2.2. Installing live-helper

You can install live-helper in a number of different ways:

  1. From the Debian repository

  2. From source

  3. From snapshots

  4. From backports.org

If you are using lenny or sid the recommended way is to install live-helper via the Debian repository.

2.2.1. From the Debian repository

Simply install live-helper like any other package:

# apt-get install live-helper


# aptitude install live-helper

2.2.2. From source

live-helper is developed using the Git version control system. On Debian systems, this is provided by the git-core package. To check out the latest code, execute:

$ git clone git://live.debian.net/git/live-helper.git

You can build and install your own Debian package by executing:

 $ cd live-helper
 $ dpkg-buildpackage -rfakeroot -b -uc -us
 $ cd ..
 # dpkg -i live-helper*.deb

You can also use a local version of live-helper without installation:

# live-helper/helpers/lh_local

Subsequent calls to lh_-prefixed helpers in that shell environment will then use the version located in the directory you executed lh_local from.

You can also install live-helper directly to your system by executing:

# make install

2.2.3. From 'snapshots'

If you do not wish to build or install live-helper from source, you can use snapshots. These are built automatically from the latest version in Git and are available on http://live.debian.net/debian.

2.2.4. live-initramfs

N.B. You do not need to install live-initramfs on your system to create customised Debian Live systems. However, doing so will do no harm. Using a customised live-initramfs

To modify the code you can follow the process below. Please ensure you are familiar with the terms mentioned in Section 1.1.1, “Terms”.

  1. Checkout the live-initramfs source

    $ git clone git://live.debian.net/git/live-initramfs.git
  2. Make changes to your local copy

    And beware that if you want to add your pre-init script in live-bottom, you should name it without dashes '-', e.g: call it "81new_feature" and not "81new-feature".

  3. Build a live-initramfs .deb

    You must build either on your target distribution or in a chroot containing your target platform: this means if your target is lenny then you should build against lenny. You can use a personal builder such as pbuilder to automate building packages in chroot. To build directly on the target platform, use dpkg-buildpackage (provided by the dpkg-dev package):

    $ cd live-initramfs
    $ dpkg-buildpackage -rfakeroot -b -uc -us
  4. Use the generated live-initramfs .deb

    As live-initramfs is installed by the build system, installing the package in the host system is not sufficient: you should treat the generated .deb like another custom package. Please see Section 5.1.4, “Installing modified or third-party packages” for more information. You should pay particular attention to Section, “Custom packages and APT”. Using live-initramfs snapshots

You can let live-helper automatically use the latest snapshot of live-initramfs by configuring a third-party repository in your live-system configuration. Assuming you have already created a configuration tree with lh config:

  1. Create a sources.list entry for the chroot stage:

    echo "deb http://live.debian.net/ sid-snapshots main contrib non-free" > config/chroot_sources/debian-live_sid-snapshots.chroot
  2. Create a sources.list entry for the binary stage:

    cp config/chroot_sources/debian-live_sid-snapshots.chroot config/chroot_sources/debian-live_sid-snapshots.binary
  3. Fetch the archive signing key:

    wget http://live.debian.net/debian/project/openpgp/archive-key.asc -O config/chroot_sources/debian-live_sid-snapshots.chroot.gpg
    cp config/chroot_sources/debian-live_sid-snapshots.chroot.gpg config/chroot_sources/debian-live_sid-snapshots.binary.gpg