OpenSolaris Developer Preview on USB flash drives

One of the things we developed between BeleniX and the Live Media project is the ability to run the live CD bits on USB flash drives, and indeed, that's what I mostly demo, because it's a lot faster (boot time is under a minute, install time for the OpenSolaris Developer Preview  is about 7 minutes) - Jonathan loved it when we demo'ed it a couple of weeks ago.  We don't push USB images yet because right now you need to already have Solaris installed in order to copy it to the USB stick.  But if you do have Solaris Nevada (or have installed the preview!) already, and a copy of the preview ISO, you can make a USB flash drive for yourself, as follows:
  1. Use mercurial to get a copy of the Distribution Constructor repository:

    hg clone ssh://anon@hg.opensolaris.org/hg/caiman/distro_constructor

  2. Go into the distro_constructor/tools directory and run usbgen, this will take roughly 10 minutes:

    ./usbgen <path_to_iso_file> <path_to_usb_image> `pwd` <tmpdir>

  3. Plug your USB flash drive into the system, give the system a few seconds to see it, then run usbcopy, this will usually take 3-5 minutes, depending on your flash device; usbcopy will discover all your removable media and let you pick the right device:

    ./usbcopy <path_to_usb_image>

You'll need a 1 GB or larger USB flash device, since the image is 600+ MB.
Comments:

Nice!

Posted by Marc on November 05, 2007 at 10:25 AM EST #

Lovely!
But will this work from within VMWare? Or do I need to be running on native hardware?

Posted by Gregg C Levine on November 20, 2007 at 02:40 PM EST #

We test booting the ISO's within VMWare, but I'm unsure whether anyone has tried the USB image within VMWare.

Posted by Dave Miner on November 26, 2007 at 05:17 AM EST #

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I'm the architect for Solaris installation, with a lot of background in networking and system management. I also play a lot of golf.

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