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  1. #1

    Booting multiple OS images from External Portable Hard Disk

    Hi all,

    I am using a 500GB Western Digital Portable Hard Disk. The type of partition is NTFS. I need to find a solution for the following problem.

    I have lots of CDs and DVDs of Linux Distribution either as Live CDs or Installation media. Carrying a bunch of CDs and DVDs to every place annoys me. So I was thinking of an idea to extract the ISO images of CD/DVD and store it in my external hard disk and use the "boot with USB" option from the BIOS. If I could install a GRUB in my external hard disk and include the paths of the ISO images in GRUB config file, I would have a menu display of every ISO images stored in my external hard disk. I can then easily select the distro I want to install or use it as a Live CD. This will eliminate the bunch of CD/DVDs that I carry everywhere. Hope you all understood what I am trying to convey.

    Problems I am facing:
    1) GRUB does not support NTFS formats. So, I could not install the GRUB on my external hard disk as the file system is NTFS.
    2) I tried to format my hard disk to FAT32. But the storage space came down from 500GB to somewhere around 200GB. So, I didn't continue with that process.

    What I am expecting:
    1) If you ppl could provide a solution to install GRUB and still use my external hard drive as NTFS, I would be really glad.
    2) If GRUB is not the solution, are there any other ways to store my ISOs in my hard disks and could choose which ISO I should "boot from USB"?
    3) I want to use my hard disk as booting different linux distros as well as storage purposes. I would like to configure the ISOs without deleting any files which I already have stored in my external hard disk.

    Well, I would be happy if I could find a solution as soon as possible. I am searching in Google for any solutions.

  2. #2
    Just Joined! enyocnosaj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Southern Arizona
    I don't see how Grub is supposed to offer a menu of your image files... wouldn't you have to partition your portable harddrive and then install your distros one-by-one?

    At that point, you would then boot up from the USB and choose through Grub which Linux to load.

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