Build Tools


"EasyVMX! is the simple and failsafe way to create complete virtual machines for VMware Player on the web.

Install any Windows, Linux, BSD or Solaris, and test live-CDs in a safe environment.

Filling in only four configuration fields will create a downloadable virtual machine. [...]

You can install the following operating systems in VMware Player:

* Any of your favourite Linux distributions, be it Slackware, TurboLinux, Mandrake, Linspire, Ubuntu, Debian, Gentoo, SUSE/Novell or Redhat.
* Any version of Novell Netware.
* Any version of FreeBSD.
* Any version of Sun Solaris for x86.
* You can even install Darwin!
* Most other operating systems for the x86 platform will also run in VMware Player.

You can also run live CDs like Knoppix inside a virtual machine generated by EasyVMX!. It's a perfect way to test new stuff, and keep your computer safe at the same time."

LinuxCOE - Linux Common Operating Environment

"The HP Linux Common Operating Environment (LinuxCOE) is a global engineering program which facilitates provisioning and lifecycle support of Linux systems. Key deliverables are to increase reliability, availability, maintainability and performance of global infrastructure and production environments by maintaining a minimum number of platform and component configurations.

LinuxCOE is licensed under the GNU General Public License.

LinuxCOE System Designer is a CGI-based web application that allows a user to create localized network boot images. To get started, download System Designer and follow the documented installation and configuration procedure.


* A CGI-based network install image generator
* A profile manager to store custom install images
* A retrofit process to configure machines to use LinuxCOE processes for patch and package management"


"make-live is a shell script that does automagically create Debian Live images foryou. The image generation is as simple as:

* cdebootstrap a debian standard system in a subdirectory.

* apt-get install the linux kernel image together with squashfs, unionfs modules and the casper initramfs image generator.

* Install the proper flavour packages with right preseeded questions.

* Clean things up

* Compress this rootfs as a squashfs image.

* Copy out the kernel and initramfs image.

* Assemble the iso, hd or netboot final image."


"TCOS is a free software project, it consists in creating a micro OS (debian/ubuntu based) that when copied into /tftpboot root dir it gets served to a thin client network (pentium 350 64 Mb ram), this will boot terminals and connect by XMDCP to the server where the users can login and work. The idea is based on PXES project but TCOS uses newer kernel without patches and recognizes newest hardware."

MINIMIX Debian/GNU Linux 3.1 LiveCD HOWTO

"In this Howto you will learn like simply it are their own live CD from a the Scratch to be provided. It is divided into three sections.

In the section 1 explained like one is installed a Debian basic system by Qemu and entpakt with lomount. I have myself consciously approximately debootstrap decided because I the opinion am which one the expiration with Qemu better understand. In addition the Qemu is simpler variant to handle. They can download the result of section 1 in form of a tar.bz2 Archives (121 MT).

In the section 2 we come then on the point. We provide step by step own live CD. The finished live CD can download you here (227,9 MT).

In the section 3 I explain as simply and fast one MINIMIX rem asters and to install can.

This HOWTO is constantly updated and improved, if someone has an idea like one it make better could please answer-gives."

"In diesem Howto werden Sie lernen wie einfach es ist eine eigene Live CD from the Scratch zu erstellen. Es ist in drei Abschnitte unterteilt." (German)


"Debian Live initramfs generator

Casper provides an initramfs generator suited for booting a Debian Live systems from read only media. Useful to build live CDs."

Aurox Live Generator

"Aurox Live Generator is a tool for building your own operating system bootable directly from CD or DVD. This is the first OS in the world, which gives you a possibility of preparing customized iso images from www site. Person who's preparing system must only choose applications which should be placed on CD or DVD and their own pack of artwork like wallpaper or splash screen. The OS is based on scripts prepared dynammically, which are downloading choosed software from network repositories.

Building the new system in short:

* user is selecting programs from web site which will be added to his system
* next he downloads specially prepared pack of scripts and runs it. Scripts will prepare iso image which user can burn on CD/DVD
* user burns an iso image and booting the new system from CD/DVD [...]

Project status

Currently project is at testing stage. The quickly test the latest working version of scripts by generating live from WWW (see links below). You can browse the latest source code with Your WWW browser from adress:

or download the latest SVN version by typing:

svn co

You can also browse automaic home generation scripts written by Dariusz Gut from Aurox Core Team by typing:

svn co "


larch is a kit for building a live CD based on Archlinux.
Package selection is fully configurable, and a simple hard disk installer is also provided, the result being a completely standard and up-to-date Archlinux system. It should be possible to run the build scripts on most up-to-date Linux systems, so you don't already need an Arch system to build the CD.
Extensive documentation is provided.

Backup Host:

"Until I've got something new sorted out you should be able to download the stuff as a tarball (larch_all.tar.gz), including all the docs, from "


"Gendist is a live CD generator system. It has nice features like multi-distribution CDs, support for grub, isolinux, and gfxboot boot managers, and a modules system for configuring your distribution in live mode. This system is independent from the kernel version (but need unionfs and squashfs support). It only works on Debian Sid or Ubuntu Dapper." (spanish)


"MkDistro has evolved to an excellent tool for building and remastering modules and whole Distros. [...] [It leverages] the Morphix approach of modules and his previous works on developing the HD remastering scripts for the Kurumin, Knoppix, Kanotix and Beatrix Live CD Distros."

Ubuntu Customization Kit

"Ubuntu Customization Kit (UCK) is a set of tools for easy cutomization of Ubuntu Linux distribution (and its derivatives, like Kubuntu).

Currently it allows you to:

* Create bootable LiveCD with predefined languages based on original Ubuntu/Kubuntu live CD using wizard with GUI.

* Build live CD with special features using scripts. It is possible to customize root filesystem (for example install/remove packages), ISO contents (add/remove docs, change names) and initrd (add modules to boot, change boot sequence)."


"Crucible is a flexible, layered set of tools for pulling down software from the web, building it, running tests on it, and reporting any unusual behaviors back to the parent project.

But since every testing project is unique, we strive to structure Crucible as a set of distinct tools that can be used independently or in other frameworks. Thus, if you're working on your own test harness, we hope you can cherry pick something of use to you from Crucible. :-)

Crucible has been used for doing automated testing of:

* NFSv4 kernel code - client / server multi-machine testing
* Inkscape - build, make check
* Cairo - build, make check
* Crucible - of course [...]

It was created because while there are a lot of automated test harness out there, none were found that could both do kernel booting and allow for orchestrating testing across multiple machines. The Samba build farm was selected as a starting point because the code was simple and relatively clear.

A key design goal of Crucible is to keep its focus as *limited* as possible. "Do one thing, and do it well." Many test harnesses try to do _too_ much, and in the process become too cumbersome and unweildy to be of real use for doing real world testing. I need the ability to easily break things apart and run things in isolation, so I can dig my hands in and get a good grasp on the bug. Also, every test project is unique, so by keeping Crucible's scope limited, it makes it easier to reuse for a wide variety of test harness needs.

Crucible is implemented mainly in Bash. This was done not because I love bash (I actually much prefer Perl), but because bash is reasonably easy to debug, it's widely known, and fairly easily learned. Much of what Crucible does is just file and process manipulation, and bash is pretty good at that. For more complex tasks, or for functionality that bash isn't that good at, I code a tool in a better language and exec that."


"Scratchbox is a cross-compilation toolkit designed to make embedded Linux application development easier. It also provides a full set of tools to integrate and cross-compile an entire Linux distribution."


"Buildroot is a set of Makefiles and patches that allows to easily generate both a cross-compilation toolchain and a root filesystem for your target. The cross-compilation toolchain uses uClibc (, a tiny C standard library. [...]

As said above, Buildroot is basically a set of Makefiles that download, configure and compiles software with the correct options. It also includes some patches for various software, mainly the ones involved in the cross-compilation tool chain (gcc, binutils and uClibc)."

Udpcast Boot Image Generator

"This section describes how to generate boot images yourself.

If you have installed the Udpcast image generator RPM, the boot image generator is located in /usr/lib/udpcast/makeImage, and needs the following additional packages to be installed:

* mknbi (only needed for generating etherboot images), can be downloaded from Etherboot's site
* syslinux (for PXE, and CD-Rom. For floppy, the relevant files are already included with the image generator itself)

These additional packages are already supplied with most major distributions (SuSE, Redhat, Mandrake, Debian, ...)"


"draklive builds a live distribution according to a configuration file, creates a master image, and optionally installs it on a device.

draklive's philosophy is to keep the live distribution as close as possible to a normal Mandriva Linux distribution. All specific live tweaks are done in a very tiny initrd script. Since this one is generated on the fly, it's very small, and gets quite easy to debug.

The list of drivers included in the initrd is adjusted during the live distribution creation, according to the medium type. draklive uses the DrakX libraries to have an up-to-date drivers list. [...]

Once the initrd script is done booting, the root device will be used transparently by the distribution, without any additional tricks.

Hardware detection is done with harddrake, providing a reliable integration.


* live CD
* live distribution on USB key
* easy to test over NFS
* uses the Mandriva installer to create the live system
* fully read-write live system (using unionfs)
* automatic hardware configuration (using harddrake)
* generic code structure to make new technical choices usable quickly"


"[grow-knoppix is a] Xdialog script creates a boot-able live CD or DVD that is a copy of a KNOPPIX version plus user content added to the root of the new DVD.

The guide allows easy publishing and including of new a boot file, background, startup index.html, and desktop on your custom DVD. [...]

Boot from a KNOPPIX KANOTIX CD, get grow-knoppix, save to /home/knoppix. right click --> Properties --> Permissions --> put X in Exec boxes, click to run" (download)

LiveCD Collection

This is an example of a Multi-boot LiveCD/DVD.

"There are a lot of Live CD Linux's versions, some of them based in diferents ditributions other in the same and other based en other LiveCD, so if you are like me, you have a collection of CD's and floppys. I decided to create a CD/DVD where I can have some LiveCD's and floppy programs that I have untudy in the box. This could be usefull or useless depending the person, but if you want to create this CD/DVD here you are the method I have used. [...]

The zip file to download, contains one script to create a booteable CD/DVD image with mkisofs in the directory where we have unzipped the file. The CD/DVD will use Grub as a boot loader.
Along with the script there is a folder named /dvd/ in this folder we are going to put the files corresponding for each distribution we want to include. Inside the folder dvd there is among others a folder named /boot/. The boot folder contain a folder for each distribution where we will place the kernel and initrd of each distribution.."

Jornada 820 bootimage


The Makefile ought to contain everything you need to build the bootimage. For hacking, an optional script "please" helps you do things with the kernel tree. [...]

The toolchain is based on uClibc - [...]


The ramdisk that is built by this Makefile has the following usage:
* lots of functions are defined in /etc/functions -- see by yourself
* you may add your own additional functions in /etc/functions.local
* Use "standalone" to configure linux for standalone usage with the ramdisk.
* Use "rootfs" to chain-boot into your first Linux partition on CF.
* The ramdisk will automatically attempt to "rootfs" at startup, unless you
create a file or directory named "noautomount" in your WinCE partition.
* We have mkfs.minix and fsck.minix in busybox. No ext2 support, sorry.
To build an ext2 filesystem, you'll have to use a CF reader on your PC,
or to NFS mount a filesystem with your ext2 utilities.
* Busybox is packed up with lots of functionality. Check it out!
* To free the memory occupied by the ramdisk, your rootfs will need to run
the program blockdev, which is part of the util-linux debian package.

* With kernel 2.6, you must use cat /proc/modules instead of lsmod"

dscdbuilder - Debian from Scratch CD Builder

"The name dscdbuilder stands for "Debian from Scratch CD Builder". The idea for doing this came from the needs to create a heavily modified version of Knoppix, and from a series of little scripts i wrote to help me on this task. But finally, this came as a tool to *master* a live CD, that is, build it on a bottom-to-top basis. The key word here, as Andreas Tille points on his notes for CDD, is *mater*, as the modifications from the famous Knoppix are just *remasters* of it, in the sense that you download the latest Knoppix CD image, copy it into your HD, make any changes you want and recompress it to a new iso. In the other hand, dscdbuilder starts from an empty directory and starts installing different layers of software, dedicated to different objectives, something similar to what dfsbuild does. [...]

The [...] 6 big groups of stages: 1) Install base system: the 'base' stages build a basic system on a directory, downloading and installing some packages (base_*) 2) Install live CD-related software: the 'knoppix' stages install some packages and add support for auto configuration and booting (they're called knx_* because they're a group of Knoppix packages) 3) Install final contents: the 'einam' stages add the real usefull contents to the directory, so here's the big list of package contents (the stages are named einam_* because 'dscdbuilder' was first written for use on the build of Einam CDs) 4) Miscelaneous operations: here come some extra 'knoppix' stages that need to be run after any package installation 5) Build initrd image: the 'miniroot' stages are used to build the initial root filesystem to mount and boot the CD as a live CD (minirt_*) 6) Create an ISO"


"BootRoot creates a boot disk with lilo, a kernel and an initrd image. The initrd script mounts another root disk with a compressed (gzip or bzip2) filesystem.

The root filesystem isn't made by this program, but there lots of compressed filesytems out there to use (see rest of FAQ). This program is patterned after mkrboot, but unlike mkrboot it creates an unique bootdisk and a separate root disk."


"Make the development, construction, and testing of distributions fun and simple. [...]

Non-root users construct, develop, test and run all types of distributions with Root Methods (Yard, etc.) and user-mode-linux, then finish with a Boot Method (2-disk compression, etc). Make_debian yard template creator provided for Debian users."

Grand Unified Installer Project

"The GUI project - One CD boots them all*

The goal of the Grand Unified Installer project, is to create one CD, which can help install Linux/Windows on a single hard disk, and also function as a rescue disk for these operating systems. In addition, this CD can also be used to backup the harddisk to tape, and restore the hard disk from the tape. The starting point is a very useful utility called ISOLINUX, which functions as a boot loader for CD based Operating Systems."

Rescue disk images and Tools for creating rescue disks

"What you'll find here: rescue disk images and tools for creating rescue disks [and live linux operating system distributions]"!INDEX.html

MultiBootCD (MBCD)

"MBCD is a shell script to make a customised CD-ROM that can boot any kind and number of image files.

Currently 4 types of images are supported:

* Floppy images (1.2M, 1.44M or 2.88M)
* Knoppix-like image (one per CD)
* Kernel-binary images (e.g. memtest86)
* Windows XP Recovery Console

Note that using more than one Knoppix image is currently not possible, but may be in a future version. And of course you can't use the original 700MB Knoppix version (unless you use 800MB CDR blanks). See below for some smaller alternatives.

MBCD is licensed under the GNU GPL ("


"MKDanix allows you to build Live CD ISO images non-interactively and easily. It uses the latest Debian archives from the stable or unstable Debian branch. You can add a custom set of packages, documents, texts, and images to create your own personal operating system. [...]

MKDanix - Build your own live CD today!
Document Actions

* Send this page to somebody
* Print this page

Having your own custom live CD rocks!
Have you ever dreamed to have your own custom live CD?

Imagine you can:

* build the cd noninteractively (even newbies can do it),
* use latest debian archives from stable or unstable debian suite,
* add custom set of packages,
* add custom texts and images,
* add custom configuration scriptlets."


"Genera tu livecd instalable en pocos minutos [...]

Garfio es un sistema e infraestructura, que te permite crear una livecd instalable de tu distribución preferida, en cuestión de minutos."


"A 'dialog' based tool for on-demand embedded system creation (e.g: Live-cd, usb key etc..). It allows creation of fully customized Live-cd in a few minutes, using normal packages, not special things. If fact, our init-scripts are Nbed-compliant from scratch, only the existence of an 'NBED' file at the root of filesystem will trigger variant action to work smooth on a read-only media. That's all, everything else is excatly the same that what's used on the Hard-drive, nothing to adapt, it works exactly the same.

It can be used at for easy creation of (non-exhaustive): advanced Live-rescue, live-desktop, autoconfiguring DHCP client and LAN, gateways, NAT-box, Distribution specific install-CD (binaries and or sources based), cluster nodes, media-box etc..."


"Integrate several tools

Maybe you create your own mini iso with mrxcdram

* ./ # generate the /boot/ramdisk.gz, with all command defined in ramdisk.db
* ./ # snapshot your current linux system without personal information directories
* ./ # create bootable iso using the /boot/ramdisk.gz and current /vmlinuz kernel"


"The buildkernel script is an intelligent tool that will build a new linux kernel for you. It is designed to be easy so that a novice can use it. At the same time, it is flexible and powerful enough that it can be useful for experienced users."

Syndicate content