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Old 08-10-2012, 12:21 PM   #1
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Require a bootable Linux Abuntu USB Flash Stick for HP Laptop with no Harddrive

Hi I have an HP Pavilion DV5 Laptop. The Hard Drive is excessively damaged and I have been unable to install any operating systems on the drive. I do not have the funds required to replace the drive either. My thought process was this: after researching Linux I found that one can install Linux Ubuntu on a USB Stick of 1Gig or more, This would make it possible to boot without having a Hard Drive and I can store my work on my External Drive. However from the forums I have visited, I need system already running Linux (This is where my problem comes in) I have no system of any kind and the HP Laptop is my only PC.

I also tried restoring the Drive using the Tools available on Ultimate Boot Manager without luck (once again by following the advice of experts found on forums and IT support sites). I have tried to partition the Drive in the hopes that a 10-100Gig partition with luck will have no damaged sectors ( I used the Partition Magic Tools that comes with UBM) the best result I have achieved so far is the message No Boot Record when trying to install Ubuntu. I know not how to get around these problems.

Thank you for your time.

If there is any information needed please let me know.
Old 08-10-2012, 01:30 PM   #2
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A short update. I would like to surf the web and work with open office maybe play some music whilst doing so.

If any other options are available for using a Laptop without a Hard Drive are out there please let me knows (as oppossed to a paper weight)
Old 08-10-2012, 05:16 PM   #3
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Well, hello and welcome.

Maybe I'd start by getting the OEM diags for the hard drive. See the OEM web site of the company that made the hard drive.

There is an edit feature that would have worked better. This site uses a zero reply list for some people to find posts that don't have someone helping. Anywhay.

You have many many choices.

One is to boot to some floppy or usb to download a live linux each time you power up.
Not a normal way but an option. See and there are some others like slitaz.

Two is your usb. Most newish systems can use a usb flash or usb external just as if it were an internal drive. Most of the distro's posted at can do that one way or the other.

Three is to boot off a local system.

For a usb flash, one of the most simple might be to make a LPS flash. It has most of all of what you need. There is batch file I think that creates your usb from a windows box. See the read me files. I tried it last week on an old 1G and it ran great.

Many people start off with a Live cd sort of usb. It is an in between sort of install. It is a live cd/dvd that is made to work on a usb flash. One advantage is that you can get usually a 1G usb to hold 2.5G worth of linux. See tools on the distro web site like Fedora's live usb creator or many ideas at

Decide on what you want and maybe we can direct you more clearly. Also post how much ram you have.

Last edited by jefro; 08-10-2012 at 05:20 PM.


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