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Old 07-15-2010, 12:00 AM   #1
sumeet inani
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booting USB in grub when BIOS does not support it


I wanted to ask
Is it possible that grub can load usb driver because BIOS of my computer is 10 or more years older.
Currently in grub if I run
root (<press tab>
I get
fd0 hd0
meaning so far floppy & hard disk can be accessed.

I am using ubuntu 8.04 .
 
Old 07-15-2010, 12:13 AM   #2
paulsm4
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Short answer - no.

Full and robust USB support relies on BIOS support. If you want USB, then you need to get a motherboard that supports USB.

'Hope that helps .. PSM

Last edited by paulsm4; 07-15-2010 at 12:15 AM.
 
Old 07-15-2010, 04:39 AM   #3
sumeet inani
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Is it possible to have boot manager on hard disk which loads USB driver.
I tried plop (http://www.plop.at/en/bootmanager.html) but did not work in my case.
Can you suggest anything which you have seen working ?
 
Old 07-15-2010, 07:16 PM   #4
jefro
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Start with wakepup from puppylinux.
The issue may not be grub but may be iso versus syslinux.
 
Old 07-15-2010, 09:05 PM   #5
TB0ne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sumeet inani View Post
Is it possible to have boot manager on hard disk which loads USB driver.
I tried plop (http://www.plop.at/en/bootmanager.html) but did not work in my case.
Can you suggest anything which you have seen working ?
Again, NO.

If your computer does not support booting from USB, that's it..you CAN'T boot from USB. Either update your hardware, upgrade your BIOS, or boot from something else.
 
Old 07-15-2010, 09:25 PM   #6
linus72
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What exactly happened when you tried to use Plop to boot usb?

did you install plop to mbr or just use the plop executable?
 
Old 07-15-2010, 09:34 PM   #7
colorpurple21859
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Plop worked great for me on an old computer without bios support to boot usb. upgraded to usb2 with a pci card and was able to boot the usb2 with plop also.
 
Old 07-16-2010, 12:59 AM   #8
sumeet inani
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to linus72 and colorpurple21859
You give me hope.

OK . I will tell what i did.
i have dual boot of ubuntu-8.04 and windows-xp on my pentim3 , 1GHz processor with 384MB RAM.

I decided to use plpgenbtldr-0.7.zip (so that my grub remains as it is )& did as told in readme.txt about editing boot.ini in windows xp.
Code:
plpgenbtldr v0.7 20090804 - generate boot manager loader, by Elmar Hanlhofer



Get the latest version from http://www.plop.at



HINT: This is not the primary way to use the boot manager!



WINDOWS VISTA: You need to run the programs as administrator!



-----------------------------------------------------------------------

How to use:



1) create a directory like c:\plop or whatever you want



2) copy plpgenbtldr.exe and plpbt.bin to c:\plop



3) start "plpgenbtldr"

    this program will search the file "plpbt.bin" in the current directory.

    plpgenbtldr generates the file "plpbtldr.bin".



    if all is ok, then add the boot manager to the boot menu. see below.    



   problems:

    plpbt.bin must not be fragmented. if plpbt.bin is fragmented, then download

    'contig' from microsoft. 

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb897428.aspx



    use 'contig plpbt.bin' to defrag plpbt.bin.

   

   

4) Adding to the boot menu



4.1) Windows XP

    add the line below to your c:\boot.ini

    c:\plop\plpbtldr.bin="PLoP Boot Manager"



4.2) Windows VISTA

    run notepad as administrator

    create a file c:\boot.ini and add the following lines



[boot loader]

[operating systems]

c:\plop\plpbtldr.bin="PLoP Boot Manager"





Now you should be able to start the PLoP Boot Manager from your Windows

boot menu.
Now when i select plop I get
'press ctrl+esc if you can read this'
Then in menu of cd , hard disk, floppy, usb.
I select 'usb'
Then system hangs up with message.

loading ehci driver
searching on host1

I tried it on 2GB & 4GB USB stick of sandisk.

colorpurple21859 , if you can tell what software you used to create bootable USB & iso image of distro . I will do the same & get good result.

to jefro
I wanted to do without cd while I removed my floppy drive long ago.

Last edited by sumeet inani; 07-16-2010 at 01:02 AM.
 
Old 07-16-2010, 08:59 AM   #9
colorpurple21859
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used plopboot to boot puppy linux installed on usb. Holding down the ctrl key while selecting usb boot helps keep plopboot from hanging.
 
Old 07-16-2010, 03:03 PM   #10
jefro
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You CAN boot computers via usb that do not support a usb bootable device in bios.

First of all start with a well known disto. You have to start at the most likely working disto to begin with. Takes all of 10 minutes. Get puppy and make wakepup. What happens?


You need some bootable media supported by your bios. If cd is supported then dd a floppy to an image and burn it as track 1 and you have a bootable cd that will work usually. Otherwise there are ways to boot most computers that have some sort of usb native. It may never support an add on card. But it could in some computers.

As to your distro I would need to learn more on how it normally boots.


There are other ways to get a system booted too. Boot to pxe/gpxe/rom that has enough code to further boot to a usb drive. Some bootable media has to teach your computer just enough to boot from CD since the bios can't. That is all there is to it.


As I said before you also need to know if your system has issues with syslinux/isolinux.

Last edited by jefro; 07-16-2010 at 03:11 PM.
 
Old 07-16-2010, 03:21 PM   #11
mostlyharmless
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Quote:
You CAN boot computers via usb that do not support a usb bootable device in bios.
Not really because:

Quote:
You need some bootable media supported by your bios.
 
Old 07-18-2010, 07:10 PM   #12
jefro
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OK, we are disagreeing on a very good point. Does one boot to usb when no native support in bios. NO. Does one have an old computer then they want to boot to some cd. Yes. It can be done but cheating it. I'll agree that you are technically correct but not exactly what the OP asked.
 
Old 07-18-2010, 11:57 PM   #13
sumeet inani
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I have downloaded lupu-501.iso . I will try that.
I wanted to avoid cd because it gets scratch when used & every time you have to boot USB , you must insert cd .
Booting via hard disk & loading USB driver then booting USB is a bright idea .
 
Old 08-04-2010, 11:55 PM   #14
sumeet inani
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Finally , I figured out my problem . it was not about the distro or software I use to create bootable USB. And the great thing is I can boot from USB .
I have a hard disk with dual boot of 'windows xp' and 'ubuntu' .
In boot.ini of windows drive , I added entry of plop .
Plop loads USB drivers making my computer similiar to present USB-boot enabled BIOS.

Code:
it is tricky to boot USB because many times system hangs. 
I figured out a method. 
After I turn on computer , I quickly select 'xp' in grub then plop entry of boot.ini . 
Then  in settings select 'force USB 1.1:mode2' . 
Keep ctrl key pressed. Hit USB button. Release ctrl key only after you see
'waiting for key to boot. Press n to cntinue search.'
I press 'N' , then I get boot device error. 
This is part of the plan.
Now i select 'USB' button again WITHOUT pressing control . 
This time USB boots.
I have booted hiren(http://www.hirensbootcd.net/) .See method to create bootable USB in windows here --> http://www.hiren.info/pages/bootcd-on-usb-disk.
Also tiny core ran smooth.
For plop get plpgenbtldr-0.7.zip from http://www.plop.at/en/bootmanagerdl.html

This can help those who have old BIOS.Like in my case , when i bought my computer it did not have any USB port then i bought a card & jacked it in PCI slot for USB ports.

Last edited by sumeet inani; 08-06-2010 at 07:04 AM.
 
Old 08-05-2010, 12:09 AM   #15
Wim Sturkenboom
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Congratulations and thanks for the feedback; you can mark your thread as solved using the thread tools above the first post.
 
  


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