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How to Boot With a USB Drive

When you first begin using Peach OSI - You might want to boot from a USB device, like an external hard drive or a flash drive. When you boot from a USB device, what you're actually doing is running your computer with the operating system that's installed on the USB device. When you start your computer normally, you're running with the operating system installed on your hard drive. Follow these easy steps to boot from a flash drive or an external USB hard drive. Depending on the age of your computer you should be able to boot your computer with a USB device in one of the following ways.

Method 1 - Usually used on older computers - Boot to USB by editing your BIOS settings.

Note: Creating a bootable flash drive or configuring an external hard drive as bootable is a task in itself. Chances are that you made it to these instructions because you already know that whatever USB device that you have should be bootable after properly configuring your computer's BIOS.

        1.) Shut down your computer and turn it back on. Press the key required to enter your BIOS or setup. This key is different on different computers. It may be the "del" key, "F10" or a different key. The screen will tell you which key to press during the BIOS Post process (the first screen that you see after turning on your computer).

        2.) Locate the boot-sequence page of the BIOS setup. Each BIOS has its own setup pages, so the name for the page may be different. Sometimes it is called "boot," other times, "drive setup." Use the arrow keys to navigate through the different menus until you locate the boot-sequence page. Tip: The BIOS on most computers list the USB boot option as USB or Removable Devices but some confusingly list it as a Hard Drive option, so be sure to dig around if you're having trouble finding the right one to choose.

        3.) Change the boot sequence so that USB device is listed first. On most computers, the sequence will start with the CD/DVD drive, then the hard drive, followed by other devices. Move "USB/Other devices" to the top of the list. Items can usually be moved around using the "+" key, but each BIOS has its own ways to move items on the list. Read the tips on the screen for information about how to move items on the list.

        4.) Press "F10" to save your changes and exit BIOS. Once you exit, your computer will reboot. If you have a bootable USB device plugged in, your computer will boot from the USB device. Note:  Most of the time when trying to boot to a USB device there is no key-press prompt. The USB boot process usually starts immediately. On some bootable devices, you may be prompted with a message to press a key before the computer will boot to the flash drive or other USB device. If you do nothing, your computer will check for boot information on the next boot device in the list in BIOS which will probably be your hard drive.

Method 2 - Usually used on newer computers - Boot to your USB drive by pressing a special key during the BIOS post process.

  • Insert a flash drive into any USB port on your computer.

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    Start your computer.

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    Access the Device Boot Menu. To do so, press the F10 key as soon as the computer starts.

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    Select the name of the flash drive by using the arrow keys on your keyboard.

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    Press the Enter key to boot up your computer from the flash drive.

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1.) Turn off your computer and insert a flash drive into an available USB port that you have pre-prepared with an operating system.

2.) Start your computer.

3.) Access your computer's Device Boot Menu. To do so, you will need to repeatedly press a special key command as soon as you turn on the computer. This special key command varies. The very first screen that you see should tell you what the key is - if this option is available on your computer. Typically the special key command is the F10 or F12 or the ESC key. You may have to Google your particle computer in order to find out if such a special key command is available on your computer and if so what that key is.

4.) Select the name of the flash drive that you want to boot by using the arrow keys on your keyboard.

5.) Press the Enter key to boot up your computer from the flash drive.

Tips & Troubleshooting

  1. Recheck the boot order in your BIOS . The number one reason a bootable flash drive or other USB device won't boot is because BIOS is not configured properly to check the USB ports first.
  2. Didn't find a "USB Device" boot order listing in BIOS? If your computer was manufactured around 2001 or before, it may not have this ability. If your computer is newer, check for some other ways that the USB option might be worded. In some BIOS versions, it's called "Removable Devices" or "External Devices".
  3. Remove other USB devices. Other connected USB devices, like printers, external media card readers, etc. could be consuming too much power, or causing some other problem which is preventing the computer from booting from flash drive or other device. Unplug all other USB devices and try again.
  4. Switch to another USB port. The BIOS on some motherboards only check the first few USB ports. Switch to another USB port and restart your computer again.
  5. Copy the files to the USB device again. If you created the bootable flash drive or external hard drive yourself, which you probably did, repeat whatever steps you took again. You may have made a mistake during the process. We recommend using Yumi Multiboot to create your Peach OSI bootable USB drives. Peach OSI is on Yumi Multiboot's approved Distro list and will check your ISO and setup Peach OSI for you properly. You can also format the USB drive prior to installing the operating system from the Yumi Multiboot installer and can give your drive the capability to boot Peach OSI live with persistence. You can download Yumi Multiboot for free from here...