Booting From USB

Continuing my desire to create a CentOS test system, I next tried a Dell PowerEdge 2850. A wattage sucking monster.

I had a CentOS 7 Minimal Install DVD. I tried several times to install and failed. I paused to consider the problem. Sure enough, the drive is a CD drive and not a DVD drive.

Okay, burn a CD.

Except that is impossible with CentOS 7. The Minimal ISO image is 800 MB, about 100 MB too large for a CD.

Okay, burn the ISO to a USB flash drive.

The system refused to see the stick. Fiddling around with some BIOS settings finally got the system to recognize the USB flash drive.

Except I then saw the following:

isolinux.bin missing or corrupt

More head scratching, more four letter words. I stumble across a discussion about modern ISO images needing the isohybrid command. Seems most modern ISO images these days are not compatible with older BIOSes. The old BIOSes need an MBR. The isohybrid adds an MBR and some other tweaks to create a compatible image.

The solution is to copy the ISO to a working directory and executing the isohybrid command:

isohybrid CentOS-7-x86_64-Minimal-1708.iso

Then cp or dd the image to the USB flash drive.

The difference can be seen when using fdisk -l to view the USB flash drive. After running isohybrid the disk will contain a single partition. Otherwise the device will contain two partitions, one being an EFI partition.

Linux keeps old hardware alive? Maybe. Maybe not. Be prepared to jumps through hoops of fire.

Posted: Category: Usability Tagged: CentOS

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