How to install openELEC to a HD or USB

tuxen

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Most people forget that they have whole linux ditro available to them via. Raspbian.

1. Download and write raspbian to a sd card. (http://raspberrypi.org or get metalkettle's 3 in one image)
2. Boot it up, just skip the initial options we are only gonna use it to prepare the HD/USB.
3. Connect the USB stick or harddrive plus keyboard to the pi.
4. Login User: pi / Passwd: raspberry (do NOT use putty)
5. Execute the following commands to format the device as ext4:
Code:
sudo umount /dev/sda[1-2]
sudo parted -s /dev/sda mklabel msdos
sudo parted -s /dev/sda unit cyl mkpart primary ext2 -- 0 -2
sudo mkfs.ext4 -L STORAGE /dev/sda1
6. Find a sdcard with minimum 128MB or reuse the one you used for rasbian. Format it as fat32 label it SYSTEM and copy the following files from the lastest 3.0.x openELEC release: (http://openelec.tv , you can use 7zip or winrar to unpack it)
Code:
All the files from the 3rdparty folder
and
SYSTEM and KERNEL from the target folder
7. Rename KERNEL to kernel.img on the sdcard.
8. Create a txt file with notepad on the sdcard named cmdline.txt, paste this into it, then save the file:
Code:
boot=LABEL=SYSTEM  disk=LABEL=STORAGE  ssh  quiet
9. Plug both the sdcard and HD/USB stick into the raspberry pi and turn it on.
10. Voila. You now have a totally clean openELEC installation running of either harddrive or USB stick.

If umount fails with "not mounted" in step #5 just carry on. It's to ensure that is is that.
Remember to label SDcard (SYSTEM) and USBstick/HD (STORAGE) in all UPPERCASE.
 
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jas0npc

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BIG thanks to both @tuxen and metalkettle for this, I just set up my new usb stick and what a difference,
 

dohmer

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Done as you said, only get not mounted error on first command, sudo umount /dev/sda[1-2]. What am I doning wrong?
Tried /dev/sda, /dev/sda1, /dev/sda2..
 

Mcord

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I realize this is probably a dumb question but my hard drive currently has 2 partitions. One is dos and has some movies and pictures the other is a time machine backup for my Mac. If I go through thes steps I assume I would be formating the entire drive and would lose all saved data. Am I correct? Thanks
 

tuxen

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Yes you are.. It formats the whole drive as ext4.

In relation to not mounted error just ignore them its just to make sure that they are exactly that.
 

sickboy

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Mar 13, 2013
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I am not fluent in linux at all but looking at the instructions in the first post I can't see where the actual xbmc filesystem gets transferred to the usb stick.

Would somebody mind explaining that please ?
 

Kel

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I bought a already configured Raspberry Pi that is coming today. It already has xbmc installed. I would like to have it so the OS runs off the sd card and everything else off a USB stick. I read the thread but I am a total newb and it doesn't make to much sense to me. Can someone please tell me what I need to do or is it really not necessary to add the USB stick?
 

jas0npc

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It runs whole lot better of the usb, It reads a whole lot harder than it is, Im sure there must be a video guide on youtube.
 

tuxen

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I am not fluent in linux at all but looking at the instructions in the first post I can't see where the actual xbmc filesystem gets transferred to the usb stick.

Would somebody mind explaining that please ?
The actual XBMC and filesystem is encapsulated in the SYSTEM image file if you have a 512MB board it will run entirely in ram and is read only. So that can't really run any faster than it does. It's the STORAGE partition that is writeable and where XBMC stores and builds databases, thumbnails images, addons and so on.
This is the bottleneck on sdcard's (small random writes) and since this is moved to a good USB stick or harddrive that bottleneck is removed.

Edit: if you wonder why not move it to the USB stick to anyway its because of a upgrade issue in openELEC if you do that the bootloader and firmware will not update on the sdcard but on the usbstick which is no good because the pi looks at the sdcard for them at boot no matter what.
 
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tuxen

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As said by jasonPC it reads a lot harder than it is just follow the 10 steps and before you know it you are up and running.
 

tuxen

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Nothing really this one is a clean install. The other is built from the image I made with addons and tweaks, because its a image the size is static, so if you use the other method you probably want to expand the 4GB partition afterwards unless it fits with your USB stick size.
 
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tuxen

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Ok....all set up and running good. Now I want to go to the next step...........overclocking.

What are the best and safest ones with the combination USB/SD?

force_turbo =
arm_freq=
core_freq=
sdram_freq=
over_voltage=

Who wants to fill in the numbers?
It depends so much on the individual board. So it's impossible to give you 100% working figures.
But try this: (im assuming you have a 512MB board as they in general overclock better)

force_turbo=1 - a must
arm_freq=900
core_freq=500
sdram_freq=500
over_voltage=0

If this works then slowly work your way from 900Mhz and up to 1050Mhz while increasing over_voltage if crashing from 2 to 6. That is if you want more.
Use the systeminfo as stress test leave it here for 10min without it crashing and also scanning/jumping around your library.
If it crashes with these first figures already try setting sdram and core down to 450. Or set over_voltage=2. Or maybe both.
As said its a fine balance figuring out the exact optimal numbers for your individual board.

Edit: you can also use this chart others have had luck with to experiment: http://elinux.org/RPi_config.txt#Tested_values

If nothing works then force_turbo=1 and arm_freq=800 and nothing more will give you a standard boost every pi is able to handle. And it will be faster, safer and more predictable in general than dynamic clock. (force_turbo=0 setting)

Anyway you're a bit on your own here as nobody can predict the optimal numbers its trial and error. And remember rather a rocksteady system instead of trying to push a mere 50Mhz more out of it.

Edit: btw. The biggest boost after arm_freq is core_freq as this also controls the L2 cache of the arm processor.
 
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jas0npc

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@Tuxen since I installed OE onto the usb stick this is the most stable my old 256mb pi has ever been its rockin at oc 1000 950 950 +6 not frozen or reset once, totally impressed with a bit of kit that cost less than 30
 

tuxen

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Cool man.. Nice to hear. You mean 1000/450/450 +6 I hope. Heh. A core and sdram at 950mhz sounds a little extreme to be true. :) sdram is also hardcoded to not go above 600Mhz in the firmware as far as I know.

Also watch it at updates since this is the only occurrence when the RPi needs to write to the sdcard now.
 
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