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Re: [linux-dell-laptops] Digest Number 2078

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  • irlandes
    ... Actually, I don t think I would mind booting from a floppy each time that I use the USB HD, if that will do it. And, I can copy the .iso into the main HD
    Message 1 of 3 , May 12, 2005
      > Message: 4
      > Date: Thu, 05 May 2005 19:57:10 -0700
      > From: "Douglas S. Oliver" <dsoliver@...>
      > Subject: Re: Digest Number 2075
      >
      > I see your problem. On my i8600 I have several boot options hitting the
      > f12 key as the computer starts to boot. I don't remember whether I
      > actually have bios options set in cmos. Did you say you have a floppy
      > drive? You might be able to install the boot loader there, but no one
      > wants to have to do that each time. Best of luck -- Douglas
      >
      > irlandes wrote:
      >
      > >
      > >Thanks, though there are a couple of unanswered questions in my mind,
      > >you have given me the jump start that I needed.
      > >
      > >First, external power supply: OKAY.
      > >
      > >Next, it is almost certain that for my multiple distros to work, I must
      > >be able to boot on the USB drive, one way or another. And, it is almost
      > >certain if I can find a way to boot on the USB HD, I can then install
      > >the boot loader there, and use as many distros as will fit. Usually, the
      > >installation process creates the fstab as needed on the partition where
      > >the distro is installed, though it is always possible I will be rudely
      > >surprised -- so it is good to have a heads-up on that possibility.

      Actually, I don't think I would mind booting from a floppy each time
      that I use the USB HD, if that will do it. And, I can copy the .iso into
      the main HD in case it goes bad.

      My hope is to keep my dual boot system untouched, and only use the USB
      HD when I want to use another distro. When I get back to the States in
      July, I will be able to dig in and find out if that is possible.

      Every user has a different circumstances. In my case, I travel back and
      forth between Mexico and U.S. Customs in Mexico does not permit any but
      new computers, except laptops, so I have always carried a laptop. My
      first was a Compaq, but the Dell seems so much better a computer,
      quality wise.

      For some years, I took the bus from the border, and couldn't carry much.
      When I left my house in the country, I usually walked. So, any add-on's
      were unacceptable.

      Now, I have a car with me, and can pretty much fit in anything which
      will not bother customs. Also, the new rules allow new computers as
      long as 17% duties are paid. So, I can bring pretty much whatever I
      want, as long as I don't take it back.

      Only trying to live within retirement income while finishing our house
      here is a limit. Which is why I thought of the USB HD rather than a new
      computer.

      I have my son-in-law on this problem. He teaches CAD in high school, and
      builds 18 new computers each summer. Usually, they must wait three years
      before getting new computers, but he builds them for a fraction of the
      usual cost, and each summer turns over the previous year's 18 computers
      to other teachers, and since he always uses the latest and greatest
      stuff those 18 "old ones" are pretty much the same as the new ones the
      school system is buying a year later, so they are willing to give him
      the money.

      He says if they ever find a way to use AutoCad in Linux, he will
      probably run a total Linux lab for his classes. He and his cousin who
      teaches Computer Maintenance in the same school have built a Linux
      software server for his classroom, so while he still needs 18 AutoCad
      licenses, he only needs to type in a lengthy registration number one
      time for each time he updates.

      CrossOver has been tuned to run MS Office, and version 2.0 runs Adobe
      Photoshop. I wonder if they will set their sights on AutoCad next? If
      so, he might get his wish.

      Thanks for the jump start, will try to keep you posted. Now that I have
      an idea what to look for, I am somewhat impatient to give it a try, but
      it will be early June at best. It really bugged me to have to walk away
      from both SuSe 9.2 Pro, and CentOs 4 because of problems that might have
      well been fixable if I had more time. This multi-distro HD system seems
      the way to go.
    • irlandes
      ... Alas, last night I actually got almost an hour on dial-up, and googled intensely for ways to boot a USB HD. As best as I can tell, it won t work on my
      Message 2 of 3 , May 13, 2005
        > Message: 4
        > Date: Thu, 05 May 2005 19:57:10 -0700
        > From: "Douglas S. Oliver" <dsoliver@...>
        > Subject: Re: Digest Number 2075
        >
        > I see your problem. On my i8600 I have several boot options hitting the
        > f12 key as the computer starts to boot. I don't remember whether I
        > actually have bios options set in cmos. Did you say you have a floppy
        > drive? You might be able to install the boot loader there, but no one
        > wants to have to do that each time. Best of luck -- Douglas

        Alas, last night I actually got almost an hour on dial-up, and googled
        intensely for ways to boot a USB HD. As best as I can tell, it won't
        work on my computer.

        There were a lot of folks asking for similar help to what I asked, so I
        am ont the only one with the idea.

        I learned that no current version of Windows can be run via USB HD even
        if you can boot to it.

        I found a thread that says outright that Dell Inspirons cannot boot any
        USB device, though other models do have that ability.

        Some newer machines do have BIOS which will allow booting for USB
        devices. Even those do not always run correctly for all operating
        systems, due to bugs..

        Most hits mention in passing that there is little one can do if the BIOS
        does not support USB booting. Then, the rest of the information
        involves how to set up the USB to be bootable, which I don't see as much
        of a problem.

        I downloaded the latest BIOS. A13. for my machine and it does not
        include USB booting, according to accompanying text. It does give a 4
        digit checksum for each, but I do not know how to run that function. I
        only know md5sum. If I were interested, I suppose I could download it a
        number of times, and see if md5sum is always the same; if so, it might
        be worth risking.

        I found absolutely no hits for USB boot utilities, whether for floppy,
        HD, or CDROM.

        That makes sense, sad as it is. First, Windows does have a much larger
        number of users, and if none can be run in USB, there is much less
        motivation to produce such boot utilities.

        Next, newer computers will have that capacity built into the BIOS, so
        again there is little motive to create such utilities.

        And, apparently the main use of USB HD is for storage, not operating
        systems.

        So, at this point, I am apparently not going to buy an external HD, as
        there is no way to use it as I intended. By the time I get a newer
        machine, we will be up to CentOs 5 or 6?

        Oh, well, it sure seemed like a good idea at the time. Thanks for ideas
        and support.
      • Douglas S. Oliver
        Not to beat a dead horse, but I CAN boot into Win98 and WinXP from a hard drive placed in an external USB device--what I like to call a drive caddy. Like I
        Message 3 of 3 , May 18, 2005
          Not to beat a dead horse, but I CAN boot into Win98 and WinXP from a hard drive placed in an external USB device--what I like to call a drive caddy. Like I said before, my i8600 gives me that option at boot time. What happens is this: system starts to boot; screen comes up with the usual press <del> to enter setup; and if I have a CD in the drive or a USB device connected, press <f12> to boot from ? device. That menu includes an option to boot from an external USB device. That also includes using a ram drive, stick, or whatever you want to call those little things. My bios is A05 I think. I am writing from a MacIntosh right now, so I can't be more accurate.

          Oh yeah, I just remembered. When I put in my original Dell CD and boot my computer, I get the message to hit any key to boot from CD. I think that takes me into that f12 menu also. I'll pull out my i8600 later and get you some more accurate details. -- Douglas

          -----Original Message-----
          From: irlandes <brucemcgovern@...>
          Sent: May 13, 2005 7:39 PM
          To: linux-dell-laptops@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [linux-dell-laptops] Digest Number 2078

          > Message: 4
          > Date: Thu, 05 May 2005 19:57:10 -0700
          > From: "Douglas S. Oliver" <dsoliver@...>
          > Subject: Re: Digest Number 2075
          >
          > I see your problem. On my i8600 I have several boot options hitting the
          > f12 key as the computer starts to boot. I don't remember whether I
          > actually have bios options set in cmos. Did you say you have a floppy
          > drive? You might be able to install the boot loader there, but no one
          > wants to have to do that each time. Best of luck -- Douglas

          Alas, last night I actually got almost an hour on dial-up, and googled
          intensely for ways to boot a USB HD. As best as I can tell, it won't
          work on my computer.

          There were a lot of folks asking for similar help to what I asked, so I
          am ont the only one with the idea.

          I learned that no current version of Windows can be run via USB HD even
          if you can boot to it.

          I found a thread that says outright that Dell Inspirons cannot boot any
          USB device, though other models do have that ability.

          Some newer machines do have BIOS which will allow booting for USB
          devices. Even those do not always run correctly for all operating
          systems, due to bugs..

          Most hits mention in passing that there is little one can do if the BIOS
          does not support USB booting. Then, the rest of the information
          involves how to set up the USB to be bootable, which I don't see as much
          of a problem.

          I downloaded the latest BIOS. A13. for my machine and it does not
          include USB booting, according to accompanying text. It does give a 4
          digit checksum for each, but I do not know how to run that function. I
          only know md5sum. If I were interested, I suppose I could download it a
          number of times, and see if md5sum is always the same; if so, it might
          be worth risking.

          I found absolutely no hits for USB boot utilities, whether for floppy,
          HD, or CDROM.

          That makes sense, sad as it is. First, Windows does have a much larger
          number of users, and if none can be run in USB, there is much less
          motivation to produce such boot utilities.

          Next, newer computers will have that capacity built into the BIOS, so
          again there is little motive to create such utilities.

          And, apparently the main use of USB HD is for storage, not operating
          systems.

          So, at this point, I am apparently not going to buy an external HD, as
          there is no way to use it as I intended. By the time I get a newer
          machine, we will be up to CentOs 5 or 6?

          Oh, well, it sure seemed like a good idea at the time. Thanks for ideas
          and support.




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