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Creating Your Own Custom Ubuntu 7.10 Or Linux Mint 4.0 Live-CD With Remastersys

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This guide shows how you can create a Live-CD from your Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon or Linux Mint 4.0 system with a tool called remastersys.

Remastersys is available in the Linux Mint romeo repository. You can customize your Ubuntu/Linux Mint system and then let remastersys create an iso image of it which you can then burn onto a CD/DVD.

1 Installing Remastersys

Open a terminal and become root:

sudo su

Then add the Linux Mint romeo repository to /etc/apt/sources.list and update the package database:

echo “deb romeo/” >>/etc/apt/sources.list
apt-get update

Afterwards you can install remastersys like this:

apt-get install remastersys

Then leave the root shell so that you are logged in as your normal user again:


2 Remastersys Usage

In order to learn how you can use remastersys, run

sudo remastersys

It will then print all available options:

falko@falko-desktop:~$ sudo remastersys
[sudo] password for falko:

Usage of remastersys is as follows:

sudo remastersys backup|clean|dist [cdfs|iso] [filename.iso]


sudo remastersys backup (to make a livecd/dvd backup of your system)

sudo remastersys backup custom.iso
(to make a livecd/dvd backup and call the iso custom.iso)

sudo remastersys clean (to clean up temporary files of remastersys)

sudo remastersys dist (to make a distributable livecd/dvd of your system)

sudo remastersys dist cdfs
(to make a distributable livecd/dvd filesystem only)

sudo remastersys dist iso custom.iso
(to make a distributable iso named custom.iso but only
if the cdfs is already present)

cdfs and iso options should only be used if you wish to modify something on the
cd before the iso is created. An example of this would be to modify the isolinux
portion of the livecd/dvd


3 Creating An ISO Image Of Your Installation

To create an iso image of your installation, simply run

sudo remastersys dist

This will create an iso image called customdist.iso in the /home/remastersys directory. The dist option makes that your personal folder (e.g. /home/falko) will not be included in the iso image. You might have to insert your Ubuntu/Linux Mint installation CD during the process.

This is how the end of the process looks:

92.16% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:25 2007
93.39% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:25 2007
94.62% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:24 2007
95.85% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:24 2007
97.08% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:25 2007
98.31% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:25 2007
99.54% done, estimate finish Wed Nov 28 15:31:25 2007
Total translation table size: 2048
Total rockridge attributes bytes: 3950
Total directory bytes: 9094
Path table size(bytes): 54
Max brk space used 0
406890 extents written (794 MB)
/home/remastersys/customdist.iso is ready to be burned or tested in a virtual machine.

Check the size and if it is larger than 700MB you will need to burn it to a dvd

796M /home/remastersys/customdist.iso

It is recommended to run ‘sudo remastersys clean’ once you have burned and tested the customdist.iso


As I’ve just mentioned, the iso image has been created in /home/remastersys:

ls -l /home/remastersys/

falko@falko-desktop:~$ ls -l /home/remastersys/
total 814596
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 73 2007-11-28 15:08 control
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 833310720 2007-11-28 15:31 customdist.iso
drwxr-xr-x 9 root root 4096 2007-11-28 15:07 dummysys
dr-xr-xr-x 5 root root 4096 2007-10-19 02:08 ISOTMP
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 904 2007-11-28 15:06 varexc

Now you can burn /home/remastersys/customdist.iso onto a CD or DVD (if the iso file is bigger than 700MB, you must use a DVD).

4 Cleaning Up

After you’ve burnt the iso image onto a CD/DVD, you can run

sudo remastersys clean

to remove all temporary file created during the iso generation as well as the /home/remastersys directory.


Written by praji

July 14, 2008 at 12:14 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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