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 Post subject: Tips for installing Peppermint 4 on tiny storage (4GB SSD)
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 8:53 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 4:31 pm
Posts: 2

Based on personal experience with my ancient Dell Mini 9 netbook with its ancient 4GB SSD, I have three tips:

1) As of Peppermint 4, the (Ubiquity) installer won't actually install on a setup with less than 4.2GB of free space on the *root" partition, even though Peppermint 4 32-bit actually takes up ~2.3GB (64-bit still less than 3GB). To fix this issue -- something I suggest the developer either offer as a script download or better yet within the install image itself -- follow these instructions:

- Boot Peppermint 4 install image, selecting "Live CD" (not the installer!)
- Menu->Accessories->Terminal
- gksudo gedit /usr/lib/ubiquity/plugins/ubi-prepare.py
- Find the whole word "size". You should get this line as your first hit (in Peppermint 4):
Code:
        # TODO move into prepare.
        size = misc.install_size()

- Change it so we're dividing it by half thusly:
Code:
        # TODO move into prepare.
        size = misc.install_size() / 2

- Save the file.
Make sure not to screw with the spaces indenting the line, since python seems sensitive about that.
- Run the installer on the desktop as normal.

2) Using btrfs with compression for your root ("/") partition can save some space, however, the Peppermint 4 32-bit install image as of today (3-2-14) forgot to include btrfs-tools, so even though it's an actual install option in Ubiquity, it won't work until that's installed manually through Package Manager or Terminal ("sudo apt-get install btrfs-tools", no reboot required). Once you boot into your new Peppermint installation:

- Make sure you've booted into your install and NOT in the LiveCD ("Install Peppermint" should be gone)
- Menu->Accessories->Terminal
- gksudo gedit /etc/fstab
- The default mount options for root should look something like this:
Code:
defaults,subvolume=@

To add compression, add "compress-force" (which forces it even for files that dont compress well):
Code:
defaults,subvolume=@,compress-force

If you're on a SSD, which you very likely are, or a flash drive, also add "ssd,discard", so it'll look like:
Code:
defaults,subvolume=@,compress-force,ssd,discard

- Do the same for all btrfs mountpoints in fstab, then save and exit.
- Reboot and log back in.
- Next, we need to compress all files currently on the btrfs volume by entering into the Terminal prompt:
Code:
btrfs filesystem defragment -r -v -czlib /

Ignore any errors about open files and such.

Note if you find your CPU is under too high a tax using zlib compression, you can use "compress=lzo" and "-clzo" respectively to switch to the less taxing LZO algorithm.

3) Follow the drive tuning guide here: http://peppermintos.net/viewtopic.php?f=41&t=12

Note that even after all of this, and doing "apt-get clean" religously, you'll still only have about 500MB free on a 4GB drive (assuming ~120MB boot and ~512MB swap partitions), so if that's not enough for you, and you don't want to meticously uninstall unneeded packages, I suggest just getting a (physically tiny) flash drive to put root on, making sure at least "/var", "/tmp", and swap, go on your internal storage (as they are were things are written to far most).

Suggestions to Peppermint developers:
- Make sure the install image has btrfs-tools properly installed, as the installer offers this option, and cant explain why it fails.
- Offer the size change fix as either a downloadable script, or better yet, offer it within the install image as a troubleshooting option.
- Run a script after install that automatically tunes the root drive if it's low on free space.


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 Post subject: Re: Tips for installing Peppermint 4 on tiny storage (4GB SS
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:29 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:25 pm
Posts: 5521
Location: Cornwall, England
Thanks for that .. there's some good suggestions in there :)

Further info:-

The Peppermint 4 respin ISO image dated 13 Nov 2013 (20131113) does have btrfs-tools included.

The 4.3 GiB Ubiquity minimum requirement was a bit of an oversight in the Peppermint 4 ISO's, we meant to fix it but forgot :oops:

A workaround (slightly different to yours) has been covered on this forum a couple of times .. We'll try to remember to correct it in Peppermint 5 ;)

_________________
Please be sure to sign up to the new Peppermint forum and post any new question there .. this forum will be made read-only on the 1st April 2014

You can read the announcement here:
http://peppermintos.net/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=6608
Or here's a direct link to the new forum:
http://forum.peppermintos.com


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 Post subject: Re: Tips for installing Peppermint 4 on tiny storage (4GB SS
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 11:46 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 4:31 pm
Posts: 2
Odd, I just found out and installed Peppermint 4 a week ago, and my md5-matching copy of Peppermint-4-20131113-i386.iso downloaded off the main site doesn't seem to have btrfs-tools in the LiveCD environment (which would mean the installer also doesn't have access to it) perhaps it's just a small oversight with 32-bit?

Anyway, it's not really that big of a deal: I'd work on trying to slim down the install, as even 2GB is still huge for your common Netbook. I noticed once installed, there's a crap ton of drivers installed that NY hardware doesn't need. Unless you're booting off a USB key, it makes more sense with the already low-threshold netbook hardware to optimize the hell out of it: I plan on recompiling everything away from generic/i386 to at least take advantage of SSE. I did notice that Chromium on the LiveCD wasn't exactly stable with my ancient 1.6Ghz Atom N270 and only 512MB of RAM, crashing tabs if I had more than 2 open. Once installed that rose to 3-4+, so I'm hoping it just needs a bit more "cheap" optimizing.

Oh and of course: thank you very much for your hard work on Peppermint :)


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