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Old 05-13-2009, 10:45 PM   #1
Registered: May 2005
Location: Michigan
Distribution: Slackware -current
Posts: 98

Rep: Reputation: 37
usb installer on thinkpad r61 - "boot error"

I am having trouble getting the usb-installer to boot successfully on my thinkpad. After downloading the image and dd'ing it to a usb-key, I attempted to reboot my laptop. I choose the usb-stick from my boot menu, and it simply results in "Boot Error." To confirm my laptop could boot from usb, I have grabbed another live-usb image and booted it with success.

After a bit of searching, it seems others have had similar issues with thinkpads. My guess is it's something to do with syslinux, as the live-usb image I had successfully booting used grub as its loader.

Has anyone successfully gotten around this "boot error" problem ? There are no further errors, as the boot doesn't even get to the kernel-loading stage.
Old 05-14-2009, 06:35 AM   #2
Alien Bob
Slackware Contributor
Registered: Sep 2005
Location: Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 8,403

Rep: Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545Reputation: 7545

Some computers are not able to boot from a USB pendrive with Slackware's usbboot.img on it.

For that reason I have written the script which takes the contents of usbboot.img and writes that to a standard USB pendrive with vfat partition. The command " -h" shows the following:

# Purpose: to use the content of Slackware's usbboot.img and transform
#   a standard USB thumb drive with a single vfat partition
#   into an alternative USB boot device for the Slackware installer.
# Reason: some computers refuse to boot from a USB thumb drive if it was
#   made bootable by dumping 'usbboot.img' onto it.
# Your USB thumb drive may contain data!
# This data will *not* be overwritten, unless you have
#   explicitly chosen to format the drive by using the '-f' parameter.
# accepts the following parameters:
#   -h|--help                  This help
#   -f|--format                Format the USB drive before use
#   -i|--infile <filename>     Full path to the usbboot.img file
#   -l|--logfile <filename>    Optional logfile to catch fdisk output
#   -o|--outdev <filename>     The device name of your USB drive
#   -u|--unattended            Do not ask any questions
# Example:
# -i ~/download/usbboot.img -o /dev/sdX
I wrote this script because the usbboot.img was unable to boot the Slackware installer from a USB drive on a tablet computer that I own.

I also asked Pat to add this script to the usb-and-pxe-installers directory.

Old 05-14-2009, 05:37 PM   #3
Registered: May 2005
Location: Michigan
Distribution: Slackware -current
Posts: 98

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 37

I can confirm that your script transformed the image perfectly for my thinkpad. It now boots the kernel successfully, and I can load the installer with ease.

Thanks alot, and +1 for its inclusion in the usb-installation directory!


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