It’s not common knowledge, but it is possible to assemble your own own operating system based on Linux from the ground up. The first steps are outlined below for you.
There are innumerable different Linux distributions available. A good number of them will make an effort to adapt to your specific preferences and requirements.
However, it’s possible that you don’t want to spend the time looking through and testing each and every distribution, especially if there are more than a thousand of them available. Finding a perfect partner using this method can be a time-consuming process with no assurances of success. What better method is there to know that you are holding the ideal partner in your hands than to create the operating system on your own?
This is where the Linux From Scratch guide may help you out.
What Is Linux From Scratch?
The Linux From Scratch (LFS) project was developed in order to give users the ability to create their own customized versions of the Linux operating system in order to better accommodate their unique hardware configurations, achieve optimal levels of performance, remain current with the most recent developments, or gain an understanding of the inner workings of Linux.
Linux From Scratch is not simply another distribution that has the bare essentials in terms of its tools; it was built from the ground up. Because LFS is essentially simply a collection of documentation, everything that you do really originates from the source code of each individual project.
Compiling the Linux kernel source code is possible if you use the LFS documentation as a guide. The Linux kernel source code may be directly downloaded from their website and compiled. After that, you move on to the subsequent component and continue to build your way forward from there until you have finally constructed an entire operating system, or at the very least, as much of an operating system as you require.
How to Make Your Own Linux OS
You need to be aware of the fact that in order to construct your own Linux operating system, you will need to start with an existing Linux distribution in order to get started. This is due to the fact that you are generating everything directly from source code, in which case you will require standard tools that are offered with the majority of Linux distributions in order to compile and install your LFS system.
Having stated that, it is not necessary for you to have the temporary distribution installed. Instead of using a computer, you may boot Linux off of a USB stick and utilize that to do all of your tasks.
When you are ready, pull up the most recent documentation for Linux From Scratch to obtain instructions on how to get started. The documentation will have links and extensive information on how to execute the needed procedures, which is something that this article won’t address in full because it’s not relevant to the topic at hand.
Step 1: Partition Disks
After opening up the manual, the first actual step that you will need to take is to create a new partition on which you will install your brand-new LFS operating system. You are free to continue doing things in the same manner as usual, whether that be encrypting your disks, putting everything on a single partition, or isolating the root partition from the home partition.
You are free to utilize the partitioning program of your choice, such as GParted, in order to create these partitions. There is a considerable probability that you already have GNOME Disks installed on your computer if you are utilizing the default editions of Ubuntu or Fedora. You also have the option of use a command-line tool, such as fdisk, which is accessible independent of the distribution that you choose to use.
You have the option to establish a new system in addition to your already installed operating system, but you should be aware that dual-booting is not without its drawbacks. The Linux From Scratch installation process is difficult enough. It’s possible that you won’t want to bother with that additional layer of intricacy.
Step 2: Compile & Install Your Base System
After you have completed setting up your partitions, you will need to go to Chapter 3 in order to obtain the source code for all of the required packages and fixes. Then, once you have finished implementing the remaining modifications outlined in Chapter 4 of the documentation, you will start to construct the fundamental components of your LFS system.
If you follow the instructions, you will be able to collect the tools that will be used to construct the toolchain, which you will then use to construct the other components of the fundamentals.
Note that the “essentials” category in Linux From Scratch is defined somewhat differently than in your typical distribution, which typically includes a variety of other services in the background, such as printing, audio servers, and firewalls. You are free to install as much of the content as you choose, but it will take place in a subsequent step.
Your base system is what you need to construct a bootable system that can stand on its own, without the continuous requirement for you to continue working from a different distribution. This means that you do not need to continue working from a separate distribution.
After you have completed the compilation of the base, you will “chroot” into your new operating system. This is the same as restarting into your new operating system, with the exception that you are not actually restarting, and the change will only apply to the terminal window you are now working in. At this stage, you are able to start the compilation process for the remaining components that will comprise your new operating system.
Step 3: Install Your Desktop, Apps, and All the Rest
Installing additional applications that will make your computer genuinely unique to you can begin as soon as you have a basic configuration up and running successfully. It is entirely up to you, your preferences, and your requirements to decide what additional software you should put on your computer.
Please keep in mind that there is not a package management. It is necessary to have knowledge of how to compile and assemble software from source in order to install anything. One of the reasons why LFS is sometimes referred to as the next level up for folks who have learned Gentoo is because of this particular reason. If the thought of producing this much software is intimidating to you, you might be more interested in experimenting with Arch Linux instead.
You have no restrictions whatsoever on the kinds of software you can install on your computer. There is nothing stopping you from selecting one of the many pre-existing options rather than building your own desktop environment, but if you want to continue in the spirit of building as much as you can from scratch, you can choose to continue in that spirit and build your own desktop environment.
In any case, you will then have access to the top applications available for Linux. If you’ve gotten this far, it’s likely that you already have a good idea of the type of setup you want to implement. Have a good time customizing the PC to your liking.
Is Making Linux From Scratch Worth It?
Compiling software is a slow operation, therefore developing an operating system based on LFS will unquestionably consume some amount of your time. People who aren’t familiar with using the terminal or who have never used Linux before might wish to get their feet wet somewhere else before diving into such a complex topic.
If you are set on experimenting with Linux From Scratch nonetheless, you should do it in a secure and isolated environment, such as a virtual machine or on a space machine, so that you do not inadvertently erase any data that is precious to you. Then you should definitely educate yourself. Hands-on experience is the only way to acquire the vast majority of the priceless information available today.