Boot entirely to RAM and disconnect medium

I want to achieve something like this:

  • boot Manjaro from USB
  • remove USB medium so everything still works

Or maybe boot something which will copy manjaro live image to ramdisk and start it… Is something like that possible? Will i need to edit the image or add some magic around the image?

It’s definetly possible in general, because it’s linux. Everything is possible :slight_smile: I searched for other distros which have such feature and found that Ubuntu has cryptic “toram” feature and an article on their wiki describing how to prepare an image for booting to RAM, but it looks tedious and distro-specific.

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at grub selection hit ‘e’ and add to kernel param’s
copytoram

for debuntu

or is it
toram

Might work.

Oh look I found a link - seems to indicate toram
https://askubuntu.com/questions/829917/can-i-boot-a-live-usb-fully-to-ram-allowing-me-to-remove-the-disk

But looking further I cant seem to find documentation of these options:
https://github.com/torvalds/linux/blob/master/Documentation/admin-guide/kernel-parameters.txt

[edit - looks like toram is for ubuntu, copytoram works with arch/manjaaro]

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Absolutely! People do it time and time again. 'Course, ya gotta have enough RAM to start with. LOTS of RAM, if you never want anything touching disc. Basically, you are installing an entire operating system and all of its applications into virtual memory. You use something called a RAM CACHE.

The problem comes when rebooting or shutting down. It’s all gone, man! So you have to do it all over again.

Also found this, which seems a bit old but might still work:
https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=193461&p=3

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That’s an awesome hat trick if it still works. :smiley:

I know it is not necessary now to put ‘toram’ for liveiso boots in casper (ubuntu & derivatives).
I still have this line ‘toram=filesystem.squashfs’ for gparted liveiso boots.
Both automatically put into ram the ‘OS’.

But OP wants to boot a ‘normal’ partitioned installed OS in the usb and wants to remove usb once booted up. I’d caution against it as it would be the same as removing a ‘normal’ disk once the OS in the ‘normal’ disk has booted up. If an app, say Firefox is not called up, the ‘app’ won’t be put into the ram and if disk is removed and Firefox is then launched, the ‘app’ will not be available anywhere and system will crash.

But if OP finds a way, let us know.
Cheers.

ps: cscs link is still for liveboots.

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Maybe i wasn’t clear: the idea was to boot-and-remove-medium for a live image, not for a “normal installed OS”. And do it in a way that everything is copied to RAM, so that calling any app will not result in crash.

Anyway, thanks all for suggestions, i’ll try them and hopefully something will work.

UPD: toram doesn’t work, just tried on manjaro-xfce live image…

‘toram’ is not distro-specific. you can use it for all linux distros’

I used to have this in the kernel parameters for liveboots, but I now put all my isofiles in a ‘normal’ disk partition and boot from the disk, not from usb. Here’s the grub entry. You can try to put in ‘toram’ (no appos) in the linux line and test it out. Let us know how it turned out. Remember to say, launch Firefox after usb is pulled out.

Oh…remember, best to put the isofile in a directory. Not in the raw partition. Every post I answered on this subject has the poster put the isofile in the raw partition. The people I know who use it and don’t need to post are our resident experts, likely they put in a directory.

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I tried booting manjaro live image and editing kernel cmdline from the first menu. It didn’t work :frowning: I could see a “toram” in /proc/cmdline but unplugging boot medium is still fatal.

I can’t see how using grub and mounting .iso as loopback would help, it’s still just passing paramerets to the same kernel inside the .iso…

From my memory, toram is a very old parameter that I’ve seen around circa 2005 on several Debian/Knoppix based live distros.

It’s not an official kernel boot parameter and thus distro specific.
“copytoram” however is related to squashfs and might work.

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There are a number of smaller distros that support running completely from RAM, such as AntiX, Puppy linux, probably MX-Linux and Porteus…

I’ve put ‘toram’ whenever I want to boot any live iso for a long time now… I used to have this also in casper (ubuntu and derivatives) until casper made it automatically into ram (without toram) about one year back. And I put it into other distros as well. The trouble (or the good thing) is that anything we put into grub kernel parameters that is not applicable or ‘nonsense’ will be ignored [1]; so I don’t really know if ‘toram’ will actually help in the case the OP wants.

I used to have puppy linux, dsl , slack,… (as well as ubuntu) booting from usb into ram; but as said, I always put in ‘toram’. Distro specific? Dunno. There are always into ram.

[1] - try it, put any ‘nonsense’ into grub parameters. It will boot up as though it isn’t there.
Good thing? Probably so, otherwise bad parameters will cause non-boots.
Bad thing? Yeah, maybe - we won’t know if the parameter works.

If it worked, you would have at least some output in dmesg or journalctl.
Should be the case with Ubuntu and derivatives, as well as some Debian live distros.
Parted Magic loads into RAM by default IIRC.

copytoram is worth a try.

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copytoram works for me, can’t remember whether toram worked or not.

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I think copytoram is a squashfs specific parameter, and Manjaro images are squashed so it should work.
Good to know!

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Thanks everyone for the help! Just tested:
copytoram works for Manjaro, toram does not.
toram works for Ubuntu, copytoram does not.

It would be just nice to have an option for booting to ram right in Manjaro ISO’s boot menu. Because i always thought of that feature and only realized that it should be possible after years with archlinux, and still was unsure how to do that. Regular users may benefit from this feature if it was obvious.

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just one thought It may not work to well with a low ram system trying to install that is the only drawback.

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As @cscs was the first one to suggest using copytoram it is only fair he gets credit for the solve.

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