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> How To Put a LiveCD/DVD To USB
AndrewSerk
 Posted: Feb 26 2012, 12:57 AM
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How To Put a LiveCD/DVD To USB

In this how to I will describe 4 methods that I use to put a livecd/dvd to USB. All of these methods will delete/destroy any data that is on your USB stick!

1. Using dd (IMMO this is the simplest, most reliable and my favorite)
2. By mounting a cd/dvd in a loop and copying the contents and installing grub
3. Using livecd-iso-to-disk (This method also works for install DVD's)
4. Using liveusb-creator

The USB stick I will be using throughout this how to has a device location of /dev/sdc . It is very important that you determine the correct location of your USB stick and change /dev/sdc to the device location of your USB stick in each of the commands in this how to. Do not just copy past the commands in this how to as that could result in the wiping/overwriting/erasing of your hard drive/s. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED! rolleyes.gif

HOW TO DETERMINE THE DEVICE LOCATION OF YOUR USB STICK:
There are several ways to determine the device location of your USB stick. I will describe a few here. Use the method that you are comfortable with:

To determine the location of your USB stick from the command line use one of the following:
The lsblk command returns a easy to read summery of the installed drives, there size, there device location and there mount locations if mounted, etc.
CODE
lsblk


Fdisk is also able to list lots of disk info but requires root privileges:
CODE
su -c 'fdisk -l'


The command blkid will list disk info along with the UUID number.
CODE
blkid


To determine the location of your USB stick using the disk utility palimpsest:
Go Applications >> System Tools >> Disk Utility On the left hand side of the disk utility window there is a list of storage devices, locate the one that represents your USB stick and click on it. This will display the info for your USB stick on the right hand side of the disk utility window. The device location of the USB stick is displayed on the top right hand side of the disk utility window. Look for the line resembling “ Device: /dev/sdc “ . From this computer the USB device is located at /dev/sdc. Yours may be different and you will have to adjust the commands accordingly by replacing /dev/sdc with the location of your USB stick as shown by the info following the line “Device: in the disk utility window. Failing to do so may result in you wiping/overwriting/erasing your hard drive/s.



1. THE DD METHOD:
This method works on just about all the available livecd/dvds. I have found this method to be the most reliable method. I have used this method with many different distros including SL, Debian, Fedora, Centos, opensuse, Ubuntu ect.

Insert the USB stick,
determine the device location using one of the above methods
Unmount any mounted partitions that are mounted from the USB stick. (This can be achieved by right mouse clicking on the mounted partition/s on your desktop and selecting umount or opening the disk utility, clicking on your usb stick on the left hand side. Then click on the mounted partition on the right hand side and then click the unmount button. Or use the umount command from the command line)

The nest step is to wipe the USB stick with the following command (make sure to change /dev/sdc to your usb stick's device location for all of the following commands):
CODE
su -
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdc bs=512 count=1


Now to put the SL-62-i383-2012-02-16-LiveCD.iso to the usb stick. (Change path-to-iso to your real path to the iso file. ie. Something like /home/sluser/Downloads/SL-62-i383-2012-02-16-LiveCD.iso):
CODE
su -
dd if=/path-to-iso/SL-62-i383-2012-02-16-LiveCD.iso of=/dev/sdc


When the above command is finished you will have a bootable liveusb stick.


2. THE LOOP MOUNT, COPY AND INSTALL GRUB METHOD
This method allows for multiple partitions, allowing you to have 2 or more operating systems on one usb stick or use one partition for storage and one for the operating system. I am using a 4gb USB stick.

Insert the USB stick,
determine the device location using one of the above methods
Unmount any mounted partitions that are mounted from the USB stick.
Using the disk utility, format the usb stick
create a partition with the label “SL62” with the size equal to half the USB stick.
create a second partition with the label “Data” the size being the other half of the USB stick.
Mount the partition SL62 to the mount point /media/SL62 (you can just unplug and plugin the usb stick and it should mount both partitions for you in /media)
Create a mount point for the iso:
CODE
su -
mkdir /mnt/iso


Mount the livecd.iso and copy the data to the usb stick:
CODE
su -
 mount -o loop /path-to-iso/ SL-62-i383-2012-02-16-LiveCD.iso /mnt/iso
 cp -r /mnt/iso/* /media/SL62
 unmount /mnt/iso


Install Grub on the USB stick:
CODE
su -
 grub-install –root-directory=/media/SL62 /dev/sdc


Create a grub.conf file:
CODE
su -
 gedit /media/SL62/boot/grub/grub.conf

and add the following stanza to the grub.conf file:
CODE
title SL62 i686
         root (hd0,0)
         kernel /isolinux/vmlinuz0 ro root=LABEL=SL62 rootfstype=auto liveimg
         initrd /isolinux/initrd0.img


and click save and close. Unmount/eject the USB stick.

You now have a bootable usb stick with a data partition. Alternatively you could use the second partition for a second OS.



3. THE LIVECD-ISO-TO-DISK METHOD:

I use this method to put a install dvd to usb for computers without cd/dvd drives. With this method you can put livecd/dvds to usb as well.

Insert the USB stick,
determine the device location using one of the above methods
Unmount any mounted partitions that are mounted from the USB stick
CODE
su -
livecd-iso-to-disk –format –reset-mbr /path-to-iso/SL-62-i383-2012-02-16-LiveCD.iso /dev/sdc

Follow the onscreen instructions.

For more info on this method see: http://www.livecd.ethz.ch/usbdisk.html#livecd-iso-to-disk

4. THE LIVEUSB-CREATOR METHOD:

This method is also pretty easy and has built in functions to download a cd/dvd for you or use a iso that you have locally.

Insert the USB stick,
determine the device location using one of the above methods
CODE
su -
liveusb-creator –reset-mbr

Choose the target device, browse for a local iso or select one to download. Select persistent storage size if desired (this function does not always work)
Click the Create Live USB button and follow the instructions in the box.

For more info on this method see: http://www.livecd.ethz.ch/usbdisk.html https://fedorahosted.org/liveusb-creator/


Happy USB-ing cool.gif

This post has been edited by AndrewSerk: Mar 3 2012, 04:11 PM
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joutlan
 Posted: Feb 26 2012, 04:13 PM
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Thanks Andrew, nice contri ! biggrin.gif


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log69
 Posted: Feb 26 2012, 05:26 PM
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Great HowTo!

One remark: instead of the dd command, I always use pv, so it prints a nice progress bar:

CODE
pv live.iso > /dev/sdX


Also I found out that if I use dd with the sync flag to push out the blocks, then I get a 45% increase in speed. So I always use this method:

CODE
pv file.iso | dd bs=1M oflag=sync of=/dev/sdX 2>/dev/null
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log69
 Posted: Feb 26 2012, 08:31 PM
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Another thing, just for the record if any non-expert user comes around:

For me the only way to put the install DVD on my USB pendrive is to create an ext2 or 3 FS on the device without any partitions at all, and then use livecd-iso-to-disk to put the image on it. So in a couple of steps it looks like this:
CODE
lsblk
su
umount /dev/sdX*
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdX count=1024
mkfs.ext2 /dev/sdX
livecd-iso-to-disk installer_dvd.iso /dev/sdX


Also, I use Ext instead of VFat here because the install DVD image is bigger than 4 GB which is the limit of the Fat32 FS.

So that's the only way for me to be able to boot up the installer DVD from a USB drive. I didn't have any problem with the LiveCD or LiveDVD versions though.
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AndrewSerk
 Posted: Mar 3 2012, 02:39 PM
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QUOTE (log69 @ Feb 26 2012, 03:31 PM)
Another thing, just for the record if any non-expert user comes around:

For me the only way to put the install DVD on my USB pendrive is to create an ext2 or 3 FS on the device without any partitions at all, and then use livecd-iso-to-disk to put the image on it. So in a couple of steps it looks like this:
CODE
lsblk
su
umount /dev/sdX*
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdX count=1024
mkfs.ext2 /dev/sdX
livecd-iso-to-disk installer_dvd.iso /dev/sdX


Also, I use Ext instead of VFat here because the install DVD image is bigger than 4 GB which is the limit of the Fat32 FS.

So that's the only way for me to be able to boot up the installer DVD from a USB drive. I didn't have any problem with the LiveCD or LiveDVD versions though.


Hi log69,

That is why I use the directives " --format --reset-mbr" with the livecd-iso-to-disk command. If you use those directives you should not have to run a separate command to format, ect.

Hope this helps,

This post has been edited by AndrewSerk: Mar 3 2012, 02:40 PM
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log69
 Posted: Mar 3 2012, 06:42 PM
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QUOTE (AndrewSerk @ Mar 3 2012, 03:39 PM)
That is why I use the directives " --format --reset-mbr" with the  livecd-iso-to-disk command. If you use those directives you should not have to run a separate command to format, ect.

Hope this helps,


Hi Andrew,

You are absolutely right. I don't know how I overcame those options you specified above, but now I tested your way and it definitely works just great! It reformatted an already setup partitions on my pendrive and made everything as needed.

So thanks for the correction! smile.gif
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feedmebits
 Posted: Mar 3 2012, 09:54 PM
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Never tried some of the ones mentioned here. I always use unetbootin and liveusb-creator. Never had any problems with them. Will try them out sometime smile.gif


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log69
 Posted: Mar 3 2012, 10:20 PM
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QUOTE (feedmebits @ Mar 3 2012, 10:54 PM)
Never tried some of the ones mentioned here. I always use unetbootin and liveusb-creator. Never had any problems with them.  Will try them out sometime smile.gif


Both of them work for LiveCD and LiveDVDs, but they don't work for me for the installers.
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Nathan
 Posted: Mar 4 2012, 04:25 PM
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I always use dd. No idea why so many places list it as a 'dangerous' method, if you just follow the steps provided you won't ever run into any problems with wiping your entire hard drive or whatever.
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feedmebits
 Posted: Mar 5 2012, 10:25 AM
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QUOTE (log69 @ Mar 4 2012, 12:20 AM)
QUOTE (feedmebits @ Mar 3 2012, 10:54 PM)
Never tried some of the ones mentioned here. I always use unetbootin and liveusb-creator. Never had any problems with them.  Will try them out sometime smile.gif


Both of them work for LiveCD and LiveDVDs, but they don't work for me for the installers.


Now that you mention that I never was able to install even when making a bootable usble from the norma install iso. I did try DDing once like how they have it in the redhat docs, but never gat that to work.

Will try it another time again



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log69
 Posted: Mar 5 2012, 11:41 AM
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QUOTE (feedmebits @ Mar 5 2012, 11:25 AM)
Now that you mention that I never was able to install even when making a bootable usble from the norma  install iso. I did try DDing once like how they have it in the redhat docs, but never gat that to work.

Will try  it another time again


It does work though with method 3 described in the first post.
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feedmebits
 Posted: Mar 5 2012, 12:02 PM
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Will try it out as soon as I have time and let you know


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feedmebits
 Posted: Mar 5 2012, 07:28 PM
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Works great! thanks! smile.gif


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raul_l
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 11:03 AM
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Thank you for the instructions. I have a laptop with no optical drive and used method 3 to install from Install-DVD. As long as the USB device is connected I can boot to SL. However, if I remove the USB device I can't boot and get the error
CODE
error: file not found.
grub rescue>

I think the problem is that grub gets installed onto the USB device, which is an older laptop hard drive mounted in an external hdd enclosure. During installation this is what my partitioning setup looks like:
CODE
Hard drives
sda (/dev/sda)
 sda1 ext3 # External USB hard drive for installation
sdb (/dev/sdb)
 sdb1 ntfs
 sdb2 ntfs
 sdb3 ext4 # mount point /
 sdb4 Extended
  sdb5 ext4 # mount point /home
  sdb6 swap

In the next step I have to choose where to install the boot loader. If I choose /dev/sdb instead of /dev/sda (which is the usb device) the system won't boot (because then what's currently sdb becomes sda). How to solve this? As I understand the usb device is detected first and gets the label sda1. Perhaps there's some way to make the internal hdd be detected first?
I have no such problems with my desktop computer which has an optical drive.


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AndrewSerk
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 02:02 PM
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Hi raul_l,
If looks like you have a window install on your internal hd. Is that correct? If correct you may want to try to install grub at the beginning of sdb3 " / " . Then use a chainloader to boot windows.

If you find you still need help, copy/past what each of these commands return and I or someone else will try to help.
CODE
lsblk
df
su -c 'cat /boot/grub/grub.conf'


Hope this helps
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raul_l
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 05:10 PM
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If I install grub to sdb3 I get the same error
QUOTE
error: file not found.
grub rescue>

without the USB hdd and if the USB device is connected I see the Install-DVD welcome menu. If I choose "Boot from local drive" I get
CODE
Boot failed: please change disks and press a key to continue.

SL doesn't boot now but using the rescue mode I get
bash-4.1# lsblk
CODE
NAME   MAJ:MIN RM   SIZE RO TYPE MOUNTPOINT
loop0    7:0    0 128.5M  1 loop /mnt/runtime
sda      8:0    0  74.6G  0 disk
└─sda1   8:1    0  74.6G  0 part
sdb      8:16   0 298.1G  0 disk
├─sdb1   8:17   0   1.2G  0 part
├─sdb2   8:18   0 120.6G  0 part
├─sdb3   8:19   0    40G  0 part /mnt/sysimage
├─sdb4   8:20   0     1K  0 part
├─sdb5   8:21   0 128.3G  0 part /mnt/sysimage/home
└─sdb6   8:22   0     8G  0 part [SWAP]

bash-4.1# df
CODE
Filesystem     1K-blocks    Used Available Use% Mounted on
/dev             1967712     228   1967484   1% /dev
none              256000  132032    123968  52% /tmp
/dev/loop0        131584  131584         0 100% /mnt/runtime
/dev/sdb3       41326992 3102332  36125368   8% /mnt/sysimage
/dev             1967712     228   1967484   1% /mnt/sysimage/dev
/dev/tmpfs       1967712       0   1967712   0% /mnt/sysimage/dev/shm
/dev/sdb5      132448296  191996 125528280   1% /mnt/sysimage/home

bash-4.1# cat /mnt/sysimage/boot/grub/grub.conf
CODE
# grub.conf generated by anaconda
#
# Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
# NOTICE:  You do not have a /boot partition.  This means that
#          all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg.
#          root (hd1,2)
#          kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/sdb3
#          initrd /boot/initrd-[generic-]version.img
#boot=/dev/sdb3
default=0
timeout=5
splashimage=(hd1,2)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz
hiddenmenu
title Scientific Linux (2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64)
root (hd1,2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64 ro root=UUID=14dca14e-e0dc-47a1-b95a-f7c93e50019 rd_NO_LUKS LANG=en_US.UTF-8  KEYBOARDTYPE=pc KEYTABLE=es rd_NO_MD quiet SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 rhgb crashkernel=128M rd_NO_LVM rd_NO_DM
initrd /boot/initramfs-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64.img
title Other
rootnoverify (hd1,0)
chainloader +1

If the bootloader is installed to sda1 (with USB hdd connected, see earlier post) I get
[raul@x220 ~]$ lsblk
CODE
NAME   MAJ:MIN RM   SIZE RO TYPE MOUNTPOINT
sda      8:0    0 298.1G  0 disk
├─sda1   8:1    0   1.2G  0 part
├─sda2   8:2    0 120.6G  0 part
├─sda3   8:3    0    40G  0 part /
├─sda4   8:4    0     1K  0 part
├─sda5   8:5    0 128.3G  0 part /home
└─sda6   8:6    0     8G  0 part [SWAP]
sdb      8:16   0  74.6G  0 disk
└─sdb1   8:17   0  74.6G  0 part /media/LIVE

[raul@x220 ~]$ df
CODE
Filesystem           1K-blocks      Used Available Use% Mounted on
/dev/sda3             41326992   3173504  36054196   9% /
tmpfs                  1902176       284   1901892   1% /dev/shm
/dev/sda5            132448296    217896 125502380   1% /home
/dev/sdb1             76954216   4668480  68376640   7% /media/LIVE

[raul@x220 ~]$ su -c 'cat /boot/grub/grub.conf'
CODE
Password:
# grub.conf generated by anaconda
#
# Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
# NOTICE:  You do not have a /boot partition.  This means that
#          all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg.
#          root (hd1,2)
#          kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/sdb3
#          initrd /boot/initrd-[generic-]version.img
#boot=/dev/sda
default=0
timeout=5
splashimage=(hd1,2)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz
hiddenmenu
title Scientific Linux (2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64)
root (hd1,2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64 ro root=UUID=94536034-1fc2-4d79-ba85-0bf36d69a520 rd_NO_LUKS LANG=en_US.UTF-8  KEYBOARDTYPE=pc KEYTABLE=es rd_NO_MD quiet SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 rhgb crashkernel=128M rd_NO_LVM rd_NO_DM
initrd /boot/initramfs-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64.img
title Other
rootnoverify (hd1,0)
chainloader +1

I also have Windows 7 installed if that's what you meant (else I don't know the term "window install"). But I don't think that would complicate anything. On my desktop computer I have windows, ubuntu and SL running with no problems.


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142 Riia, Tartu, 51014, Estonia
e-mail: raullaasner@gmail.com
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AndrewSerk
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 06:15 PM
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Looks like you need to edit grub.conf to use your internal drive after removing your usb drive, from:
CODE
# grub.conf generated by anaconda
#
# Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
# NOTICE:  You do not have a /boot partition.  This means that
#          all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg.
#          root (hd1,2)
#          kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/sdb3
#          initrd /boot/initrd-[generic-]version.img
#boot=/dev/sdb3
default=0
timeout=5
splashimage=(hd1,2)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz
hiddenmenu
title Scientific Linux (2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64)
root (hd1,2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64 ro root=UUID=14dca14e-e0dc-47a1-b95a-f7c93e50019 rd_NO_LUKS LANG=en_US.UTF-8  KEYBOARDTYPE=pc KEYTABLE=es rd_NO_MD quiet SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 rhgb crashkernel=128M rd_NO_LVM rd_NO_DM
initrd /boot/initramfs-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64.img
title Other
rootnoverify (hd1,0)
chainloader +1

To:
CODE
# grub.conf generated by anaconda
#
# Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file
# NOTICE:  You do not have a /boot partition.  This means that
#          all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg.
#          root (hd0,2)
#          kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/sdb3
#          initrd /boot/initrd-[generic-]version.img
#boot=/dev/sda3
default=0
timeout=5
splashimage=(hd0,2)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz
hiddenmenu
title Scientific Linux (2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64)
root (hd0,2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64 ro root=UUID=14dca14e-e0dc-47a1-b95a-f7c93e50019 rd_NO_LUKS LANG=en_US.UTF-8  KEYBOARDTYPE=pc KEYTABLE=es rd_NO_MD quiet SYSFONT=latarcyrheb-sun16 rhgb crashkernel=128M rd_NO_LVM rd_NO_DM
initrd /boot/initramfs-2.6.32-220.el6.x86_64.img
title Other
rootnoverify (h0,0)
chainloader +1


You may need to change the above to get windows to boot to:
CODE
title Other
rootnoverify (h0,1)
chainloader +1


Hope this helps,
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raul_l
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 09:07 PM
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I tried that, didn't work. I also tried to fix the MBR using Boot-Repair from Ubuntu live-usb https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Boot-Repair. That allowed me to boot directly into Windows so at least something boots without the usb drive. However, if I set the option
"Partition booted by the MBR: sda3 (Scientific Linux release 6.2)"
in Boot-Repair I get
CODE
Hard Disk Error

I wonder if there are any tools on SL live-dvd that could fix grub? I would put the live-dvd onto my 3.7 gb usb stick (not hdd) and there shouldn't be any trouble with partitioning as above. If all else fails I will purchase a larger usb stick for the Install-DVD.


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e-mail: raullaasner@gmail.com
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raul_l
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 09:34 PM
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It worked! I followed the instructions from http://www.sorgonet.com/linux/grubrestore/ and restored grub using the Live-DVD. Now both Windows and SL boot normally.


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Raul Laasner
PhD canditate, Institute of Physics
University of Tartu
142 Riia, Tartu, 51014, Estonia
e-mail: raullaasner@gmail.com
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AndrewSerk
 Posted: Apr 25 2012, 10:43 PM
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Glad you were able to get things going! smile.gif
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neocronomican
 Posted: May 2 2012, 03:08 PM
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Is there any look like The 3rd method (LIVECD-ISO-TO-DISK METHOD) run in Windows 7 system?

I have 2 dvd installer and want to make SL 5.8 installer from USB (my server doesnt have dvd drive)....
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AndrewSerk
 Posted: May 2 2012, 07:59 PM
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QUOTE (neocronomican @ May 2 2012, 10:08 AM)
Is there any look like  The 3rd method (LIVECD-ISO-TO-DISK METHOD) run in Windows 7 system? 

I have 2 dvd installer and  want to make SL 5.8 installer from USB (my server doesnt have dvd drive)....


Hi neocronomican and welcome to SLF,

I don't know of a livecd-iso-to-disk version for Windows but I am not very familiar with Windows.
You may be able to boot a livecd and run it from there.

Andrew
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neocronomican
 Posted: May 3 2012, 06:24 PM
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QUOTE (AndrewSerk @ May 3 2012, 02:59 AM)


Hi neocronomican and welcome to SLF,

I don't know of a livecd-iso-to-disk version for Windows but I am not very familiar with Windows.
You may be able to boot a livecd and run it from there.

Andrew


Hi Andrew, thanks for you respond...

I have try ISO2USB tools, SL install process work smoothly but it fails when after first reboot (after install process done)... The problem because GRUB always install in /dev/sdb (USB Flashdisk), there is no option to install GRUB in /dev/sda... I am need Grub because I will you dual OS..


Do you know another tools(on windows) to make SL USB Installer?
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tux99
 Posted: May 3 2012, 06:59 PM
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I'm not sure if this is what you are looking for:
http://www.pendrivelinux.com/


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My personal SL6 repository, specialized in audio/video software: http://pkgrepo.linuxtech.net/el6/
(can be used together with EPEL and ELRepo repositories) - repository mirror: http://linuxsoft.cern.ch/linuxtech/el6/
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AndrewSerk
 Posted: May 3 2012, 07:01 PM
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Hi neocronomican,

You could boot the install DVD in rescue mode or from a livecd and use the "grub-install" script to install grub where you want it.
Here is a link to a CentOS guide for re-installation of grub, the process is the same for SL: http://wiki.centos.org/TipsAndTricks/ReinstallGRUB

Hope this helps,
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