Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes - Solaris

This is a discussion on Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes - Solaris ; Hi all, I'm trying to create a bootable Solaris USB memory stick. I've followed what little instructions I can find, but I don't get anywhere. I've created a FAT32 and Solaris partition on my 64 MB memory stick, ran installgrub, ...

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  1. Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    Hi all,

    I'm trying to create a bootable Solaris USB memory stick. I've
    followed what little instructions I can find, but I don't get
    anywhere. I've created a FAT32 and Solaris partition on my 64 MB
    memory stick, ran installgrub, and copied /boot/grub/* to the
    UFS partition I created on the memory stick. All seems to go OK
    (no errors), but when my Ultra 20 tries to boot from the memory
    stick, it complains about the disk not being bootable (in other
    words, it DOES find the memory stci and tries to boot from it,
    but fails).

    Any clues greatfully received!

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  2. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    In comp.unix.solaris Rich Teer wrote:
    > Hi all,


    > I'm trying to create a bootable Solaris USB memory stick.


    What OS/build?

    > I've
    > followed what little instructions I can find, but I don't get
    > anywhere.


    Have you seen this site? It claims to have worked under b20, but I
    haven't tried it.

    http://uadmin.blogspot.com/2005/11/grub-on-stick.html

    --
    Darren Dunham ddunham@taos.com
    Senior Technical Consultant TAOS http://www.taos.com/
    Got some Dr Pepper? San Francisco, CA bay area
    < This line left intentionally blank to confuse you. >

  3. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Mon, 23 Jan 2006 22:24:29 GMT, Rich Teer
    wrote:

    >Hi all,
    >
    >I'm trying to create a bootable Solaris USB memory stick. I've
    >followed what little instructions I can find, but I don't get
    >anywhere. I've created a FAT32 and Solaris partition on my 64 MB
    >memory stick, ran installgrub, and copied /boot/grub/* to the
    >UFS partition I created on the memory stick. All seems to go OK
    >(no errors), but when my Ultra 20 tries to boot from the memory
    >stick, it complains about the disk not being bootable (in other
    >words, it DOES find the memory stci and tries to boot from it,
    >but fails).
    >
    >Any clues greatfully received!


    Hi Rich,

    I had poked at this a little w/out success. I had hopes of getting
    a small Knoppix or something onto a USB fob as an exercise w/some
    potential for being useful. I could get an isolinux image to boot
    but had no idea how to install grub. (By memory stick do you mean
    a thumb drive or a stick in a reader? Does it make a difference?)

    Your post inspired me to try again, and I googled up this:
    http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/...10/grub_intro/

    I was booting grub from a Lexar USB fob in a couple of minutes

    Basically (in Linux on my T43) it was:
    fdisk /dev/sdb
    created a 3M fat32 partition (sdb1) - probably way too big.. df
    says the space used (after below) was about 116k. I would
    probably create a separate ext2 parititon to install the OS in.
    mkdosfs /dev/sdb1
    mount -t /dev/sdb1 /mnt/fatscratch
    mkdir /mnt/fatscratch/boot, /mnt/fatscratch/boot/grub
    cp /boot/grub/menu.conf, stage1, fat_stage1_5, stage2 to
    /mnt/fatscratch/boot/grub
    grub
    find /boot/grub/stage1 .... and add'l gyrations
    The article uses this to figure out what
    the grub path to the fat32 partition on the thumb drive is,
    but I knew it would be (hd1,0) - see the article
    root (hd1,0)
    the thumb drive fat partition - if correct grub
    says "Filesystem type is fat, parrition type 0xb)
    setup (hd1)
    grub finds the appropriate files in boot/grub on the thumb
    and installs the boot loader

    Reboot and select the thumbdrive as the boot device. Grub comes up
    immediately and offers to boot Linux from the copied grub.conf - which
    isn't correct anymore since when the thumb is booted _it_ becomes
    hd0. I only copied it to have _something_ in place to test with. A
    manual edit from within Grub let me boot my Linux install. One would
    do something more permanent...

    I haven't tried this from Solaris yet. I leave that as an exercise
    for the reader Please post your results.

    After many frustrating tries this turned out to be quite easy.
    Hopefully it will be from Solaris as well. Please let me know if I
    left anything out.

    Thanks for the inspiration,
    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  4. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Tue, 24 Jan 2006, Darren Dunham wrote:

    > What OS/build?


    CUrrently, build 30 of Nevada.

    > Have you seen this site? It claims to have worked under b20, but I
    > haven't tried it.
    >
    > http://uadmin.blogspot.com/2005/11/grub-on-stick.html


    Yep, those were the instructions that I was following... :-(

    SOMEthing does get put onto the memory stick, but obviouslyt not
    enough to make it bootable.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  5. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Mon, 23 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:

    > but had no idea how to install grub. (By memory stick do you mean
    > a thumb drive or a stick in a reader? Does it make a difference?)


    I have no idea if it make a difference, but I'm specifically talking
    about one of those thumb shaped "drive" one puts into a USB slot (the
    ULtra 20 has two front mounted USB ports, so I'm putting it into one
    of those).

    > Your post inspired me to try again, and I googled up this:
    > http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/...10/grub_intro/
    >
    > I was booting grub from a Lexar USB fob in a couple of minutes


    Cool! How big is your fob? I suspect that at only 64MB, mine is a little
    bit small. I might be suffering from fob envy. :-)

    > I haven't tried this from Solaris yet. I leave that as an exercise
    > for the reader Please post your results.


    If/when I have some, I will. In fact, I'll create a web page about it.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  6. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Tue, 24 Jan 2006 01:06:34 GMT, Rich Teer
    wrote:

    >On Mon, 23 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:
    >
    >> but had no idea how to install grub. (By memory stick do you mean
    >> a thumb drive or a stick in a reader? Does it make a difference?)

    >
    >I have no idea if it make a difference, but I'm specifically talking
    >about one of those thumb shaped "drive" one puts into a USB slot (the
    >ULtra 20 has two front mounted USB ports, so I'm putting it into one
    >of those).
    >
    >> Your post inspired me to try again, and I googled up this:
    >> http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/...10/grub_intro/
    >>
    >> I was booting grub from a Lexar USB fob in a couple of minutes

    >
    >Cool! How big is your fob? I suspect that at only 64MB, mine is a little
    >bit small. I might be suffering from fob envy. :-)


    128M for this experiment. The eventual target is a SanDisk Mini 1G.
    Size _does_ matter.


    >> I haven't tried this from Solaris yet. I leave that as an exercise
    >> for the reader Please post your results.

    >
    >If/when I have some, I will. In fact, I'll create a web page about it.


    How do you intend to work around things like logs gradually filling up
    the thumb drive? Or constant log writes (even if limited in max size)
    wearing it out. These things have an upper limit to the number of
    writes to each internal "page", IIRC. I was looking at Knoppix since
    it treats its boot drive as read-only. And is compressed.

    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  7. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Tue, 24 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:

    > 128M for this experiment. The eventual target is a SanDisk Mini 1G.
    > Size _does_ matter.


    SIgh. So I'm told. :-)

    > How do you intend to work around things like logs gradually filling up
    > the thumb drive? Or constant log writes (even if limited in max size)
    > wearing it out. These things have an upper limit to the number of
    > writes to each internal "page", IIRC. I was looking at Knoppix since
    > it treats its boot drive as read-only. And is compressed.


    My plan was to only boot from the USB drive when re-installing a machine.
    I don't have DHCP here (which PXE relies on apparently), so I can't do the
    equivelent of SPARC's "ok> boot net". I boot from a DVD/CD and then select
    NFS as the source of the software. I was hoping to be able to boot from a
    USB stick rather than a CD.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  8. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Tue, 24 Jan 2006 16:41:20 GMT, Rich Teer wrote:

    >On Tue, 24 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:
    >
    >> 128M for this experiment. The eventual target is a SanDisk Mini 1G.
    >> Size _does_ matter.

    >
    >SIgh. So I'm told. :-)
    >
    >> How do you intend to work around things like logs gradually filling up
    >> the thumb drive? Or constant log writes (even if limited in max size)
    >> wearing it out. These things have an upper limit to the number of
    >> writes to each internal "page", IIRC. I was looking at Knoppix since
    >> it treats its boot drive as read-only. And is compressed.

    >
    >My plan was to only boot from the USB drive when re-installing a machine.
    >I don't have DHCP here (which PXE relies on apparently), so I can't do the
    >equivelent of SPARC's "ok> boot net". I boot from a DVD/CD and then select
    >NFS as the source of the software. I was hoping to be able to boot from a
    >USB stick rather than a CD.


    Ah. I'm thinking more of a rescue OS or a way to do a quick check of a
    new box for Linux compatibility. Grub isn't really necessary for that but
    might be useful. Might be fun to dual boot the 1G thumb w/snv_something
    and Linux.

    Does Solaris/snv_x have any ability to detect (new) hardware at boot,
    or is that all done during install? If it is all at install, it would be
    rather less useful when plugged into varying boxen. In particular,
    SATA/PATA, NIC, and VID drivers might be issues. Put a little differently,
    are _all_ drivers installed @ install, or only those for detected hardware?

    I should already know the answer to this...

    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  9. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Tue, 24 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:

    > Ah. I'm thinking more of a rescue OS or a way to do a quick check of a
    > new box for Linux compatibility. Grub isn't really necessary for that but


    Linux compatibility isn't a requirement here. :-)

    > Does Solaris/snv_x have any ability to detect (new) hardware at boot,


    Yep, although the ability to USE the new device depends on the driver
    being installed.

    > SATA/PATA, NIC, and VID drivers might be issues. Put a little differently,
    > are _all_ drivers installed @ install, or only those for detected hardware?


    Depends. If you chose a complete installation, then all drivers that are
    bundled with Solaris will be installed. Otherwise, only those for the
    detected HW will be installed.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  10. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Tue, 24 Jan 2006 01:06:34 GMT, Rich Teer
    wrote:

    >On Mon, 23 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:
    >
    >> but had no idea how to install grub. (By memory stick do you mean
    >> a thumb drive or a stick in a reader? Does it make a difference?)

    >
    >I have no idea if it make a difference, but I'm specifically talking
    >about one of those thumb shaped "drive" one puts into a USB slot (the
    >ULtra 20 has two front mounted USB ports, so I'm putting it into one
    >of those).
    >
    >> Your post inspired me to try again, and I googled up this:
    >> http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/...10/grub_intro/
    >>
    >> I was booting grub from a Lexar USB fob in a couple of minutes


    Rich, maybe this will give you a little more hope This Lexar fob
    will boot grub on my W1100Z, and menu entries let me boot my
    HD-installed OSs from there. Haven't tried putting any OS on the fob
    itself yet.

    I wonder if your Ultra 20 requires the same foolish gyration to boot
    a USB fob that the W1100Z does. (?) It recognizes the FOB at boot.
    Hitting F8 brings up the boot menu. There is a "+" next to the
    "hard disk" (note disk, not disks) implying that there are multiple
    sub-choices. I'm damned if I can find a set of keystrokes that open
    the sub-list so I can choose the fob. Google and Docs.Sun haven't
    come through with clues yet either...

    What I _can_ do is go to BIOS, boot options, expand the HD entry, move
    the fob to the top of the list, save and exit, reboot, and the fob
    gets booted. Ugh. This is the same as my old StinkPad R40. The
    newer T43 just lets me select the fob on the fly. As it should be.

    Any clues how to expand the boot menu? Newer BIOS? Magic keys?

    Thanks,
    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  11. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Wed, 25 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:

    > Rich, maybe this will give you a little more hope This Lexar fob
    > will boot grub on my W1100Z, and menu entries let me boot my
    > HD-installed OSs from there. Haven't tried putting any OS on the fob
    > itself yet.


    Thinking about it, all I need to be able to do is get as far as running
    grub (with a writable menu.lst), so that I can select a network install
    of Solaris. Hmm...

    > I wonder if your Ultra 20 requires the same foolish gyration to boot
    > a USB fob that the W1100Z does. (?) It recognizes the FOB at boot.


    I don't think so. It does try to boot from the USB stick, but pronounces
    it as unbootable.

    > Any clues how to expand the boot menu? Newer BIOS? Magic keys?


    Sorry, no idea.

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  12. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    Bill Waddington writes:

    >Ah. I'm thinking more of a rescue OS or a way to do a quick check of a
    >new box for Linux compatibility. Grub isn't really necessary for that but
    >might be useful. Might be fun to dual boot the 1G thumb w/snv_something
    >and Linux.


    It is also possible to use the built-in grub booted from disk to
    boot oover the net.

    >Does Solaris/snv_x have any ability to detect (new) hardware at boot,
    >or is that all done during install? If it is all at install, it would be
    >rather less useful when plugged into varying boxen. In particular,
    >SATA/PATA, NIC, and VID drivers might be issues. Put a little differently,
    >are _all_ drivers installed @ install, or only those for detected hardware?



    All drivers are installed (with some minor exception on SPARC hardware)

    Casper

  13. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Wed, 25 Jan 2006 17:44:05 GMT, Rich Teer
    wrote:

    >On Wed, 25 Jan 2006, Bill Waddington wrote:


    >> I wonder if your Ultra 20 requires the same foolish gyration to boot
    >> a USB fob that the W1100Z does. (?) It recognizes the FOB at boot.

    >
    >I don't think so. It does try to boot from the USB stick, but pronounces
    >it as unbootable.


    I didn't mean to imply that you were missing a step required to boot
    the stick. I was hoping that you had to go through the same pain and
    had already found a simpler way

    >> Any clues how to expand the boot menu? Newer BIOS? Magic keys?

    >
    >Sorry, no idea.


    Rats

    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  14. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    In article ,
    Rich Teer wrote:

    >I don't think so. It does try to boot from the USB stick, but pronounces
    >it as unbootable.


    Did you set up USB emulation in the bios?

    I did succeed to boot SchilliX in May 2005 on a IBM T42p from a USB stick

    --
    EMail:joerg@schily.isdn.cs.tu-berlin.de (home) Jörg Schilling D-13353 Berlin
    js@cs.tu-berlin.de (uni)
    schilling@fokus.fraunhofer.de (work) Blog: http://schily.blogspot.com/
    URL: http://cdrecord.berlios.de/old/private/ ftp://ftp.berlios.de/pub/schily

  15. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Wed, 26 Jan 2006, Joerg Schilling wrote:

    > Did you set up USB emulation in the bios?


    No, but I don't recall seeing an option like that in the Ultra 20's
    BIOS screens.

    > I did succeed to boot SchilliX in May 2005 on a IBM T42p from a USB stick


    Cool! All I really need to do is get as far as the GRUB screen
    appearing, so that I can then select a network device to boot
    from. Of course, all these could be avoided if PCs had something
    decent like OBP. Sigh... (PXE doesn't work for me as I don't have
    a DHCP server.)

    --
    Rich Teer, SCNA, SCSA, OpenSolaris CAB member

    President,
    Rite Online Inc.

    Voice: +1 (250) 979-1638
    URL: http://www.rite-group.com/rich

  16. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    Bill Waddington wrote:

    > After many frustrating tries this turned out to be quite easy.
    > Hopefully it will be from Solaris as well. Please let me know if I
    > left anything out.


    It might work. However, bear in mind that Sun modified GRUB quite a bit.
    I have found Sun and normal GRUB to differ significantly. For
    instance, obviously Sun GRUB has the UFS reader. But there is also no
    /boot/grub/device...whatever file there either. Then there is the whole
    bootadm(1M) and boot_archive thing. In other words, it's a whole new
    adventure.

  17. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    Rich Teer wrote:

    > Cool! All I really need to do is get as far as the GRUB screen
    > appearing, so that I can then select a network device to boot
    > from. Of course, all these could be avoided if PCs had something
    > decent like OBP. Sigh... (PXE doesn't work for me as I don't have
    > a DHCP server.)


    Well, you said it! You're gonna need to set up a DHCP server for PXE
    sooner or later. Better make it sooner.

    The way I went about this (and am still working on it), is to use JET.
    Basically I just wanted a PXE boot env. which enables me to flash a
    system with JumpStart(TM) / Flash(TM) archive. JET set up the DHCP
    server for me that was PXE capable.

    So I backed it all up, and then wiped the DHCP / boot / install server
    clean. Next step is to do reverse engineering - what they did to the
    DHCP server, what they added into /tftpboot that should and should NOT
    be there. Once I have it all figured out, I'll build my own PXE /
    JumpStart / flash install server, but without the extra junk laying around.

    The funny thing that I ran into is that the JET / PXE install of the
    flar archive would render the system bootable, but it would hang during
    boot. However, it I flashed the system with that same archive using the
    DVD to boot off of it, everything was hunky-dory. So, my bet is on the
    begin_ or finish_ scripts that JET does. That'll go buh-bye as well.

  18. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Thu, 26 Jan 2006 09:50:32 +0100, UX-admin
    wrote:

    >Bill Waddington wrote:
    >
    >> After many frustrating tries this turned out to be quite easy.
    >> Hopefully it will be from Solaris as well. Please let me know if I
    >> left anything out.

    >
    >It might work. However, bear in mind that Sun modified GRUB quite a bit.
    > I have found Sun and normal GRUB to differ significantly. For
    >instance, obviously Sun GRUB has the UFS reader. But there is also no
    >/boot/grub/device...whatever file there either. Then there is the whole
    >bootadm(1M) and boot_archive thing. In other words, it's a whole new
    >adventure.


    Good point. I have already managed to boot a Solaris HD install via
    grub on the fob - but to clarify an earlier post, what I did was
    _chainload_ the HD Solaris grub from the fob grub.

    That might turn out to be necessary for an all-fob installation as
    well if for some reason the Solaris version of grub won't install/run
    in the fob's mbr.

    That's enough grubbing for now.

    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

  19. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    In article ,
    Rich Teer wrote:
    >On Wed, 26 Jan 2006, Joerg Schilling wrote:
    >
    >> Did you set up USB emulation in the bios?

    >
    >No, but I don't recall seeing an option like that in the Ultra 20's
    >BIOS screens.


    If it is a Phoenix BIOS, it should be under "built in peripherals" or similar IIRC.

    On my IBM Notebook, it was on by default.
    On my MSI Dual Opteron MoBo, I needed to switch it on by hand.

    --
    EMail:joerg@schily.isdn.cs.tu-berlin.de (home) Jörg Schilling D-13353 Berlin
    js@cs.tu-berlin.de (uni)
    schilling@fokus.fraunhofer.de (work) Blog: http://schily.blogspot.com/
    URL: http://cdrecord.berlios.de/old/private/ ftp://ftp.berlios.de/pub/schily

  20. Re: Booting Solaris from USB memory stick woes

    On Mon, 23 Jan 2006 22:24:29 GMT, Rich Teer wrote:

    >Hi all,
    >
    >I'm trying to create a bootable Solaris USB memory stick.


    Rich,

    Did you ever get this working? I wish you hadn't posted this because
    it has become a bit of an obsession with me...

    I've been able to boot knoppix from the stick on several machines -
    haven't tried Solaris yet but at least the grub stuff should work.

    What I have discovered is that for some boxes just installing grub
    and running setup isn't enough to make a stick appear as bootable.
    Some will happily boot it, others need the stick to be sprinkled
    with the right pixy dust first.

    If you're still interested I will post what I have sussed out so far.

    Bill
    --
    William D Waddington
    william.waddington@beezmo.com
    "Even bugs...are unexpected signposts on
    the long road of creativity..." - Ken Burtch

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