using boot options with dsl-embedded

Forum: DSL Embedded
Topic: using boot options with dsl-embedded
started by: hunterkaller

Posted by hunterkaller on Sep. 20 2005,04:52
I'm pretty new to linux and very new to DSL, so I hope some more experienced users can help me out.

My problem: I'm running dsl embedded in Win XP from a usb pen drive. It's on an older laptop with usb 1 and I'd like to be able to use toram make it run faster. However, as I don't get a boot prompt, I don't know how to do this.

I was thinking, perhaps, that the boot options were stored in a config file somewhere that I could modify from XP with a text editor, but I was unable to track it down (if it even exists).

I'd be very appreciative if anyone could tell me how to do it, or point me in the right direction.

Thanks in advance.
- HK

Posted by adssse on Sep. 20 2005,14:19
I am not sure how to give embedded boot codes, but I believe you can see the ones it boots with in /proc/cmdline. Not sure, but I would check it out.
Posted by mikshaw on Sep. 20 2005,14:30
As far as I know (from reading rather than from experience), the boot options are set in for embedded in linux, and dsl-windows.bat for embedded in windows.
Posted by B@se on Sep. 20 2005,17:06 batch file reads:

REM Start qemu on windows.

START qemu\qemu.exe -L qemu/ -enable-audio -localtime -kernel linux24 -initrd minirt24.gz -hda KNOPPIX/knoppix -hdb qemu/harddisk -append "qemu sb=0x220,5,1,1 frugal quiet"


I dont know if you should tweek this file...

Posted by mikshaw on Sep. 20 2005,17:12
The "-append" parameter looks like the right place.  For example, if you want toram then try:
-append "qemu sb=0x220,5,1,1 frugal quiet toram"

Like I said, I've never used embedded...this just looks like the right place to do it.

EDIT: toram isn't necessarily going to make it run faster unless you still have plenty of RAM left over from XP.  XP uses a pile of RAM and CPU power itself, so running another operating system on top of it will be slower than running the os by itself, no matter what you do.

Posted by hunterkaller on Sep. 21 2005,00:47
Hey guys,
Thanks for the help! Mikshaw's suggestion of adding the cheatcode to dsl-windows.bat after "... frugal quiet" proved to be successful, but as warned, I lacked enough ram to actually load it all. Too bad. That in mind, I might keep both versions of the dsl-windows.bat file on my drive, in case I encounter a system with heaps of ram that could manage the load.

Thanks again,
- HK

Posted by ZoOp on Sep. 21 2005,13:38
Hi guys! I hope I'm posting this on the right place.

my situation: I am using dsl-embedded and would like to make it used from students on our computers at school. All computers have windows xp (professional with SP1) on quiet brand new middle-range barebones machines (intell 1,5/2 GoHz, with more than 512 Mo RAM). I don't want the students to work with xp; I want them to use dsl. I choose dsl embedded because our computers haven't any cd-rom or floppy, only usb 2.0; I also don't want our students to use the usb boot options, only as last solution (they may want to use their usb-key on other systems at home or elsewhere, for example just in order to pick up some stuff on the key without booting dsl or using it with cd).  

my problem: I would like the students to start winxp, to be brought to the winlogon from xp (with defined login and password to be input); I assume, the usb-key with dsl-embedded has been pluged in the computer; I would like that when students give a password, a script runs which enables dsl-embedded without the possibility for students to enter winxp; so that basically, they just need xp to mount the hardware, using then dsl as system;

my deceptions: I try to make a script (*.bat) to be run at user's logon (C:\WINDOWS\system32\GroupPolicy\User\Scripts\Logon) with following lines:

[my HD]:
[my HD]:dsl-windows.bat

The script hasn't be run as login in xp as guest. It has been run as user with password and admin. privileges; but when I tip my password, winxp opens before dsl (then) runs. Actually, I would like to get dsl running without having winxp running.

Another idea was to force winxp to boot in dos mode, in order to get a boot prompt; so, winxp can't boot directly in a dos mode (I googled it), or you have to install a dos program and a dual-boot possibility (dos/xp). I don't have the knowledge base for that, and I would also like to find an easiest and elegant way to solve this, if it is possible to solve it.

I appreciate very much your help. Please, take in account that I am a newbie without strong knowledge in command line vocabulary. DSL is a real interesting project, I hope my intervention support your work and brain storm. Just go ahead!

Posted by B@se on Sep. 21 2005,19:03
I personally think you should have created a new thread...

But on your question, I do not think this is your best shot. I don't know why you would like to use dsl for your students, security? I think those lads will be fast linux nowledged enough to get your system as tehy want it to be.

The only system I know of to run these scripts etc for external components is Xp MCE. I know this cause a friend off me is working on a project to get personal to loggon to a terminal with a "smartcard" and biometric scanners (wich wont work unles you are logged in...) and this for a very very big company.

I personally think that a bootable solution off DSl could do the trick. So completely running dsl as separate OS directly from the thumbdrive. This could be depending off your bios settings, so that the startup secuence is fisrt usb drives the hdd.

hopes this wil help you out.

Posted by ZoOp on Sep. 22 2005,09:40
@ B@se
first of all thank you very much for your answer. To your points now:

- security: yes and no; yes, because our school is literally infected by virus, so that students using win regularly come to me in order to get their computer cleaned, what also means for me and for them a lot of hours lost; with dsl, you are out off such a problem (so far...); no, because I don't want that students stop using winxp (actually, they also have this possibility when they log in as guest); so, I would like for them to use dsl because it is a little, secure and very mobile system with all the stuff you need, which you can carry on with you and use in every environnment you'd like; so, it is true that I am making a kind of "sweet propaganda" for dsl; more seriously, I would like my students to use dsl-embedded regarding the limitations of our hardware (my post from yesterday) and in order for them to keep space left on their usb-stick when working f.ex. at home on another system (win or mac), which enables them to also use the usb-key as conventional flash disk;

- linux knowledge with dsl: you are right, I find dsl incredible easy to use and have a lot of fun with it; but this is not the opinion of our students after a first test; usual questions are "where is the start button?", "how can I get it shutdown?", "I don't want this application, how can I uninstall it?", "why dsl doesn't save my data?", all questions that have precise and helpfull answers in dsl-forum; now, you have to read the threads out of the forum, and that's already too much for our students (I apologize for them); this is billy ideological performativity: when you always work with win, it is not possible for you to imagine other people not working with win, i.e. working with other OS... already mac is mars for such kids (however, they are all between 20-25 yo, computer generation they said...).

- your solution: "completely running dsl as separate OS directly from the thumbdrive"; I gave it a try today, but without success = USB-HDD as first boot in BIOS (sequence: USB-HDD, CD-R, HDD; we only have USB-HDD as Usb-boot function) and USB key plugged in computer, starting computer, running, xp winlogon window... USB-Key is San Cruzer mini 256 Mo. I guess, win mount USB *late* in the boot process, so that the computer switch on CD and finally on HDD. Actually, this is the reason why I imagine a possible boot of dsl after a winxp boot in order to only use win to mount the USB-Stick and to enable the functionality of Qemu. If so, then it is perhaps possible to do the same with mac, and so to enables a lot of users the use of dsl as dsl-embedded on every systems you want wihout need of beeing ""inside"" win or mac.

But at the moment, I stuck in front of billy doors...

Posted by B@se on Sep. 22 2005,22:50
I must admit I am not a DSL expert, I use SUSE pro as my main OS and dsl as working space on my universaty (yep I'm one off those youngsters you talk about)

I think If you are trying to boot from dsl thumbdrive you might have to have another version (do not know that exacly, going to check later on) and you should try to start dsl with the bios setup to look for a USB-Zip source to boot from.

FAQ says this:

How Do I Install to a USB Pendrive?

In the Fluxbox menu, go Apps >> Tools >> Install to USB Pendrive and choose either USB-ZIP emulation or USB-HDD emulation, depending on what is supported by your computer's bios.

Think you should try to install it to another thumbdrive to get t working as a boot device, but Iĺl try to see if there is another way.

Further more, you could consider to register yourselve and start a separate Thread with these questions, cause currently we are violating board rules.

Posted by B@se on Sep. 22 2005,22:53
USB booting can be a hit-or-miss process with DSL or other pendrive-based operating systems.

Older computer BIOS usually do not support direct booting from a USB device. Around 2001, PC motherboard manufacturers started to add USB boot support.

There are two common BIOS methods for direct USB booting. One method is called the "USBHDD" method and it is used to support the booting of standard USB mass storage devices that are configured like a normal PC hard drive. The other method is called the "USBZIP" method and it supports booting from a USB storage device that behaves like the original IOMEGA ZIP drive with USB support.

Most computers (just about all Dells, for example) made today have a BIOS that supports the USBHDD method so I expect that this will eventually become the standard way to boot a USB device. However, many motherboards will support BOTH methods, and many older motherboards have USBZIP support.

In any event, just about any computer that has an available USB port will support booting from the DSL USB boot floppy. See the boot floppy section of the WIKI for more info.

From within the DSL main menu, it is possible to create either a USBZIP or a USBHDD formatted pendrive with DSL installed. Just choose the appropriate install method and follow the prompts.

Most USB pendrives are located at device name "sda" after they are plugged into the USB port.

However, you can verify this location by typing this command inside a terminal window:

    dmesg | grep scsi -A 3

and it should tell you the device name for your USB (SCSI emulated) devices and vendor name.

I would like to point you at the Wiki < >
I think all the info is there, just take time to read.  ???

Posted by cbagger01 on Sep. 23 2005,05:43

You cannot run the USB pen drive install script unless you are booting from a DSL livecd.  Using a USB drive or DSL-embedded will not work.

Posted by ZoOp on Sep. 23 2005,08:39
thanks a lot for your extensive answer; I open a new topic in order not to violate forum's rules.
thanks also very much for getting in touch.
@both of you: your answers are really clear for me; I also know all about booting on usb-flash drive. My problem is another one. I shall explain it in the new topic dedicated to it.
See you soon!

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