UBCD INSERT Cheat Codes
Last modified 09-16-04: Charles Appel
Cheatcodes are used to pass values to INSERT upon boot to help with enabling/disabling additional functionality
or to work around difficult hardware. Bootcodes would probably be a more accurate description, but in
the Knoppix tradition we'll stick with the term cheatcodes.
Cheatcodes are specified at the
boot: prompt. Normally a user will simply hit enter or wait for the
default timeout (30 seconds). However, if you want to enable/disable some hardware detection, restore
previous settings, set display characteristics, etc, you will need to use cheatcodes.
start with the word
insert, so the boot prompt syntax is
cheatcode1 cheatcode2=value cheatcode-etc <Enter Key>
Note that cheat codes are case-sensitive; usually lowercase.
UBCD Insert adds a few new cheat codes and an additional way of detecting them.
Additional Detection Method
In addition to specifying cheat codes at the
boot: prompt, you may now add cheat codes to a file that resides on
CDROM. The file's name and location is /INSERT/initparms. This is a one-line file (without
carriage returns) with space-separated
cheat codes. Note that the cheat codes specified in this file are not read by the kernel startup routine, only scripts run
by init, so not all codes are applicable. To add codes
to initparms, you should consult CDROM Enhancements.
Boot time codes take precedence over initparm codes.
Additional Cheat Codes
- Look for and execute insert.sh. scan will search all partitions autodetection finds, /dev/XXXX will look only in the specified partition,
where: XXXX is sdXN or hdXN. X is a letter a-z and N is a partition number 1-9. For example, to run insert.sh from the first partition
on the first IDE hard drive, use
insert myconf=/dev/hda1. Many USB drives start at sdd and usually have only one partition so
you could try /dev/sdd1 for USB drives. Consult Customizing and Persistence for
more information on myinit.
- This will disable module detection and loading. This can be helpful
when used with the
toram option to avoid loading modules into memory.
- Search all known drives/partitions for home directory, myconf and
- An experimental cheat code that attempts to only search USB drives for modules, home
directory, myconf and myinit files. It is experimental because I'm not
yet sure it's going to work 100% of the time and could end up scanning hard
nohome noconf noinit
- In case you specified any of the following: cheatcodes
myinit= to your initparms file (not
recommended), will disable the home, myconf and myinit features.
Troubleshooting Cheat Codes
noapic noagp noapm nodma nomce nofirewire nopcmcia noscsi noswap nousb nosmp
- Skip parts of Hardware-detection, In case of a failing hardware autodetection,
try booting with any or all of the "no-" options as shown above. For
insert noagp noapm noapic nodma nopcmcia noscsi nousb to skip some critical
parts of the autodetection system. The "noswap" option is useful for a forensic
analysis or working with failed/failing drives without touching existing partitions.
- Specify Memory size in MByte, Some Boards apparently don't pass the proper
memory size to the linux-kernel. It may cause the message "Panic cannot mount
root file system" and the system hangs. Use
insert mem=128M to solve that
problem if your system has 128MByte memory for example (caution you MUST use a
capital "M" here). You can use a number greater than 128 if your system has more
memory, but try to keep this number slightly below actual memory.
- Notebook if PS/2 mouse doesn't work, Try "insert pci=irqmask=0x0e98" if (you
have a notebook and) your PS/2 mouse doesn't work. (Possibly caused by a
BIOS-flaw on your board.)
- boot from PCMCIA-CD (Transmeta notebooks)
- Will force the use of the BIOS assigned Interrupt
ReQuests on the PCI bus. Possible cure for
non-functioning hardware. Very handy for unruly IRQ conflicts. Look at
dmesg and cat /proc/pci to find out if you
have any such troubles..
Check CD data integrity, If your UBCD makes strange noises during
boot, or you see frequent errors like "cloop read error", or programs on your
desktop keep crashing randomly, then your CD image is probably defective or
incomplete, or your CD-burner created a defective CD due to wrong writing speed
or bad media. This is the most common error reported. Please boot with
testcd to check if the CD is OK, and/or even better, verify the MD5 checksums
that are present on the mirrors before writing the CD. Also, please read the
KNOPPIX-FAQ. Note that if you customized your own CD but did not create MD5
checksums for the added files, this test will report errors. Note that if
you add UBCD Insert Modules manually instead of using the
script, testcd will fail.
- A simple video card driver accessing the video ram directly. It does not provide
hardware acceleration, but should work with most cards ok. Useful for older laptops.
Common Cheat Codes
Init runlevel 2. This will not start the X graphical environment but bring you to a command prompt instead.
This parameter must be the last cheatcode specified: as an example, to set the timezone and drop to
a console prompt, use
boot: insert tz=MST 2. The Tux graphic will remain on
the screen and interfere with some applications so it is recommended you type the word
as soon as you drop to the console prompt.
Set the time zone. By default, Insert sets tz=EDT so you're clock will be off unless you're in the
Eastern Time zone. This is an ideal parameter for the initparms file.
Loads the entire contents of Insert to RAM. This option requires at least 128MB of memory and
preferably 256. This option may be necessary when you only have one CDROM drive and need to access it
during your Insert session (for example, to run bashburn). The
nomods cheatcode can be useful in addition to
toram to save additional RAM when you don't need UBCD Insert modules.
Does not attempt to mount a swap partition if it exists or create one on a FAT partition.
Useful when performing forensics in which you don't want Insert to scan or touch your
hard drives. Also see nofstab.
Does not attempt to search for hard disk partitions. Useful when performing forensics
you don't want Insert to scan or touch your hard drives. Note that you will manually have
to create /mnt/XXX directories for any partitions you wish to mount. Also see noswap.
Search for and extract saved configuration. Consult Customizing and Persistence for
more information on myconf.
Search for and mount persistent home directory. Consult Customizing and Persistence
more information on home.
Use specified Screen resolution for X
Use 60 Hz vertical refresh rate for X
Use 80 kHz horizontal refresh rate for X
Use specified XFree4-Module
Even more Cheat Codes
UBCD Insert does not support all the cheat codes used by Knoppix, but there may be additional codes
not documented here. See here
for more codes.