live-config - System Configuration Scripts


live-config contains the scripts that configure a Debian Live system during the boot process (late userspace).


live-config can be configured through boot parameters or configuration files. If both mechanisms are used for a certain option, the boot parameters take precedence over the configuration files. When using persistency, live-config scripts are only run once.

3.1. Boot Parameters (scripts)

live-config is only activated if 'boot=live' is used as a boot parameter. Additionally, live-config needs to be told which scripts to run through the 'live-config' parameter or which scripts to not run through the 'live-noconfig' parameter. If both 'live-config' and 'live-noconfig' are used, or, if either one is specified multiple times, always the later one takes precedence over the previous one(s).

live-config | config 4 All scripts are run. This is what Debian Live images use by default.

live-config=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn | config=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn 4 Only the specified scripts are run. Note that the order matters, e.g. 'live-config=sudo,user-setup' would not work since the user needs to be added before it can be configured for sudo. Look at the filenames of the scripts in /lib/live/config for their ordering number.

live-noconfig | noconfig 4 No script is run. This is the same as not using any of 'live-config' or 'live-noconfig'.

live-noconfig=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn | noconfig=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn 4 All scripts are run, except the specified ones.

3.2. Boot Parameters (options)

Some individual scripts can change their behaviour upon a boot parameter.

live-config.hostname=HOSTNAME | hostname=HOSTNAME 4 Allows to set the hostname of the system. The default is 'debian'.

live-config.username=USERNAME | username=USERNAME 4 Allows to set the username that gets created for autologin. The default is 'user'.

live-config.user-fullname=USER FULLNAME | user-fullname=USER FULLNAME 4 Allows to set the fullname of the users that gets created for autologin. The default is 'Debian Live user'.

live-config.locales=LOCALE1,LOCALE2 ... LOCALEn | locales=LOCALE1,LOCALE2 ... LOCALEn 4 Allows to set the locale of the system, e.g. 'de_CH.UTF-8'. The default is 'en_US.UTF-8'. In case the selected locale is not already available on the system, it is automatically generated on the fly.

live-config.timezone=TIMEZONE | timezone=TIMEZONE 4 Allows to set the timezone of the system, e.g. 'Europe/Zurich'. The default is 'UTC'.

live-config.utc=yes|no | utc=yes|no 4 Allows to change if the system is assuming that the hardware clock is set to UTC or not. The default is 'yes'.

live-config.keyboard-model=KEYBOARD_MODEL | keyboard-model=KEYBOARD_MODEL 4 Allows to change the keyboard model. There is no default value set.

live-config.keyboard-layouts=KEYBOARD_LAYOUT1,KEYBOARD_LAYOUT2 ... KEYBOARD_LAYOUTn | keyboard-layouts=KEYBOARD_LAYOUT1,KEYBOARD_LAYOUT2 ... KEYBOARD_LAYOUTn 4 Allows to change the keyboard layouts. If more than one is specified, the tools of the desktop environment will allow to switch it under X11. There is no default value set.

live-config.keyboard-variant=KEYBOARD_VARIANT | keyboard-variant=KEYBOARD_VARIANT 4 Allows to change the keyboard variant. There is no default value set.

live-config.keyboard-options=KEYBOARD_OPTIONS | keyboard-options=KEYBOARD_OPTIONS 4 Allows to change the keyboard options. There are no default value set.

live-config.sysv-rc=SERVICE1,SERVICE2 ... SERVICEn | sysv-rc=SERVICE1,SERVICE2 ... SERVICEn 4 Allows to disable sysv services through update-rc.d.

\fBlive-config.x-session-manager=X_SESSION_MANAGER | x-session-manager=X_SESSION_MANAGER 4 Allows to set the x-session-manager through update-alternatives.

live-config.xorg-driver=XORG_DRIVER | xorg-driver=XORG_DRIVER 4 Allows to set xorg driver instead of autodetecting it.

live-config.xorg-resolution=XORG_RESOLUTION | xorg-resolution=XORG_RESOLUTION 4 Allows to set xorg resolution instead of autodetecting it.

live-config.hooks=filesystem|medium|URL1|URL2| ... |URLn | hooks=medium|filesystem|URL1|URL2| ... |URLn 4 Allows to fetch and execute one or more arbitrary files. Note that the URLs must be fetchable by wget (http, ftp or file://), the files are executed in /tmp of the running live system, and that the files needs their dependencies, if any, already installed, e.g. if a python script should be executed the system needs python installed. Some hooks for some common use-cases are available at /usr/share/doc/live-config/examples/hooks/ and <http://live.debian.net/other/hooks>.
If the file is placed on the live medium, it can be fetched with file:///live/image/FILE, or with file:///FILE if it is in the root filesystem of the live system itself.
All hooks in /lib/live/hooks/ in the root filesystem of the live system can be automatically be enabled with the keyword 'filesystem'.
All hooks in /live/hooks/ of the live medium can be automatically be enabled with the keyword 'medium'.
If several mechanisms are combined, then filesystem hooks are executed first, then medium hooks, and last the network hooks.

3.3. Boot Parameters (shortcuts)

For some common use cases where it would require to combine several individual parameters, live-config provides shortcuts. This allows both to have full granularity over all the options, as well keep things simple.

live-config.noroot | noroot 4 Disables the sudo and policykit, the user cannot gain root privileges on the system.

live-config.noautologin | noautologin 4 Disables both the automatic console login and the graphical autologin.

live-config.nottyautologin | nottyautologin 4 Disables the automatic login on the console, not affecting the graphical autologin.

live-config.nox11autologin | nox11autologin 4 Disables the automatic login with any display manager, not affecting tty autologin.

3.4. Boot Parameters (special options)

For special use cases there are some special boot paramters.

live-config.debug | debug 4 Enables debug output in live-config.

3.5. Configuration Files

live-config can be configured (but not activated) through configuration files. Everything but the shortcuts that can be configured with a boot parameter can be alternatively also be configured through one or more files. If configuration files are used, the 'boot=live' parameter is still required to activate live-config.

Configuration files can be placed either in the root filesystem itself (/etc/live/config.conf, /etc/live/config.d/), or on the live media (live/config.conf, live/config.d/). If both places are used for a certain option, the ones from the live media take precedence over the ones from the root filesystem.

Although the configuration files placed in the conf.d directories do not require a particular name or suffix, it's suggest for consistency to either use 'vendor.conf' or 'project.conf' as a naming scheme (whereas 'vendor' or 'project' is replaced with the actual name, resulting in a filename like 'debian-eeepc.conf').

LIVE_CONFIGS=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn 4 This variable equals the 'live-config=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn' parameter.

LIVE_NOCONFIGS=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn 4 This variable equals the 'live-noconfig=SCRIPT1,SCRIPT2, ... SCRIPTn' parameter.

LIVE_HOSTNAME=HOSTNAME 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.hostname=HOSTNAME' parameter.

LIVE_USERNAME=USERNAME 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.username=USERNAME' parameter.

LIVE_USER_FULLNAME=USER FULLNAME 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.user-fullname="USER FULLNAME"' parameter.

LIVE_LOCALES=LOCALE1,LOCALE2 ... LOCALEn 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.locales=LOCALE1,LOCALE2 ... LOCALEn' parameter.

LIVE_TIMEZONE=TIMEZONE 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.timezone=TIMEZONE' parameter.

LIVE_UTC=yes|no 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.utc=yes|no' parameter.

LIVE_KEYBOARD_MODEL=KEYBOARD_MODEL 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.keyboard-model=KEYBOARD_MODEL' parameter.


LIVE_KEYBOARD_VARIANT=KEYBOARD_VARIANT 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.keyboard-variant=KEYBOARD_VARIANT' parameter.

LIVE_KEYBOARD_OPTIONS=KEYBOARD_OPTIONS 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.keyboard-options=KEYBOARD_OPTIONS' parameter.

LIVE_SYSV_RC=SERVICE1,SERVICE2 ... SERVICEn 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.sysv-rc=SERVICE1,SERVICE2 ... SERVICEn' parameter.

LIVE_XORG_DRIVER=XORG_DRIVER 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.xorg-driver=XORG_DRIVER' parameter.

LIVE_XORG_RESOLUTION=XORG_RESOLUTION 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.xorg-resolution=XORG_RESOLUTION' parameter.

LIVE_HOOKS=filesystem|medium|URL1|URL2| ... |URLn 4 This variable equals the 'live-config.hooks=filesystem|medium|URL1|URL2| ... |URLn' parameter.


live-config can be easily customized for downstream projects or local usage.

4.1. Adding new config scripts

Downstream projects can put their scripts into /lib/live/config and don't need to do anything else, the scripts will be called automatically during boot.

The scripts are best put into an own debian package. A sample package containing an example script can be found in /usr/share/doc/live-config/examples.

4.2. Removing existing config scripts

It's not really possible to remove scripts itself in a sane way yet without requiring to ship a locally modified live-config package. However, the same can be achieved by disabling the respective scripts through the live-noconfig mechanism, see above. To avoid to always need specifing disabled scripts through the boot parameter, a configuration file should be used, see above.

The configuration files for the live system itself are best put into an own debian package. A sample package containing an example configuration can be found in /usr/share/doc/live-config/examples.


live-config currently features the following scripts in /lib/live/config.

hostname 4 configures /etc/hostname and /etc/hosts.

user-setup 4 adds an live user account.

sudo 4 grants sudo privileges to the live user.

locales 4 configures locales.

tzdata 4 configures /etc/timezone.

gdm 4 configures autologin in gdm.

gdm3 4 configures autologin in gdm3 (squeeze and newer).

kdm 4 configures autologin in kdm.

lxdm 4 configures autologin in lxdm.

nodm 4 configures autologin in nodm.

slim 4 configures autologin in slim.

xinit 4 configures autologin with xinit.

console-common, console-setup (lenny), keyboard-configuration (squeeze and newer) 4 configures the keyboard.

sysvinit 4 configures sysvinit.

sysv-rc 4 configures sysv-rc by disabling listed services.

login 4 disables lastlog.

apport (ubuntu only) 4 disables apport.

gnome-panel-data 4 disables lock button for the screen.

gnome-power-manager 4 disables hibernation.

gnome-screensaver 4 disables the screensaver locking the screen.

initramfs-tools 4 makes update-initramfs to also update the live media when using persistency.

kaboom 4 disables KDE migration wizard (squeeze and newer).

kde-services 4 disables some unwanted KDE services (squeeze and newer).

kpersonalizer 4 disables KDE configuration wizard (lenny).

debian-installer-launcher 4 adds debian-installer-launcher on users desktop.

module-init-tools 4 automatically load some modules on some architectures.

policykit 4 grant user privilegies through policykit.

sslcert 4 regenerating ssl snake-oil certificates.

update-notifier 4 disables update-notifier.

anacron 4 disables anacron.

util-linux 4 disables util-linux' hwclock.

login 4 disables lastlog.

xserver-xorg 4 configures xserver-xorg.

ureadahead (ubuntu only) 4 disables ureadahead.

openssh-server 4 recreates openssh-server host keys.

hooks 4 allows to run arbitrary commands from a script placed on the live media or an http/ftp server.


/etc/live/config.conf 4

/etc/live/config.d/ 4

live/config.conf 4

live/config.d/ 4

/lib/live/config.sh 4

/lib/live/config/ 4

/var/lib/live/config/ 4





More information about live-config and the Debian Live project can be found on the homepage at <http://live.debian.net/> and in the manual at <http://live.debian.net/manual/>.


Bugs can be reported by submitting a bugreport for the live-config package in the Debian Bug Tracking System at <http://bugs.debian.org/> or by writing a mail to the Debian Live mailing list at <\ \fR>.


live-config was written by Daniel Baumann <\ \fR> for the Debian project.