run linux from flash drive

Discussion in 'all things UNIX' started by lurningcerv, Feb 19, 2014.

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  1. lurningcerv

    lurningcerv Registered Member

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    Are there any advantages or disadvantages to running Linux from a flash drive?
     
  2. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    It's fine as long as you can get at least essential stuff into RAM.
     
  3. lotuseclat79

    lotuseclat79 Registered Member

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    With regard to RAM, since memory is cheap, it is best to populate your computer with its maximum size RAM in order insure what mirimir is talking about.

    I find that a distinct advantage is that hard drives are not mounted, therefore not directly exposed to any Internet-facing application attacks. By definition, any installed OS exposes the hard drive to those attacks (in theory) simply because the hard drive is mounted. The flash drive or for that matter CD is mounted Read Only, so it is not vulnerable to being rewritten by any malware that might make it into RAM from the Internet before the power is turned off.

    -- Tom
     
  4. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Indeed.

    That reminds me of a nagging problem.

    Every LiveCD implementation that I've looked at creates two ramdisks at boot, each with half of the machine's RAM. One ramdisk is used for stuff from the LiveCD, and the other is reserved for system RAM, /proc, /tmp etc.

    That's OK for normal LiveCDs in machines with 4-8 GB RAM. But for large LiveDVDs, with as much as 8-10 GB uncompressed stuff to be loaded into RAM, you need ~20 GB total RAM, and much of it never gets used.

    Am I missing something simple? I have looked for ways to reconfigure RAM usage. But maybe I'm confused.
     
  5. lotuseclat79

    lotuseclat79 Registered Member

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    Hi mirimir,

    I think you are spot on with regard to running DVD/ISOs in terms of RAM. The problem may be as you say, but I have to believe that there is a way to reconfigure the unused RAM loaded stuff to never get loaded.

    -- Tom
     
  6. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Thanks, Tom :)

    It's not unneeded RAM-loaded stuff that bugs me. It's that 50% of physical RAM, even if that 50% amounts to 8-10 GB, is dedicated to stuff (/proc, /tmp and working memory) that only requires 2-3 GB maximum.
     
  7. mack_guy911

    mack_guy911 Registered Member

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    the advantage running from USB flash drive is you can run it as live mode without storing anything on your system .............unless you mount drives

    or

    and having enable persistent size save some of your files and use it anywhere on other system with same live stick and OS pretty safe and secure way to use files on other person computer

    also one of great advantage i find is recovering files form non working windows system you can save files to some external drive to scan them later or scan online and upload to cloud disk and after fresh windows install have them back.......:))


    3rd if you install it on pendrive then the real problem is it only work system hardware with which you have installed its bind to specific.
     
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