• Launchpad Entry: usb-creator-console

  • Created: 2009-09-17

  • Contributors: roderick-greening

  • Packages affected: usb-creator


It should be easy to make a USB Image in any environment, including those with text only consoles, like in a server environment.

The groundwork is already completed for supporting multiple frontends and backends with the existing usb-creator for KDE, GTK and Windows. A sensible next step would be to have either a command line mode or ncurses mode which would allow one to make a startup disk from any text console.

Release Note

usb-creator-console provides a text only interface to the usb-creator package, allowing the end-user to make a startup disk via any Linux text based console. This is especially useful in server environments, where a graphical console may not exist, but where the user would still like to have a usb startup disk created.


There are cases where a graphical environment may not be available, but the end-user may desire to make a startup disk via a non-gui console. For example, in a server environment, is would be highly unlikely that the server would have a local X server running.

User stories

Server Admin Karl has a new server installed and working. He now wishes he had a live USB image startup disk to use as his server does not have a permanent CD-ROM. The server has no X server running, and he does not wish to install one simply to make a startup disk.

Server Admin Jody has a server, and wishes to have a custom USB startup disk with persistence. The server is headless and only has a Async terminal, so generating a statup disk via a graphical environment is not possible.


The Ubuntu Linux system has an active console from which to launch the text only usb-creator-console. This could be one of the active tty's or an async terminal connection.

The server will require device-kit disks, and python and possibly ncurses, which should all be available on the majority of systems with a default install.


Either a command line based module or ncurses interface will be developed.

The command line interface would be trivial, but possibly limited. It would require the user have advanced knowledge of the devices and possibly manually mounting these devices ahead of time.

A ncurses interface would be more involved, but would be easier for the user to use, as no advanced knowledge of the devices would be required and mounting would be taken care of within the ncurses interface (using the devicekit-disks back-end).


Add a new usb-creator-console binary to existing usb-creator package.

UI Changes

usb-creator-console would provide a new interface frontend, similar to either usb-creator-kde, usb-creator-gtk or the windows interface.

The addition of the new binary would not impact the existing interfaces, and would appear as a seperate stand alone package (deb).

Code Changes

  • Add new usb-creator-console binary
  • Update packaging to include new binary and package into seperate deb
  • Update packaging dependancies for build time and runtime (on usb-creator-console)
  • Add man page for new package (similar to gtk and kde man pages)
  • Update unit tests to accomodate new package


None: this is a new package and a previous way has not existed up to this point.

Test/Demo Plan

TODO: complete test plan after spec approved and work has been started

Unresolved issues

BoF agenda and discussion


Specs/LucidUsbCreatorConsole (last edited 2009-09-30 03:25:18 by CPE52544c04a312-CM00169243eab6)