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Bootable Live USB Stick:
FreeBSD, DOS & Encrypted Data Partitions.


This page is
Operating system + sources + 1000 packages pre-installed + encrypted data partition.
Logo: Powered by FreeBSD
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What Is It For ?

A tiny USB stick for your key ring, partitioned with FreeBSD with 1,000+ packages, ready to live boot or optionally install, + encrypted personal data space, + DOS slice for exchanging data.

How does it differ from a FreeBSD USB Image ?

  • FreeBSD offers a free down-loadable 700M image, to be written raw to a small stick with no partitions.
  • The berklix stick has partitions.
  • The berklix stick has 1000 packages built.
  • The berklix stick has the berklix patches compiled in.
  • All binaries on the berklix stick are built locally on berklix machines.
  • Only for amd64, not for i386 & other CPUs that FreeBSD supports.


  • Integrated backup of OS, packages, tools & data on a tiny stick.
  • Much cheaper to bundle with new PC hardware, than MonopolySoft ;-)
  • Compatability tests in shops of FreeBSD inc. packages eg X11 etc without needing to install.
  • Live demonstrations (& end shippable product) of integrated packages on an OS: your own company's &/or FreeBSD's add on packages.
  • Military Rugged: Solid state resilience, vibration, G force & pressure resistant, ready to run with packages pre installed. (Packages on a PC normally need to install from a DVD needing clean air, or a high speed net, to a hard disk not subject to a sensitive hard disk (or SSD using more power than a stick )).
  • Recovering PCs with scrambled file systems that fail to boot.
  • Secrecy & Counter Espionage:
    • Security applications (standard or your own) can run from stick. (Some companies & governments don't want secret data on hard disc even if encrypted (a laptop is too big & easy to impound). Some don't want risk of transient files on hard disk. Some ban civil servants & employees travelling to certain foreign countries with data on active computer devices, &/or scrub active devices on return. )
    • Your OS, tools & data should be safer on a Micro SD card (15 x 11 mm), you keep close, in your ear ring/ cuff links/ tie clip/ watch strap while foreign officials grab your notebook PC & remove it from sight.

This mini combi. stick on a key ring can avoid massive recovery delays, & aborted recoveries, in many circumstances, eg:

  • Business laptop dies or stolen while travelling, & no spare BSD PC ; Or
  • The PCs / laptops / notebooks in your house/ flat/ apartment/ office/ hotel room get stolen; Or
  • Lightning surge on overhead power cable fries PCs, tools & data etc.
  • Your PCs, tools & data removed by floods, fire, earthquake, sink hole, mud slide, tsunami or explosion (gas, or un-exploded bomb during excavation
  • An emergency rush to airport, not via work/home to collect PC & data, & arrival in another country with no laptop, tools & data.; Or
  • PCs, tools & data at home or work get impounded/ restrained by some government agency/ court order/ bailiffs/ government inspectors/ police. (Debt, divorce proceedings, unlimited liability firms, scene of unrelated crime or investigation etc. You may be innocent but it may take time to access your PCs & data.
  • Return to Home/ Office PCs, tools & data disrupted (eg by riots or disasters (eg Bhopal/ Chernobyl/ Fukushima etc) or outbreaks of communicable disease.
Many scenarios could be a time consuming recovery nightmare:
  • Surrounded by alien untrusted unfamiliar mostly Microsoft PCs, probably insecure, possibly virused, perhaps belonging to trading partners you'r visiting in a foreign country, with no tools to access your BSD personal data, (& no way you'd want to allow access.)
  • Finding a less clueless MS user, asking their help on their PC to
    • Download via ftp Not http, 650 M to 2.5 G of CD/DVD/USB FreeBSD image.
    • Check the checksum (with what resident MS tool ? In what way ?!) Many MS people skip it.
    • Write a CCD/DVD/USB image, (with what MS tool ? In what way ?!)
      Keeping it still bootable (often BSD media written by MS people fails to remain bootable).
  • Installing a generic FreeBSD (or using live generic media without extras packages)
  • Configuring ports &/or packages
  • Restoring personal ~/.* options &
  • Installing other media with your backup data (& was that data safely encrypted ?
How long would it take - if you didn't give up till you flew home ? How much business & time lost ?

Get a Berklix stick, ready to run ! Cheap insurance against PC, OS & data loss! smiley face icon

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Distributor Enquiries Welcome

Licences to manufacturers & wholesale vendors available.
Retail sales to users we're not geared up for yet,
(but register your address now for a promotional discount offer when we launch).

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Product Description - Technical:
Bootable Partitioned Encrypted FreeBSD USB Stick

Extra Features beyond just a simple FreeBSD image:

  • The Berklix FreeBSD live stick was developed before the live stick. The Berklix live stick offers more functionality than the FreeBSD.Org downloadable image.
  • Versions
    It's been tested for years, eg one /boot/kernel on a test stick is dated: Dec 17 2013 with /etc/motd: "FreeBSD 10.0-RC1 (GENERIC) #0: Tue Dec 17 15:50:21 CET 2013", (It's rescued & installed for author, & also carries an encrypted data partition etc,

    Public availability has been held up pending work to automate quantity of image serial numbers (for individual download rather than purchase pre-installed on USB stick), & possibly individual encryption key injection into generic images, this work may not be done until demand volume indicates investing time is worth while.

    Newer versions available on request, it moves, eg at 12 Feb 2016, one build host machine had partitions for all of 8.4-RELEASE, 9.3-RELEASE, 10.2-RELEASE, 11.0-CURRENT, though stick was not generated for all. )

  • Partitions with an MBR (Master Boot Record)

    Allows a PC to choose which OS to boot, the same way Fdisk specifies on a hard disk. MBR still the simplest common denominator, most reliable way of ensuring multi OS data access, avoiding all the weirdness of MS secondary partitions, & Linux lilo, & the new FreeBSD GPT methods etc.

    dmesg extract for da0:

    14786MB (30283008 512 byte sectors: 255H 63S/T 1885C)
    Device names in /dev/ : da0 da0s1 da0s2 da0s2a da0s3 da0s3.bde da0s4

    fdisk da0 output

    df extract :

    Filesystem Size Used Avail Capacity Mounted on
    /devusb/platinum.bde 2.5G 2.3G 28M 99% /media/platinum.ufs
    /devusb/platinum.dos 4.3G 4.3G 53M 99% /media/platinum.dos
    /devusb/platinum.os 8.3G 7.8G 516M 94% /media/platinum.os
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  • F1: A DOS FAT

    Master Partition
    • To allow import/export of data with MS & Linux etc associates.
    • Partition #1 to increase the chance MS OS &/or users do not have a crisis ;-)
    • Includes a deletable README.TXT offering a reward for finders, our contact info, & your customer number.
      Useful if your tiny USB stick is on your key ring: Finder will not see your address for where to try the keys on your door, but finder can contact us, & we will reply with the contact info of your local friend you specified, so finder can contact your friend for a reward, (& you will tell your friend to pay a reward for you but Not to divulge your address to finder in case finder made a copy of our keys).
    • Extra Data
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  • F2: Bootable Live Master Partition, marked Active
    Logo: BSD Daemon FreeBSD operating system

    • Can boot & run from USB stick.
    • Can also optionally install to hard disk.
    • Release: Currently (@ 2013-12-23) 10.0-RC(Release Candidate)2, that will progress to 10-0-RELEASE etc
    • CPU: Currently (@ 2013-12-23) AMD64, not currently for i386 (ie *86 for 686 based on 586 default) maybe later, Purchase Enquiries Welcome if interested.
    • Over 1,000 pre built packages pre installed, including X windows, Firefox etc. Here's a snapshot from 'pkg info', (shipped product may vary slightly)
    • Includes /usr/src & /usr/doc & /usr/ports/ framework to build Tens Of Thousands of ported packages
    • All Berklix fixes & enhancements pre applied to binaries.
    • Generic FreeBSD sources too, so you can revert from Berklix fixes with src/ make world & /usr/ports/ makes.
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  • F3: A FreeBSD GBDE encrypted Master Partition with a UFS/FFS file system

    • Should keep your data safe if you lose the stick.
    • Several gig for your personal data backup to keep on your key ring
    • Extra Data
    • The password: We set a standard password, We detail how you can easily change that to your own, The order form allows you to specify your own password
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  • F4: A tiny residual Master Partition, Format May Vary

    • Remnant sectors, Not cylinder aligned at end,
    • May be a minute FS, or a small tar of encryption keys etc.
    • A set of public & private encryption keys generated by us for you, the public key we will publish in a table for you, related to customer number, rather like a free quasi certification authority. Make sure:
      • When you order your stick, give us all other data you want related as we will not edit frozen record later
      • Delete your private key before you let anyone copy your stick !
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  • Extra Data

    • To avoid shipping 4.3 G of unused space in F1, + 2.5 G in F3 + residual empty space in F2, we usually pack in some anodine/ vanilla public data, such as X11 /usr/ports//distfiles etc or some ports/packages/ & berklix patch set etc.
    • Copy them to disk if you want, then delete them to make space, data should also remain available on internet later too if you need it.
    • If we put up a generic image for download, we will omit this optional data as it's easily available elsewhere, & omitting it will reduce our compressed images to speed your download.
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  • Extra Tools:

    • Best not to do too many write cycles to sticks, as this sort of media is more limited than hard disks. Best if you install OS to disk, &/or applications use ram or disk cache data.
    • We provide scripts to reduce write wear on the USB stick to mirror your encrypted partition to hard disk, update it there using eg rdist6, then mirror it back to usb stick in a single write with large blocking. Much faster reduces stick write wear.
    • Use of the script is optional, you can of course also access the sticks direct, eg for minor write updates.
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Optional Extras

Optional Media We Supply:

    • New media at cost price,
    • purchased by us on Your behalf, no warranty with us, no liability on us.
    • We're Not in business of buying or selling media for profit, only computer services & consultancy.
    • If you prefer to post us blank media, that is acceptable, if you've tested it & we've agreed to the job.
    • Conrad is merely a local shop convenient to author to buy media, author & Berklix have no special relationship with Conrad.
    • If you dont read German, for guide text to similar media in English, type "USB Stick" to Conrad's English subsidiary
  • We pass media on to you at same price we purchase, we only charge for customising the data image for the media.
  • Download For those people who may have difficulties receiving media in the post, we offer a keyed Internet download service. Of interest to eg:
    • Business who want to bulk licence our stick, but who also don't want the hassle of themselves distributing them to their colleagues & or customers
    • Purchasers in countries with awkward/ slow postal service delivery, or where collection rather delivery is needed eg outback of Australia & parts of rural America etc,
    • Those with [expensive] customs/import authorities, that sometimes don't even declare receipt to recipient, & wait for recipient to visit them & pay to collect.
    • Those on islands & eg polar research stations rarely visited by ships, who have satellite download,
    We will split the download image into chunks, & also provide chunk checksums, to avoid worry of aborted ftp's restarting at the beginning (as eg while FreeBSD ftp offers reget, some other ftp clients do not). Neither our servers nor your clients will be burdened by refetches of whole gigabyte images if your FTP fails. SFTP: will not be provided to serve the image. It would waste server & client CPU. HTTP: will probably not be provided. Servers dont want to be sucked dry by zombie mirror scripts (eg FreeBSD.ORG host admins complained of bad experiences with load from CTM images being mirrored prior to 2016).
  • Our Media Is Standard From Shops, but VERY SMALL good for a key ring !
  • We also provide commercial consultancy from our bases in Munich & Aachen Germany, & Tunbridge Wells UK & FreeBSD consultants world wide also offer consultancy.
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Optional Extra WLAN/WiFi At Cost Price: Edimax+EW-7811Un

We can bundle in extra at cost price (ie price we buy at in shop) (only if you tell us when ordering the stick), a nano sized Wireless LAN Stick (protrudes about 5mm from laptop/notebook). Why might you want that ? It's seriously Small ! Author has done tests with it & the urtwn driver supports it, (& FreeBSD doesn't support every last wireless chip internally built into every laptop ie perhaps not yours?.
Or skip it, (saves us buying it for you & adding to price, so we're happy if you Don't want it smiley face icon )
You can also order one yourself later direct from shop where we buy, not from us. Technical & shop details. If you order an image from us & not a stick, we will not be posting anything, so if you want a WLAN stuck, order it yourself direct from a shop.

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Extra Consultancy Logo: Vector Systems Ltd

  • We do Not provide a free help desk if you get stuck. Our time costs money.
  • If you want free help:
    post your question to the FreeBSD questions@ or other lists, just like other FreeBSD users do. We might even answer ourselves free, if its ro a public list. (There's also (but our staff don't use that, we're traditionalist active mail list users, as are most FreeBSD developers.
  • If you wish, You can bundle in some hours of pre paid consultancy at discount, which expires automatically after some time (a sort of insurance).
  • Or later purchase full price consultancy only if you need it.
  • For consultancy purchasers, we offer a special phone number for hot line support, plus email support.
  • Our support staff in Europe tend to start & finish late, as if working in an office aboard some ship in mid Atlantic,
    (No that doesn't mean that American place in an American timezone, quaintly named "Mid Atlantic" (perhaps for a coastal latitude?), it means longitudinally middle of the North Atlantic, between London & New York. ;-)
  • Picture Global times now
  • Purchase Enquiries Welcome
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Our stick data is aggregate copyright Julian H. Stacey & Vector Systems Ltd, 2013. Copying the aggregate images for commercial purposes is forbidden & would be illegal.

Commercial Licensing Enquiries Welcome

(This stick would also be good to embed your application on to, enquire about that too if interested).

A 2nd slightly different image may be placed for free download, policy hasn't been decided yet, bandwidth considerations would apply, it would probably have to be available from us only via torrent, or via master-ftp to other mirrors/ distributors to spread load, & also compressed segments, no raw image.

Some Free Copying Allowed!

Free Logo: No money required Purchasers are permitted to make 2 free copies to give to friends (purchasers can also add multiple additional sticks to order, for little more than media purchase price).

After you've bought a stick, or tried a friend's stick, Feel free to make a couple of image copies to give to friends of the purchaser (ie you) if you qualify, If :

  • You are a FreeBSD commiter or
  • You have contributed more than 15 fixes to FreeBSD send-pr (not just to a mail list or forum that does Not count).

    (You can easily see bug reports & fixes submitted & still outstanding by your email name, Example:> but that example does not show patches since accepted & committed, & patches submitted under other email names.)

  • If your name is in the credits of any of the sources used to build included binaries, (include CSRG, BSD386, Patch-kit-[36?], src/contrib/ & Google Summer Of Code projects, Or
  • If your name is credited as a contributor to a package included on the stick, Or
  •   If you have contributed sufficient last year to the FreeBSD Foundation that you have met the level they should specify on their web, to authorise you to make a free copy of our stick.
  • Authorisations for a free limited bulk run may be available to certain User Groups etc. Enquire
Why are we generous ?
We use & promote BSD & FreeBSD etc, both for personal & business interests. We need to earn on stick image sales &/or related BSD etc consultancy, but the stick is deliberately Not copy protected: you'r placed on your honour to either pay us our small fee for the stick image creation, or to have previously contributed substantially to FreeBSD that the stick is based on.
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Retail Sales

  • We're not geared up for individual sales yet.
  • Mail us your email address to qualify free for a 30% promotional discount when we launch). (Discount applies to the stick image labour fee, not cost price media & postage.)
    Purchase Enquiries Welcome
  • If we decide not to distribute ourselves, & instead to license another company to distribute for us, we'll give them your email address, so you can be supplied ASAP.

    (Our computer consultancy company (Vector Systems Ltd) is not currently geared up for bulk retail. We are used to development projects with only occasional billing on substantial amounts, & have not arranged bulk retail issues: (sales, post & packaging staffing, order forms, databases, international foreign currency small payment acceptance mechanisms (inc. safeguarding against high minimum bank fees on transfer charges of small payments of foreign currency) international & local sales taxes, customs duties & package declaration forms issues etc.

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Retail Price & Exchange Rates

Our prices are normaly in Euros (EUR) (unless where stated in British Pounds Sterling (GBP)), we do Not normally quote in (USD) dollars, (if you want a dollar price, we up our prices to cover your risk, so better you take the risk & you get a cheaper price). Foreign Exchange Rates

Choose & add what you want to purchase:

Description Prices. Tentative. Subject to change without notice, Excluding sales tax, VAT MWST TVA etc if applicable)
Basic Fee for Data Aggregation etc. Not Yet Determined. Labour Charge To be advised by email on enquiry. Depends hom much time needed to document, configure, update to latest releases, answer questions etc.
Further Customisation Fee. Optional Dependent on individual extra requirements if any.
Media See Above At cost price we buy in at.
Media - Extra Duplicates (Sticks wear out faster than hard disks) Optional See Above At Cost
Media - Extra Duplicates - Copy Charge Optional 15 EUR
WLAN Stick Optional See Above At Cost
Packing time (If not standard image download) & Posting
Standard Image Download - Time to set your net download key
10 EUR
Customised Image - Fee Optional Dependent on individual extra requirements if any.
Customised Image - Upload Fee Optional 20 EUR
Postage At Cost Price, un-registered, un-insured etc.
Optional Possibility: Per carrier eg UPS/ DHL/ FedEx as they cost considerably more, & we don't have time to read their German language web sites re. their requirements. If you have a customer account number you can quote us, & we can give them, so you pay the bill & you deal with all formalities, Yes, we can use them.
Consultancy Fee For FreeBSD Support, At A Discount If Purchased In Advance, Optional

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  • You must pay both the fee your bank charges you to remit (send) internationally & the amount our bank charges us to receive your remittance.
  • Payment to be made in advance.
  • A `simple' US dollar cheque would FAIL ! US dollar cheques cost a tangible bank fee to clear outside USA, money we will Not pay, so you must add that.
  • Pay by bank transfer to our corporate British bank account.
  • You must tell your bank to deduct both their senders & our recipients bank charges from your account.
    If you just pay your banks fees & not our banks fees we will not action your order.
  • Our Account details are Not yet here for reasons above.
  • If you send a US dollar cheque, assume you will need to pay us over GBP 10 Sterling extra to cover what our bank will charge us. to cover banks extortionate fees for handling international cheque clearing. (A decade back with another bank author recalls a fee of perhaps GBP 8+, know what current fee is, explore our new bank here: hsbc
  • (If the banks surprise us with reasonable charges, we will toss in an extra stick or service so you don't lose out).
  • We have plans for more efficient banking later.
  • We do not accept any credit or debit cards, No Credit Cards No MasterCard Visa AmericanExpress DinersClub, PayPal etc. We are a professional services company, geared for high value low frequency occasional payments for consultancy, we have no credit card mechanisms for lower value higher frequency payments. pas@ may later advise on electronic payments handling.
  • We do not offer Cash On Delivery (= German Nachnahme)
  • We do not action orders until funds are cleared (not just received) in the company account.
  • Discounts may be available for certain charities.
  • Purchase Enquiries Welcome
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Order Form

The individual order form is not yet ready
For bulk licencing Purchase Enquiries Welcome.
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  Donations To FreeBSD

Logo: FreeBSD Foundation
We don't bundle in a margin to be forwarded as donations to FreeBSD We leave you to do that direct yourself if you want:
  • It reduces work for us, &
  • It leaves you certain they receive, & how much.
  • It can mean you Only pay the Foundation, & you pay us Nothing, ! (Thus we may help the FreeBSD Foundation while minimising administration smiley face icon )
  • As FreeBSD Foundation is a USA tax exempt body, & we're European commercial consultants, if you'r a USA donor, it's a Lot less hassle for you to donate direct & get yourself a USA tax break receipt too.
  • There's also tons of other useful software on the stick, & lots more packages download-able to run with FreeBSD & lots of other people & organisations would be grateful if you happened to be happy enough with their software that you wanted to donate something to support their continued work etc, browse their documentation & READMEs in the source code & packages etc.
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Boring Legal Conditions, Small Print ;-)

footer Logo: No Software Patents
This is based on free source softwareIf you don't know about Free software start here.
We do Not own this aggregated software. We do not sell it to you. We merely compiled it & aggregated it in the hope it was in accordance withe licence & patents if they exist, & would hopefully run most seems to run smiley face icon We disclaim all liability for copyright, patents, usage licensing etc. You must read & comply with license conditions of the various software you want to use. Read legal & copyright etc notices in their sources.

With so much software it's nigh impossible to get all the licensing right: occasionally one encounters software that allows source distribution, but not binary distribution. If we supply any such binary by mistake, please do not use it, & inform us, & recompile your own binary. Thanks.

Media pictured/linked to is just for interest, & may change at any time, Prices are just snapshots, not maintained, not an offer of sale, just to give a rough idea. We have no relationship with media vendors currently, (except we've bought from one).

Other Legal etc aspects are covered in &

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Distributor & Purchase Enquiries Welcome

Contact Julian Stacey, of Vector Systems Ltd We may add a fast track contact here with procmail anti spam trap filter. Please Join or Leave berklix-announce@ Mail List
& consider joining berklix-plus@ Mail List & Other Mail Lists
Also see: The list is for all Berklix USB & cdrom & dvd & usb stick media etc.
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FAQ Questions & Answers / To Merge:

Do you sell the equivalent on DVD for migration to a USB stick?

  • Not currently.
  • No advantage to us unless you the reader/purchase are a magazine publisher (if so please contact us)
    a DVD is much more attractive than a stick as cheaper media for a magazine. Years back author mastered a DVD that DrDobbs mag was looking to licence, but after DrDobbs decided they didnt want to ship it with every magazine of an issue, just on their web site, Berklix did not pursue that further. Nice idea but not cost effective, too much work for probably insufficient sales.
  • A DVD brings the disadvantage some people would mess up converting to USB stick.
  • A USB stick fits easily in a standard size envelope for international postal services, A DVD needs a reinforced package, more work & expense for Berklix to write & to pack, & perhaps more likely detained by recipient's national border customs authority for import tax ?
Do we know Knoppix ? Yes, a nice live image for Linux. It also has a wikipedia page

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