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pashabear 03-09-2007 09:50 PM

Installing / Uninstalling to External USB HDD
Hi, I'm wanting to install SLED 10 to my external USB HDD, for evaluation purposes. However, when I installed a Linux distro (don't remember which one) to a USB device before, and then removed it, I found that whenever I booted my computer with the device plugged in I'd get an error. I think this was due to the fact that the MBR of that device got changed so that it thought it had an OS to boot to.
SO, my question is, if & when I want to remove SLED (or whatever distro) from an external USB device, how do I make it revert to being a simple storage device, so that my BIOS doesn't try to boot from it?

saikee 03-11-2007 09:09 AM


You hang on to the boot loader now in the internal hard disk.

Install the new Linux in the external hard disk and "make sure" the installer install Linux boot loader in the root partition of the new Linux.

The new Linux doesn't boot automatically but is "chainloadable" by your current boot loader. Therefore it is just a matter of editing your current boot loader configuration to "chainload" the new Linux.

XP's NTLDR, Linux Lilo and Grub can all chainload each other. If you need specific commands they are in the last link of my signature.

Thereafter you can remove or restore the external hard disk without any error. The error will only occur if you choose to boot the Linux in the external hard disk while it is not connected.

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