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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Cutting edge
Another way of distributing Puppy?
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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1528
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Mon 25 Jun 2018, 10:48    Post subject:  Another way of distributing Puppy?
Subject description: Distribute Puppy as a ".zip" file
 

Current:
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=997410#997410

Original:
Distribute Puppy as a ".zip" file containing only the files required in a frugal install directory, i.e. just the Puppy files, not boot files.
It would be the responsibility of the install mechanism to provide the boot files.

Let's see how this might work for the manual creation of a Puppy UEFI bootable usb stick on a Windows 10 machine.

1. Download files.
In this case the install mechanism is itself a zip file, so download http://www.fishprogs.software/puppy/zipboot/puppy_uefi_boot.zip (764 KiB). (obselete)
Then download an appropriate puppy distribution, in this case http://www.fishprogs.software/puppy/zipboot/upupbb-18.05+6.zip (257 MiB). (obselete)

2. Format usb stick.
Insert the usb stick.
In windows explorer right click of the drive and select "Format...".
Ensure that the "File system" field contains "FAT32", and that the "Volume label" field contains "USBPUPPY" (without the quotes), then click "Start" button.

3. Populate empty usb stick.
Open windows explorer in the folder containg the downloaded zip files.
Right click on the "puppy_uefi_boot.zip" file and select "Extract All...", and in the ensuing dialog select the empty root folder of the usb stick.
Right click on the Puppy distribution file, in this case "upupbb-18.05+6.zip", and select "Extract All...", and in the ensuing dialog select the "puppy" folder on the usb stick.

4. Boot the usb stick.

This assumes that the BIOS has been modified to disable "Secure Boot", and enable booting from a usb stick.

Why?

In the day, every Windows PC had a CD burner, so burning an iso file and then booting the CD was straight forward.
These days more and more Windows PC's do not have a CD/DVD burner, where as they all have usb ports.

ISObooter at http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=67235 contains a way of booting a usb stick, starting with only windows, but it does not work with UEFI.

It would be good for windows users to be able to easily install Puppy as a UEFI bootable usb stick.

Remember this, "Puppy Linux UEFI boot EASY" at http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=109702?
This does the a similar thing, but using an iso file as the distribution medium.

It would also be an advantage for the process to be easily scriptable in Windows.

It's also simple for manual frugal installs, just unzip the distribution zip file into the new install directoty.

Con's:

There would need to be a script to create an iso from the zip file for those folk who still want to boot from a CD/DVD.

Notes:

Yes, it seems as though a UEFI bootable usb stick can be produced by simply copying files to the stick, (no installing of MBR code).

Utilities like "Universal USB Installer" do not produce an acceptable entry in the boot configuration file for my taste.
(And they would not work at all with "overlray_init".)
It's not an "easy" process if you have to edit the boot configuration file before first boot.

I have attached "iso2zip", a Linux script to extract appropriate files from an iso file into a zip file. (obselete)

gyro
iso2zip.gz
Description  gunzip to produce script "iso2zip"
gz

 Download 
Filename  iso2zip.gz 
Filesize  511 Bytes 
Downloaded  31 Time(s) 

Last edited by gyro on Mon 02 Jul 2018, 02:31; edited 2 times in total
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musher0


Joined: 04 Jan 2009
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Location: Gatineau (Qc), Canada

PostPosted: Mon 25 Jun 2018, 11:54    Post subject:  

By telepathy. Laughing
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hamoudoudou


Joined: 24 Jul 2014
Posts: 1317
Location: rabat

PostPosted: Mon 25 Jun 2018, 18:53    Post subject: img2key could be of some interest for you (by Did18) f .  

Well you just have to click on the Iso and copy/past the files to requested place..
However, img2key could be of some interest for you (by Did18). Tested succesfully with FR ToOpPY, Personally i failed.
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nosystemdthanks

Joined: 03 May 2018
Posts: 279

PostPosted: Mon 25 Jun 2018, 19:31    Post subject:  

you could certainly distribute a distro this way instead, and it would save you the step of making it into an iso each time.

for puppy itself, it wont save a lot of download time, the iso step only takes about 30 seconds, and the installer could make frugal just as easy to manage as a zip file, but with the iso.

or good idea, but would really only help with some puppy alternative or puppy derivative.

Quote:
There would need to be a script to create an iso from the zip file for those folk who still want to boot from a CD/DVD.


some versions of windows can also mount iso files now.

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hamoudoudou


Joined: 24 Jul 2014
Posts: 1317
Location: rabat

PostPosted: Mon 25 Jun 2018, 20:05    Post subject: You can run your Puppy OS as cloud apps..  

You can run your Puppy OS as cloud apps.. Like a game.. (tested once with Amazon, long time ago)
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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1528
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Tue 26 Jun 2018, 11:43    Post subject:  

It used to be very simple for a Windows user to boot into Puppy.
Just download an iso file, burn it to a CD, and reboot.
(Most PC's were configured to boot off a CD in preference to the HD.)

It was also reliable, since an iso is an image of a CD, every file that was part of the subsequent Puppy boot was completely under Puppy control.

What I'm looking for is a way to recapture that level of simplicity in a usb stick world.
But also retain complete control of all files that are part of the Puppy boot.

So, I'm not particularly interested in "Just use this 3rd party utility....".
I'm also not impressed with copying an image to a usb stick, it seems to "muck up" the stick a bit.
After installation, the stick should be a normal fat32 stick, with normal access to all the files on it.

The process I outlined in the first post could be simplified by having only a single zip file.
That would mean that our publish mechanism is targeted directly at fat32 UEFI boot devices.
Then again our current publish mechanism is targeted directly at CD's.
One of the downsides of the current iso distributions, is that they don't contain the appropriate files for a fat32 UEFI boot.

Why zip?
Because it has a simple GUI extraction facility builtin to Windows, (right click, select "Extract All...").
I suggest simple zip, because the bulk of the content is already heavily compressed, i.e. the sfs files.
It won't make any significant difference to the download time, since the size of my example zip file is about the same as the original iso file.

Why UEFI?
Because it doesn't seem to require any MBR install, just ordinary copies of appropriate files onto a fat32 device.
And more and more PC's will support it.

Yes, windows can mount an iso, (just double click on it), but then you have to manually select and copy the appropriate files. I'm looking for greater simplicity.

An alternative approach would be to write an installer exe for windows (perhaps using NSIS), that would "install" a zip file, or perhaps even an iso file, to a usb stick, a bit like LICK, except it would not install Puppy to the HD.
It would have a GUI to select the usb device and the puppy distribution file.
Of course this involves installing an extra utility to Windows.

gyro
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oui

Joined: 20 May 2005
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Location: near Woof (Germany) :-) Acer Laptop emachines 2 GB RAM AMD64. franco-/germanophone, +/- anglophone

PostPosted: Thu 28 Jun 2018, 17:10    Post subject:  

great, not, maximal nonsens:

I, and a lot of Puppy and other linux user's have 10 years yet nothing to do any more with windows!

and don't are wishing at all to simplify the manipulation for windows user and import the correspondent difficulty in linux.

the right way is and stay the iso file and a very simple entry in a boot loader.

go away, go back to windows if you can't live without it Twisted Evil !
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nosystemdthanks

Joined: 03 May 2018
Posts: 279

PostPosted: Thu 28 Jun 2018, 18:52    Post subject:  

im sure what they meant is for it to be easier for other users to get from windows to puppy--

dual-booting used to be easier.

the first version of puppy i used was more like they describe. back then, windows didnt usually mount iso files, and a zip was more important. now it is probably trivial to get the same functionality from a zip or iso, but back then this was a great idea. it has nothing to do with "going back to windows." its about coming here from windows.

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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1528
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Fri 29 Jun 2018, 07:05    Post subject:  

@oui,

'nosystemdthanks' is correct, this is about how a Windows user can boot Puppy for the first time.

It's not as easy now, on a windows PC with no CD drive, as it was when I booted my first Puppy many years ago, on a windows PC with a CD burner, and the BIOS already setup to boot the CD in preference to the HD.

gyro
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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1528
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Sat 30 Jun 2018, 07:52    Post subject:  

I've uploaded a new zip file that contains the whole thing, so the Windows process beomes:

1. Download http://www.fishprogs.software/puppy/zipboot/upupbb-18.05+6_stick.zip (257 MiB).

2. Format usb stick, with "File system" FAT32, and "Volume label" USBPUPPY

3. Right click on the Puppy distribution file, in this case "upupbb-18.05+6_stick.zip", and select "Extract All...", and in the ensuing dialog select the empty root folder of the usb stick.

4. Boot the usb stick.

Also, I have attached "iso2zip-uefi-stick", a Linux script to create an appropriate zip file from an iso file.

gyro
iso2zip-uefi-stick.gz
Description  gunzip to produce script "iso2zip-uefi-stick"
gz

 Download 
Filename  iso2zip-uefi-stick.gz 
Filesize  855 Bytes 
Downloaded  23 Time(s) 
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ETP


Joined: 19 Oct 2010
Posts: 1080
Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue 03 Jul 2018, 04:17    Post subject: Another way of distributing Puppy?  

Hi gyro,

Please see this thread: http://murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=991458#991458

It would seem that we are both thinking along similar lines but in my case I am using a self extracting zip (.sfx) which
can just be placed on a Linux volume. Using Linux all that is needed is a left mouse click to extract it once it is in position
on a USB stick. A Windows user would need 7-Zip to extract the contents & a UEFI pc would need to be in CSM mode.

Boot is provided by a 16MB boot image (.img) that is placed on a SD card or another USB stick using Win32diskimager, etcher or dd.

Reproduced below is an extract from a PM that I sent to another forum member on 23/05/18 which details some further thoughts:

Quote:
I doubt whether the 2 file approach will ever
be adopted by the WoofCE team despite its versatility. The obvious next step would be an interactive install script which
would download a single sfx file (as the boot image could be placed inside the sfx) and then invite one to plug in the first card or
stick for the boot image to be written to followed by an invite to plug in another stick for the sfx file to be written to and then extracted.

Installation time is dramatically reduced in comparison to the 20 to 40 minutes that it takes to write a full 8GB bootable image to a stick.
I am not suggesting that this method replace existing methods but that it should be an option open to devs within WoofCE
should they wish to use it.

It is a great way just to try out a Pup with no need to change any aspect of whatever build may be on the test PC.
In addition as you know the folder on the main stick can subsequently be moved to a HD/SSD partition or another stick.

That also applies to the files on the boot card/stick if one wants to include an entry in any existing bootloader.
That is the way that I am currently using it with the folder on sdb10. Note the simplicity of the vesamenu entry with no additional
boot codes required.

Code:
MENU SEPARATOR

LABEL poc
MENU LABEL Cutting Edge   sdb10 13/05/18
KERNEL /poc/vmlinuz
APPEND initrd=/poc/initrd.q rw

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Burn_IT


Joined: 12 Aug 2006
Posts: 3144
Location: Tamworth UK

PostPosted: Tue 03 Jul 2018, 07:34    Post subject:  

Quote:
A Windows user would need 7-Zip to extract the contents


Not if a self extracting file is created.

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ETP


Joined: 19 Oct 2010
Posts: 1080
Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue 03 Jul 2018, 13:06    Post subject:  

Burn_IT wrote:
Quote:
A Windows user would need 7-Zip to extract the contents


Not if a self extracting file is created.

Hi Burn_IT,

Yes, it is perfectly possible to offer two self extracting files (.sfx and .exe )
A self-extracting windows archive would not require the user to be running 7-Zip or the Portable Apps version of 7-Zip.
In fact they could download it directly to the root of their data drive [D:] and right click it to scan it before
left clicking it to extract it. It would only add about 4MB to the file size.

Please let me know if you wish to test such a file and I will upload one.
Straight to NTFS partition is a good option as it is performance wise, on a par with non-journaled EXT4.

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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1528
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Fri 06 Jul 2018, 07:41    Post subject:  

@ETP,
Yes, we are thinking along similar lines, in that we think it is time to consider that there might be a "better" way of distributing Puppy, and we are looking for a method that does not disturb an existing windows installation.
But our solutions are different.

Using a UEFI boot became my preferred option when I finally realised that UEFI did not not require the installation of an MBR, just the copying of appropriate files to an appropriate filesystem, e.g. fat32.
So it simply involves copying files out of a distribution container file, no need for the complication of an "image".

My choice of zip as the container, is because there is a simple GUI extraction method that includes the selection of the destination folder, builtin to windows.
And Puppy has no problem in extracting a zip file either, so modifying Puppy installers to use zip files as well as iso's should not be difficult.

I also want to provide a "rich" example of a boot entry for a frugal install.

As to self extracting archives; they would make things easy for windows users, but I'm not so sure as to how easy it would be for Puppy to use them.

gyro
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gyro

Joined: 28 Oct 2008
Posts: 1528
Location: Brisbane, Australia

PostPosted: Fri 06 Jul 2018, 07:55    Post subject: Extra zip files  

I have uploaded 2 more zip files, produced with "iso2zip-uefi-stick".
Each contains a complete install, so only a single extract is required.

http://www.fishprogs.software/puppy/zipboot/upupbb-18.05+7.zip is simply the latest version of upupbb.

http://www.fishprogs.software/puppy/zipboot/upupbb_overlay0.9c-18.05+7.zip is the same upupbb but with the "overlay_init" initrd.gz and utilities, http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?p=956089#956089.

gyro
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