Boot from CD-ROM disabled in BIOS with Vista computers?

One of my friends was asked to look at a new Toshiba laptop (sorry, I don't know the model number) that was running Vista and he wanted to install Linux on it. However, the boot from CD-ROM option in the computer's BIOS was completely missing and the machine would not boot from CD-ROM even though there was a CD-ROM drive in the laptop and it appears to function normally. (It did have options to boot from LAN and USB, though, which he's now working on getting the computer booted from.)

Is this a thing that Toshiba has been doing as of late to keep people from mucking with the computers (and possibly generating support calls to fix whatever they goofed up doing so) or is it something designed to keep people from putting other OSes than Vista on their computer?
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  1. Hmmmm. Very interesting sir. What in the world is going on there? Next thing we'll all have to boot our computers from outer space :tongue:

    I am still trying to figure out how to use my fax machine through Vista like you could in XP. But I don't think there is a way to set it up, only to print. I know you can use the new fax service. And they took A3 out for page size. Little things like that are a grrrrrr............. :x

    Linux is much brainwork for me but I am interested in learning. Have about 3 or 4 old drives laying around and plenty of distros of course.

    The only thing I can think of with your friends new laptop is, if he wants to load other OS's from CD, then maybe he should look into cross flashing the BIOS with another version, perhaps older one.
  2. I had suggested perhaps that it was a BIOS bug and since he was running the latest BIOS, to use an older one. Apparently that one didn't work either.

    Perhaps a USB CD-ROM could work though. It just seems very odd that the CD-ROM drive disallows booting.
  3. Its not Vista doing it thats for sure.

    Strange that is.... I would think what you did, a BIOS issue that should have been fixed in any BIOS update.
  4. I didn't think that it was the OS doing this as I don't think that a running OS can change very much in BIOS as the BIOS steps out of the way once the boot process has been handed off to the bootloader. What I was wondering is if OEMs were disabling the option in the BIOSes of their computers that happened to run Vista as the OS. This doesn't really look like a BIOS bug but more like a removed feature, if my friend and a couple of engineers are reading the situation correctly, which I think they are.
  5. You realize a simple (maybe simple...) call/email to the laptop manufacturer might solve this?
  6. Yeah, it probably will. I'll tell my friend to give Toshiba a call and see if they can fix this. I'll just warn him to be careful about what he says as tech support is generally loath to do much with helping somebody setting up non-standard/unsupported configuration. I've run into that pitfall a few times, so once bitten, twice shy. Alternatively, I'll see if he can hunt down a USB CD-ROM drive and see if it'll boot from that.

    I posted this here just to see if this was a random occurrence or if this was part of a growing trend.
  7. Let us know here when you find out, I am interested in knowing what the deal is with that. It just seems hard for me to believe that they would remove the option to boot from CD, although it would not surprise me if they did.
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