Putting OpenSolaris on a USB stick is part of the distribution
constructor project. It’s very simple, however, right now, one must be running on a Solaris host; though there are some interesting ways to get around this, just we need someone to spend some time to do it. Well, on a Solaris host, to begin with:
- Get the distribution constructor:
This would put the project’s “gate” into a folder called slim_source:
hg clone ssh://email@example.com/hg/caiman/slim_source slim_source
One can now use the SUNWdistro-const IPS package on OpenSolaris, if running build 99 or newer, to get the Distribution Constructor! To install SUNWdistro-const use the Package Manager GUI or issue the following command (as root, or using pfexec(1)) pkg install SUNWdistro-const.
- Next, get an OpenSolaris ISO image:
To get the latest development build of OpenSolaris, see the main page of http://genunix.ORG for ISOs, however, the latest full release of OpenSolaris can be found by going to http://OpenSolaris.COM/get
- Now, create the USB image:
Here, one use of the Distribution Constructor is to take an ISO image and change the grub menu entries for a USB device (opposed to a CD/DVD) and change some permissions for running on a read-write media instead of a read-only one.
To generate a USB image from an ISO run:
slim_source/usr/src/cmd/install-tools//usr/bin/usbgen <iso> <new usb file> /tmp.
- Copy it to a USB stick (or hard disk):
Lastly, the Distribution Constructor can copy the image to a USB disk (memory stick or hard disk). (This is what currently requires Solaris.) Here, the stick has fdisk(1) run on it and the Grub menu written. A nifty idea which was putback by Bill Moore uses dd(1) to copy blocks and since USB sticks tend to be relatively unreliable, uses md5sum(1) to checksum what was written matches what should have been.
To copy the image, run
slim_source/usr/src/cmd/install-tools//usr/bin/usbcopy <new usb file>.