Remastersys

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Remastersys

Note: As of 10-2011 the developer of Remastersys has stopped development and no longer distributes this software. These instructions are for reference of legacy users of Remastersys only.

Install Remastersys

Remastersys is available from Sourceforge. (If using a repository installation from another source (not recommended), note that the (Launchpad) repositories have versions that are different for Jaunty (and earlier) than the ones used for Karmic and later.)

  • Obtain the .deb file from Sourceforge and install:
wget http://sourceforge.net/projects/remastersys/files/remastersys-ubuntu-karmic-lucid-maverick/remastersys_2.0.18-1_all.deb
sudo dpkg -i remastersys_2.0.18-1_all.deb

Create a custom distribution

  • Remastersys copies all your settings exactly as they are set up in your system, except for proprietary display drivers (and other proprietary hardware drivers). Therefore, customize your distribution to your liking first, using a single user. (It is recommended to keep an installation to less than 2 GB if you wish the remastered distro to fit on a CD. If you intend to use DVDs, it can be larger.)

The custom distribution (dist) option does not retain any files in the /home directory (nor even any users). A new user must be created upon installation from the custom disc. Therefore, do not include any critical files or functions that require a user to be retained. (If you do, use the backup option instead).

  • Once it is perfected, write the distribution to an .iso (for burning onto a distributable CD (or DVD)):
sudo remastersys dist
Menu -> Multimedia -> K3b CD & DVD Burning -> Tools -> Burn DVD ISO Image...
-> Image to Burn: /home/resmastersys/remastersys/customdist.iso
-> Start -> Default Settings
Note: an MD5 sum will be calculated and displayed, which can be recorded (on the disk, for example) for later verification.
  • Clean the temporary files (if the disc burned and works correctly):
sudo remasterys clean

Create a system backup

This method allows you to backup a multiple-user system using any privileged user, and retains the user files and settings.

sudo remastersys backup

Using the Remastersys GUI

A GUI is available (after installation of the Remastersys package):

Menu -> System -> Remastersys Backup

Edit Remastersys configuration file

Choose the settings for the custom distro:

sudo nano /etc/remastersys.conf

Troubleshooting

  • See this page regarding Remastersys limitations. For example, no single file can be 4 Gb or larger in size; only gdm or kdm can be used as login managers; and all included packages must be available in the Ubuntu repositories.
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