Author Topic: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library  (Read 37572 times)

Offline Docwatmo

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Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« on: January 27, 2010, 05:56:00 AM »
I know in a total TEOTWAWKI anything electronic would not be of much use (Depending on the state of your own power generation).  But given the availability of cheap low power computers and solar, wind and even hand cranked power generation.  Its not too hard to envision the ability to keep a small laptop battery charged.

So in the spirit of easy information storage, this thread is for electronic means of storing your prepper library of information.

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2010, 06:20:51 AM »
I'll start with my own personal method. 

Being a tech guy, I like to store tremendous amounts of information electronically.  I’ve downloaded hundreds of PDF’s, spreadsheets, databases and other items to help me on the way to living a better life.

Knowledge is king, and I believe in learning as much as possible, but there is just too much info to keep it all in memory, particularly if you don’t have the time to practice all the skills available.  Having a good reference library is an excellent way to keep information at your fingertips.  However, not everyone has the storage space for a large built in library and its not practical to carry too many books with you in a bug out situation.  So below is my current solution.  (I sent this to Jack for comments and suggestions so if the info gets repeated thats my fault :) )

Currently I keep most of them on my phone on a 8 gig MicroSD card.  (Along with backups on several machines and CD/DVD’s).   They are accessible any time I need them and its pretty easy to find what I need.  Short term this isn’t a bad solution.  Also in small SHTF situations its fine also.  But of course if the phone is damaged (The card is waterproof and can be transferred to any of a number of other devices I have and I have a spare full sized SD card and a couple of the Corsair Survivor USB Sticks) but extended power outages make this a non option.  I do also have several secondary chargers and a couple of old laptop frames that I keep batteries charged in.  I can recharge the phone 15 or 20 times off of these (and the phone (with transmitters shut off) will last 4 hours per charge of continuous use and 3 to 4 days of periodic use just reading PDF’s).

My other solution is a bootable USB memory stick.  This Linux (Puppy Distro) runs off the USB Stick and is capable of booting darn near every computer I've tested it with.  This stick contains a copy of all my prepper documentation, instruction manuals, PDF's, spreadsheets and databases.  My goal is to have an ultra portable laptop (I have a Dell XT with battery slice that runs for 10 hours on a charge) and have this available, as well as a cheapo used laptop stored at a future BOL.  I have a solar power adapter on my short list of needed gear that will keep this happy little combo running for as long as I need it. 

Another benefit, since the hard drive is the most likely point of failure on most computers, this will still work even without a hard drive.

I'll post a link to the walk through on this project as soon as I find it again.

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2010, 06:29:08 AM »
Here are a couple of links that may help.  (Once you have a bootable CD Rom of Puppy, the wizard is pretty straight forward and will handle most of the install for you).

http://maketecheasier.com/how-to-install-puppy-linux-on-a-usb-flash-drive/2008/06/27

http://www.pendrivelinux.com/puppy-linux-on-usb/

I need to do the build on my Survivor USB stick so i'll do a step by step with screen shots and post it next week.


Offline SigMan34

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2010, 06:38:55 AM »
I need to do the build on my Survivor USB stick so i'll do a step by step with screen shots and post it next week.


Much appreciated, Doc. This sounds like a great way to keep and have access to TONS of critical information, including survivor-related items.

I'll look forward to your DIY info next week!!!  ;)

Offline KYdoomer

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2010, 07:33:29 AM »
Thanks Doc, I appropriated your advice some time ago and now carry one on my keychain. It is also great if I get a lot of downtime at work, I can work on writing my book.

Thanks!

J

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2010, 07:37:52 AM »
I've been writing a novel for the last 15 years.  I think i'm up to page 9 now.  LOL  Actually, that is exactly what I purchased my first USB stick for. :)

Offline KYdoomer

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2010, 07:55:45 AM »
I've been writing a novel for the last 15 years.  I think i'm up to page 9 now.  LOL  Actually, that is exactly what I purchased my first USB stick for. :)

Hilarious.  I have a different problem.  I start about 20 a year and never finish.  I'm up to page 40 in this one right now so I'm determined.

J

Offline sledgehammer

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2010, 02:52:41 PM »
Does Puppy Linux fully load into RAM? My concern is that you can only switch the ones and zeros back and forth so many times. My approach is a boat load of CDs (references and a live boot linux CD). The only other thing is to remind people that they may have to swap up the boot order in the BIOS.

Great post!

Sledgehammer

Offline madcap1one

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2010, 02:58:57 PM »
Ya know...

I was thinking that we all have to one extent or another, downloaded a treasure trove of info in electronic format.

We need to setup a library of some sort for those on the forum, but I have yet to figure out the proper technology to deploy.

FTP - ehh, those of us tech savvy are okay with it, but not terribly convenient as it requires its own client, not to mention one of us maintaining a server.
Torrents - same deal
These forums - require 3rd party hosting, and useless for mass file share
Dropbox/FolderShare/Groove - super easy, and I could share mine, but data size limitation (2G on Free, and 50 on paid) and the issue of version control and admin/edit/delete of files
Basecamp - really kludgy interface for mass file sharing
Google docs - same

Anyone? I would love to share my files and take yours that I do not currently possess?

Offline KYdoomer

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2010, 03:47:17 PM »
Ya know...

I was thinking that we all have to one extent or another, downloaded a treasure trove of info in electronic format.

We need to setup a library of some sort for those on the forum, but I have yet to figure out the proper technology to deploy.

FTP - ehh, those of us tech savvy are okay with it, but not terribly convenient as it requires its own client, not to mention one of us maintaining a server.
Torrents - same deal
These forums - require 3rd party hosting, and useless for mass file share
Dropbox/FolderShare/Groove - super easy, and I could share mine, but data size limitation (2G on Free, and 50 on paid) and the issue of version control and admin/edit/delete of files
Basecamp - really kludgy interface for mass file sharing
Google docs - same

Anyone? I would love to share my files and take yours that I do not currently possess?


I'm in.

J

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2010, 03:56:36 PM »
Ya know...

I was thinking that we all have to one extent or another, downloaded a treasure trove of info in electronic format.

We need to setup a library of some sort for those on the forum, but I have yet to figure out the proper technology to deploy.

FTP - ehh, those of us tech savvy are okay with it, but not terribly convenient as it requires its own client, not to mention one of us maintaining a server.
Torrents - same deal
These forums - require 3rd party hosting, and useless for mass file share
Dropbox/FolderShare/Groove - super easy, and I could share mine, but data size limitation (2G on Free, and 50 on paid) and the issue of version control and admin/edit/delete of files
Basecamp - really kludgy interface for mass file sharing
Google docs - same

Anyone? I would love to share my files and take yours that I do not currently possess?

probaly the easiest thing would be to make a account at www.scribd.com its a great resource for info junkies/digital librarians

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2010, 08:03:31 PM »
I believe puppy loads entirely into memory.  I'll double check while i'm doing the new build.

I have some hosting possibilities and in a couple of months i'm bringing a full blown webserver online at home.  We could use any technology we wished and find backup or web based front end online.

There are some pretty nifty file sharing sites but none that are free.  I'm not big on all the eggs in one basket so if I did host it, i'd want to be sure its accessible on another mirror somewhere.

I'm swamped the next two weeks but i'll keep it in the back of my mind.

I can't remember who it was but someone else was working on something like this in another thread.  They were trying to use a document management system on a USB stick completely web based.  If we do something like this, I think that would be the way to go.  It would have to be downloadable and able to run locally for anyone who wants to use it.  A cloud only solution would not be a viable solution in many situations.  We have enough technicians here that i'm sure we can come up with a good solution.

Google docs is clunky but so far its the best "Cloud" solution i'm aware of (with my limited experience with it).  I'm working on some XML and and SQL web based database stuff.  Might be a simple way to tie that together and run off a freebie web server on a stick.




Offline grog

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Re: Bug Out/In prepper Library (how to get to library after stuff hits)
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2010, 08:32:03 AM »
As to file sharing and the link, hosting space and supporting infrastructure are good, however you can only back up so much.

Though I have to admit, if you can do it, having a BOFS (Bug Out File Server) would be sort of cool, in an odd, how in the h?ll sort of way. The networking would be interesting as well. One thing on data transfers/ communications would be that while voice traffic on cellular networks systems was impaired or worse during Hurricane Katrina , text messaging worked.

The first browsers for the internet where text based as well. In a grid down situation. perhaps something like packet radio/BBS would become the new information resource the net is today if it all fell and went boom?

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2010, 09:35:19 AM »
OOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHHH,  That an awesome idea.  When I was in the Army and got to play/work at a MARS Station in Germany, my specific task (unofficial, just someone knew someone else who asked if i'd help em out) But the job was using the Mars radio network to send data rather than voice.  It was an experimentation thing I worked on 3 days a week for a month.  It was some pretty old equipment I was using then (And that was almost 20 years ago).  We managed to have a PC on one side send 56 character strings in bursts to receiving terminals.  We managed to get one series of messages without having to retransmit that was 9 bursts long.   I'd have to do some digging, but with modern compression and particularly on the higher bands, if we stick with strictly text based documentation (no scanned pages or images, only compressible text) it might be applicable to create a kind of backbone or sub-internet over the radios.  I'm sure the equipment is probably readily available now (either PCI or USB connectors) nowadays.

Like I said, its been almost 20 years, but I bet I could pick it back up enough to hack my way through it.  I need to get my ticket in Feb and hopefully my first radio in Feb and a couple used "Tinker" radios to hack and slash with in March or April

VERY interesting Concept.

Offline madcap1one

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2010, 11:52:29 AM »
Well considering I pseudo-hijacked this thread, and since my idea seems to be garnering interest, then my approach would be to establish a requirements finding so we know exactly the specs we are looking for, and then identify the solution. This as opposed to us all reeling off names/ideas/techs in random fashion.

Needs:
1. Filetype agnostic hosting (not all info to be included in the library is text based, for example excel spreadsheets for inventory management and worksheets, video demos, etc.)
2. Ideally free to minimal annual expenditure for hosting and bandwidth
3. Some sort of good faith effort to ascertain fair-use, open copyright, etc. We cannot allow this to become a repository of stolen IP (and frankly, if you guys are like me, a good amount of my library was downloaded, and may not be posted publicly as it will (rightly) upset the original author)
4. Mass upload/download capable
5. Ideally a very clean and simple UI
6. Public vs private areas?
7. Others? Chime in folks

Do we need a committee of volunteers for this project?
Is this open? MSB? Public? TSPF only but not MSB?
Replicable on bootable drives?
Automagically file syncing such as Dropbox etc?
Version control issues?
Nomenclature standards?

Uggh, I just started a full blown IT project spec sheet... Sorry!

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2010, 12:06:54 PM »
I vote madcap as commitie chair :)  He is A1 spot on!

Offline bartsdad

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2010, 12:11:29 PM »
I vote madcap as commitie chair :)  He is A1 spot on!

I second the motion.

I'll help if I can. I 'm a mechanic, not an IT guy, but if there is something...

Offline idelphic

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2010, 12:19:03 PM »
Quote
2. Ideally free to minimal annual expenditure for hosting and bandwidth

I think I pay about $100 ($6.00 a month(ish))for my hosting package a year.  www.hostmonster.com

Offline madcap1one

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2010, 12:24:55 PM »
Ugghhh!!!!

This is the second time in a week I have forgotten the cardinal rule - i.e. when they ask for volunteers, run backwards!

I am willing to work with you guys, other folks, chime in if you would like to be involved.

So far:
Madcap1One - committee (chair? and PM)
Docwatmo - committee (radio and and alternate access tech?)
The Grog - committee (tech?)
BartsDad - metalworking and networking cabinetry wrangler, and committee
idelphic - sucker who responded about hosting costs while I was typing this reply, and hence self nominated for participation
One more here - perhaps a graphics person with UI experience? Anyone?

Just a quick summation of volunteers so far.

If you folks would please PM your direct emails, I will setup a project management workspace for this and invite you in.

Offline irish

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2010, 12:40:03 PM »
Not exactly on topic, but hopefully close enough. IPOD has been very useful for downloading prepper related topics. Also, Mozilla Firefox has a good plug in for downloading YOUTUBE videos, that can be pulled into Itunes, so I've built up a decent library of Survival related videos, all stored on the IPOD. Library in my pocket. I think PDF files can be loaded onto IPOD as well. So you can put together quite a bit of information for pocket storage.

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2010, 01:47:40 PM »
You can count me in for any of the following (To a degree as yet to be determined :) based on my available time).
1.  Hosting or hosting support,  I have some static IP availability and will have a full blown Web server coming online that can be either a temporary host during development or a permanent host or mirror.  It will have about 1/2 a terabyte of Raid 5 operating and storage space (runing on a VMWare Server) with as much snapshotting and backup as is feasible on a 2 TB Raid 5 Backup device in a semi-Hardened concrete box.  Unfortunately its still within coffee spilling distance of the server so offsite backup or Mirroring would be a requirement.  (Also has a 10MB upload pipe and 5 MB Download Pipe).
2.  Web Development
3.  minor programming (depends on what we do).
4.  Database support
5.  Some graphic and web image design.  (Used to do a little interface work and software development/testing/DQAA with interface)
6.  Periodic Sarcasm and Joke instigator but only when someone leaves a nice big fat opening :)

I don't have any radio gear yet and it will probably be mid to late march before I have my first bits of radio gear and probably closer to may before I can start experimenting with IP linking on the radio equipment.

Email Sent to PM

Doc


Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #21 on: January 28, 2010, 02:12:51 PM »
OK, Back on topic Here is the link to the instruction document for the Puppy Linux USB Stick that I use.

http://sites.google.com/site/vidsecintro/departments/documents

This is the process for creating the USB stick.  After this point you can just boot it and follow the on screen instruction to operate it.  There are some configuration options and instructions and i'll put together another document to handle those after the weekend.  Until then this should get you started.

Now please, if I've missed something, or you have any ideas or suggestions for this process, by all means let me know.  I'm far, far, far from perfect (I don't think that was enough far's :) ) and appreciate any feedback or assistance.

I did forget to mention that this can be done on USB hard drives or CF or SD cards etc.  But for durability the USB stick is the best option.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2010, 02:18:09 PM by Docwatmo »

Offline idelphic

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #22 on: January 28, 2010, 07:40:41 PM »
Ugghhh!!!!

This is the second time in a week I have forgotten the cardinal rule - i.e. when they ask for volunteers, run backwards!

I am willing to work with you guys, other folks, chime in if you would like to be involved.

So far:
Madcap1One - committee (chair? and PM)
Docwatmo - committee (radio and and alternate access tech?)
The Grog - committee (tech?)
BartsDad - metalworking and networking cabinetry wrangler, and committee
idelphic - sucker who responded about hosting costs while I was typing this reply, and hence self nominated for participation
One more here - perhaps a graphics person with UI experience? Anyone?

Just a quick summation of volunteers so far.

If you folks would please PM your direct emails, I will setup a project management workspace for this and invite you in.
MadCap -
  You now owe me a keyboard... and I just ,... well  never mind, but it's graphic!   :excited:

I do have a bit of experience with cPanel as I am hosting about 6 different sites at the moment.  I've been using Joomla! for the front end, but even that doesn't take up much space.  It has userid / document management, and of course with cpanel you can have ftp access,..  but which ever direction it's decided to go, I don't mind to help some.

Offline theadob

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #23 on: January 28, 2010, 07:47:53 PM »
why not just use IRC (I use MIRC as a front end).  You can set yourself up for sharing files and people can pull them right off your computer.  People use this for the copying of illegal music, ebooks, and movies every day. Its a little complex but with good instructions it would work just fine.  all you need is a computer that is always connected to the internet to share files on and bing!  no worries about gigabyte transfer limits, etc.

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #24 on: January 28, 2010, 09:26:03 PM »
OK, Finished the documentation for the Puppy USB Stick.  They are now on the http://sites.google.comcom/vidsecintro

I am also uploading the Puppy ISO image (105 Megabytes) so it should be available about 10:30 Central Time tonight).

You provide a USB stick and everything else is on the site.

Let me know if you have any trouble with the site or the process.

Doc



Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #25 on: January 28, 2010, 09:30:17 PM »
why not just use IRC (I use MIRC as a front end).  You can set yourself up for sharing files and people can pull them right off your computer.  People use this for the copying of illegal music, ebooks, and movies every day. Its a little complex but with good instructions it would work just fine.  all you need is a computer that is always connected to the internet to share files on and bing!  no worries about gigabyte transfer limits, etc.

That would work, However I think we are looking for something that can be simplified for the non techs and downloaded to a running USB stick as needed so that its available sans any communication link. 

The secondary goal of having a resource available via the radios post SHTF would be the 2nd stage in a recovery or continued SHTF situation.  (Could even be made a public resource to help an area before/during/after a disaster/recovery situation.

Great thinking, Keep it coming!!!

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #26 on: January 28, 2010, 09:48:36 PM »
Disregard, I didn't realize there was a 20 Meg limit on Google sites.  You will have to pull the image form the http://www.puppylinux.org Website.

Offline theadob

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #27 on: January 29, 2010, 07:02:25 PM »
if you want someone to gather primitive cooking and canning/preserving resources, i'll help

Offline madcap1one

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #28 on: January 31, 2010, 10:33:25 AM »
OK - we seem to have stalled for the weekend (sorry, family obligations first.)

Those who expressed interest, and one who was (thankfully to his amusement) drafted, have been invited into a planning document.

Friends, you all should have access rights to edit and insert into the document. Lets get this rolling...

Perhaps a workable schedule is to have requirements done by the end of the week (2/5?)
Potential solutions by 2/12?
Budget for asking donations by 2/19?
And debut of the library by 3/5?

Just throwing it out there as an aggressive challenge.

Offline Docwatmo

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Re: Bug Out/In Bootable USB Stick for prepper Library
« Reply #29 on: January 31, 2010, 12:41:03 PM »
Yep, thats aggressive all right. I just put a resource list and some project objectives on the Google docs.  In for a penny in for a pound :)