14 April 2011


I have made a special wish for my birthday: A network server. I do not have the shadow of a doubt in respect to the OS I'm going to use. The only choice for me is Debian.

You know that many modern servers have their operating systems on a flash memory saving disk space and also making the substitution of the OS a blast in case something breaks badly.

So an awesome idea has crossed my mind this morning. I'm going to build a customized live-system especially suited for my brand new server. It's gonna be a headless server without x-org but with http, ftp and telnet servers (I always use ssh for remote systems, but this is local. telnet will do). This is just an outline, I'm going to build the image but I won't be able to use it until I have the new machine.

The tools I need are provided by the debian-live team. I've got them all already installed (live-manual as well). Here are the basic steps: (Be warned that this is a custom-made live system but I intend to use persistence to save configurations. I do not want to risk completely losing all data after a power outage or an occasional reboot)

1. $ mkdir live-server && cd live-server
2. $ lb config -b usb-hdd --packages "apache2 proftpd-basic telnetd"
3. # lb build 2>&1 | tee binary.log

Update: This produced a binary.img file of 187MB (Excellent size) I copied it on a USB stick of 1GB. The space left is used for persistence.

I tried it on my eee pc just to see if it worked and it did, just fine. I still need to tweak several things. Most of all configs...

Update 2 The new system works fine, I have added some more packages and improved its configuration.