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  1. #11
    Linux Guru
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Tucson AZ

    Given that the OP probably needs to create the bootable drive from Windows, is your dd method going to work in Win?
    Did you read the OPs post # 4 which says:

    I'm getting mint from a mirror on mint site.
    Using Ubuntu 12.04 LTS.
    I dont see any mention of windows.

  2. #12
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Vancouver, BC
    Quote Originally Posted by yancek View Post
    Did you read the OPs post # 4 which says:

    I dont see any mention of windows.
    Sorry, my mistake, from referring to the first post.

  3. #13
    Linux User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by Montana68 View Post
    Hello Jack
    So I just use the command that you show here.

    dd if=whatever.iso of=/dev/sde bs=1M

    I put the name in where it says whatever and then just click enter. This will run the command and install it onto the usb stick.
    Thank you.
    That is the general idea, but it makes a few assumptions which may cause it to fail.
    @Yanek hinted at what to do, but wa perhaps not that clear.
    For the sake of completeness:
    The best way is to open a terminal window and then log in as root (Type su <enter> and then the root password.)
    with the usb stick in your computer run:
    fdisk -l
    This will give a print out of all the drives connected to your computer.
    Look for the lines that read: /dev/sdx or /dev/hdx
    Make a note of them and remove the usb drive
    Run fdisk -l again and check what is missing by comparing it to your list above.
    The missing drive is your usb stick
    Put the usb stick back into the computer and change directory to where you downloaded the mint iso (probably cd ~/Downloads)
    Now type the command
    dd if=<name of mint iso> of=/dev/sdx
    Where <name of mint iso> is the filename of the mint iso
    and the 'x' in /dev/sdx is the drive letter of your usb stick.

    If you are using ubuntu to do this, it may not let you run a root terminal, so add 'sudo' in the front of each command and type the root password each time.

    This method should work for copying most distribution iso files to to usb.

    The dd command is irreversible. It will overwite everything on the drive, so that is why it is good practice to see where the disk is mounted lest you wipe out a drive with data on it.

    The other way is possibly to use the Ubuntu usb creator used to make a bootable ubuntu usb stick.
    (Don't run ubuntu, so can't remember the name the give it) Make sure you have the latest version first.

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #14
    I would think so as the iso file does have the structures for whatever it's supposed to be for. I've used it with Windows (Vista) and Linux (Debian i386 and AMD64) with success. What I think is something we don't think about is that an iso image is just that a bit copy of the structures and data that the target OS is expecting or being booted (usually the same) so the dd copy method should work on all various OS's. I would say there could be someplace it won't work, such as some obscure OS. Although booting a machine in this day and age should be the same mechanism...

    I hope whoever is trying this on Windows reports back about their success, that would put more people at ease.


  6. #15
    Linux User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    It all depends on the distro and the way the iso is set up to boot. Some distros will only boot from cd and not usb unless you edit thebootloader/grub files and add extra drivers.

    Windows users need to either use one of the windows tools like unetbootin or ubuntu's version or use the windows port of the linux dd command.

  7. #16
    The real 'depends' is on the lower level of code (usually called the bios) and that would determine if you can boot off a stick or not. I have a machine running here that has about 4 different USB options, like USB/CD and others that try and predict how to boot. My latest box that I have (6 months old) just has USB and it figures out what you have. So as firmware and 'bios's go, I think that's what you mean... The OS has really nothing to do with it until it loads it's initial code off of wherever, USB, CD, Network... Once that's done, then it's all in the hands of that code...

    I call it the bios, all computers have to come up running code, or in a 'halted' state. I used to have to enter boot sequences at work when the power went down the machine came up 'halted'. You entered a boot routine it went to disk loaded that and off it went. Some of those machines had core memory which doesn't forget and if you were luck, some times you could start it in a recover. For that you needed to know where to send it as in a hex address. Some people call it a monitor, some firmware, whatever that's the low level you must interface to in order to get the machine up.

    Most machines today that run windows code need a known format for the bios to load from and all the Linux models I've seen boot off a vfat file type initially, I mean during the first setup. At least I can't think of any. Microsoft has a foot in the door.


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