Installation of MeX Linux to a USB stick
(To perform the installations you must be root)
The MeX ISO
is now a ISO-hybrid, which means that it can very easily be transferred (copied) to a USB pen drive. You can then even run MeX from the USB stick and save all your system changes on the stick. I.e. you will enjoy persistence!
A) "Normal" installation without persistence
MeX Linux can be installed/transferred to a USB stick directly from the ISO file. It might be good to use this method if your computer lacks a CD/DVD drive, or if you just prefer to run Linux systems from a USB stick.This is the way to perform the installation:
1. Boot up a Linux system (Ubuntu or...) and download the ISO file mex-64bit-cinnamon-isoh-persistent-1040mb-140917.iso
2. Open up a terminal and cd to the folder where the ISO file is
3. Insert a USB stick and make sure which name it was given (/dev/sdb1 or /dev/sdc1 or ...)
4. Run the installation command cp mex-64bit-cinnamon-isoh-persistent-1040mb-140917.iso /dev/sdb
5. Then run the command sync
B) Installation with perfect persistence
To make changes persistent do this:
Start up a Linux system (Ubuntu or...)
Download the ISO file mex-64bit-cinnamon-isoh-persistent-1040mb-140917.iso
2. Download the script
3. Download the script
4. Change Directories (cd) to your download directory
5. Run chmod 755
./mex-create-usb-drive.sh mex-64bit-cinnamon-isoh-persistent-1040mb-140917.iso /dev/sdb
Run ./mex-create-usb-drive-persistent.sh mex-64bit-cinnamon-isoh-persistent-1040mb-140917.iso /dev/sdb
NOTE1: This doesn't work in Windows!
NOTE 2: It is not necessary to format the USB stick. The scripts take care of everything.
NOTE3: Do not use /dev/sda. (You will then delete the partition on which you probably have a Windows system).
NOTE4: You shall not write /dev/sdb1 (which is easy to believe).
After following the instruction 1 - 5 or 1-7:
Restart your computer with the USB stick in place and change the BIOS so that the computer in the first place is booting from the USB stick.
NOTE5: This way to transfer/install MeX to a USB stick works perfectly. See this Boot menu.
NOTE6: If the above described methods doesn't work for you, you should try with another USB stick. (Another brand). All different versions of SanDisk are known to work very well. See also below.
Error messages when running from USB
Common error message when trying to run MeX from an USB stick: (initramfs) mount: mounting /dev/loop0 on //filesystem.squashfs failed: Invalid argument. Can not mount /dev/loop0 (/cdrom/casper/filesystem.squashfs) on //filesystem.squashfs
Solution: Try with another USB stick (another brand). NOTE: It appears that not all USB sticks are suitable for topical purposes. I.e. they can not be made bootable. I myself have experience of brands Kingston DataTraveler, SanDisk Extreme USB 3.0 and Sony Micro Vault. The first two works (for me). You shall not use USB sticks of older model. They may work, but mostly bad. If you - after the installation of MeX to the USB stick - get different error messages (see above) when you try to run the system from the stick it is often because the stick is not "good enough".
Alternative in Windows
You can as an alternative to the above mentioned commands use Linux Live USB creator (LiLi) in Windows. When using it it will look like this. Persistence can't be enabled though. Be sure to go to OPTIONS and choose/force "Recognized Linux" as Ubuntu 14.04 before starting the installation. You can also use UNetbootin in Windows or Linux. See a picture how it looks before the installation starts in Windows 8.1. NOTE: You must replace syslinux.cfg in the root of the stick with this file. (Also so you can enjoy persistence and run MeX in RAM). There's other ways to do it, but using UNetbootin is the best/safest way. I.e. if you want to do the installation to a USB stick in Windows. However, if you want to install MeX to hard drive you will have to run the system from a dvd disc during installation or install MeX to USB the way I describe in paragraph A) and B). If you use Startup Disk Creator in Linux to transfer MeX to USB it is also possible to install MeX to hard drive later on from the USB stick.
mex-create-usb-drive.sh and mex-create-usb-drive-persistent.sh make UNetbootin and Ubuntu's Startup Disk Creator superfluous (in Linux).The scripts are quite ingenious. Unfortunately, it is not me who have created them. I found the scripts on Kanotix website. There was no direct indication of how good the scripts were, but my tests show that they work flawlessly on USB installations of all normal Ubuntu systems.