I'm using Xubuntu 13.04 from live usb.

I know that in order to be able to keep files/settings/etc after restart, USB live disk should be created with some storage reserved. However since I got this USB from a friend who created installation, I don't know if he reserved any space, and so my questions are:

  • How can I find out amount of space reserved (if any)?
  • If no space is reserved, can I manually chose USB/HDD location to store my settings in order to be able to boot into them the next time I log on?

I'm currently running a very long session and it would help me if I could somehow be able to store my settings (firefox, apt-gets, xrandr screen conf. ... ) to not have to do it again after I reboot.




If your settings and files are not saved when you reboot, you do not have persistence enabled.

You can either make a new Flash drive. This may be easiest as there are graphical tools to do this for you ("install" the iso to the flash drive and enable persistence).

See: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/LiveUsbPendrivePersistent#Live_USB_creator_.28GUI-based.29

Alternately you can manually enable persistence. You can do this either by making a file or partition named "casper-rw". I think making a file would be easiest.

First, mount the flash drive at say /mnt

sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt

then make a file, change the count to increase the size:

dd if=/dev/zero of=/mnt/casper-rw bs=1M count=128

mkfs.ext4 /mnt/casper-rw

Then reboot, at the boot screen add the work "persistent" to the boot options.

See https://help.ubuntu.com/community/LiveCD/Persistence#Using_a_Loopback_File for details.

  • 1
    Or fallocate -l 128m /mnt/casper-rw (info) followed by mkfs.ext4. – ignis Jul 18 '13 at 7:27
  • Thanks for your answer, especially for the info on manually enabling persistence, exactly what I needed to know. – user_user Jul 18 '13 at 11:45
  • You are most welcome. @ignis Thank you for the fallocate command – Panther Jul 18 '13 at 15:29
  • If you want to allocate only what you write into the file - starting with the minimum, and growing when something is written - then create a sparse file, via dd or truncate: see http://stackoverflow.com/questions/257844 – ignis Jul 18 '13 at 18:22

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