No, I'm working as root to set things up.
I'm trying to use persistence. I get my desktop documents to stick, but not my keyboard selection or fstab (which really bugs me since, as another I found here, wants to run /tmp in ram to minimize SSD wear, and I also have a bunch of other configs, like the IO schedular and disk-caching configs and stuff I'm afraid isn't being kept either).
I've butchered my initrd in the hopes of deducing something about where the changes= and the union file system is being setup, so I might be able to change how the union file system ???gets mounted to save my fstab and system settings, but they aren't in initrd, or in /etc from my word-searches. Perhaps in the kernel? At least I was able to discern (and belatedly remember) those liveusb initrd's don't like ext4 filesystems.
Tried hitting the 'r' and 'R' keys, and all the rest, then the '2', but it only seems to do it when I'm just normaly typing either in a terminal or kwrite. Quit intermittent.