Install PCLinuxOS MiniMe to a Flash Drive from CD

This tutorial covers the process of installing PCLinuxOS MiniMe to a USB flash thumb drive from within a Linux operating environment (using the Live CD). PCLinuxOS ranks as our second favorite Distro, trailing just behind Ubuntu. For this tutorial, we are booting from the PCLinuxOS MiniMe CD and using this as the installation platform, however, the installation procedure will work from other environments as well.

PCLinuxOS MiniMe Screenshots:

PCLOS MiniMe Screenshots

System Requirements:

  • PCLinuxOS Live CD or alternate working Linux environment
  • CD Reader/Recorder
  • 512MB or larger USB thumb drive

USB PCLOS MiniMe installation Process:

  1. Download the pclinuxos-p93a-minime.iso and burn it to a CD
  2. Restart your Computer, booting from PCLinuxOS (login as root)
  3. Insert a 512MB or larger USB thumb drive
  4. Open up a terminal and type fdisk -l (note which drive is your USB stick)
  5. Type umount /dev/sdx1 (replacing x with your flash drive letter)
  6. Type fdisk /dev/sdx (again replacing x with your device)
    1. Type p to show the existing partition and d to delete it
    2. Type p again to show any remaining partitions (if partitions exist, repeat the previous step to delete them)
    3. Type n to make a new partition
    4. Type p for primary partition
    5. type 1 to make this partition one
    6. hit enter to use the default first cylinder
    7. hit enter again to use the default last cyl
    8. type a to make this partition active
    9. type 1 to select partition 1
    10. type t to change it's file system
    11. type 6 to select the fat16 file system
    12. type w to write the new partition table
  7. Type umount /dev/sdx1 (replacing x with your device) to unmount the partition
  8. Type mkfs.vfat -F 16 -n usb /dev/sdx1 to format the first partition as fat (replace x with your flash drive)
  9. Remove and reinsert your USB flash drive
  10. Type mkdir /tmp/usb
  11. Type mount /dev/sdx1 /tmp/usb (replace x with your USB drive)
  12. Type mount /mnt/cdrom (or cdrom2 if you have more than one)
  13. Type cd /mnt/cdrom (or cdrom2)
  14. Type cp -rf livecd.sqfs isolinux/* /tmp/usb
  15. Type cd /tmp/usb
  16. Type mv isolinux.cfg syslinux.cfg
  17. Type cd
  18. Type umount /tmp/usb
  19. Type syslinux -sf /dev/sdx1 (replacing x with your USB device)
  20. Finally, reboot your computer and set your system BIOS to boot from USB-HDD. Also set the boot priority to boot the USB device first if this option is available.

If all goes well, you should be booting into PCLinuxOS MiniMe via the USB device.