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Recieve "boot error" when attempting to boot from USB Flash Drve

Posted on 2010-08-26
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Last Modified: 2013-12-15
It seems as if the drive is attempting to load but stops and simply states "boot error".

It does this on all of my workstation at the office.  They are custom built intel boxes.  I udpated the BIOS on one and still get the same error.

I try the same USB Drive on a laptop and it boots just fine.

I've tried various different USB drives with same result.

I'm using unetbootin to put various live linux distros on the drive.

Can anyone give me some direction?
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Question by:Tom F
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by:frabru
ID: 33532360
Make sure that the ports are not set to legacy on the bios. If it work in the laptop it should work on the desktop since the laptop has less current on the port than the desktop.

It could be an incompatibility between your specific brand of usb drive and the intel implementation of the usb ports. A good try would be to connect a pci / pci-e usb card to make sure that you are not having any hardware incompatibility.
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Expert Comment

by:adallen
ID: 33532396
Try formatting the unetbootin drive to ext3
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Author Comment

by:Tom F
ID: 33532530
I'm trying to do all of this IN WinXP.

I don't think I can format/read/write ext3.
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by:Tom F
ID: 33532621
@frabru, I don't have a PCI USB card to try...but I have tried about 5 different types of USB Drives so far.
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SimplyRick earned 500 total points
ID: 33532738
The flash drive should be formatted as FAT32. unetbootin takes care of the rest, like installing the GRUB boot loader etc...Whether or not your can write to EXT3 in windows is not relevant here, thankfully. :)

USB booting can be a funny thing. In general, newer computers handle it pretty well (past few years), but it still isn't perfect. One of the major problems with USB booting is how USB drives appear to the system. Some appear to be removeable media (floppy) others appear to be HDD (hard drive) etc... There are some options to check in your BIOS:

1.) Make sure USB booting is enabled and set to boot before anything else. If you have any doubts, there is often a "quick boot' menu you can access by pressing a certain function key during BIOS POST.

2.) Many BIOSes allow you to configure USB boot -- Booting "floppy" USB drives as HDDs won't work on some systems. You may be able to control this in the boot order by placing "USB Floppy" first to see if it works. If it doesn't,t hen change it to boot to "USB hard drive" first and see if the results differ.... Some systems do a respectable job of automatic detection while other times certain flash drives simply won't work no matter what you do in certain systems.

3.) Try toggling USB legacy off/on

Thanks and good luck.

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Author Comment

by:Tom F
ID: 33532964


1)It's TRYING to boot from the drive, its just getting that error.  When I remove the drive it boots to Windows fine.
2)  I'll play with these.
3) When I turn legacy off it won't even recognize the drive

The mb is an intel dp35dp and is only 2 years old.

Is there any chance its not a hardware issue but maybe isnt liking what unetbootin is doing?
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Author Closing Comment

by:Tom F
ID: 33533008
Ha.  Thanks.  Setting in BIOS to treat USB as fixed did the trick.  Thanks so much.
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