Difference between revisions of "Talk:USB flash installation media"

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(Rationale for block size: Question asked and answered in discussion. Probably not the best place for it to begin with. Note could be added, but seems unnecessary in the article due to its scope. Struk out for future removal.)
(Consistent ordering (dd at top)?: new section)
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::::::::::It works, but it breaks syslinux.cfg so the USB stick does not boot properly. This is explained at the top of the topic. I changed the "Note" to a "Warning" and added a little more text to the first paragraph. I think this is sufficient for now. (I agree deleting the section is not the best solution -- I just wanted the warnings to be a bit stronger) [[User:2ManyDogs|2ManyDogs]] ([[User talk:2ManyDogs|talk]]) 15:49, 15 June 2013 (UTC)
 
::::::::::It works, but it breaks syslinux.cfg so the USB stick does not boot properly. This is explained at the top of the topic. I changed the "Note" to a "Warning" and added a little more text to the first paragraph. I think this is sufficient for now. (I agree deleting the section is not the best solution -- I just wanted the warnings to be a bit stronger) [[User:2ManyDogs|2ManyDogs]] ([[User talk:2ManyDogs|talk]]) 15:49, 15 June 2013 (UTC)
 
:::::::::::Ok, let's try to close this discussion again ^^ -- [[User:Kynikos|Kynikos]] ([[User talk:Kynikos|talk]]) 03:41, 16 June 2013 (UTC)
 
:::::::::::Ok, let's try to close this discussion again ^^ -- [[User:Kynikos|Kynikos]] ([[User talk:Kynikos|talk]]) 03:41, 16 June 2013 (UTC)
 +
 +
== Consistent ordering (dd at top)? ==
 +
 +
Hello all,
 +
 +
Would anyone be opposed to re-ordering the Windows section to place dd for Windows at the top in the same way that dd is at the top for the GNU/Linux section?
 +
 +
Similarly, if anyone is a current (part-time) Macintosh OS X user, is there a dd option that we could add as well for cross-"platform" consistency? I would just search, but I would prefer someone that is able to test the program while editing the article to include it (if available).
 +
 +
Cheers,
 +
 +
[[User:AdamT|AdamT]] ([[User talk:AdamT|talk]]) 20:29, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Revision as of 20:29, 8 August 2013

Article Name is Ambiguous, Move Warranted?

Hello,

First off, references:

  1. Article Naming Guidelines
  2. Wikipedia:USB Flash drive

The current title, "USB Installation Media" seems ambiguous (i.e, not descriptive). The current title could rightfully imply a USB connected hard drive or optical drive while the article is focused entirely on USB connected flash media.

In keeping with Arch Wiki's naming guidelines, I suggest the article be renamed to something more specific such as "USB Flash Installation Media," or "Thumb Drive Arch Linux Install." The former is likely preferable as it results in a very similar name, just one that is more descriptive.

Cheers all,

AdamT (talk) 04:28, 24 July 2013 (UTC)

Sounds fair, certainly USB Flash Installation Media would be preferable. -- Kynikos (talk) 12:31, 25 July 2013 (UTC)
I have been rolling this around a bit more before making any changes. I figure this will generate some noise so I want to get it right the first time. Does USB Flash Install work a bit better while simplifying the word choice?
Once the name is agreeable I hope to migrate the UEFI USB instructions from the UEFI article make the naming consistent and maybe make this article a bit shorter and sweeter by linking to other relevant articles and removing any redundant content.
AdamT (talk) 01:31, 28 July 2013 (UTC)
We have to make sure that the title of this article can't be confused with Installing Arch Linux on a USB key, and I think USB Flash Install wouldn't meet that requirement. -- Kynikos (talk) 11:18, 29 July 2013 (UTC)
Thanks Kynikos. Just as a follow-up I will make this move shortly here. I just wanted to make sure nothing else crossed my mind first. AdamT (talk) 10:18, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Verifying the USB

Before and after having performed the dd onto the USB disk, check that the md5sums are correct. For example:

- $ md5sum archlinux-2008.06-core-x86_64.img && echo && cat md5sums.x86_64

The next command will give similar results, but will also let you confirm that the data was written correctly and can be read correctly:

- dd if=/dev/sdb count=661159 status=noxfer | md5sum && echo && cat md5sums.x86_64

--Zatricky 06:45, 22 January 2009 (EST)

I would like to verify this once I get my install back up and running and then integrate this into the GNU/Linux dd section if verified still working. AdamT (talk) 10:23, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

dd for Windows

There is also dd for Windows. I tried it and it works perfectly: [1]

 dd if=file.img of=\\.\e:

where e: is your USB drive letter.

--Liquen 14:55, 4 April 2009 (EDT)

This information should be okay to remove. This is in the article proper. AdamT (talk) 10:25, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

About making the installation media without overwriting

I'm not totally sure if I misunderstood something, but I had to change the path of the entries of the *.cfg files. For instance:

INCLUDE boot/syslinux/archiso_sys.cfg

became:

INCLUDE syslinux/archiso_sys.cfg

It was the only way it worked with the unofficial ISO x86_64 image of march 13th, 2012. Looks like the syslinux command described in the page doesn't get the path as it should.

I edited all of the .cfg files, but probably only editing this ones should have been enough:

archiso.cfg archiso_head.cfg archiso_sys_inc.cfg

I hope it could be useful to somebody, because I spend some time with this (I even thought that was a problem with the hardware). I think it could be possible to make a simple script (or give some command lines) to patch the files once they are copied into the USB and run syslinux.

Thanks !!

I cannot find that this is still relevant to the article as it now exists. I am striking it out as it looks like it could be good to remove. AdamT (talk) 10:33, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Recovering the USB drive afterwards

This didn't work for me:

  1. dd count=1 bs=512 if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdx

I tried this multiple times. No matter how I formatted the disk, 'devmon' always mounted '/dev/sdd' as /media/ARCH_whatever.

I finally just zeroed as much of the disk as I thought the ISO might have been written to.

  1. dd count=100 bs=4M if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdx; sync

That worked. I believe we need to zero MORE than just the initial 512 bytes, but I have no idea how much. Maybe 2048?

At any rate, put '; sync' in there somewhere.

This is what I did eventually, taking a tip from: [2]

  1. dd count=100 bs=4M if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdx; sync
  2. fdisk -H 224 -S 56 /dev/sdx

(new partition, primary, 1, 2048, whatever, type of partition, c (fat32 LBA), x, beginning data sector, 256, write)

  1. mkfs.vfat -F 32 -n volume_label -s 32 -v /dev/sdx1; sync

See the link for more details on the beginning data sector.

  • Um, zeroing out the first 512 bytes is fine for MBR-formatted drives. Were you using GPT? Because then you would need to zero out the first 512+512+16k, and the last 16k+512. See GPT. But assuming you used dd, we're talking about MBR-formatted because the ISO contains a MBR (hybrid) partition table.--DSpider (talk) 06:25, 8 September 2012 (UTC)
Striking this out due to no further communication on this. Will add sync to dd commands under GNU/Linux sections. AdamT (talk) 10:36, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

flush file system buffers after dd

I found that after using dd to write the data to my USB I had to wait for the file system to actually write it to my drive. (as dd completed and returned its stats) This could cause confusion, should we add 'sync' after the dd command on the artical?

Adding && sync as suggested. AdamT (talk) 10:37, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Rationale for block size

Why specifically bs=4M in the example:

# dd bs=4M if=/path/to/archlinux.iso of=/dev/sdx

NoobCp (talk) 11:08, 20 December 2012 (UTC)

Because it speeds up the process, that's why. I guess somebody decided that one warning, two notes and a tip would be too rainbow-like. See this older edit (which references this script). I reduces the time it needs almost by half. --DSpider (talk) 12:17, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

UNetbootin should be removed

I think UNetbootin should be removed. It was just added more information that basically tells you to use something else. This program is way too intrusive. It installs its own version of the bootloader, a crappy syslinux.cfg, and doesn't give a shit about labels. Unetbootin is totally NOT recommended for Arch Linux and it should be removed from the wiki. --DSpider (talk) 11:20, 16 September 2012 (UTC)

Thanks. Good riddance! But, perhaps we should keep the warning? Or just refer them to this discussion page. --DSpider (talk) 06:01, 17 September 2012 (UTC)
This is not the first time UNetbootin info is added and then removed (sadly by me.). Search the history you will find the same topic show up long time ago. If it is broken, we'd better clearly tell people it is broken. And it can prevent it from being recommended again. -- Fengchao (talk) 10:30, 17 September 2012 (UTC)
Yes, please don't take example from what User:Danielwallace did; content should never be removed without at least a valid explanation in the edit summary, and anyway, in this case UNetbootin must be mentioned, even only as an non-recommended, discouraged alternative in a Warning: following the philosophy of the ArchWiki and Arch Linux in general, no available option must be hidden to the users, who are the only ones who can choose what's best for themselves in the end. -- Kynikos (talk) 13:22, 17 September 2012 (UTC)
Deletion reverted. Close. -- Fengchao (talk) 12:09, 24 September 2012 (UTC)
Reopening as the section has been restored. My opinion is unchanged. -- Kynikos (talk) 07:16, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm sorry for re-opening the section but it was my first time that I wrote on this wiki. I know that UNetbooting overwrite the syslinux.cfg, infact my guide is to edit that file to permit the boot of the installation media. So I think you could remove the disclaimer. Mathias (talk) 14:44, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Lol, silly me, I added the disclaimer back without re-reading the section just because I remembered this has been the cause of some edit warring in the past, sorry... Of course you're right, however I've merged the disclaimer into the introduction paragraph in order to try to prevent future disputes. Closed (again). -- Kynikos (talk) 10:57, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
It appears to me that there has been an increase in the number of new users attempting to use unetbootin (and failing) since this section was changed. I think this tool should be more strongly discuraged. There really is no reason to use it, even with the syslinux warning. I'd like to at least amplify the warning about using another tool, and ideally return the original warning from DSpider (Do Not Use UNETBOOTIN). 2ManyDogs (talk) 19:59, 13 June 2013 (UTC)
I admit it's been a while since I last tested UNetbootin: is the procedure described in the article working or not? In any case yes, please expand the warning about using another tool, specifying the reason why UNetbootin is worse. However let's not delete the section again, otherwise this cycle of deletions and restorations will never end... -- Kynikos (talk) 11:25, 15 June 2013 (UTC)
It works, but it breaks syslinux.cfg so the USB stick does not boot properly. This is explained at the top of the topic. I changed the "Note" to a "Warning" and added a little more text to the first paragraph. I think this is sufficient for now. (I agree deleting the section is not the best solution -- I just wanted the warnings to be a bit stronger) 2ManyDogs (talk) 15:49, 15 June 2013 (UTC)
Ok, let's try to close this discussion again ^^ -- Kynikos (talk) 03:41, 16 June 2013 (UTC)

Consistent ordering (dd at top)?

Hello all,

Would anyone be opposed to re-ordering the Windows section to place dd for Windows at the top in the same way that dd is at the top for the GNU/Linux section?

Similarly, if anyone is a current (part-time) Macintosh OS X user, is there a dd option that we could add as well for cross-"platform" consistency? I would just search, but I would prefer someone that is able to test the program while editing the article to include it (if available).

Cheers,

AdamT (talk) 20:29, 8 August 2013 (UTC)