Boot Debian from an USB device
Posted by sebas on Mon 9 Oct 2006 at 12:49
Here is a very short (but in my opinion very useful) how-to for creating an USB boot device, which enables you to boot Debian from your memory stick.
We are assuming that your USB device is indicated by /dev/sda, and that you are interested in Debian stable (other distributions are untested, but should work).
First unmount your memory stick.
sudo umount /dev/sda
Now download the boot.img.gz, which is necessary to make your USB device bootable:
cd ~ wget ftp://ftp.debian.org/debian/dists/stable/main/installer-i386/current/images/hd-media/boot.img.gz
Extract this image and write it to your USB device:
sudo zcat ~/boot.img.gz > /dev/sda
Now mount the volume to /mnt:
sudo mount /dev/sda /mnt
In this case a Debian Stable net-install image is used. You may also use a business card iso. Nevertheless, you should be sure to use the same version of the ISO-image as the image.tar.gz that was used before.
Download the ISO to the USB device:
cd /mnt/ sudo wget http://cdimage.debian.org/debian-cd/3.1_r3/i386/iso-cd/debian-31r3-i386-netinst.iso
Now you can unmount the volume:
cd ~ sudo umount /dev/sda
You can remove the USB device, and plug it in your new system. Of course you should tell your BIOS to boot from USB.
There is a copy of this how-to on the website of our company VirtualConcepts