How can I create a live USB with storage partition?

Hello everyone!

So here’s some background information of what I want to do. I’ve recently installed KeepassXC and like it quite a bit, as it’s more secure than my last approach to passwords, which was to simply use the same one over and over. There is the problem though that I can only use it on my own phone and PC, since the portable version is only available for Windows and I’d like to be able to use it on other Linux PCs too.

So my solution to this problem seemed straight forward: I just install Manjaro on a USB drive and put my own system in my pockets to carry around. Turns out that’s possible, but it’s running so slow that it’s basically unusable.
My next idea was to create a custom iso of my current system and use it as a live USB. This works, but if I want to update the database of KeepassXC, I need to make a new live USB. So this isn’t ideal either.

That brought me to making a live USB with persistent storage. I found a persistent iso of Manjaro xfce and tried using it, but it seems like it’s about as slow as a full installation on USB. So maybe it’s better to keep using the non-persistent live USB, but with an extra storage partition.

This brings me to the question of this topic: Is it possible to install a Manjaro iso on a partition, rather than on a whole USB device, so I can use the rest of the space as a storage partition? It seems like the only program that supports this is UNetbootin, but if I create a live USB with it, I can’t boot it. I’ve also found something on archwiki, where they’re explaining how to manually create a live USB partition, but that didn’t seem to work with Manjaro iso’s.

Thank you for reading this far! If anyone has already tried or managed to do this, I’d really appreciate if you could help me out here :slightly_smiling_face:

Hi there :wave:

So what you looking for is a persistent storage, which is not supported for arch-base system because of lack of compatibility. Debian based systems have kernels which are patched and prepared for this use case.

However… arch-based systems have another method called alma, where you can make installation on an image file on your local machine and after installation, just write it to the usb stick (it will use f2fs filesystem which performs better on flash drives) .

Of course there are some little tweaks needed to make it run faster for lower disk I/O, where actually the bottleneck is located. But hey you can at least configure the system with you preferences and remove everything what you don’t need, to make it faster.

With iotop for example you can look for programs which reads and writes a lot to disk in the background.

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You could also simply have the appimage on a key…
It’s portable… not really “portable” because of it saves settings it will be in the home directory

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Ah seems i didn’t see that… the portable App is called “AppImage” for linux and KeepassXC have one here: Download - KeePassXC

Thanks @scachemaille for mentioning this :slight_smile:

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You have a couple of options

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Thank you for your replies! Sorry that I didn’t answer them earlier.
The appimage seems like a good solution, everything worked good on my laptop that hasn’t got KeepassXC installed yet. I didn’t even know this is a thing, thanks for pointing that out :slightly_smiling_face:
I’ll still try to make a persistent USB drive installation when I have time, probably using Ubuntu. The concept of having your own plug and play system seems nice to me :smile:

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