Install USB Not Bootable

Help with issues regarding installation of Debian

Install USB Not Bootable

Postby broadsworde » 2017-03-01 14:01

I have downloaded and written latest ISO image of Debian as instructed on this https://www.debian.org/CD/faq/#write-usb FAQ page... I've tried both cp and dd methods, I've also tried the Ubuntu (current OS in use) Disks, Restore Disk Image process... in all cases the ISO is copied to the USB, but when booting and selecting F10 to show bootable devices, the USB is not shown on the list. I know my EFI BIOS is configured correctly as I am able to see a Ubuntu ISO on the boot list on a different USB drive.
I have also tried writing the debian image to the USB drive that I know works for Ubuntu just to rule out any issues or differences between the USB drives, and it still doesn't show on boot menu.
Any assistance or ideas would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you.
Last edited by broadsworde on 2017-04-17 17:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby Segfault » 2017-03-01 17:16

Plug you drive in and run
Code: Select all
file -s /dev/sdX
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby GarryRicketson » 2017-03-01 17:36

The OP might not understand , where it says,
'sdx", could be 'sdb', I tried this using sdx, and got not found.
Using 'sdb' worked.

Code: Select all
 $ file -s /dev/sdx
/dev/sdx: ERROR: cannot open `/dev/sdx' (No such file or directory)
garry@debian:~$ file -s /dev/sdb
/dev/sdb: sticky DOS floppy 1440k, x86 hard disk boot sector

Using 'lsblk' can help determine if it should be sdx,sdc,sdb , etc.
Interesting command, though, thanks.
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby Segfault » 2017-03-01 19:56

You are welcome! :)

I have a strange habit reading man pages when I have nothing better to do, there is lots of power in those little utils that live in /bin/ (and /sbin/).
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby EnigmaOne » 2017-03-20 20:48

The problem that I have had with a lot of motherboards is the lack of firmware support for USB3.0 ports at POST; which means that you generally cannot boot from USB ports other than the USB2.0 ports. This may be the case in the OP's scenario.
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby broadsworde » 2017-04-06 08:28

Very sorry for not replying sooner and thanking you for suggestions.
I did try the command:
Code: Select all
sudo file -s /dev/sdX (actually sdc in my case)

which resulted in output:
Code: Select all
/dev/sdc: DOS/MBR boot sector ISO 9660 CD-ROM filesystem data (DOS/MBR boot sector) 'Debian jessie 20170116-23:47' (bootable); partition 1 : ID=0x17, active, start-CHS (0x0,2,1), end-CHS (0x3f5,83,32), startsector 64, 2725568 sectors

I then tried to boot again to the USB drive both in USB 3 and USB 2 ports, but unfortunately still no joy.

I used the cp command to copy the iso image over to the USB drive, has anyone else had issues with this technique?
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby broadsworde » 2017-04-11 17:12

OK, so I have a small update in case anyone finds this useful or can assist.

In my attempts to get a Debian bootable USB drive I have been using the debian-live-8.7.1-amd64-gnome-desktop.iso, as I want to try Debian out first without actually installing it. I have just downloaded the network install version; debian-8.7.1-amd64-netinst.iso, I then used the exact same method to copy the iso to the same USB drive (sudo cp /[path]/[isoFile] /[target]) and was able to boot to the drive first time!? So is there something different about the live iso that requires a different method, or additional steps?

Thanks again in anticipation.
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby srq2625 » 2017-04-11 17:42

The last I knew, only the netinst will boot in a UEFI environment. The "live ISO" boots only in the older BIOS environment.

But, I could be wrong :)
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby broadsworde » 2017-04-12 07:16

Thanks srq2625, that would certainly explain it. I will have a look at my BIOS/UEFI settings shortly, as I believe I can set support for legacy BIOS as well as UEFI. I'll update once tested.
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby broadsworde » 2017-04-12 07:33

Awesome, that worked... thanks again srq2625.

This does however beg the questions:
1. Why does the live ISO not support UEFI?
2. Why is there no mention of this legacy BIOS/CSM requirement in the download process, or the "How do I write a CD/DVD/BD image to a USB flash drive?" instructions?
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby Dai_trying » 2017-04-12 07:58

You can make the live-cd UEFI bootable/installable using this forum post, I did and it worked a treat.
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby broadsworde » 2017-04-12 12:43

Thank you Dai_trying, very much appreciated... shame it's not in the core install though hey?
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Re: USB Not Bootable

Postby Dai_trying » 2017-04-12 14:08

The Stretch iso's are UEFI capable, I think it was just down to the fact that UEFI was still problematic when Jessie became stable so was not implemented. Stretch will soon (ish) become the stable version so this should not be a problem for many future users.
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