Remastering script for Ubuntu

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Chay Bewley, 123RF

Chay Bewley, 123RF


Pinguy Builder gives you a simple way to create an image of a preconfigured installation as a backup or for distribution to your circle of friends.

Ubuntu is a Debian derivative that has, produced many other derivatives. PinguyOS, which seeks to further facilitate and complete Ubuntu for newcomers, an Ubuntu derivative that comes with more software, codecs, and browser plugins, as well as a comprehensive configuration tool.

To create PinguyOS [1], the developer wrote the Pinguy Builder [3] remaster script. This is a variation of the Remastersys [2] tool for creating customized Live CDs/DVDs from an existing system for Debian and its derivatives. In addition to Pinguy Builder and Remastersys, several other scripts are available for creating customized distro images [4].

Remastering for Home Use

Some distro-building tools are compiled from the repositories by a build script. Scripts like Pinguy Builder or Remastersys, however, open an existing ISO image, as the name Remaster indicates, and reassemble the image after making the desired changes. The results of these scripts are thus basically only suitable for home use and at best for a circle of friends; they are not useful for further distribution. The Ubuntu Imager script [5] aims to do the same thing as Pinguy Builder. Although it offers more options, you also need more basic knowledge because it runs in a terminal and requires informed decisions from the user.

Pinguy Builder is easy and offers graphical user guidance, although you can run it in the terminal if desired. A typical usage scenario might look like this: A user has lovingly configured a personalized Ubuntu system, retroactively installing the necessary software, setting up the Conky system monitor, and tweaking many things. Now, the user wants to preserve this setup to be able to install it again in the future or to save someone else the configuration work. Pinguy Builder offers two different approaches for solving this problem. If the resulting image is for home use only, the system is converted into an ISO image. If the results will be distributed among friends, the contents of the home directory and all other personal information is removed, so it's not included in the image.

Intuitive Interface

Two flavors of Pinguy Builder are available from SourceForge [6]. Version 3.x is for Ubuntu 14.04 and 14.10 or their derivatives, and version 4.x is suitable for Ubuntu 15.04 or newer. We used Ubuntu 15.10 in our lab, after first updating the version. Then, we downloaded the brand new version of Pinguy Builder, Beta 4.3.3. As of Ubuntu 15.04, you also need to install the xresprobe package [7]. Make sure that any previously installed versions of Remastersys are uninstalled.

After changing to the download folder in your home directory, install the downloaded DEB package with sudo dpkg-I pinguybuilder_4. 3 3_all_beta.deb . In our latest test version, there were complaints about 60 missing packages. Because DPKG does not install any dependencies, you need to install these packages by typing sudo apt -f install (Figure 1). But, you can also handle the installation in the Software Center GUI. After the installation completes, you can start Pinguy Builder from the menu or at the command line. If you want to test Pinguy Builder in a VirtualBox, you first need to create a fixed size disk, instead of a dynamic disk. I recommend at least 15GB for this purpose.

Figure 1: Pinguy Builder has a number of dependencies.

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