faq4.html addition: making USB install media

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faq4.html addition: making USB install media

Peter N. M. Hansteen-3
The attached diff adds a new subsection about creating bootable USB media to
the install faq, hopefully useful and correct.

- Peter

--
Peter N. M. Hansteen, member of the first RFC 1149 implementation team
http://bsdly.blogspot.com/ http://www.bsdly.net/ http://www.nuug.no/
"Remember to set the evil bit on all malicious network traffic"
delilah spamd[29949]: 85.152.224.147: disconnected after 42673 seconds.
--- faq4.html.ori Sat Sep 28 10:18:59 2013
+++ faq4.html Sat Sep 28 10:42:39 2013
@@ -42,6 +42,7 @@
     <li><a href="#MkCD-ROM" >4.3.1 - Creating a boot CD</a>
     <li><a href="#UnixFlop" >4.3.2 - Creating floppies on Unix</a>
     <li><a href="#DosFlop"  >4.3.3 - Creating floppies on Windows</a>
+    <li><a href="#MkUSB" >4.3.4 - Creating a boot USB drive</a>
     </ul>
 <li><a href="#Boot"         >4.4 - Booting OpenBSD install media</a>
 <li><a href="#Install"      >4.5 - Performing a simple install</a>
@@ -457,7 +458,38 @@
   1474560 bytes written
 </pre></td></tr></table>
 
+<a name="MkUSB"></a>
+<h3>4.3.2 - Creating bootable USB media on Unix</h3>
+
 <p>
+Precise details and device names may vary from Unix variant to Unix
+variant; use what is appropriate for your system.
+
+<p>
+If your target machine is able to boot from USB media, the most convenient way to install is to copy the  <tt>cd53.iso</tt> or <tt>install53.iso</tt> files to the USB media using
+<a href="http://www.openbsd.org/cgi-bin/man.cgi?query=dd&amp;sektion=0">dd(1)</a> (overwriting any pre-existing file system on there in the process).
+An example usage of <tt>dd(1)</tt> is below:
+
+<p>
+<table border=0 width="90%"><tr><td nowrap bgcolor="#EEEEEE"><pre>
+  # <b>dd if=install53.iso of=/dev/rsd0c bs=32k</b>
+</pre></td></tr></table>
+
+<p>
+Once the image is written, check to make sure that the copied image is
+the same as the original with the
+<a href="http://www.openbsd.org/cgi-bin/man.cgi?query=cmp&amp;sektion=1">cmp(1)</a>
+command.
+If the USB media is identical to the image, you will just see another prompt.
+
+<p>
+<table border=0 width="90%"><tr><td nowrap bgcolor="#EEEEEE"><pre>
+  # <b>cmp /dev/rsd0c install53.fs</b>
+</pre></td></tr></table>
+
+
+
+<p>
 <a name="Boot"></a>
 <h2>4.4 - Booting OpenBSD install media</h2>
 
@@ -467,12 +499,12 @@
 to most people.
 Your system will have to be instructed to boot from whatever media you have
 chosen to use, usually through a BIOS setup option.
-If you want to boot from CD, your system BIOS must be able to and be set to
-boot from CD.
+If you want to boot from CD or USB media, your system BIOS must be able to and be set to
+boot from your chosen install media.  
 Some older systems do not have this option, and you must use a floppy
 for booting your installation image.
 Don't worry though; even if you boot from floppy you can still install
-from the CD if it is supported by OpenBSD (i.e., almost all IDE drives).
+from the CD or USB drive if it is supported by OpenBSD (i.e., almost all IDE drives).
 
 <p>
 You can also install by booting <a href="#bsd.rd">bsd.rd</a> from an

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Re: faq4.html addition: making USB install media

Stuart Henderson-6
On 2013/09/28 10:46, Peter N. M. Hansteen wrote:
> The attached diff adds a new subsection about creating bootable USB media to
> the install faq, hopefully useful and correct.

How widely does this actually work?

This method is common on Linux distributions but they have a specially
prepared partition table (mkhybrid) so that the dd'd image is valid for
writing to a hard-drive-like device, whereas OpenBSD isos are just plain
cd images.

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Re: faq4.html addition: making USB install media

Simon Pratt
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA512

On 2013-09-28 5:23 AM, Stuart Henderson wrote:
> How widely does this actually work?

Last week I spent a great deal of effort installing OpenBSD on a
system with no CD or floppy drive.  Simply dd'ing the iso to the USB
drive did not work.  I loaded up the iso in a VM and installed OpenBSD
on the USB, then copied over the installer ramdisk files and packages
from the iso to the USB.
Comment: GPGTools - http://gpgtools.org
Comment: Using GnuPG with Thunderbird - http://www.enigmail.net/

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Re: faq4.html addition: making USB install media

Nick Holland
In reply to this post by Stuart Henderson-6
On 09/28/13 05:22, Stuart Henderson wrote:

> On 2013/09/28 10:46, Peter N. M. Hansteen wrote:
>> The attached diff adds a new subsection about creating bootable USB media to
>> the install faq, hopefully useful and correct.
>
> How widely does this actually work?
>
> This method is common on Linux distributions but they have a specially
> prepared partition table (mkhybrid) so that the dd'd image is valid for
> writing to a hard-drive-like device, whereas OpenBSD isos are just plain
> cd images.
>

lemme extend this a bit:

NO WAY.  Not ok.

This will work on some computers.  I highly doubt enough to justify the
phrase "most convenient". "works for me" doesn't cut it.

If you want to boot from a USB stick, use a process that will work from
most machines that can boot from a USB stick -- install the system to
it, as documented in faq14.17.  It is really easy, and really works.
And even then, USB booting is so blastedly buggy on enough systems, I'll
still qualify it with a "most" -- but at least that's not hoping the
BIOS successfully interprets a CD image on a disk device.

Plus, the formatting is poor and the FAQ is in lock for the 5.4 updates
anyway.

Nick.