I'm going to put my comments inline instead since they're easier to read in context then out.

On 9/14/05, andy < dancer@axelrod.plus.com> wrote:
So here's the plan:

1. install some distribution* in a partition(s) in the usual
dual-boot way on my daughter's w2k machine.

2. modify that system so it will run boot-alone
or with co-linux (w2k) (sounds easy - have two /etc dirs and
a symlink) on that sytem.

3. take an image of that.  I can plug in an external disk
with a choice of filesystems and boot say from knoppix cd
or any unix on there to do that. BUT - I don't know how to
make an image file - can anyone advise ?

Easily done. Mount your NT partition through samba, and run dd. An example would be:

dd if=/dev/cobd0 of=/mnt/disk.image

where /mnt is the mount point of your samba share (if you're saving the image to a FAT32 partition, then mount that partition directly.)
 

4. copy that image to my machine (xp home with ntfs)
and run that image with colinux.

Questions:

a) For the linux-in-a-partition that also runs with CL on
w2k is there a size limit - does that partition have
to be <= 4G to run with CL w2k ? (that would be a shame).

No. This 4gig file limit only applies to FAT32, AFAIK. Even NTFS can work with images larger than 4gig (I've run 6 gig images before). Also, if you're running FAT32 on a colinux system, you can get around this 2 gig limit by using RAID devices if disk size is upmost importance (and you don't want to mount a crapload of 2 gig files). Using RAID5 or RAID0 should be optimal (in fact, you don't need RAID5 when all the images aer on the same disk *anyways*).

b) how do I make the image file from that partition ?

Answer given above.

Extra information:

For various reasons repartitioning the xp machine is out
so I must run with an image-in-a-file on there.  Doing
the operation this way will help me figure out a few useful
things that everyone who doesn't want to depend on paying
someone to recover data should know.  I don't need help with
how to copy files around across the different file systems -
I always keep a few linuxes around and run an fc3 server and
taught unix for a few years a few years ago.

Often, this is the problem with a lot of colinux users (I.E. unable to partition their system to accomidate a linux partition). The other big one is the inability to gain administrator on their system. I'm going to ahve to play some more with this, since I think this will prohibit colinux from running at all (RING0 mode requires admin privs, I think).

*footnote
maybe fc - using it
on some machines but displeased with its user-maintainability
- recommendations pls to be up 2 date)

I've used FC3 and FC4 before (and FC1 as well)... and while I like its setup (apt-get with rpms is nice),  I don't like its support (I.E. lack of packages for current software). They've gotten better with FC4, but FC4 doesn't support apt-get for some reason, and you have to use yum (not that I have anything against yum, it works quite well, but I'm just a die-hard apt-get user, I hate to switch).

Ian