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Linux installed to USB drive won't boot

Ken g6

Programming Moderator, Elite Member
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Dec 11, 1999
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I'm trying to get my HTPC with an ASUS H110S2 motherboard to boot Xubuntu 17.04. For complicated reasons, I can only use an M.2 drive internally, and I don't have one of those. So I'm trying to install to and boot from a hard drive connected by one of these to a USB3 port. The USB stick I use to install Ubuntu will boot. But after installation, the hard drive won't boot - it just goes to the BIOS. I think I've disabled all the "secure boot" nonsense in the BIOS. And the hard drive is recognized in the BIOS.

What am I doing wrong? Alternatively, how could I boot Linux from USB, with my user data restored at boot, some other way? I need a kernel of version at least 4.9 to support my USB tuner stick.

Thanks!
 

TheELF

Diamond Member
Dec 22, 2012
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What am I doing wrong? Alternatively, how could I boot Linux from USB, with my user data restored at boot, some other way? I need a kernel of version at least 4.9 to support my USB tuner stick.

Thanks!
One of the installer screen for ubuntu asks you where to put the bootloader,grub.
That is where you doing something wrong,my guess is that the installation recognizes the usb as the systems main boot drive so it puts the boot loader there,did you check this?Does booting from the usb now,after the installation,give you some other option to boot into the installed version?

Basically this is just a matter of fixing the grub/grub menu,I'm not knowledgeable enough to help you out with that but there are plenty of webpages with tutorials and guides out there.
 

Ken g6

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I don't think that's the problem. I found an EFI partition was created on the drive, so I think Grub is there. It. Just. Doesn't. Boot. The. Drive.
 

TheELF

Diamond Member
Dec 22, 2012
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Efi partition could have been there from the previous windows installation or as part of whatever the OEM had on the drive or for any reason.
linux doesn't create a efi partition.
You can use that though, if you can make a "windows to go" (search on google) usb/hdd drive or much easier install windows on a virtual machine inside linux you can use easybcd to easily create a bcd store and add ubuntu to it.
You can also do this if you are able to boot into a windows installation media (iso/dvd "burned" to usb) but you will have to use bcdedit from the console which is a pretty big pain in the ass.
 

Ken g6

Programming Moderator, Elite Member
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Dec 11, 1999
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linux doesn't create a efi partition.
Xubuntu 17.04 sure seems to. I tried manually formatting the drive without one, and it says it wants a 35MB EFI partition.
 

Ken g6

Programming Moderator, Elite Member
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Dec 11, 1999
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Well now I'm seeing several potential problems. The installer may be crashing before installation is complete. UEFI might not be as off as I thought. This time I rebooted and got a blinking cursor. Could be the drive is bad too.

Edit: Yeah, I think the drive went bad. It was cheap.:\
 
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