Thursday, September 28, 2006

Coolest all-in-one super-boot-cd

So you have a great WinPE boot-CD with not only your favorite tools (like Total Commander) but also with a lot of various WinPE versions and more important - a lot of cool recovery tools (like ERD Commander, PartitionMagic or data-recovery stuff). You also have another nice CD with the latest KNOPPIX version, eventually another one with a much smaller DSL or one with the media-oriented MoviX. Everything is just fine ... except that you have 3-4 large CDs that will never fit inside your pocket :(

But since today DVD drives are the norm there is one alternative - what if you could place all the above onto a small 8 cm DVD+RW - that will perfectly fit in a pocket and will be the ultimate "all in one mini-DVD".

For my own mini-DVD I have decided to combine my long-tested all-in-one WinPE version (with a lot of extras like Spinrite and much, much more) + KNOPPIX 5.0.1 + MoviX - so I have used the same build+boot method as in that WinPE CD - meaning that the ISO was created with Microsoft CDIMAGE.EXE (which can map duplicate files to the same block and will manage to fit 2-3 similar Windows versions in barely more space than a single one), and for boot options the original BSCRIPT was used. The CD structure was the same as for WinPE with a few extra folders - one named KNOPPIX, two other named MOVIX and MPLAYER.

Small hints - with CDIMAGE the option "-j1" should be used with KNOPPIX; also with only one KNOPPIX I have just used the latest at that moment - but please be aware that v5 has a small bug so it will expect the folder to be KNOPPIX - while older v4 versions were ok with any folder name and passing that as a boot parameter (that is a good trick to have v4 + DSL as a dual-linux boot option). Linux boot was achieved with BSCRIPT commands like "onkey 6 bcdw /boot/isolinux/isolinux.bin /boot/isolinux/linux initrd=/boot/isolinux/minirt.gz ramdisk_size=100000 init=/etc/init lang=us apm=power-off vga=791 nomce BOOT_IMAGE=knoppix".

The final result boots quite well on a large variety of computers so for the moment is my ultimate "all in one boot/recovery tool" - it is a LOT safer than a non-write-protected USB stick and will boot on far more computers (USB boot is still a little tricky on older systems) - however I also keep a bootable DSL + movix version on a small iPod shuffle (together with some relaxing music) 'just in case' :)

If you want more details on similar stuff you can take a look at some older posts here, here and here - or you can search on Google or your favorite torrent site for "boot CD" !


Blogger cool_stuff_or_not said...

On the latest remaster with Knoppix 5.1.1 I decided to let the original boot menu do more work - so I now use something like:

onkey 6 bcdw /boot/isolinux/isolinux.bin
onkey 7 bcdw /boot/isolinux/isolinux.bin /movix/vmlinuz initrd=/movix/initrd.gz load_ramdisk=1 prompt_ramdisk=0 ramdisk_size=19000 rw root=/dev/ram0 LABEL=Mov
onkey 8 bcdw /boot/isolinux/isolinux.bin /movix/vesafb initrd=/movix/initrd.gz load_ramdisk=1 prompt_ramdisk=0 ramdisk_size=19000 rw root=/dev/ram0 LABEL=Mov

6:40 AM  

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