2010-11-02

How-To: Remaster Debian 6 "Squeeze"

There are a couple of qualifications to "Debian". In fact, this isn't really a general guide for Debian itself, but it's more for Linux Mint "Debian". In any case, because Linux Mint "Debian" is pointed towards the Testing repositories by default, for standard Debian, the procedure will still be similar anyway.
I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know that the latest versions of Fresh OS are up on my SourceForge site. Yay! These are the download links (for Traditional, Elementary, and Light), and I am also going to link to the project wiki as well. I'm still working on the wiki, so please be patient. In any case, I strongly recommend that you try it out (and if you're especially bold, install it (though be warned that the installer is the Remastersys installer which isn't very consistent), and please let me know what you think either in this blog's comments or in a review on the project's SourceForge page. Thanks!
So this post is just going to be about how I did it. Follow the jump to read more (and to see screenshots of the finished product).

I've already reviewed Linux Mint "Debian" before, and that review also covers the installation process. I did this all in VirtualBox (and as I made 3 somewhat different respins, I had 3 different virtual hard disks).
Post-installation, I downloaded all upgrades as well as all of the packages that I wanted. As this was the making of Fresh OS, these included the new Mint Menu and Mint icons/desktop theme from the Linux Mint unstable ("Romeo") repositories. I then added Hadret's Debian PPA (repository) to the list of repositories in Synaptic Package Manager. I then installed packages from that repository, including the Nautilus Elementary mod and the GNOME global application menu panel applet. Finally, I fiddled with the software selection, replacing F-Spot with Shotwell (and sometimes OpenOffice.org with Abiword and Gnumeric or Rhythmbox with DeaDBeeF).
After that, I went to the Remastersys website, added the repository to the list in Synaptic Package Manager, and installed it. Before anything else, I copied all the hidden files and folders (using "gksu nautilus" for a root file manager and Ctrl+H to show hidden folders) to the directory "/etc/skel/". This allows Remastersys to actually incorporate custom configurations into the ISO file. I then just ran "sudo remastersys backup" in the terminal and an ISO file was created.
Finally, to get this from my virtual hard disk to my real hard disk, I installed Guest Additions in the virtual machine, ran the shell script from the Guest Additions virtual CD in the virtual machine to fully install Guest Additions, and then restarted. I then mounted a dedicated folder on my real hard disk named "hostshare" onto the virtual hard disk's folder "~/Public" using "sudo mount -t vboxsf hostshare ~/Public". I then transferred the files, unmounted, and had a working ISO! It really is that simple! Thanks, Fragadelic (the lead developer of Remastersys)! Oh, and while you're at it, when can I expect a working version of Remastersys for Debian 6 "Squeeze" capable of the Dist option (instead of just the Backup option)?
(UPDATE: It seems like clickable (expandable) images are back! Yay!)

21 comments:

  1. Hi, thanks for the post.
    I've bookmarked it for my reference once I have time to try remastersys.
    Please inform what files or folder did you copied to /etc/skel.
    Btw, do you mind to share the theme of this blog, I really like it :)

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  2. @Anonymous: All I did was show all the hidden files in the user's (/home/$USER/, in my case it was /home/live/) folder and copy all of those hidden files and folders (the folders and files with a period in front of the name) to /etc/skel/ (and replace/merge files and folders as necessary (when prompted)). Also, because you asked, I'll post the full HTML of this template in a new post (hopefully in the next couple days). How does that sound? (In truth, this was actually a WordPress template that I adapted to Blogger using my extremely limited HTML/CSS skills. Since then, I've changed the layout of the blog to retain the same general theme while working more nicely with gadgets, but it isn't exactly the same as before.) Anyway, thanks for the comment!

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  3. Many thanks for the clarification.
    Can't wait the template :)

    Warm regards.

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  4. @Anonymous: I just put it up. Enjoy, and thanks for the comment!

    ReplyDelete
  5. "These are the download links, and I am also going to link to the project wiki as well...Follow the jump to read more (and to see screenshots of the finished product)."

    I could not find the said links. Please help.

    Thanks.

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  6. @Anonymous: Whoops. I forgot to include the download links themselves when writing this - it slipped my mind. My bad. Thanks for the tip!

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  7. "These are the download links (for Traditional, Elementary, and Light), and I am also going to link to the project wiki as well."

    Thanks for the download links, but they are very large files. Is there anywhere I can go to read about the differences between the three versions before downloading?

    Thanks.

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  8. @Anonymous: I have a wiki (linked here) (that I'm still working on) that should clear a couple things up. The main differences regard themes and application selections. Also, I am fully aware of the somewhat large size of each ISO file, and this is because I have added packages to a base of Linux Mint "Debian" which is already over the size limit of a CD. In any case, please do try it out and let me know what you think! Thanks for the comment!

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  9. Nice article, waiting for tutorial Remaster Debian Squeeze (not Linux Mint)
    thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @takien: I may do that at some point; that said, it has been a while since I wrote this, and frankly, I'm not sure I have the time or the interest to do this with straight-up Debian 6 "Squeeze". Thanks for the comment!

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    2. Hello, i try remastering Linux Mint Debian
      got this error while installing remastersys.

      E: /var/cache/apt/archives/live-initramfs_1.236.2-1_all.deb: trying to overwrite '/usr/share/initramfs-tools/hooks/live', which is also in package live-boot-initramfs-tools 3.0~a20-1

      and remastersys not completely installed.
      how to fix?

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    3. @takien: I apologize that I haven't used Remastersys in a while, so unfortunately I am not of much help here. Did you check or post in the Remastersys forums for an answer? (I believe it goes by a different name now, if I remember correctly.) Thanks for the comment!

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    4. found the solution here.
      http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=190&t=63392
      hope it will success.
      thanks @PV

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    5. @takien: Thanks for the tip!

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  10. what did you instaled on light version that made it look like that.

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    Replies
    1. @Matheus!: Most of the important ones have been listed. Thanks for the comment!

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    2. i just wanted to know what's the name of the application that you use to put that black bar in the light version, so i can install it in my system.

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    3. @Matheus!: Ah, I wasn't sure what exactly what it was that you were wondering. That panel (with the sharp corners) is called Tint2; configuring it is pretty well-documented, but you have to be comfortable editing text files and adding it manually to the list of programs to start upon logging in. I hope that helps, and thanks for the comment!

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  11. Hello,
    I would like to know about the live installer. Is the Fresh OS having the same Debian binary installer ?
    If not how did you changed it?

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    Replies
    1. i actually meant whether it is possible to have the default debian installer in place of remastersys installer?

      Also, i wish to know which is the default icon theme and desktop environment in the Fresh os elementary edition?

      Is it possible to have that theme in ubuntu 12.04 ? How to include this?

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    2. @Roshan George V: It's been a while since I've checked out Remastersys, but I don't think it's possible to replace its installer with the standard Debian installer without more advanced configuration (to the point where Remastersys wouldn't be necessary anyway). The desktop is GNOME 2, which is no longer available, but you can use MATE or Xfce instead. I don't remember what GTK+ theme I used, but the icon theme is Elementary or the standard Linux Mint theme. Thanks for the comment!

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