Linux, musical road-dogging, and daily life by Paul W. Frields
Persistence of vision.

Persistence of vision.

In between bouts of fighting one of my broken systems at home, I’m trying to spend some time working on our Single Source Summary page on the wiki. In doing that, and in talking to some other people about the Fedora 9 Beta, I found out that some of our keen new features may not have all the exposure they deserve — one of those is the work our resident ninja master Jeremy Katz has done on persistence for Live images.

Persistence means you can insert your Fedora Live USB stick into a USB-bootable machine, boot from the stick, run Fedora for a while, and save your work. When you’re done, shut down and remove the stick and carry it to your next home away from home! To use the feature on your Fedora 9 Beta (or Rawhide) system, install the livecd-tools package and run:

livecd-iso-to-disk --overlay-size-mb 256 image.iso /dev/sdc1

The example assumes you want 256 MB of persistent data in addition to the ISO image, and that the partition on your USB stick is /dev/sdc1. (If you’re not sure of the latter, look in /dev/disk/* for hints.)

Just another great piece of new technology that you always get first from Fedora!

So why all the hubbub about the Single Source Summary, then? The idea is for that page to hold all the text from which we would draw a number of other general-purpose pages, such as the Release Summary, the Release Announcement, and the Overview. Unfortunately, wild growth on the wiki means we frequently have pages that repeat content or are inconsistent, meaning the people costs of maintaining those pages rises dramatically.

The SSS page will give us a place for people to write content centrally, and then include it anywhere they like using the wiki’s Include function. So you can see content crowing about features such as the one above in more places with consistency and accuracy.


  1. Yes, persistence is very cool!
    I have a [known] bug with Beta live images (Intel video drivers related) and can’t use the images, but the first thing I want to look for is if persistent changes will allow me to install things on the live image (like multimedia support). That would totally kick ass!

    But back to the Fedora driving innovation: I was talking recently with a Fedora ambassador and he told me he is afraid F9 will not be that great, one of the reasons being not enough innovation. I showed him some of the things we will got, but this made me think: if a Fedora ambassador was not aware about the cool stuff, they we have *a lot* of improvement to do in communication.

  2. Phil Musta

    I have been waiting for the persistence feature for usb sticks and straightway tried installing F9 beta and then the current Rawhide snapshot to a 2 GB stick.

    The F9 beta and Rawhide snapshot would not respond for me using # livecd-iso-to-disk â??overlay-size-mb 512 image.iso /dev/sdb1 meaning that the image was not written to the usb device. When I removed the ” â??overlay-size-mb 512″ the image was written to the device and upon booting from the device it ran properly but no persistence.

    I was wondering if the persistence overlay was to be on a separate partition or is it created automatically via ” â??overlay-size-mb” surely I am overlooking the obvious. 🙂

  3. Phil Musta

    “Nicu Buculei says

    Phil, what are you using to write the image?
    The â??overlay-size-mb option is available only on the F9 version of the script, so you have to create the live USB image with F9 Beta or Rawhide.”

    Nicu, sorry it was my misunderstanding on how the script was run. I placed the script in the same directory that contained the Rawhide.iso then ran:
    “livecd-iso-to-disk â??overlay-size-mb 512 image.iso /dev/sdb1”
    and the image was written to the usb device using Fedora 8. 🙂

Comments are closed.