Is it possible to boot from a USB hard drive?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by toploader, Aug 29, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    i'm thinking of buying a USB hard drive and putting a copy of my C drive onto it.

    in the event of windows failing to boot from the C drive could i then simply boot from the USB drive to get the system up and running?
     
  2. hadi

    hadi Guest

    Check your BIOS. some new BIOSes do allow booting from external device.
     
  3. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Posts:
    1,946
    Location:
    Bay Area, California
    Yes, if your BIOS supports it. Mine says it does, but I have never tried it...

    Check how you enter your BIOS (mine is F1 - but I seem to recall that most peoples is something else...maybe F2)

    Then you have to look at the Boot Order. most XP machines boot to a CD first, then eventually Hard Drive - 0, or whatever they call it.

    There may be a check box for "enable USB Bootup"


    -HandsOff
     
  4. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    cheers HandsOff - when i'm feeling brave i may check my Bios - i'm bound to alter something if i go poking around in it :D

    thanks for the info - could come in useful
     
  5. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Posts:
    1,946
    Location:
    Bay Area, California

    I'd be interested in hearing what is the best way to copy the system partition. I only know the hard way which is why I never tried it.

    (they hard way involves removing the drive from the drive enclosure and do a low level format and duplicate the drive having them both connected to the internal ATA cable)


    -HandsOff
     
  6. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    regarding the bios - i might post on the support forum for my machine - they might be able to tell me without the need for me to go rummaging thru the bios

    toploader boldly not going where any bios has been before :D
     
  7. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    i thought if i buy norton ghost or something like that it just makes a straight copy of the entire drive?
     
  8. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Posts:
    1,946
    Location:
    Bay Area, California
    For some reason people are wary of the BIOS, but I do not know why. You have to be pretty explicit when you exit. One key for exit and save changes, one key for disgard changes. I don't imagine it could hurt to look. You better get a second opinion though. It's possible I just don't understand the risk.

    - HandsOff
     
  9. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    it's ok HandsOff - i'm just being over cautious - i've fiddled with bios before in other machines with no problems but this is a relatively new machine and having loaded it with software and data i don't want to do anything to compromise it. ;)
     
  10. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Posts:
    1,946
    Location:
    Bay Area, California
    Well, you can accomplish the same thing sort of by just duplicating with a second internal hard drive, Then disconnect it.

    In fact, a certain poster on this forum presents it as the best way to back up the system. I have to say it does have a lot of appeal. Just plug it in, and instantly you are back on line!

    Alot cheaper too!

    -HandsOff
     
  11. toploader

    toploader Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Posts:
    707
    yes it is an option - i just felt it would be a lot easier with a usb drive - no need to install configure or physically disconnect.
     
  12. VIPER99

    VIPER99 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    Posts:
    78
    You should also check to see if the USB hardrive manufacturer supports booting. In a computer course I took last year we tried booting to a USB HD but it didn't work :'( We figured it was a combination of the bios didn't support it and the manufacture didn't either. We contacted the manufacture about our plan and they stated that they didn't support what we were doing. So if you are planning on trying a USB boot I would recommend taking a look at manufacture too.

    Hey, you could allows try creating a boot disk for XP on a USB jump drive and see if it will boot. Just thought of it now. Anyways good luck with the boot attempt I would like to here how it works out for ya.
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.