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Linux usb floppy boot of hard drive

Last response: in Linux/Free BSD
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March 27, 2012 11:20:14 PM

I am looking to boot a linux laptop (which does not have an internal floppy) from an external USB floppy drive. I learned a lot and tell you what I did so we do not talk about what a know or what I should do what I did already. First I formatted the USB drive with fdisk in this case called /dev/sdb and created a /dev/dsb1 partition. Made an ext2 file system on it using mkfs.ext2. Mounted it on /mnt and created sub directories ./boot/grub. Now I copied stage1,stage2 and menu.lst from the main hard drive (same sub directories which already has linux installed but not boot able) to the ./boot/grub sub directory on the mounted USB floppy drive. Unmounted and go into grub. At grub prompt I type root (hd1,0) return and setup (hd1,0) return and exit and try to reboot with this floppy. It gets to "GRUB" display and stuck. Now you wander how I boot up the computer with the USB floppy drive. I have GRUB boot floppy which I made with the in internal floppy drive and it works in the USB floppy drive also (surprise, surprise) . Now I found a program called grub-usb-check.py which I supposed to run after exit from grub to adjust some "segments" and I did to this USB floppy. Now other problem at boot "GRUB offset out of segment" and get stuck again. This my situation at the present time. Clearly stating again I can boot up with the USB floppy drive with a boot floppy which I made with an internal floppy drive but I can not make a boot floppy with the USB drive which boots up linux completely. So again floppy which I made with the internal floppy drive boots up the computer either with the internal floppy drive or with the USB floppy drive. A general grub floppy (which goes to grub prompt only) which was made with the internal floppy drive works in the USB floppy again. Here you have to apply "configfile (hdx,x)boot/grub/menu.lst at grub prompt to boot up. I am working on this problem couple days looking the internet but no results. If you have any good suggestion I would appreciate it and a know other people would do too because no way to make a grub boot floppy with an USB floppy drive Bill billdevlp@aol.com
a b 5 Linux
March 28, 2012 3:22:18 AM

Hi welcome to 2012, did you just step out of a time machine from 1992?
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April 11, 2012 9:11:43 PM

skittle said:
Hi welcome to 2012, did you just step out of a time machine from 1992?

hello skittle : I do not understand your comment it looks like it is a wise crack rather then a technical comment. If you are a
comedian you should be in a comedy club instead on a technical site. billgrub
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a b 5 Linux
April 15, 2012 11:49:03 PM

Try not to take life to seriously, we have some young folk on here that fail to appreciate the beauty in our technical heritage. I think the reason for the comment is that you're fighting to get GRUB working with a USB Floppy drive; if you have USB then why not use a pen drive that presents as a HDD interface wise and which would do everything you want? I know there is a technical challenge but it just seems like a dead end route to go.

If you're set on using rusty plastic discs to boot from then have you ever tried using chroot? Boot your own mini linux of the floppy and then chroot to the install on the HDD, it's what you have to do when doing a Gentoo install.
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April 26, 2012 3:00:39 AM

audiovoodoo said:
Try not to take life to seriously, we have some young folk on here that fail to appreciate the beauty in our technical heritage. I think the reason for the comment is that you're fighting to get GRUB working with a USB Floppy drive; if you have USB then why not use a pen drive that presents as a HDD interface wise and which would do everything you want? I know there is a technical challenge but it just seems like a dead end route to go.

If you're set on using rusty plastic discs to boot from then have you ever tried using chroot? Boot your own mini linux of the floppy and then chroot to the install on the HDD, it's what you have to do when doing a Gentoo install.


Hello audiovoodoo: I solved the usb floppy boot up problem even I can make an usb boot pen drive naturally under linux only. You right about pen drive they are cheaper and easier to handle then the usb floppy. I am using GRUB under PClinuxOS which I like so making a mini boot floppy is not practical for me. I will "publish" my work on the PClinuxOS forum under "boot with usb floppy and usb pen drives" in the near future. Thanks anyway for your sugesstions billgrub
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