Debian Live Manual

About

1. About this manual

1.1 For the impatient
1.2 Terms
1.3 Authors
1.4 Contributing to this document
1.4.1 Applying changes
1.4.2 Translation

2. About the Debian Live Project

2.1 Motivation
2.1.1 What is wrong with current live systems
2.1.2 Why create our own live system?
2.2 Philosophy
2.2.1 Only unchanged packages from Debian "main"
2.2.2 No package configuration of the live system
2.3 Contact

User

3. Installation

3.1 Requirements
3.2 Installing live-build
3.2.1 From the Debian repository
3.2.2 From source
3.2.3 From 'snapshots'
3.3 Installing live-boot and live-config
3.3.1 From the Debian repository
3.3.2 From source
3.3.3 From 'snapshots'

4. The basics

4.1 What is a live system?
4.2 Downloading prebuilt images
4.3 Using the web live image builder
4.3.1 Web builder usage and caveats
4.4 First steps: building an ISO hybrid image
4.5 Using an ISO hybrid live image
4.5.1 Burning an ISO image to a physical medium
4.5.2 Copying an ISO hybrid image to a USB stick
4.5.3 Using the space left on a USB stick
4.5.4 Booting the live medium
4.6 Using a virtual machine for testing
4.6.1 Testing an ISO image with QEMU
4.6.2 Testing an ISO image with virtualbox
4.7 Building and using an HDD image
4.8 Building a netboot image
4.8.1 DHCP server
4.8.2 TFTP server
4.8.3 NFS server
4.8.4 Netboot testing HowTo
4.8.5 Qemu

5. Overview of tools

5.1 The live-build package
5.1.1 The lb config command
5.1.2 The lb build command
5.1.3 The lb clean command
5.2 The live-boot package
5.3 The live-config package

6. Managing a configuration

6.1 Dealing with configuration changes
6.1.1 Why use auto scripts? What do they do?
6.1.2 Use example auto scripts
6.2 Clone a configuration published via Git

7. Customization overview

7.1 Build time vs. boot time configuration
7.2 Stages of the build
7.3 Supplement lb config with files
7.4 Customization tasks

8. Customizing package installation

8.1 Package sources
8.1.1 Distribution, archive areas and mode
8.1.2 Distribution mirrors
8.1.3 Distribution mirrors used at build time
8.1.4 Distribution mirrors used at run time
8.1.5 Additional repositories
8.2 Choosing packages to install
8.2.1 Package lists
8.2.2 Using metapackages
8.2.3 Local package lists
8.2.4 Local binary package lists
8.2.5 Generated package lists
8.2.6 Using conditionals inside package lists
8.2.7 Desktop and language tasks
8.2.8 Kernel flavour and version
8.2.9 Custom kernels
8.3 Installing modified or third-party packages
8.3.1 Using packages.chroot to install custom packages
8.3.2 Using an APT repository to install custom packages
8.3.3 Custom packages and APT
8.4 Configuring APT at build time
8.4.1 Choosing apt or aptitude
8.4.2 Using a proxy with APT
8.4.3 Tweaking APT to save space
8.4.4 Passing options to apt or aptitude
8.4.5 APT pinning

9. Customizing contents

9.1 Includes
9.1.1 Live/chroot local includes
9.1.2 Binary local includes
9.2 Hooks
9.2.1 Live/chroot local hooks
9.2.2 Boot-time hooks
9.2.3 Binary local hooks
9.3 Preseeding Debconf questions

10. Customizing run time behaviours

10.1 Customizing the live user
10.2 Customizing locale and language
10.3 Persistence
10.3.1 The persistence.conf file
10.3.2 Using more than one persistence store

11. Customizing the binary image

11.1 Bootloader
11.2 ISO metadata

12. Customizing Debian Installer

12.1 Types of Debian Installer
12.2 Customizing Debian Installer by preseeding
12.3 Customizing Debian Installer content

Project

13. Contributing to the project

13.1 Making changes

14. Reporting bugs

14.1 Known issues
14.2 Rebuild from scratch
14.3 Use up-to-date packages
14.4 Collect information
14.5 Isolate the failing case if possible
14.6 Use the correct package to report the bug against
14.6.1 At build time while bootstrapping
14.6.2 At build time while installing packages
14.6.3 At boot time
14.6.4 At run time
14.7 Do the research
14.8 Where to report bugs

15. Coding Style

15.1 Compatibility
15.2 Indenting
15.3 Wrapping
15.4 Variables
15.5 Miscellaneous

16. Procedures

16.1 Major Releases
16.2 Point Releases
16.2.1 Last Point Release of a Debian Release
16.2.2 Point release announcement template

17. Git repositories

17.1 Handling multiple repositories

Examples

18. Examples

18.1 Using the examples
18.2 Tutorial 1: A default image
18.3 Tutorial 2: A web browser utility
18.4 Tutorial 3: A personalized image
18.4.1 First revision
18.4.2 Second revision
18.5 A VNC Kiosk Client
18.6 A base image for a 128MB USB key
18.7 A localized GNOME desktop and installer

Appendix

18.8 Guidelines for authors
18.8.1 Linguistic features
18.8.2 Procedures
18.9 Guidelines for translators
18.9.1 Translation hints

Debian Live Manual

Project

16. Procedures

This chapter documents the procedures within the Debian Live project for various tasks that need cooperation with other teams in Debian.

16.1 Major Releases

Releasing a new stable major version of Debian includes a lot of different teams working together to make it happen. At some point, the Live team comes in and builds live system images. The requirements to do this are:

  • A mirror containing the released versions for the debian and debian-security archives which the debian-live buildd can access.
  • The names of the image need to be known (e.g. debian-live-VERSION-ARCH-FLAVOUR.iso).
  • The data from debian-cd needs to be synced (udeb exclude lists).
  • The includes from debian-cd needs to be synced (README.*, doc/*, etc.).
  • Images are built and mirrored on cdimage.debian.org.
  • 16.2 Point Releases

  • Again, we need updated mirrors of debian and debian-security.
  • Images are built and mirrored on cdimage.debian.org.
  • Send announcement mail.
  • 16.2.1 Last Point Release of a Debian Release

    Remember to adjust both chroot and binary mirrors when building the last set of images for a Debian release after it has been moved away from ftp.debian.org to archive.debian.org. That way, old prebuilt live images are still useful without user modifications.

    16.2.2 Point release announcement template

    An annoucement mail for point releases can be generated using the template below and the following command:

    $ sed \
         -e 's|@MAJOR@|7.0|g' \
         -e 's|@MINOR@|7.0.1|g' \
         -e 's|@CODENAME@|wheezy|g' \
         -e 's|@ANNOUNCE@|2013/msgXXXXX.html|g'

    Please check the mail carefully before sending and pass it to others for proof-reading.

    Updated Debian Live @MAJOR@: @MINOR@ released

    The Debian Live project is pleased to announce the @MINOR@ update of the
    Live images for the stable distribution Debian @MAJOR@ (codename "@CODENAME@").

    The images are available for download at:

       <http://live.debian.net/cdimage/release/current/>

    and later at:

       <http://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/release/current-live/>

    This update includes the changes of the Debian @MINOR@ release:

       <http://lists.debian.org/debian-announce/@ANNOUNCE@>

    Additionally it includes the following Live-specific changes:

      * [INSERT LIVE-SPECIFIC CHANGE HERE]
      * [INSERT LIVE-SPECIFIC CHANGE HERE]
      * [LARGER ISSUES MAY DESERVE THEIR OWN SECTION]

    About Debian Live
    -----------------
    The Debian Live project produces the tools used to build official
    Debian Live systems and the official Debian Live images themselves.

    About Debian
    ------------
    The Debian Project is an association of Free Software developers who
    volunteer their time and effort in order to produce the completely free
    operating system Debian.

    Contact Information
    -------------------
    For further information, please visit the Debian Live web pages at
    <http://live.debian.net/>, or contact the Debian Live team at
    <debian-live@lists.debian.org>.