I am a newbie at linux and also had problems with puppy 2.10 and USB. It took me quite a few hours and lots of reading of the forums to get it working.
side note: just today someone warned me about the reliability of USB in general so I'm not sure I will continue using it as my boot option of choice.
In any case, I got the USB boot working by following the directions jesse gave to losl on the following link:
Well I think I did it, it would be cool if you could try it out and see if it works for you.
Download "for_initrd.tar.gz" from this thread
into your /root directory then run these commands in a terminal window:
tar zxvf for_initrd.tar.gz
mount initrd temp -o loop
cp /root/init temp/sbin/init
cp /root/elspci temp/bin/elspci
If you modified your syslinux.cfg file, you can put it back to the standard:
default vmlinuz root=/dev/ram0 initrd=initrd.gz PMEDIA=usbflash
or get some extra info and see your sata drives being ignored
default vmlinuz root=/dev/ram0 initrd=initrd.gz PMEDIA=usbflash pfix=sd
and hopefuly enjoy booting Puppy 2.02 from usbflash
If your problem was the same as mine the reason it would not boot is because the init script got confused while trying to detect the USB (sda) and the SATA drivers (also labled sda)
The way to fix it for me was to boot off of the live CD and make the changes specified above.
Hope this helps,