Differences between revisions 51 and 54 (spanning 3 versions)
Revision 51 as of 2006-03-15 06:39:41
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Editor: EddyPetrisor
Comment: correct link
Revision 54 as of 2006-05-09 18:21:17
Size: 5132
Editor: ?hildeb
Comment: fixed typos, word ordering and the like.
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You need a USB device with standard mass storage interface and with, '''at least, 128 MBytes''' (the distros uses generally 50 -64  MB)  to work with Linux. You need a USB device with a standard mass storage interface and with, '''at least, 128 MBytes''' (the distros uses generally 50-64 MB) to work with Linux.
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      dmesg | grep scsi -A 3 {{{dmesg | grep scsi -A 3}}}
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If you cannot find it, you have to load the UsbStorage ["module"] (type in a ["terminal"] ''modprobe usb-storage'') and ["mount"] the usb FileSystem s (''mount -t usb-devfs none /proc/bus/usb ). If you cannot find it, you have to load the UsbStorage ["module"] (type in a ["terminal"] {{{modprobe usb-storage}}}) and ["mount"] the usb FileSystems ({{{mount -t usb-devfs none /proc/bus/usb}}}).
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Store your USB pendrive data and the ["root"] used must format it with ["fdisk"] (the USB key must not be mounted). Partition the USB pendrive with ["fdisk"] (the USB key must not be mounted!).
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Press P to see the list of all ["partition"]s and D to exclude the first partition. Unmark all partitions and clean them. Create a new partitin pressing N , P and L . Make it a boot partition selecting the A option (t > 6 create a FAT16 partition, that detects upto 4 GB volumens) and finally press W to store and exit from fdisk. Press P to see the list of all ["partition"]s and D to exclude the first partition. Unmark all partitions and clean them. Create a new partition pressing N, P and L . Make it bootable partition selecting the A option (t, 6 to create a FAT16 partition, that detects upto 4 GB volumes) and finally press W to store and exit from fdisk.
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Press P to see the list of all ["partition"]s. Use D repeated to delete all partitions. Press P to see the list of all ["partition"]s. Use D repeatedly to delete all partitions.
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Enter mkdosfs /dev/sda1 at the prompt to create a filesystem because otherwise installation described later under 'Unburned using DSL' won't work. Enter {{{mkdosfs /dev/sda1}}} at the prompt to create a filesystem because otherwise the installation steps described under 'Unburned using DSL' later on won't work.
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There is two installation methods: There are two installation methods:
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 * Burned: from a LiveCD using the utility Install to USB.
 * Unburned: downloading the files and installing them in the USB pendrive. There is two file types : ISO and other types.
 * Burned: from a LiveCD using the 'Install to USB' utility.
 * Unburned: download the files and install them in the USB pendrive. There are two file types: 'ISO' and 'other'.
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To install DamnSmallLinux download the ISO image and as ["root"] user go the directory with the dsl-0.9.2.iso file and : To install DamnSmallLinux download the ISO image and as ["root"] user go the directory with the dsl-*.iso file and type the following:
{{{
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   mount -o loop dsl-0.8.3.iso dsl_temp
  mount -o loop dsl-*.iso dsl_temp
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cd..
 
  cd ..
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   }}}
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  * DamnSmallLinux, that uses FluxBox , where the majority of Debian USB distros are based .   * DamnSmallLinux (uses FluxBox as window manager), upon which the majority of Debian USB distros are based.
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  * PuppyLinux , that uses FVWM-95 graphical environment.   * PuppyLinux, uses FVWM-95 as window manager.
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["USB"]


This page is about boot Linux via ["USB"] pendrives in any computer with or without USB-BIOS capability (in this last case, using a ?BootFloppy). You can install Linux in your USB pendrive or buy it installed.

BIOS and USB standard mass storage interface

There are two common BIOS methods for direct USB booting:

  • One method is called the "USBHDD" method and it is used to support the booting of standard USB mass storage devices that are configured like a normal PC hard drive.
  • The other method is called the "USBZIP" method and it supports booting from a USB storage device that behaves like the original IOMEGA ZIP drive with USB support.

Most computers (just about all Dells, for example) made today have a BIOS that supports the USBHDD method so it's expect that this will eventually become the standard way to boot a USB device. However, many motherboards will support BOTH methods, and many older motherboards have USBZIP support.

You need a USB device with a standard mass storage interface and with, at least, 128 MBytes (the distros uses generally 50-64 MB) to work with Linux.

See StandardPendrive.

USB pendrive location and mount

Most USB pendrives are located at device name ["sda"] after they are plugged into the USB port.

However, you can verify this location by typing this command inside a ["terminal"] window:

dmesg | grep scsi -A 3

and it should tell you the device name for your USB (SCSI emulated) devices and vendor name.

See : ["dmesg"].

If you cannot find it, you have to load the ?UsbStorage ["module"] (type in a ["terminal"] modprobe usb-storage) and ["mount"] the usb ?FileSystems (mount -t usb-devfs none /proc/bus/usb).

Format the USB key

Partition the USB pendrive with ["fdisk"] (the USB key must not be mounted!).

Press P to see the list of all ["partition"]s and D to exclude the first partition. Unmark all partitions and clean them. Create a new partition pressing N, P and L . Make it bootable partition selecting the A option (t, 6 to create a FAT16 partition, that detects upto 4 GB volumes) and finally press W to store and exit from fdisk.

Using fdisk on SuSE (probably other as well): Press P to see the list of all ["partition"]s. Use D repeatedly to delete all partitions. Create a new partition pressing N, P, 1 and accept all defaults concerning the size (minimum partition size necessary will be around 60 MB). Set bootable flag with A, press T, 6 to create a FAT16 partition and press W to store and exit from fdisk. Enter mkdosfs /dev/sda1 at the prompt to create a filesystem because otherwise the installation steps described under 'Unburned using DSL' later on won't work.

Installation methods

There are two installation methods:

  • Burned: from a LiveCD using the 'Install to USB' utility.
  • Unburned: download the files and install them in the USB pendrive. There are two file types: 'ISO' and 'other'.

Unburned using DSL

To install DamnSmallLinux download the ISO image and as ["root"] user go the directory with the dsl-*.iso file and type the following:

  mkdir dsl_temp
  mkdir dsl_usb
  mount -o loop dsl-*.iso dsl_temp
  cp -a dsl_temp/* dsl_usb
  cd dsl_usb
  mv boot/isolinux/* ./
  rm -Rf boot 
  mv isolinux.bin syslinux.bin
  mv isolinux.cfg syslinux.cfg
  cd ..
  mkdir usb_pen
  mount -t vfat /dev/sda1 usb_pen
  cp -a dsl_usb/* usb_pen
  umount usb_pen
  syslinux /dev/sda1

See also BootUsb2, IsoBuster, ["Isolinux"], ["Grub"] .

USB Debian distros

  • Debian:
  • Fedora / RedHat:

    • ?PuppyLinux, uses FVWM-95 as window manager.

  • Gentoo :
    • SPB-Linux , with XFCE4 environment

More information

See also:

  • ?BootingFromFloppyToUsb .

  • ["growisofs"].