[SOLVED] Live boot without a SATA drive?

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[SOLVED] Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Number3124 » 2019-11-23 17:13

I'm attempting to recover a laptop. It's SATA drive has failed catastrophically. Until I'm able to get in a new SATA HDD I'm attempting to recover some use of the laptop with a live boot disk of Debian 10.0.0 and an external USB HDD. Unfortunately the live boot fails, returning: ata1: COMREST failed (errno=-32). As near as I can tell this means that it is failing to establish a connection with the internal SATA drive, which, if course it would considering that the SATA drive has failed.

Is there anyway to bypass this part of the live boot or point it towards an external USB HDD instead?
Last edited by Number3124 on 2019-11-23 22:04, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby p.H » 2019-11-23 17:53

The BIOS may allow to disable the SATA controller or a SATA port/device.
Can't you just remove the failed drive ?
Try to add the parameter "libata.force=disable" to the kernel command line while in the boot loader menu.
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Number3124 » 2019-11-23 18:21

p.H wrote:The BIOS may allow to disable the SATA controller or a SATA port/device.
Can't you just remove the failed drive ?
Try to add the parameter "libata.force=disable" to the kernel command line while in the boot loader menu.


I'll give those a try later on.

Would just disconnecting the failed drive allow the live boot to occur?
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby p.H » 2019-11-23 18:26

I don't understand the question : doesn't the live boot already occur ?
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Number3124 » 2019-11-23 18:52

p.H wrote:I don't understand the question : doesn't the live boot already occur ?


It starts to boot, but it hangs trying to reach the desktop on that error in the OP. The drive will boot on other systems, but this system fails to boot, eventually going to sleep because of the lack of activity after the call for a SATA drive fails enough for the boot to give up.
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Dai_trying » 2019-11-23 20:33

I would remove the failed/failing drive and then try booting the live system and after you get to the live desktop insert the external hdd and install if required, it my be that the hdd failure is causing a problem with the system. It will depend on your BIOS/UEFI options as to whether you will be able to boot/run this way though.
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Number3124 » 2019-11-23 20:50

Dai_trying wrote:I would remove the failed/failing drive and then try booting the live system and after you get to the live desktop insert the external hdd and install if required, it my be that the hdd failure is causing a problem with the system. It will depend on your BIOS/UEFI options as to whether you will be able to boot/run this way though.


Thanks. I'll take a stab at that and see how it does. Let you know how it goes.
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Dai_trying » 2019-11-23 21:39

If your external device is connected via usb and the system is set to boot from usb then it should work, I have done this before when installing to a hdd for use on another machine.
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Re: Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Number3124 » 2019-11-23 21:59

Dai_trying wrote:If your external device is connected via usb and the system is set to boot from usb then it should work, I have done this before when installing to a hdd for use on another machine.


I got the boot working by taking out the SATA HDD so that answers the original question. I'm waiting on the install to the external HDD now. Hopefully this should do the job in the short-term.
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Re: [SOLVED] Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby andre@home » 2019-11-24 07:10

Can the secure option in the bios be the cause of your boot failure?
https://unix.stackexchange.com/question ... ternal-hdd

Also this may be a point of attention
https://www.dionysopoulos.me/portable-u ... n-usb-hdd/
It may or may be necessary for the latest Debian, you have to check it.
As you could boot without the internal HD, it is likely not your problem/solution.
Most affected boards (including my Intel NUC) have an option to enable the xHCI host controller interface by default. Enabling the xHCI option in the BIOS fixes the hanging boot issue.
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Re: [SOLVED] Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby p.H » 2019-11-24 08:25

andre@home wrote:Can the secure option in the bios be the cause of your boot failure?

No. Totally unrelated.

By the way, it was NOT a boot failure. At the time of the failure, the boot process was completed.
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Re: [SOLVED] Live boot without a SATA drive?

Postby Number3124 » 2019-11-24 22:14

andre@home wrote:Can the secure option in the bios be the cause of your boot failure?
https://unix.stackexchange.com/question ... ternal-hdd

Also this may be a point of attention
https://www.dionysopoulos.me/portable-u ... n-usb-hdd/
It may or may be necessary for the latest Debian, you have to check it.
As you could boot without the internal HD, it is likely not your problem/solution.
Most affected boards (including my Intel NUC) have an option to enable the xHCI host controller interface by default. Enabling the xHCI option in the BIOS fixes the hanging boot issue.


Removing the failed HDD resolved the problem. After removing it I was able to successfully boot into Debian 10 Live and install it on an external HDD.
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