casper/initrd.gz quiet splash --
    Shutdown, remove CD, reboot.

    If you prefer to make an UNetbootin install persistent let me know.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    In Startup Disk Creator, does CD-Drive/Image show /dev/sr0 and Disk to use show sdb1?

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    CD-drive image /dev/sr0. Disk to use /dev/sdh1.

    Jeffrey

    Quote Originally Posted by C.S.Cameron View Post
    In Startup Disk Creator, does CD-Drive/Image show /dev/sr0 and Disk to use show sdb1?

  6. #6
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    Does it help making the partitions:
    1) FAT32 - 6GB
    2) casper-rw - 4GB
    3) home-rw - 6GB

  7. #7
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    Tried suggested partitions. Same result. Thank you for all of your help. I will just use two sticks. One for Ubuntu 10.04 (8G) and the other (16G) for data storage. The 16G can hold all of my docs and pictures from my Win7 system. So if I ever had to use another computer I would have all of my data. I am learning a lot about Ubuntu.

    Jeffrey

    Quote Originally Posted by C.S.Cameron View Post
    Does it help making the partitions:
    1) FAT32 - 6GB
    2) casper-rw - 4GB
    3) home-rw - 6GB

  8. #8
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    With either 8GB or 16GB you can do a full install. It will be a little slower than a hard disk install as both USB and writes to flash are a little slower. You also have to be careful to install grub2 to the MBR of the flash drive. Now with Maverick you have to use manual install to even get the choice of where to install. C.S.Cameron usually suggests to disconnect hard drive, so grub cannot install itself to the internal drive which it usually does if you do not specify.

    It does not have to be encrypted:
    Standard full install to flash or SSD:
    Ubuntu Encrypted Flash Memory Installation
    http://members.iinet.net/~herman546/p19.html
    More discussion Dec 2010
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1643591
    Also has instructions from C.S.Cameron for 10.10 (he may want to add more info, I am not trying to steal his thunder)
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1643791
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  9. #9
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    As OldFred suggests a full install should do as you want.
    Following step by step for Full install of 10.10 to USB device, adjust partition size to suit:

    Turn off and unplug the computer. (See note at bottom)
    Remove the side from the case.
    Unplug the power cable from the hard drive.
    Plug the computer back in.
    Insert the flash drive.
    Insert the Live CD.
    Start the computer, the CD should boot.
    Select language
    Select install Ubuntu.
    Select Download updates while installing and Select Install this third-party software.
    Forward
    At "Allocate drive space" select "Specify partitions manually (advanced)".
    Forward
    Confirm Device is correct.
    Select "New Partition Table" click Continue on the drop down.
    Click "Free space" and "Add".
    Select "Primary".
    Make "New partition size..." about 8GB.
    Location = Beginning.
    "Use as:" = "FAT32 file system"
    And "Mount point" = windows.
    Select "OK"
    Click "free space" and then "Add".
    Select "Primary", "New partition size ..." = 3 to 4 GB, Beginning, Ext4, and Mount point = "/" then OK.
    (Optional)
    Click "free space" and then "Add".
    Select "Primary", "New partition size ..." = 1 to 2 GB, Beginning, Ext2, and Mount point = "/home" then OK.
    (Optional)
    Click "free space" and then "Add".
    Select "Primary", "New partition size ..." = remaining space, (1 to 2 GB), Beginning and "Use as" = "swap area" then OK.
    (Importent)
    Confirm "Device for boot loader installation" points to the USB drive. Default should be ok if HDD was unplugged.
    Click "Install Now".
    Select your location.
    Forward.
    Select Keyboard layout.
    Forward.
    Insert your name, username, password, computer name and select if you want to log in automatically or require a password.
    Selecting "Encrypt my home folder" is a good option if you are woried about loosing your USB drive.
    Select forward.
    Wait until install is complete.
    Turn off computer and plug in the HDD.
    Stick the side panel back on.

    Note:
    You may omit disabling the hard drive if after partitioning you choose to install grub to the root of the usb drive you are installing Ubuntu to, (ie sdb not sdb1). Be cautious, many people have overwritten the HDD MBR.
    At boot you will then be given the option to boot your computer's hard drive, even when booting another computer.
    Last edited by C.S.Cameron; January 8th, 2011 at 08:55 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Re: Data storage on USB boot stick.

    Gentlemen:

    Thank you both for all of the information. At present I do not want to do a full install. I a previous encounter with Ubuntu (about 2 years ago), I did a full install and had some bad experiences with it. For now I prefer to run from USB. I will keep the full install instructions in mind if I decide to go that way.

    Jeffrey

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