Booting Linux off iPod

Well I’m bored, so I’m gonna try to do random stuff that will have absolutely no point whatsoever. Is there any way that I can boot linux (preferably knoppix) off of my iPod?

The iPod, from what I understand, acts just like a Firewire disk, so theoretically, if you’re able to boot off of Firewire, you should be able to boot from it.

Um, the catch is whether or not you’re able to retain use of the iPod as, well, an iPod. Chances are that putting something boot-related on that disk will cause the iPod’s software to barf or something similar.

I’d boot it through my USB, I think I would have to somehow partition the iPod drive to let it do what I want it to do… maybe I’ll just buy a cheap 3rd Generation 'pod off ebay and not risk losing all my music files :frowning:

You know, if you’re willing to go that route, a bus-powered USB hard drive might do you just enough justice as an iPod would. You should be able to pick up a 20GB 2.5-inch 4200RPM Samsung drive (read: a drive with a warranty of at least 3 years) somewhere for relatively cheap, and the enclosure is something like $20-30 on top of that. Just an idea. Might even be cheaper and/or worth the little bit of extra cash even.

Heh, I just wanted the bragging rights of saying “I booted Linux off an iPod” Figuring out how to do something is half of the fun.

Here’s a tutorial I found on partitioning the iPod, unfortanetly he does it via linux. So maybe I’ll boot knoppix off a CD, partition my iPod, load the knoppix image on my iPod, set BIOS to go to my USB drive, and try to boot from the iPod… who knows, it might be crazy enough to work.

Tutorial (From googles cache):

Aha. Just like I liked having bragging rights about booting my old ThinkPad 560Z off CompactFlash. I thought that’s what you were going for, but I thought I’d prod some and make sure. :wink:

Actually, that’s OS X (or Darwin) from the looks of it. Linux doesn’t have device names like /dev/disk2s2; they’re usually something along the lines of /dev/sdtX or /dev/hdtX, where t is [az] and X is any unsigned integer [1,255]. And pdisk is PowerPC-specific.

Mind you, this is all true unless you’re running udev on top of Linux; then, you’re dealing with an altogether different beast…

You’re going to have to install an MBR on that hard drive in order really to boot from it, I think. Or set a partition under 1024 cylinders bootable.

Hmm, 7 pages into the Google search results and I still haven’t found anything. I’ll post at a few linux forums and see what they say.

While it is possible to boot an OS off it is highly not recommended. The iPods use the 1.8 in drives. These hard drives were not meant to be continuously access say to other laptop hard drives. These hard drives will build up a lot of heat in a relatively little amount of time. The reason why the iPod has a 32 mb buffer is so that the hard drive can be accessed at low speed to gently build the playlist you have on there.
I remember when I was erasing the data off my iPod it became so hot that I couldn’t hold it for long. I thought it was going to melt.
People have booted almost every system off the iPod, so there isn’t much bragging rights to be had. A normal USB or Firewire hard drive will serve you much better.

There is a version of Debian Linux that will run on a machine with the Motorola 68030 16Mhz processor (Such as the Macintosh SE/30) and probably 16Mb of RAM. I think that is pretty cool. And then once you have linux, you can run Apache. Let me know if you want some info.

Most distros of linux come with apache, mysql, php, phpmyadmin, cgi, python, ftp, etc.

I just found this interesting piece of software where you can use Linux on your iPod. Looks cool, maybe I will try it one day.

I think an important disctinction must be made. Do you want to boot your personal computer from a linux install on the iPod (iPod acts as a disk drive) or do you want your iPod to boot into Linux (the iPod is the computer)?

Most sites everyone is referring to are about the iPod running Linux.