Can't boot off the USB image

Peter Steele psteele at
Thu Feb 18 15:28:20 UTC 2010

We boot off USB disks all the time without issues. As long as the disk is listed first in the BIOS and it's a proper FBSD image, it works fine...

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-freebsd-questions at [mailto:owner-freebsd-questions at] On Behalf Of Fbsd1
Sent: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 11:17 PM
To: rocwhite168
Cc: freebsd-questions at
Subject: Re: Can't boot off the USB image

rocwhite168 wrote:
> My computers (Dell SX280 PCs or Dell D600 laptop) seem
 >to refuse to boot off the USB disk with non-Windows images are  >written to it (I have also tried OpenSolaris images).
 >I've tried using dd to write the .img files, or using unetbootin to  >write either .img or .iso images, or using UltraISO to write the iso  >files to my USB disk, but all the methods failed. But if the image was  >a Windows boot disk, it did work. Does anyone know what the problem  >could be? Is it simply because the computers are to old? Or do I  >have to do anything special for the FreeBSD images to make the  >computers boot off a USB device?
> Thank you very much!
> _______________________________________________

When you say USB disk, you do mean an USB cabled external disk hard 
drive correct? That being the case, you have to download the FreeBSD 
disc1.iso file and burn it to a cdrom disk and then boot off that to 
start the sysinstall process to populate your USB cabled external disk 
hard drive with the FreeBSD operating system. Reading the FreeBSD manual 
on the install process or the Freebsd install guide should help you a lot.

Now if on the other hand you are really talking about a (USB memory 
stick, flash drive, key disk, stick disk, or pen) which all mean the 
same thing, then you should read this article "Everything you want to 
know about Installing FreeBSD on a USB stick"

If none of this helps you then repost with an more detailed description 
of just what you did and what the result was.

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