Microcore on the serial console

The default output for the Microcore version of Tiny Core Linux is the locally attached display. What we could do if we want to use Tiny Core Linux with an embedded system without a video card?

We should use the mighty trick to redirect all text to the COM1: port. I promise you the pure command line Kung-Fu and no hacking of the distribution files. Are you interested?

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Tiny Core Linux and the swap partition

In my previous posts related either to the Microcore installation or on the USB drive, I used the default option related to the swap file. Every Linux system can use either a dedicated swap partition or only a swap file on any existing partition in the system, in the same way as Windows uses pagefile.sys.

Tiny Core Linux can be installed on an internal disk whose part is intended for the swap partition. Let’s do the trick.

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Tiny Core Linux on a USB stick

The Linux live CD or USB stick is not hot news. But, having the full installation running from a USB flash drive that acts like a hard drive is the difference. All you need is any PC with the boot from USB capability and 128+ Megabytes of RAM.

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Configuring a FloppyFW router

I successfully built a new VM that will serve as the ADSL router in my virtual lab. As the next step, I needed to configure it with specific parameters for my virtual lab. I will guide you through the configuration process for this scenario.

The good news is that the whole configuration for FloppyFW is stored in only one single file named config. This file is placed in the root of the floppy image file. Continue reading

A new “ADSL” router in my virtual lab

I keep looking for ways to improve my virtual lab and made it as realistic as possible. Although using Mikrotik routers is enough to build a large infrastructure, it’s not completely accurate with the real world experience – Mikrotik routers always work.

In the real world, we often need to connect a Mikrotik router either directly to other types of devices or even behind an exotic grandma’s home appliance. On the other hand, this is the lab and I don’t need any fancy features in such software. I want to save every megabyte of RAM or disk space on my laptop.

My search was fruitful and I found the perfect candidate – FloppyFW. This is the fully functional Linux-based router/firewall that can fit on a single 1.44” floppy disk.

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My virtual lab

This article has two purposes. It is the second part of the Mikrotik IPSec series and, at the same time, a short virtualization guide. I will present how we can simulate most common scenarios them in virtual environment.

Although I am using Oracle VirtualBox (referred to as VBox from here on out) for these demonstrations, you can use any other virtualization solution in a very similar way. We don’t need any special features of the virtualization solution. You should only optimize your VMs based on the settings related to your environment. You can find my guides about VBox environment here and here.

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How to install a Microcore version of the Tiny Core Linux

The Tiny Core Linux or TCL is very specific distribution. It’s designed to be nomadic. You can bring it with you and run it from a CD, a USB or even a hard disk. Moreover, you can mix and match different packages to build your own distribution.

When we using the Tiny Core Linux as a service tool, we often need a graphical environment. However, when we want to build some appliance or a server, we would like to have a text based system.

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