Latest LQ Deal: Latest LQ Deals
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!


  Search this Thread
Old 02-03-2010, 11:32 PM   #1
Niraj Kulkarni
Registered: May 2008
Posts: 47

Rep: Reputation: 15
Linux boot from USB flash drive

I need to boot Linux form USB pen drive

wrt :

for booting linux from u-boot from USB flash I need
1. USB Host controller support in u-boot support to detect ped drive
2. initial small & simple RAM disk.
3. USB stick with actual Images kernel & rootfs.
4. First kernel will use initial RAM disk & then actual rootfs from USB.

My question is
1. How will initial RAM disk (initial rootfs) come into picture :
As at the beginning pen drive will not be detected (without any fs).
And there will not be any on board NAND flash.
Is it the case that u-boot understands VFAT formatted pen drive

Niraj Kulkarni.
Old 02-03-2010, 11:42 PM   #2
LQ Guru
Registered: Mar 2004
Distribution: SusE 8.2
Posts: 5,863
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Hi -

I assume you're probably not already familiar with Linux (or you probably wouldn't be asking these questions).

Make a bootable USB stick, and try it out. Simply experimenting - experimenting with *ANY*thing - will help you ENORMOUSLY.

Maybe you can easily make a bootable USB of the Linux you're referring to. If so - great. Please "just do it", and do it as soon as possible.

Otherwise, there are other Linux distros which you *should* easily be able to create a bootable USB stick with. Here are are four different, easy-to-use links for one such option, "Puppy Linux":

'Hope that helps .. PSM
Old 02-04-2010, 02:04 AM   #3
Registered: Feb 2008
Location: India, Kolkata
Distribution: Fedora 16
Posts: 59

Rep: Reputation: 16
You can make a USB bootable linux by installing a bootloader in the USB drive and the setting the configuration files to load proper kernel and initrd images, and parameters.

You can follow this guide, this might help you:

In short install syslinux in USB as

cp /path_to/vesamenu.c32 /path/to/syslinux/dir/of/usb
cp /path_to/isolinux.bin /path/to/syslinux/dir/of/usb/syslinux.bin
syslinux -sd /path/to/syslinux/dir/of/usb /dev/sdXy

where /dev/sdXy is the partition where you are keeping the OS. Run syslinux as superuser

and make a config file syslinux.cfg

LABEL osname_label_for_text
MENU LABEL OS Label Shown in Manu
KERNEL /path/to/kernel/in/usb/kernel.bin kernelparameters
APPEND initrd=/path/to/initrd/in/usb/initrd.img

check the OS documentation for details with kernel parameters, and you need to check syslinux info page.
Or you can also use GRUB.
Old 02-04-2010, 03:24 AM   #4
Niraj Kulkarni
Registered: May 2008
Posts: 47

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
Thanks paulsm4 , Phoxis & all viewers
I think I should have mentioned that I am working on ARM processor with u-boot on it.
And my question was with respect to my embedded board and not Linux machine.
I am sure this experimentation will work.
Thks again.


boot, drive, flash, from, linux, usb

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
BOOT Linux from USB Flash Drive amreesh tyagi Linux - Newbie 2 11-27-2008 01:57 AM
cannot boot from USB flash drive. keratos Linux - Hardware 13 10-24-2007 07:49 AM
Boot an run linux on USB flash drive possible? zahoo Linux - General 1 03-20-2005 03:12 PM
DSL won't boot from USB Flash Drive penguin_asylum DamnSmallLinux 0 02-06-2005 07:23 PM
Boot From USB Flash Drive in LILO? clearestchannel Linux - Newbie 1 01-01-2005 08:38 AM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:01 AM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration