Having read your discussion with Nick
Can Linux clone boot-DVD contents onto boot-USB stick?
If yes, would most Puppy Linux ISOs contain the necessary utilities?
Yes, but I don't recommend it because the command (dd) has the potential to delete your Windows partition. It's easier and simpler to use something like Unetbootin
to create a bootable USB with the Puppy ISO. I'm sure Nick would agree.
If you already have the Puppy ISO burned to DVD (or CD), you could of course use that for the installation rather than make a bootable USB.
And, is there a way I can make a mini-partition with such Linux on it?
Yes, Puppy comes with GParted. You don't need much space for a Puppy installation. I have a frugal* installation of Puppy on a 3GiB partition on my laptop.
installation is the recommended method for installing Puppy on all but very old computers. Frugal installation means that Puppy is installed to a folder on a partition, rather than to an entire partition. Advantages include that if you want to remove Puppy for any reason, for example to replace it with another Puppy, you just delete the folder, and don't have to format the partition. It also utilises a save-file
As with a Puppy ISO on CD/DVD/USB etc, a frugal installation of Puppy boots from a read-only file, and then uses the save-file/save-folder, which is where all your settings and any applications you've installed etc are located. So you can "back-up" your installation of Puppy by simply making a copy of the save-folder/save-file, and "restore" your Puppy installation to your backed-up copy at any time by simply deleting your current save-folder/save-file, and replacing it with the back-up.
By simply editing a file, and selecting an option within Puppy, you can also "fool" a frugal installation of Puppy into thinking it's on a flash drive, which means that it doesn't automatically save sessions, and instead gives you the option of doing so. The idea being that if you have made any changes to your Puppy installation that you want to keep, you save the session; otherwise don't save the session and nothing will be saved to your Puppy files.
Have you thought about the bootloader? Puppy come with Grub4Dos bootloader, which is old and no longer supported, but does the job. It would overwrite the Windows bootloader on your MBR, and thereafter you would have a Grub4Dos boot menu with options to boot into Puppy or Windows when you switch on your computer. Selecting Windows would direct your computer to the partition with Windows on it, where it would then boot into Windows using the Windows bootloader. You will also find that when Windows updates its bootloader, it will overwrite Grub4Dos on your MBR and leave you unable to boot into Puppy. When that happens, just boot up with a live Puppy on CD or USB, and install Grub4Dos again (which only takes a few seconds). As far as I know that's the easiest way to dual-boot Puppy and Windows, and that's what I used to do.
Edited by Al1000, 21 December 2015 - 09:16 AM.