This is a (hopefully) long-ish term project I'm working on, now I'm officially *free* from exams.
It's very much a work-in-progress but I think it's going to be awesome.
The project itself is difficult to explain; but here I go:
I'm building on Tiny Core Linux to create a set of initial ramdisks which can be used for specialised tasks.
I realise that that sentence is at least 70% waffle, so I'll explain.
If you haven't heard of Tiny Core before, it is what it says on the tin. It's a cut-down linux distro with essential stuff - eg BusyBox plus a few other tools.
Oh, and the whole thing is <9MiB. And runs entirely in RAM.
Clearly, Tiny Core's biggest strength is its small size. This is why I want to build from it.
Syslinux is another fantastic tool.
It allows entire operating systems to be loaded from a CD (with isolinux) or over a network (PXElinux). If you've installed a Linux distro, you've used it.
It's also possible to use it to load several initial ramdisks on top of each other to create the root filesystem
I've modified the main 5MiB initial ramdisk in Tiny Core to contain an X server and a couple of other "housekeeping" packages.
I've also created 2 other initial ramdisks - one contains Chromium-Browser and one contains FreeRDP
By stacking these on top of each other with syslinux I've created an OS can network boot and start a full-screen web kiosk or an RDP client
(It doesn't need to network boot, but if you've seen me speak you probably know that's what I like doing. Its the CS version of "Look ma, no hands!")
While a web kiosk to one person is useful, it's pretty irrelevant to someone else.
That's why I'm not doing this to build a web kiosk - sure, I'll tweak it and get it working nicely, but that doesn't make it any more useful. My long term goal is to build and document scripts for the generation of specialised initial ramdisks so other people can use them for their own needs That way people can get what they want :)
I can't upload what I've done so far as my web host has a rule against file sharing.
(I'm finding a new web host.)
If you want a copy of what I've done, want to show support or give ideas, contact me: