Build Tools


"Creates an initrd image for booting from a live CD-ROM or USB device

This is the package used by the Gibraltar project to create the initrd images used for booting from CD-ROM or USB sticks. The bootable CD-ROMs or USB mass storage devices are actual live CD-ROMs respective live filesystems. That is, the root file system is the CD-ROM or an image on the USB device, ramdisks are the only things needed for operation without a hard disk. Although a harddisk can be used for e.g. storing log files permanently or when the machine acts as a proxy server.

Given a kernel image and the corresponding modules, it creates a complete boot image that can be written to floppy or be used as El Torito image for a bootable CD-ROM. Additionally, it is possible to create an initrd image to be used on a USB stick (e.g. with syslinux). Upon bootup, the initrd image will try to locate an ATAPI CD-ROM drive or a USB mass storage device. When this does not succeed, it auto-probes for SCSI adapters and tries to locate SCSI drives. It also works when multiple CD-ROM drives are installed in the system by checking if the inserted CD is the correct one for booting.

The package can be of use to developers and packagers who want to create their own bootable, live Debian CD-ROM or bootable, live Debian USB stick. It will probably not be of any use to others."


"This is webhelper of the Debian Live project.

Submit your parameters (working email address is required) to generate your very own Debian Live system."

PUD Build Kit

"PUD GNU/Linux project provides a set of live CD's build tools, including configure files, build script and packages list.

You have exactly the same tools that developers use. Hope this may help you customize and make your own live CD quickly and easily. [...]

This script will install base system, chroot to install more packages, config, cleanup unneeded files, compress filesystem, make the .iso image and start qemu to test. The whole files will be put into ../builddir/pud-YYYYMMDD-HH/, and the image file is ../builddir/pud-YYYYMMDD-HH.iso ."


"mkmydsl is NOT myDslMaker. mkmydsl is done locally. This has several advantages over a website version of the same thing including:

1. "Try before you burn" You can download extensions and try them out before you commit to making an iso and burning.

2. "Construction Set" by downloading in parts, you truly have a construction set method. This makes it easier for a slow modem users to be able to take advantage by not having to download a large single mydsl.iso

3. "Privacy" By makeing the iso locally, you are not "sending" private information to a website only to have to download the results back. This is where the myconf.tar.gz comes into play. This is your "personal" and "private" configuration including passwords, etc.

4. "No double down" You already have the base iso and have proved that it works on your system, so you don't have to download it again only this time MUCH bigger. Also, you already have your local "proven" collection of extensions

5. "The Sky 's the Limit" I know of one user, Ke4nt, who uses the mkmydsl script to make DVD sized mydsl.iso. Imagine having to download DVD sized images."


"Debian Live helper programs (gui frontend)

Live-helper is a collection of programs that can be used to build Debian Live system images. The philosophy behind live-helper is to provide a collection of small, simple, and easily understood tools that can be used in your own program to automate building of a Live system.

A typical program that uses live-helper will call several live-helper commands in sequence. Live-helper commands are all named with a "lh_" prefix.


This package contains the gui frontend.

Tags: Implemented in: Python"

Custom NimbleX 2

Custom NimbleX 2 is now available for everybody. Even if now it is at Release Candidate stage this provides a much better way for generating a customised Free Linux OS based on NimbleX. The only requirements from the users are knowledge of English, a web browser (Firefox) and a CD for burning the ISO that was generated.

Features of Custom NimbleX 2:

* Absolutely no knowlege required for the custom OS
* > 150 software packages from where you can choose
* support for over a dusin most popular languages
* configure the sounds of your Custom NimbleX OS
* set the wallpaper from 36 pics or upload your own
* configure your password and the restricted user
* calculating the size of the ISO dinamically

To go straingt to Custom NimbleX 2 go to

For more info about NimbleX you can visit

YaST2 Product Creator

Automated Linux From Scratch

"Automated Linux From Scratch (ALFS) is a project that creates the generic framework for an extendable system builder and package installer.

After having gone through the LFS and BLFS books more than 2 or 3 times, you will quickly appreciate the ability to automate the task of compiling the software you want for your systems.

The goal of ALFS is to automate the process of creating an LFS system. It seeks to make the process of building LFS easier and more efficient while still providing flexibility by granting the user total control and insight into the compilation and management of his LFS build."


"Trinux: A Linux Security Toolkit was a ramdisk-based Linux distribution that was under active development from 1998-2003. This new project (i.e. ubuntutrinux) seeks to integrate elements (and code, where appropriate) of Trinux with the Debian/Ubuntu mkinitramfs infrastructure to allow easy development and packaging Ubuntu binary (and ultimately package and repository) compatible ramdisk distributions using recent 2.6.x kernels. As before, the most common use is network security monitoring and analysis."


"live-initramfs is a fork from Casper by Canonical. live-initramfs is used for to build an initramfs suited to boot live systems. [...]

live-initramfs is a hook for the initramfs-tools, used to generate a initramfs capable to boot live systems, such as those created by live-helper(7). This includes the Debian Live isos, netboot tarballs, and usb stick images.

At boot time it will look for a (read-only) media containing a "/live" directory where a root filesystems (often a compressed filesystem image like squashfs) is stored. If found, it will create a writable environ‐ ment, using unionfs, for Debian like systems to boot from."


"mkimage - creating ariane image files

mkimage is your friend for image creation. This script creates a
archive of your current system.
The output file is an imagefile that can be used to replace the plain "stock" ariane image. If you are sure that your system boots, put it on the CD as linux.tgz in the /bootcode directory and boot from the CD (see ArianeDiskCreation).

mkimage excludes certain parts of the running system you don't want to have in the image. Hardcoded exclusion are /proc/*, /tmp/* and /var/tmp/* since the contents of these directories simply interferes with the idea of a fresh installed system. More exclusions can be configured in the file /sbin/ariane.d/etc/image.exclude. This file contains filenames (with or without shell wildcards) that should be excluded from the image, one per line. There are already some exclusion defined because there is more to drop for a clean image than just the directories above.",/Ariane...


"The pungi project is two things. First and foremost it is a free opensource tool to spin Fedora installation trees / isos. It will be used to produce Fedora releases from Fedora 7 on until it is replaced by something better. Secondly pungi is a set of python libraries to build various compose like tools on top of. Pungi provides a library with various funtions to find, depsolve, and gather packages into a given location. It provides a second library with various functions to run various Anaconda tools on the gathered packages and create isos from the results."


"Revisor enables you to customize and compose your own installation and live media. It does so by presenting you a GUI with all options, and a CLI for the more advanced users. Features that Revisor has vary from customizing the packages available during the installation and/or installed on the live media, to fully customizing the desktop environment for the live media.

Installation media would be the media you use when you install a machine to run Fedora (the CDs and DVDs the Fedora Project releases every 6 months). You cannot do anything with installation media other then install a system to run Fedora.

Live media on the other hand allow you to run Fedora, without the need to install it on your system first. Actually, the operating system is installed on a CD, DVD or USB Thumbdrive, and you let your computer boot that operating system."

Linux My Way

"LMW is a bash shell script, released under the GPL, for producing a minimal linux initrd image from your resident linux installation, suitable for booting from a floppy, hard-disk or solid-state memory device. You, too, can join the PDA/Internet appliance boom in the privacy of your own home.

Default X configuration includes the Xvnc server, allowing remote control of the target system. Using Xvnc eliminates the necessity of a graphics card in the target system, at the cost of requiring a network interface. Options are also provided for conventional X servers.

You can build a minimal floppy disk size compressed image of 1.22Mb and/or an X capable compressed image of 3.7Mb (these are functional sizes, not minimums. Depending on your linux and selected applications, the size can vary wildly). This does not include a bootable kernel which you will have to provide.

Be forewarned, this is NOT a distribution. This is a framework for creating your own distribution."

Ubuntu LiveCD Creator

"This spec proposes a set of tools and graphical user interface to create and maintain custom Ubuntu LiveCDs.

Our scope includes all manner of LiveCD creation. LiveCD tools should provide a robust enough environment for the Ubuntu developers to generate the official CDs from them. Required functionality includes:

* Creating LiveCDs based on templates, such as bare minimum installing ubuntu-minimal
o Selects repositories
o Selects default packages

* Adjusting the packages on the LiveCD by adding or removing through a Synaptic-like interface

* Adding files directly to the LiveCD just before finalizing

* Modifying the default X11 environment
o Execute a GNOME, KDE, or XFCE log-in in Xnest
o Save the home directory as the /etc/skel

* Saving and updating LiveCD templates
o Save the package list, /etc/skel, and additional files
o Update by adjusting repositories and performing upgrades or dist-upgrades

* Adding the Ubiquity installer"

NimbleX Custom LiveCD Web Builder

NimbleX now has a beta web page from where you can create your custom LiveCD with just a couple of clicks. You select the software packages that you want on your Live CD, a wallpaper of your choice, the language you prefer to use and then from that page you can generate an unique ISO that can be downloaded only by yourself.

Check this out on or visit NimbleX on

Kickstart Tools

"Build and manage your own linux distribution. You decide what RPMS should be in it. Then give your users access to a web page to create an automated boot floppy install disk."


"Live-helper is a utility to build CD, DVD, netboot and USB-stick live images of Debian, a GNU/Linux operating system. It boasts support for multiple architectures, auto-building images, amongst many other features.

Live-helper is extremely flexible, allowing interested parties to create their own system completely specific to their needs, including support for custom package lists, kernel parameters, encryption, additional commands to configure the live system etc."

KIWI Image System

"The OpenSuSE KIWI Image System provides a complete operating system image solution for Linux supported hardware platforms as well as for virtualisation systems like Xen Qemu or VMware. The KIWI architecture was designed as a two level system. The first stage, based on a valid software package source, creates a so called physical extend according to the provided image description. The second stage creates from a required physical extend an operating system image. The result of the second stage is called a logical extend or short an image."

T2 SDE - System Development Environment

With T2 SDE you can define targets for various purposes, ranging from embedded linux systems with a few MB of size over server configurations to a full desktop system featuring X.Org foundation, KDE, Gnome, OpenOffice.Org and many more. Those targets can be compiled for use on the most common architectures: Alpha, ARM, HPPA (incl. HPPA64), IA64, MIPS, PowerPC (incl. PowerPC-64), SPARC (incl. SPARC64), SuperH, x86 (incl. x86-64) - theoretically any GCC/Linux supported one.

T2 comes with many predefined targets (desktop, router, live CD ...) and over 2800 package descriptions. For more details T2 SDE - Overview.

The Build System

T2 features an automated build system which manages the whole compilation process including a possible installer CD creation. After initial creation of the build-tool chain, all packages are built inside a sandbox environment to monitor installed files and dependencies automatically. The build system can also modify the execution of various programs to provide a generic way to control compiler flags and file manipulations.

The T2 framework allows the creation of individual custom build target definitions and to customize any build aspect, as well as every single package built for it. Due to the nature of the clean source packages and its automatic build system, T2 is highly portable. Adding new architectures is easy and can be done within a day!

A quick introduction how to compile a target for your favorite architecture can be found here.

T2 - the possibilities are endless ...

The flexible T2 build environment, with the vanilla packaged built from source allows to realize your specific Linux and application ideas.


"Liso is the set of programs and data used to build STUX."

ADIOS Development Kit

"The Makefile is located at /adk on the CD file:///media/cdrom/adk. Here is a recent copy of the ADIOS version 6.0 Makefile. If you want to build your own boot CD please read this Makefile and edit it for your system. It assumes that you are using a kernel with squashfs support. You can copy the kernel from the ADIOS boot CD along with its modules and initial ramdisk by booting the CD first and copying the files you need from the directory /adios/boot or /media/cdrom/isolinux to your /boot and all of the /adios/lib/modules to your /lib/modules. You will also need to change your boot loader if you want to test the boot CD before you burn one.

Once you have successfully performed make devel you can then start removing RPMS and adding your preferred packages, assuming you have the RedHat Fedora Core distribution CDs."


"MoviXMaker-2 is a simple GUI or command line utility which purpose is to create customized bootable disk images of eMoviX, MoviX or MoviX².

eMoviX, MoviX and MoviX² are tiny GNU/Linux distributions dedicated to multimedia playback (e.g. movies, music and slideshows).*


MoviXMaker-2 includes disk image customization possibilities such as :
- Choosing your boot help language, subtitle fontset and boot label.
- Including additionnal files in the disk image.
- Specifying values for some MoviX parameters¹.

¹ Here are the currently (version 0.8.2) supported MoviX parameters:
- movix/mplayer menu language (language),
- keyboard layout (kb),
- tv region (region),
- remote control (remote),
- loop,
- random,
- shutdown (shut),
- reboot,
- eject,
- dma,
- extra_mplayer_options,
- unwanted_mplayer_options.


MoviXMaker-2 is available on Debian GNU/Linux official mirrors."

Injector Linux Source-Kit

"Build you own small linux system within seconds !

The Source-Kit consists of injectors project files and gives you the opportunity to modify and tamper the filesystem as you like.

Get Injector Linux Source-Kit (5MB)"


"[Pilgrim is an] OLPC build system to be able to spit out Fedora livecd's."

Pilgrim Build System README

PUD Build from Scratch (Using Casper)

"PUD GNU/Linux project provides a set of live CD's build tools, including configure files, build script and packages list.

You have exactly the same tools that developers use. Hope this may help you customize and make your own live CD quickly and easily."


"Our Builder generates our repositories and liveCD. It is a series of bash scripts, which can be gotten from our SVN Repositry. [...] Our script to build the LiveCD is based off the Debian Live project. Initially we hoped to work off Ubuntu's scripts but all we could find were ways to alter and existing LiveCD, rather than generate one from scratch.

Essentially we do a cdebootstrap, install all the packages we need, create a squashfs, setup syslinux and make an ISO."

Automated Debian Installer for USB Flash Thumbdrives

Simple tool to automate installing Debian to a USB Flash drive using Debootstrap and a chroot jail. Easy to use and includes support for encrypted root partitions.

"This tool will automate the installation of Debian GNU/Linux onto a USB Flash drives or other removable media.


* Base install works on most USB flash thumbdrives larger than 256MB
* Simple Partitioning [Single partition for small unencrypted USB thumbdrives, OR two partitions for large and/or encrypted USB thumbdrives].
* Uses Mkinitramfs-tools.
* Simple user configuration.
* Simple network configuration.
* Hardware autodetection during boot.
* Privacy Features:
o Support for root partition encryption with DM-Crypt and LUKS."


" dynamically generates Etherboot ROM images."


"[Instalinux] is a simple, easy way to install Linux. You follow the steps in the System Designer to choose from a bunch of different distributions and versions of Linux, and to choose what software you want included. The final product will be a fairly small ISO image (30 MB or less) that you can burn to a CD and boot from. It will automatically build your system for you, pulling what it needs from the network mirror you selected, while you sit back and relax. [...]

This site is most useful (currently!) to experienced Linux System Administrators who need to standardize their system install routines. It enables you to build custom install images for various flavors of Linux. A custom install image is one where most or all of the questions that a normal install asks have been pre-answered. You can also optionally preselect what software will be installed automatically before the system's first boot into service."

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