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I have something like an Intel NUC running Ubuntu that operates like a touchscreen kiosk in an industrial environment. It gets power cycled regularly and I want to protect against hard drive corruption. How do I make the filesystem read only, but still allow Chrome to operate normaly, other code to run (C++, Python), and MySQL database writes? How would I allow for alterations of /etc/netplan/01-network-manager-all.yaml?

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This https://wiki.debian.org/ReadonlyRoot might be what you're looking for. You can mount parts of the filesystem as read-only, but leave things like /etc or /var available to be written to as needed (technically /var and /etc must be writeable).

I'm going to assume this device is using emmc, flash or a DOM type block device. If that's the case, there are other/additional methods you can use to reduce block device activity and potentially help prevent corruption on power-loss. https://mcuoneclipse.com/2019/04/01/log2ram-extending-sd-card-lifetime-for-raspberry-pi-lorawan-gateway/ explains one method.

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