How to: Create Live USB, the easy way!

Ever wondered if you could create a live usb without using any third party software ? Read on…


  • Linux
  • USB Stick
  • ISO image of your favorite linux distro

We’ll be using the dd command to write the iso file to the usb stick. The general syntax is shown below:

# Use the dd command to write to your usb
# parameters: if='input file', of='output file/device'
# use dmesg to find out your usb device. Ex: /dev/sdb
# replace sdx with your device name
sudo dd if=path_to_iso.iso of=/dev/sdx

And now, the example. Suppose you want to create a live usb out of your ubuntu-12.04 iso, assuming that your usb stick is mounted at /dev/sdb, the command to issue is:

# Example
sudo dd if=ubuntu-12.04.iso of=/dev/sdb

Extremely simple, isn’t it ?


  • Take extreme caution while specifying the output device! You do not want to be messing up your HDD.
  • As with many linux commands, you will not see any output when you issue the command. You will be notified when the process is complete.
  • Your USB stick will be formatted, ensure that you have a backup of your data!

How to: Create bash aliases for frequently used commands

The alias command can be quite useful for creating handy shortcuts and save you some typing. It has this general syntax:

# General alias syntax
alias name='command'

where ‘name’ is the alias name and command is any valid shell command. If you want your aliases to be persistant then put them in your ~/.bashrc file.

For example, you can create some handy shortcuts for apt-get:

# Alias for apt-get
alias install='sudo apt-get install'
alias addrepo='sudo apt-add-repository'
alias remove='sudo apt-get remove'
alias autoremove='sudo apt-get autoremove'
alias update='sudo apt-get update'
alias upgrade='sudo apt-get upgrade'
alias distupgrade='sudo apt-get dist-upgrade'

Restart your shell and you should be good to go!

Now you can simply type install firefox instead of sudo apt-get install firefox.

It is a common practice to put all your aliases in a separate file and then load that file into your .bashrc. The way to do this is to copy all the aliases to another file say, .bash_aliases.

Then, edit your .bashrc file and add the following code:

# include .bash_aliases if it exists
if [ -f "$HOME/.bash_aliases" ]; then
. "$HOME/.bash_aliases"

Inform the shell of these changes by executing the command: exec $SHELL


If you are on Ubuntu, you do not have to edit the .bashrc file; .bash_aliases will be already included for you.

New Prototype

New Prototype

It has been long… a long time since the blog has been updated. For the past few months our development work has suffered due to the pressure on us from the academic point of view.

Well, I did find time to develop a new prototype audio player. This player is just an experiment with the FMOD library. The FMOD library gives an array of functions to play audio and believe me their product is excellent. So here it is the very basic prototype player based on FMOD engine.

There is whole lot more to the FMOD library than just playing music, it is also has a DSP library to process the RAW data. A long way to go to discover all the features of this powerful library so watch out for further releases.

iAMP's Back!!


Well, iAMP’s back, I’ve decided to keep it as the default skin.. atleast for now… (by the way, the player does not have two stop buttons, I was too lazy to draw the pause button, so I just used the stop button as a substitute)

Newly Added features:

  • ID3v2x tag handling (Rohit, et. al.)
  • MPEG information reading
  • Real time tag editing!!! can even update the tag while the song is playing!!