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Author Topic: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster  (Read 2122 times)

Offline TerryJC

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Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« on: December 14, 2010, 03:49:01 AM »
I'm getting very confused with extension installation using ezremaster.  The relevant dialogue box offers two ways of installing apps; by connecting to the repository or by loading from already installed apps.  There are also five places to put them.

My first problem is that if I click on the 'Load' button for any of the five places, I only get the apps in my onboot.lst file, not all of the apps in my tce directory.  Apart from loading them explicitly from the repository, how do I automatically include everything on my running machine?  If I do load them explicitly from the repository, I presume that I also need to identify all their dependencies and explicitly load those too?

My second problem is partly because I'm a bit of a newbie wrt the Linux boot process.  I understand that initrd is the initial ramdisk and contains all those executables that are needed to get the main filesystem mounted.  I note that ezremaster puts my kmap into there by default, so I presume that this is needed ahead of the filesystem being available.  Apart from that, I would have thought that everything else should be outside initrd.

So my problem is, what is the difference between the various options of  inside and outside initrd and on boot and (presumably) after boot?  What I really need to know, I suppose, is where do I put:
  • Apps that are needed to be run by scripts kicked off immediately after booting, eg by a script in tce.installed?
  • Apps (eg utilities) that are run in the shell by the user?
  • Apps that will only be needed by the User (On Demand), eg Firefox or other user tools?

Thanks in advance for any assistance.

Offline TerryJC

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Re: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2010, 05:13:57 AM »
I'm getting very confused with extension installation using ezremaster. 

Apart from the above, I've also had a continuing problem with getting some extensions to appear in the ISO at all.  For example, I know I explicitly listed lshw by including it from the Repository, but it didn't appear in ezremaster.cfg and so it wasn't included in the ISO.

Offline tinypoodle

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Re: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2010, 06:19:50 AM »
My second problem is partly because I'm a bit of a newbie wrt the Linux boot process.  I understand that initrd is the initial ramdisk and contains all those executables that are needed to get the main filesystem mounted.  I note that ezremaster puts my kmap into there by default, so I presume that this is needed ahead of the filesystem being available.  Apart from that, I would have thought that everything else should be outside initrd.

Oversimplified: Particularly in TC, initramfs - which is populated by the files in tinycore.gz - is the main filesystem.
Literally in embedded mode, switch_root'ed to a tmpfs mounted over / in default mode.
When running TC 'base norestore' all files present are the ones contained in tinycore.gz.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2010, 08:24:49 AM by tinypoodle »
"Software gets slower faster than hardware gets faster." Niklaus Wirth - A Plea for Lean Software (1995)

Offline maro

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Re: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2010, 03:53:01 PM »
Just to add some minor points:

(1) Add to the initrd things that are needed before any extension listed in 'onboot.lst' would be available. The tradeoff is that the larger the initrd the more time it takes to extract it (before even the kernel can start running). Those cases that might require to be included in the initrd are things like firmware for a NIC, additional kernel modules for block drivers, any changes to "default" configuration files that might come into play before restoration from backup would take place (e.g. customised '/etc/inittab'), ...

(2) The two user controlled startup scripts (i.e. '/opt/bootsync.sh' and '/opt/bootlocal.sh') are been called after the onboot extensions have been installed. So apps required for those two scripts do not have to be included in the initrd (but they'll need to be in 'onboot.lst').

(3) The extension startup scripts (in '/usr/local/tce.installed') are part of the respective extension. There is no need to worry about them WRT inclusion to the initrd.

(4) Apps (e.g. 'rsync') that the user would expect to run at any time from the shell should be in 'onboot.lst'.


NOTE: As I've never used 'ezremaster' (or 'appsaudit' in any real-world situation) I can't give you pointers WRT troubleshooting your extension download issues. I do all my stuff just using 'tce-load' and managing the respective config files "manually".

Offline ixbrian

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Re: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2010, 06:38:37 PM »
My first problem is that if I click on the 'Load' button for any of the five places, I only get the apps in my onboot.lst file, not all of the apps in my tce directory.  Apart from loading them explicitly from the repository, how do I automatically include everything on my running machine?  If I do load them explicitly from the repository, I presume that I also need to identify all their dependencies and explicitly load those too?

Correct, the "Load" buttons just load in your current onboot.lst in to the list as a time saver.  In any case (using the Load button or adding them from repository), you do not need to identify any dependencies - ezremaster will figure out what the dependencies are and add them as needed.   During the remaster process, ezremaster will first look in your TCE directory for extensions you selected, and if they are not found there they will be downloaded.  

My second problem is partly because I'm a bit of a newbie wrt the Linux boot process.  I understand that initrd is the initial ramdisk and contains all those executables that are needed to get the main filesystem mounted.  I note that ezremaster puts my kmap into there by default, so I presume that this is needed ahead of the filesystem being available.  Apart from that, I would have thought that everything else should be outside initrd.

So my problem is, what is the difference between the various options of  inside and outside initrd and on boot and (presumably) after boot?  What I really need to know, I suppose, is where do I put:
  • Apps that are needed to be run by scripts kicked off immediately after booting, eg by a script in tce.installed?
  • Apps (eg utilities) that are run in the shell by the user?
  • Apps that will only be needed by the User (On Demand), eg Firefox or other user tools?

Thanks in advance for any assistance.

The different options have pros/cons.   Adding them outside the initrd uses less memory - however you have to leave the CD in the drive and extensions will be slower to load when you run them.   If you add them inside the initrd or extract to initrd, it uses more memory, however the system will be faster (once it has booted) and you can remove the CD from the drive as soon as the system has booted.  

My personal preference is to use the "extract TCZ to initrd".   Using this, extensions and their dependencies are extracted directly in to the initrd during remaster.   There is no loading extensions at boot, loop mounts, etc.  It makes your remaster as if the Tiny Core base system included all of the extensions you wanted integrated in to the base system.  
« Last Edit: December 14, 2010, 06:43:30 PM by ixbrian »

Offline ixbrian

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Re: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2010, 06:41:54 PM »
I'm getting very confused with extension installation using ezremaster. 

Apart from the above, I've also had a continuing problem with getting some extensions to appear in the ISO at all.  For example, I know I explicitly listed lshw by including it from the Repository, but it didn't appear in ezremaster.cfg and so it wasn't included in the ISO.

I can't reproduce this.   As a test, I tried adding the "lshw" extension to each of the 5 app options in ezremaster, and in each case it appeared in ezremaster.cfg.   Can you provide more details so I can try to reproduce this? 

Offline TerryJC

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Re: Confused with Extension Installation Dialogue in ezremaster
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2010, 11:29:33 PM »
Apart from the above, I've also had a continuing problem with getting some extensions to appear in the ISO at all.  For example, I know I explicitly listed lshw by including it from the Repository, but it didn't appear in ezremaster.cfg and so it wasn't included in the ISO.

I can't reproduce this.   As a test, I tried adding the "lshw" extension to each of the 5 app options in ezremaster, and in each case it appeared in ezremaster.cfg.   Can you provide more details so I can try to reproduce this? 

I can't reproduce it either now.  However, I took your earlier advice and remastered with all my apps in the 'extract TCZ to initrd' field, because having to leave the CD in the drive proved to be an issue.  I noticed that the tool wouldn't let me add some apps to this field (lshw being one of them) so I added those to 'inside initrd', which worked fine and let me remove the disc once TC had booted and started work.

Again, thanks for your help Brian.