I first installed Looplinux onto the 47 Meg partition, using the same 18mb swap partition as the standard distribution.

Then i booted into the new linux system, mounted the CD-ROM(/cdrom), and copied the /usr directory to /usr2, and created a symbolic link so that /usr pointed to /cdrom/live/usr. I also modified /etc/fstab to automatically mount the CD-ROM.

I ran into some troubles at first(some basic utilities & programs refused to work). especially at boot time- it seemed like the CD-ROM didn't get mounted immediately, which caused some problems becuse there was nothing in /usr. eventually i figured out a way to solve that problem, by the following process:

  • mv /usr /usr2
  • mkdir /cdrom/live (cdrom can't be mounted)
  • ln -s /usr2 /cdrom/live/usr (cdrom can't be mounted)
  • ln -s /cdrom/live/usr /usr
  • ln -s /cdrom/live/opt /opt

    i also made the various search paths search the /usr2 directory for binaries before searching the CD-ROM's /usr sections, which helped avoid some odd errors, as well as made it run a lot faster. (modify the PATH, MANPATH, etc.. in configuration files such as /etc/profile and ~/.bashrc)

    It runs pretty slow on my laptop & Backpack CD-ROM, especially X; KDE is breakneck slow, and i imagine netscape would be a nightmare. If you've got a slightly faster system, the live cd-rom method might be a great way to get lots of software with a minimal hard-drive installation.

    if you've got any questions or comments, please email np@crackpot.org