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syslinux-install.txt

How to Create a Bootable USB: Windows XP and Vista

STEP 0: Your motherboard (BIOS) has to support boot from usb (usb-key or usb-hdd). You don't need to know which of these types your media is though, your BIOS recognizes the usb controller in the device, and this determines usb-key or usb-hdd type.
In case your motherboard does not support booting from usb, the PLoP Boot Manager might be a solution.

STEP 1: Download the latest copy of Syslinux and extract it.

STEP 2: Open a command prompt and cd to your 'syslinux\win32' folder. Run syslinux.exe -m -a X: replacing X with the drive letter of your media. This will install suitable MBR code into your flash drive and mark the partition on it as active.

STEP 3: Copy a Linux kernel image (like vmlinuz) to the root (X:\) of your media.

STEP 4: Lastly, create a 'syslinux.cfg' file in the root of your media (X:\) and
enter any configuration options you need/want.


You can also use RMPrepUSB to format your UFD and to install SYSLINUX.
How to Create a Bootable USB: For Linux

STEP 0: Your motherboard (BIOS) has to support boot from usb (usb-key or usb-hdd).
You don't need to know which of these types your media is though, your BIOS recognizes
the usb controller in the device, and this determines usb-key or usb-hdd type.

STEP 1: Download the latest copy of Syslinux and extract it.

STEP 2: Open a command prompt and cd to your 'syslinux/linux' folder. Run ./syslinux -i /dev/sdX1
replacing X with the device node of your media.
Or run ./syslinux -i -d /syslinux /dev/sdb1 (d - directory for syslinux files)

STEP 3: Ensure the usb drive is bootable. For that, we need a working MBR code and an active partition.
Open a command prompt and cd to your 'syslinux/mbr' folder. Run the following two commands,
replacing X with the device node of your usb drive:

dd conv=notrunc bs=440 count=1 if=mbr.bin of=/dev/sdX
parted /dev/sdX set 1 boot on

This will write the Syslinux mbr code (mbr.bin) into the master boot record of the drive,
and mark first partition as active (bootable). For the second task, you can use fdisk or other
disk partitioning tools.