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Thread: server on a USB stick ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Beans
    88
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Lightbulb server on a USB stick ?

    So one of my new purchases is a X9SCM-iiF supermicro motherboard, to implement a media server to serve me for the next few years.

    The host is all setup and working with LTS+zfs (some issues still remain) but thats not what this thread is about.
    I have a 160GB system disk and all the rest (upto 12) drives are for zfs...

    The motherboard has a onboard USB2.0 type A socket, and I am incling on installing a USB stick there and run the system from the USB stick, which
    would free up my 160GB slot for a spare drive on the zfs...

    My question to the guru's here is
    1. Is this a good idea ?
    2. Should I run a Live-USB system with persistence OR a vanilla system install on the USB stick
    [ By Live USB I mean a customized version from the Ubuntu Repos, not a ready-made one. ]

    I can probably also write some scripts which would keep a updated build on the server as it runs,
    and dump an image to the storage and possibly another USB stick connected to the machine.

    I can also dump the running system on to another USB stick for backup every night, so on case something goes wrong, I can
    just swap out the sticks and the system can be easily recovered.

    I plan to run this server 24x7 and would primaraily serve as a NFS/SAMBA share and occasionally at times
    do some video and voip stuff over it.

    G
    : Phenom II X4 940BE : M4A785M : 8GB:SS-TJ08-E :: desk
    : E3-1240v2 : X9SCM-iiF : 16G:Antec-902v3 :: server
    : E6550 : DG45FC : 4GB:Apex MI-008 :: htpc

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    North Augusta, SC
    Beans
    26
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: server on a USB stick ?

    I tried this and had no success with my X7DA8 supermicro board -- but I wanted to subscribe in case you decided to go for it.
    HTPC: Linkworld LC628 Case / Asus P5Q-EM / Intel Core 2 Duo e7300 / 8GB PC2-6400 / ATI Radeon 5570HD / Seagate 640GB / TV Wonder Digital / XBMC 12.2 / Win 7 Ult

    Desktop: NZXT Phantom / Biostar 970FX / FX-8150 / 8GB PC3-1333 / ATI Radeon 7770

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    ::1
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    2,485

    Re: server on a USB stick ?

    Yes, run a Live-USB system with persistence.

    It should work. And make it so, that it is easy to replace the USB-stick with another USB-stick with a fresh install.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Beans
    3

    Re: server on a USB stick ?

    Hi guys,
    I hope this isn't a wrong thread.
    I just wanted to know if live USB's can get viruses or not.

    Say I use Ubuntu or Tails OS on a live USB so I can boot it from other comuters,if the Pc from which I boot has a virus,will the OS on the liveUSB be affected/infected in anyway? If so,how can that be handled?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Beans
    88
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: server on a USB stick ?

    Quote Originally Posted by thapeliMat View Post
    Hi guys,
    I hope this isn't a wrong thread.
    I just wanted to know if live USB's can get viruses or not.

    Say I use Ubuntu or Tails OS on a live USB so I can boot it from other comuters,if the Pc from which I boot has a virus,will the OS on the liveUSB be affected/infected in anyway? If so,how can that be handled?
    Yes wrong thread....

    Virus's are hard to get on any Linux/Unix/Mac as the process' are run with user permissions, even if you get a virus at most it may damage the files in your home directory which will not affect the system.
    If you insert the tails/ubuntu/USB stick into a running windows operating system it can potentially infact the USB drive and make the tails/ubuntu install on it useless, but it cannot infect the tails/ubuntu OS.
    If you booted ubuntu/tails then there is no way a virus on the HDD can infect the live linux..

    in Linux/Unix based devices always remember..

    1. ALWAYS CHANGE the default password to something you know.
    If you install Ubuntu/or any distribution, the first thing to do is make sure the "super user" (the one user it tells you to setup) has a password which is setup by YOU,
    the second (AND MOST IMPORTANT THING) is to login to that account, and change the root password with "$>sudo passwd root" to something what you (and only you) know.
    The root account is disabled in a canonical/Ubuntu-live-cd, but you cannot trust "any" liveCD like that, if you dont want to enable the root account at a minimum you should do
    Code:
    $> sudo passwd root 
    (setup some simple passwd 123456 say)
    $> sudo passwd -dl root 
    Make sure the passwd is deleted and the root account is locked
    $> sudo rm -rf /root/.ssh* /root/.rhosts
    2. Use a password with 10+ characters, and a good mix of numbers, caps and special characters..
    One hint is Write down the FULLname of the first person you had sex with in your life. Insert the 2 char year when you had that incident, after the first name, add some simple special characters in the beginning and end of that word
    e.g. ^Sandra98Bullock- OR &Angelina99Jolie&

    It will be extremely hard to crack that password, and you can still remember it...

    G
    Last edited by ghat; March 27th, 2013 at 01:38 PM.
    : Phenom II X4 940BE : M4A785M : 8GB:SS-TJ08-E :: desk
    : E3-1240v2 : X9SCM-iiF : 16G:Antec-902v3 :: server
    : E6550 : DG45FC : 4GB:Apex MI-008 :: htpc

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Beans
    88
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: server on a USB stick ?

    Quote Originally Posted by GreenTaurus View Post
    I tried this and had no success with my X7DA8 supermicro board -- but I wanted to subscribe in case you decided to go for it.
    No success ? Why ?

    setting up a custom live USB is probably PITA especially with ZFS etc...
    : Phenom II X4 940BE : M4A785M : 8GB:SS-TJ08-E :: desk
    : E3-1240v2 : X9SCM-iiF : 16G:Antec-902v3 :: server
    : E6550 : DG45FC : 4GB:Apex MI-008 :: htpc

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