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Can I force a boot from a USB drive?

  1. Hello, is it possible for me to force my laptop to boot from a USB drive? When I go to the boot menu I see no option to boot from USB so I guess it's not supported in the bios.

    Is there any way to force it? I want to install linux but my dvd drive overheats after a few minutes of reading the disc.

    Thanks

    EDIT: Or is it possible to force a boot from a USB dvd drive?
  2. Marnomancer

    Marnomancer TechSpot Booster Posts: 808   +51

    Hello childofthetao,
    Boot your laptop with the USB drive plugged in, and change the BIOS boot priority. That should do it.
    Good luck!
  3. childofthetao

    childofthetao TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 212

    What if there is no USB in my bios boot priority list?
  4. Marnomancer

    Marnomancer TechSpot Booster Posts: 808   +51

    None in mine either. It only appears when I have a USB drive plugged in before bootup. Which is why I told you to try that.
  5. childofthetao

    childofthetao TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 212

    I can't seem to figure out how to get into the bios on this Asus A2500H laptop, DEL doesn't work, ESC gives me the boot menu. I tried mots other keys but nothing happens. Maybe you can get into the bios on this laptop.

    Looks like it's no USB booting for me :(
  6. Marnomancer

    Marnomancer TechSpot Booster Posts: 808   +51

    Have you tried F2?
  7. childofthetao

    childofthetao TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 212


    F2 worked! I got quite excited when I saw USB FDD in the boot list. But it the thing won't boot :( I used universal USB installer to put Linux Mint onto my USB drive. I'll try it again, this time Ubuntu, hopefully it was just a dodgy transfer to the USB stick.

    EDIT: I only see USB FDD in the boot priority list in the bios, the actual boot menu never did display my USB FDD. That to me might indicate the the drive was not bootable, for some reason.
  8. Assis

    Assis Newcomer, in training Posts: 16

    hi childofthetao

    can i know which laptop are you using, I mean which model are u using to boot from USB? Toshiba, HP,Acer,Axio,or Dell?

    because not all laptop can boot from USB.

    Thanks
  9. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,421   +217

    USB FDD drive is a USB floppy drive not a flash drive or USB optical drive. So unless your USB drive is a floppy, selecting that as your boot drive won't do anything.
  10. childofthetao

    childofthetao TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 212

    It's an Asus A2500H, quite old.
  11. Doctor John

    Doctor John TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 247   +15

    How about buying(cheap!)/borrowing an external USB DVD ROM?
    Then you could install Linux from the disk without heat problems, or run it as a live disk.
    Either way, you'd side-step that whole boot issue as your laptop BIOS should just pick it up.
     
  12. childofthetao

    childofthetao TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 212

    I used to have one, but it never worked either.

    As mailpup said, it must just be the floppy drive.

    Well I just checked and the laptop doesn't have a floppy drive :/

    Oh well I give in anyway, ill just have to go through the hassle of propping the thing up with a powerful fan underneath it, it usually works about eight times out of ten.

    Thanks for all the help though.
  13. tonylukac

    tonylukac TechSpot Maniac Posts: 848   +20

    Try this: Plug in the usb device, then press esc when booting to see if it's listed in the boot menu. If not, sometimes you can upgrade the bios to enable booting. Computers manufactured as recently as 2006 can often not boot from usb flash drives, etc.
  14. Kirk Kerr

    Kirk Kerr Newcomer, in training

    Just thought I would add the solution to this thread in case anyone comes across it in future :
    • Press F2 quickly at boot up
    • Go to advanced tab and navigate down to "Fast Bios Mode" and disable. (this mode stops the bios from recognizing usb devices as boot)
    • Go to Boot tab and change "Boot Device Priority" so USB HDD is at the top
    • Save and reboot
  15. childofthetao

    childofthetao TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 212

    Thanks! I still need to sort that laptop out, are you sure that works for this particular laptop?
  16. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,757   +157

    Sometimes it is just a quick touch of the esc key


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