Many thanks for the very informative and helpful responses. Also, apologies for my late reply… I had my hands full for a while learning enough about the Linux and Qubes to understand what was going on in those posts you referred me to (https://groups.google.com/g/qubes-users/c/_VCVM9AdhEM/m/vE62h6-CBAAJ).
This was exacerbated by the fact that I was unable to attach the USB WLAN adapter to the sys-net vm. Since I lacked the skill to create one from scratch, I had to reinstall Qubes OS with the option to combine USB and networking in sys-net. This allowed me to gain internet access and proceed with the instructions.
However, and further adding to my learning curve, the qubesbuilder part of the instructions did not work for me. I was able to trace this to the following causes:
- Missing the perl-open package during ‘sudo dnf install’
this caused " git tag -v ‘git describe’ " to fail after the ‘git clone’
" git tag -v ‘git describe’ " succeeded once I executed ‘sudo dnf install perl-open’ and repeated ‘git clone’
- ‘git clone https://github.com/QubesOS/qubes-builder.git’ doesn’t create qubes-src (and possibly other) required folder(s)
- had to run ‘make install-deps’ after " git tag -v ‘git describe’ "and perform steps 5 thru 7 from https://www.qubes-os.org/doc/building-archlinux-template/
did the ‘cp’ and ‘sed -i’ commands on .conf after step 5 and before step 6
not actually sure if step 7 was necessary at all
this resulted in all the qubes-builder components needed to ‘make linux-kernel’
with those modifications from above I was able to follow through the instructions and load the patched 5.6.16-1 kernel. I can confirm this works exactly as described in the post. Even have the same issue with the unusable sys-net windows (displaying an unreadable dotted pattern)
with that out of the way, I plan to venture into creating individual disposableVM templates for sys-usb and sys-net and sys-firewall from a minimal template.
Thank you again for all your great help!