Appendix FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

About Morphix

What is Morphix ?

Morphix is a GNU/Linux operating system on a CD.

In other words, you don't have to install anything to your harddisk…simply drop in the cd, boot your pc, use Morphix! When you reboot (without the cd in the drive) your machine will be the way you had it before…completely unchanged.

What is Morphix used for ?

  • A whole operating system, to install your programs on and give out. Why send out installation disks, give them a whole operating system with your files.
  • A rescue disk. A working operating system to boot your fscked looking hardware.
  • A Linux demo CD, spread the word, by showing people a Linux operating system.
  • Dust-off old hardware, with defunct harddrives and rejuvenate them.

What is Morphix made out of ?

Morphix is a derivative of Knoppix, another live CD distribution. Both are based heavly on Debian.

Morphix is modular; this means that it consists of a number of parts which together form a working distribution. What does this mean to a normal user?

Well, that's the good part: he/she doesn't even know about the modules. The modularity is invisible to the user, save the startup-output on the console (which is hidden via a progress-screen in the latest releases). So, if you don't care about how it works, just grab one of the combined isos and boot it! The best thing is that these isos can be easily modified (Morphed) by you as you require.

Why Morphix? Why should I care?

  • Morphix is and will remain Free Software!
  • Morphix is a liveCD, with the possibility to install to Harddisk
  • Morphix is modular, and can be adapted with less effort
  • Morphix is smaller! (only some 190MB for a complete image with icewm, check the mirror)
  • Morphix is easily adaptable… and much more!

What's the catch?

Morphix is not finished. It's beta-quality for now! It might not be as uptodate as Knoppix regarding hardware detection, or might handle certain hardware differently

Why Morphix, but not Knoppix ?

You only download what you want. You only download what you need! o Built-in installer with GUI. PartitionMorpher (a graphical parition program) is under development

  • Flexibility. Minimods give you a way to change your environment
  • More Software. You can't cram everything in 700MB!

Where can I get an answer to my questions ?


  1. The manual - - (which including this FAQ),
  2. The wiki -
  3. The forum -
  4. The mailing lists

  5. irc - We can be found almost daily on the IRC server on channel #morphix. See you there! If your browser supports IRC, (eg Mozilla) this you can use this link, irc://

Booting Morphix

Morphix Does Not Boot

First step is to confirm that your computer's BIOS is set to boot from CD before the hard drive(s).

  • At this point, shortly after rebooting, you should see a menu listing, Morphix followed by different options.

The next steps is to test the CD donwloaded correctly and was burnt without any errors.

  • Select from the boot-menu Test-cd.

If the CD test confirms no errors. The next step is to steer the hardware detection in the right direction, the majority of hardware detection problems (such as blank screen after initial boot) can be overcome using some boot options.

Once you read this boot options section of the FAQ have a look at the list of all possible Boot Options,

A dasebase for boot options that other people have used to get hardware working is in the wiki,

The new grub menu (0.4-1d or later) allows you to select most of the boot options using the menu system and the cursor keys. To add extra boot options to the menu you can edit the command line, just type in the extra boot option. If you do not want to add any further boots option grub menu automatic times out after 5 seconds and starts the boot process.

Blank Screen At End of Boot Process

Graphic cards are the most problematic to auto-detect. Also to nvidia drivers are not used automatically as only proprietary drivers are available from

Below are the some most popular boot options used.

  • xmodule=vesa
  • xmodule=nvidia

Laptop owners may need to use, Use fixed framebuffer graphics. * fb1024x768

Try to match the boot code xmodule=GraphicsCard with your Graphics Card

The list of all possible Boot Options, A dasebase for boot options that other people have used to get hardware working is in the wiki,

Hardware Detection

Try different boot options

A database for boot options that other people have used to get hardware working is in the wiki, []

Using Morphix

How do I get root, I need to be super user ?

Open up a terminal and type : -

sudo su

To set the root password : -

sudo passwd

Why sudo, you might ask? Having a default root pass would provide additional level of complexity. It is also easy to disable sudo if you want to lock down your morph (see /etc/sudoers file).

How do I dial-up, set up PPP ?

Open a terminal shell and type,

  • sudo pppconfig t It asks a few questions like provider, username, password, and phone number that you use to call your ISP. It will also scan for serial devices.

Then use the commands:

  • To connect - pon (type the name you gave to the above script for the provider), eg pon pipex
  • To disconnect - poff -a

Installing Morphix

Getting Apt-Get Working - Post Install

Apt - is an advanced package management tool. With out repeating what already available on the web, a brief read of on of these websites should help[][]

The Morphix liveCD are normally built on a computer with access to a local Debian repository, most normal users will not have a local repository, so we need to change the source list for apt to look at the central Debian repository.

Open up a terminal windows and become super-user (root)


Run nano a text editor

nano /etc/apt/sources.list

Before the line beginning; (something like)

deb sid main

Add a #

#deb sid main

Then add

deb sid main

Then type (Ctrl-X) to exit and save from nano. Finally do the following command

apt-get update

Further details:[]

Getting Other Packages (Applications) - Post Install

First correct read and action the Getting Apt-Get Working - Post Install.

In this example we will the morphix-manual. Most packages and applications are available the debian central repository. so we can skip to apt-cache update, but the morphix manual require is found in the Morphix Repository

Become root, confirm that your sources contains the morphix repository.

nano /etc/apt/sources.list

The file should contain the following line

deb unstable/

Then type (Ctrl-X) to exit and save from nano.

To search for a package, become super-user, update your cache, then search the cache (in this example search for the morphix-manual package).

apt-get update
apt-cache search morphix-manual

This return a list of packages matching the search term, in the example morphix-manual

morphix-manual - Morphix Manual

To install, use the apt-get with the name in the left hand column

apt-get install morphix-manual

The Morphix-manual, this document is now available locally. Using a browser go to


What are the system requirements of the different types of morphix?

It is difficult to answer your question specifically, better hardware equals better performance. Depending what how you are planning to use Morphix.

I have Morphix running on the following machines, with the following installs

  1. Morphix Gnome

    • Pentium III 500 MHz - 256M Ram - Runs ok.
    • Pentium 4 2.4GHz - 1 G Ram - Runs fast
  2. Morphix Light

    • VIA Eden 600 MHz - 512M Ram - Runs fast.
    • Pentium 1 75MHz - 70M Ram - Runs a little slow
  3. Morphix Derivative, Photo-ix, LiveKiosk, hacked for low memory

    • Pentium 1 75MHz - 16M Ram - Runs slow

Other FAQs to follow.