Debugging: Customization Notes - Live CD

This article explains where and how Split Linux deviates from a vanilla Void Live CD.

Only 1000 LOC away

As of release 20210112 Split is less than 1000 lines of code away from Void. Since this number includes textual explanations like the README files verifying the code is simple.

The relevant packages are splitlinux-lxc-conf and splitlinux-tor-router with its Docker image of a tor-router:

# 400 lines for packages
cat splitlinux-*/template splitlinux-lxc-conf/files/* splitlinux-tor-router/files/splitlinux-tor-router/* | wc -l
# 331 lines for tor-router
cat tor-router/(| tor-router/src/*  | wc -l

The actual ISO build sources split-mklive make up the rest:

# 231 lines of custumization
git diff --stat 708e7c197f84bfdded2f75e2e12d6b5c9da88d52 7fbea40caad24486928bbc3957045950806ad07e dracut keys/


void-mklive/blob/master/dracut/vmklive/ enables all services by default. Docker is therefore started automatically since it is installed as a dependency of splitlinux-tor-router via

The dockerized tor-router along with its network bridges is setup and configured by dracut/vmklive/

Log into containerized Window Manager

split-mklive/dracut/vmklive/ (called from sets up an additional lxc group which has sudo-rights to check the status of containers (lxc-info), start a container (lxc-start) and attach to it (lxc-attach).

WARNING: This allows any host-system user to attach into any other user's guest container. Until this is mitigated (maybe through using Xpra1), Split Linux is unfit for machines used by multiple entities.

For users belonging to the lxc group of the host system, xinit will be run upon login by the /etc/profile.d/ script.


General boot statistics

Booting from USB 3 on a low-end system takes about 65 seconds:

  1. 15s - GRUB reached
  2. 29s - Password prompt reached (33s if "RAM" option)
  3. 16s - Boot complete (15s if "RAM" option)
  4. 5s - Beast user environment loaded