In this article I outline how to instlall Linux to your Android device using a chroot environment to mount a disk image. Installing Linux will not overwrite your existing android installation on your device and it will continue to function as it always has, the only thing different is that it will mount a virtual disk image of a Linux installation.
Prerequisites: Your Android device must be rooted ,and USB Debugging must be enabled. (Not required but optional your kernel should support loop devices,)
Use mount command as follows to mount iso file called disk1.iso:
# mount -o loop disk1.iso /mnt/disk
Now that we have verified that we can mount loop images you will need to download and execute “Deploy Linux” which you can download from the google play store.
Now with “Linux Deploy” installed we need to configure the installation starting with the distribution, Deploy linux has a number of distributions and version to choose from. In this article I will be using debian as my distribution and sid as my version. Now we are going to want to select our processory type ( the default arm selection should be appropriate) , I am going to leave the mirror field blank in this case. Next we will select the type of disk we are going to install to. For this article I am going to use a disk image based installation, although you could install to a directory or another partition if you should choose to. If you are using a tablet or phone that has a large amount of internal storage it would be recommended to set your installation path to your internal storage. In this articles case we do not and have opted to install to /mnt/sdcard/linux. For the disk size I have set it to 5GB so as to have extra space to perform other installs. I have left the disk type to auto you can however select ext2, ext4, etc. For desktop environment I have selected Xfce For this artical I have changed the user name to “Debian”. And finally the last two steps we configure whether we want ssh and vnc to start when the installation is loaded. To access the desktop you will need VNC to start so keep this option enabled.
Once we have all of our configuration options set click the install button
When the installation operation is completed, you should see the following status message:
<<< end: install
Then, tap the Start button to boot the installed Linux distro. Note the IP address of the running Linux instance and launch the terminal emulator app
Establish an SSH connection to the running Linux instance using its IP address and the default android username (or the username you specified in the Propertieswindow). When prompted, enter the default changeme password.
The first thing you might want to do is change the default passwords. Issue thepasswd command to change the user password and run sudo passwd root to assign root password. Accessing the graphical desktop environment is equally easy: Launch the VNC client app and connect to the running VNC server using the default changeme password (Figures 5 and 6).
Johnny April 24th, 2014
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