Install Void Linux onto a USB Stick
If you want a full blown Void Linux OS on a USB Stick to give to your friends or for yourself. Then you've come to the right place.
It can be installed in a USB as little as 8Gb, and 4Gb should be sufficient too, but keep in mind we want a usable Linux installation, we may will need at least 8Gb. This guide is not recommended to new users.
Some advantages and tips before we get started: having a portable system which behaves as a normal installation is specially aimed towards mobility, security, backup plan and sharing. A -musl installation will require a bit less space and less memory, however, musl is still not fully working with some important packages, so keep that in mind (the
-musl installation requires a modification in the steps to follow, which won't be explained).
Tip: just after login type
bashto easy the installation progress. Void uses
dashas the default
/bin/shNotice: if you are going to use anything different from
ext*then we strongly recommend that you create a separate
/bootpartition. This is a good practice in any case nonetheless
Install Void Linux onto a USB Stick
First create two partitions on your USB Stick, using your favourite method. One for the system, and the other for your swap drive. Create a new file system on root to work with. Same applies to
Important note: a
/swappartition is specially recommended if you may need to use older systems with heavy loads; do not worry about the USB's internal degradation, Linux tries to use
/swapas little as possible
For advance users: you can very easily adapt this installation process to have an encrypted
/rootsystem, just remember to create a separate
Now we need to create a directory in which we will be mounting and working with our USB
Remember to use the correct device address when mounting.
fdisk -l will give you the correct address.
# sudo blkid
/dev/sdd1: UUID="1ef89660-45dc-49b2-b16b-c4fb74903dd4" TYPE="ext4" PARTUUID="3f012745-01"
/dev/sdd2: UUID="2e925665-7ffe-489d-ad9c-6ab2c8809aea" TYPE="swap" PARTUUID="3f012745-02"
Now mount your
/root partition to
/mnt/void. Here we will be using
/dev/sdd1 as our
root install. We can also activate the swap now.
mount /dev/sdd1 /mnt/void swapon /dev/sdd2
Before installing the base-system, you will have to decide what more you want to install on your OS before going ahead with this installation. Things like your video driver, desktop, method of gaining internet, and utilities you love to use. They all can be added during this part of your install, or afterwards. This install is for Fluxbox, with basic utilities: internet connection, alsa sound system, firefox, video player, file access, etc... Suit this section to your own specific needs.
Note: if you are going to use this USB in a variety of computers, it is recommended that you install all the drivers and firmware possible, in that case the probabilities of a piece of hardware failing will decrease. Also, keep your system updated, remember that Void is a rolling release distro.
-S is used to sync with the repositories.- -R to specify the repository. -r to specify the target
sudo xbps-install -S -R http://repo3.voidlinux.eu/current -r /void base-system xorg ipw2100-firmware ipw2200-firmware inetutils dhclient AlsaMixer.app alsa-tools alsa-utils nano volumeicon Thunar pcmanfm gvfs adwaita-icon-theme terminator mplayer gkrellm file-roller polkit gparted dbus pavucontrol firefox xterm usbutils menumaker usbmuxd grub wireless_tools inetutils fluxbox
Extra recommended applications: NetworkManager, network-manager-applet, lxdm, cgmanager, ConsoleKit2
Now to prepare to mount the system to chroot into
sudo mount --rbind /dev /void/dev sudo mount --rbind /proc /void/proc sudo mount --rbind /sys /void/sys sudo chroot /void
Change the shell to bash to easy the further usage
Change the root password
chown root:root / ; chmod 755 / ;
Change your HOSTNAME to whatever you want
echo "USB8Void64Linux" > /etc/hostname ;
Your system should boot without error without you editing your
fstab file, but it is still needed before you continue using your USB Stick. If you want you can edit your
fstab to make entries to your partitions here. Using Either UUID, or old school, /dev/sdxx method. UUID would be a preferred if you intend on using it everywhere, here it was not used to ease the exemplification.
Make your entries now. Save and exit nano.
/dev/sdd1 / ext4 defaults,nodiratime,noatime 0 1
/dev/sdd2 none swap sw 0 0
Now edit your libc-locales to set your
locale. Either by hand, or just shoot it into your file.
nano /etc/default/libc-locales or echo en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8 >> /etc/default/libc-locales
Rebuild the locales
xbps-reconfigure -f glibc-locales
initramfs through dracut
echo hostonly=yes > /etc/dracut.conf.d/hostonly.conf
xbps-reconfigure -f linux*
Add a user to your system besides root.
useradd username passwd username
Add user to the groups needed, you can add more groups to suit your needs.
usermod -aG wheel,storage,network,audio userName nano /etc/sudoers
Uncomment only one wheel to get sudo privileges
Uncomment to allow members of group wheel to execute any command
%wheel ALL=(ALL) ALL
Same thing without a password
%wheel ALL=(ALL) NOPASSWD: ALL
For NetworkManager, and other methods that can be used, You can find more on this Void Wiki Page to do that. But, Basically, All I've had to do what, install NetworkManager - cgmanager - ConsoleKit2 and start them at boot. Link then to
ln -s /etc/sv/dbus /var/service ln -s /etc/sv/dhcpcd /var/service ln -s /etc/sv/alsa /var/service ln -s /etc/sv/udevd /var/service ln -s /etc/sv/uuidd /var/service
Installing the bootloader
In this case we will use
grub as the bootloader in this case. Be careful where you install it! Double check the direction!
grub-install /dev/sdd grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg
An if everything was done correctly, you can exit and reboot into your new Void installation!
See Post-installation to further develop your system to what you want.
Welcome to the Void.