Ubuntu on USB: Practical Solution?

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http://askubuntu.com – I'm trying to make a USB boot ubuntu for day-to-day operation. Not live necessarily, but certainly to: Persist changes (including local document store) Password-protected logins (though single user) Minimal damage to USB blocks I'm not looking to run a machine off of this 24/7, just to use as an alternate boot OS for sitting in hotels with company laptop of an evening; I don't want my stuff left on their platters. Persisting changes can be covered by the likes of unetbootin and Universal USB Installer, this much I have gathered. Secured login though appears to be an issue under such sol (HowTos)