So you want your own distro . . .

  Not as difficult as you might think. In fact, if what you are after can be based upon Absolute, making an iso of your very own can be easlily done in a matter of minutes.

  We'll begin with a little Quick-Start guide, then get into more personalized convolutions later. [Along with details about what you can safely take out, what packages contain what settings, etc.]

This is if you just want different packages than Absolute comes with - some extra stuff, some stuff taken out. Maybe there is a whole lot of software you don't want/need but would really like OpenOffice in there from the get-go. hey, whatever.

  1. Download Absolute, if you have not done so already, and burn the ISO to CD.

  2. Copy the entire contents of the CD to a folder. For the sake of simplicity we will stick to /usr/src/mylinux [I do this as root, if you don't then you should put this somewhere in your home directory.]

  3. Take out or put in any packages you would like. They appear in the /usr/src/mylinux/slackware folder. Take out what you don't want, put in what you do. Tagfiles are not used as Absolute (and subsequently, your distro) does not use them. [I have kept them up to date in case of future use.]

  4. When you are done adding or deleting packages, open an xterm and cd to your /usr/src/mylinux directory:
    cd /usr/src/mylinux

  5. This step is not technically necessary, but it will update the package lists, MD5SUMs, etc... Type:
    and wait for it to finish. This will take several minutes.

  6. Then enter what you see below. (Might want to copy and paste . . . just make sure it is all one line!)

    mkisofs -o /usr/src/mylinux.iso -R -J -V "MyLinux Install" -hide-rr-moved -v -d -N -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table -sort isolinux/iso.sort -b isolinux/isolinux.bin -c isolinux/isolinux.boot -A "MyLinux Install CD" .

  7. When completed the xterm should look like so:

    As you can see, this version turned out to be 694 MB. Naturally, if you want to fit the iso on a regular CD, keep the size down below 700 mb.

  8. Then just burn the ISO you created (in this case "/usr/src/mylinux.iso") and boot the machine you wish to install "MyLinux" on from it.


A couple packages you might want to dip into and alter if you put in any new/different software.

  1. MENU ITEMS - /slackware/xap/icewm
    Menus and preferences in /etc/skel/.icewm/menu, /root/.icewm/menu
    The above plus winoptions in usr/share/icewm/menu

  2. MIME TYPES and SHORTCUTS - /slackware/xap/rox_filer
    Global in /usr/share/choices
    user configs in /root/.config/ and /etc/skel/

  3. CUSTOM SCRIPTS AND ARTWORK - /slackware/a/etc
    scripts in /usr/local/bin and /usr/local/sbin
    icons and artwork in /usr/share/pixmaps
    wallpapers in /usr/share/wallpaper