Linux Mint Debian Edition 2 – Codename “Betsy” Installation and Customization

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Rob Turner

He is an Instructor of Computer Technology with Ball State University where he currently teaches all of the departments Linux courses and co-teaches Cisco networking courses. He is an avid Debian user as well as many of the derivatives of Debian such as Mint, Ubuntu, and Kali. Rob holds a Masters in Information and Communication Sciences as well as several industry certifications from Cisco, EC-Council, and Linux Foundation.

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4 Responses

  1. This is very useful. But, will you help with SSD installation of LMDE 2? I hear that TRIM enabling and partitioning on UEFI system is a headache?

    • Rob Turner says:

      Prakash,

      I haven’t installed LMDE 2 on an SSD as of yet. I have Linux Mint 17.2 on a SSD and trim was enabled by default and has been working flawlessly for several months now. What troubles are you experiencing?

  2. John says:

    I tried LMDE2 in a VM and decided I’d like to install the Mate version on my laptop. Unlike the new releases of LM17.2, the LMDE bluetooth worked out of the box with both my bluetooth headset and bluetooth speaker. Well the install went smooth and bluetooth works as I hoped. My question is about encrypting my home directory. I didn’t see an option that allows me to encrypt it during install. Is there a way to encrypt it after the fact? or did I miss something during installation?

    regards
    John

    • Rob Turner says:

      John,

      I don’t recall an option to encrypt a home directory without doing an “expert” install. However you can encrypt the directory after installation. To do this, complete the following steps:

      1. Log in as another user (I would advise doing this in the CLI). You can’t be logged in as the user who’s home directory you wish to encrypt! I accomplished this by changing the root user’s password using ‘sudo su’ and then passwd once root. Then issuing ‘telinit 1’ from within that terminal you can switch to a runlevel where the other user isn’t logged in.

      2. Update the list of available packages: ‘apt-get update’. Then install the necessary packages to encrypt the home directory with ‘apt-get install ecryptfs-utils cryptsetup’. These packages are likely already install but it never hurts to check.

      3. Run the command ‘ ecryptfs-migrate-home -u ‘ where is the name of the home directory you wish to encrypt.

      4. This should be successful and at this point issue ‘telinit 2’. This will restart the gui and allow you to test that the encrypted directory is readable/writable. DO NOT REBOOT YET!

      5. It may be necessary to know/record the encryption pass-phrase. To determine the pass-phrase, log in as the user who’s home directory was just encrypted and issue the following command ‘ecryptfs-unwrap-passphrase’. I would strongly suggest making a note of the output from the command as it is necessary should you ever need to recover your encrypted files manually.

      6. (Optional) While optional, it is usually strongly suggested that the system’s swap space be encrypted as well to ensure that plain text files don’t end up stored in swap. To do this simply issue the command ‘sudo ecryptfs-setup-swap’. I received an error on LMDE 2 Mate about not being able to start cryptswap1 when I ran this command, however upon a system restart everything was working as it should.

      7. At this point, restart the system and ensure that the user can log into and read/write files in their home directory.

      8. If all went well you can now delete the folder in home that will have the username. (eg /home/hrturner.ODT5dgX) as this is the old non-encrypted home directory. This is accomplished by the command ‘ sudo rm -rf /home/hrturner.ODT5dgX ‘

      Hope this helps and best of luck!

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