Can you install an O/S on a thumb drive?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by wingman411, Jul 3, 2003.

  1. wingman411

    wingman411 OSNN Senior Addict

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    With all the new large USB flash drives out (256 MB for instance), I am wondering if you could install, say windows 98 on it and just leave it in one of the USB spots on a computer?
     
  2. scsa20

    scsa20 Simonsoft Network

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    no, you can not... there's a couple of reasons why you can't... 1 and formost reason is because it doesn't have enough space to install it on... second reason is that most of them only uses the FAT file system, and another biggie is the way the Master Boot Record (MBR) works.
     
  3. Maveric169

    Maveric169 The Voices Talk to Me

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    Well the only point that you made (sorry to say) is about the master boot record. Win 98 is a Fat32 system and 256 MB is enough to install win98 in minimum config.

    With that said I don't think you can use it for an OS because you OS has to load the USB drivers before your USB ports become active. Although I am sure it can be done somehow someway, I think it would be more hassle than it would be worth.
     
  4. GoNz0

    GoNz0 NTFS Stoner

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    there was a post on DOS based USB drivers, main page from gonaads i think.
     
  5. Un4gIvEn1

    Un4gIvEn1 Moderator

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    I don't think you can do it with a USB flash drive, but I know that there is an adapter that you can plug into the IDE connector on your board and use flashcards as if they were harddrives. I will see if I can dig up the links...
     
  6. Ketchupisyourfriend

    Ketchupisyourfriend OSNN Senior Addict

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    I was discussing this with a friend and he claims that there is an option to boot from usb drive, he claims to have used it as a boot disk before. I don't know how true this is or whatever, I'm just the messenger. Take it for what its worth
     
  7. XP Abuser

    XP Abuser Guest

    well i thought hard drives have a simple piece of code and uses it to communicate with the bios and visa-versa on low level
    then the code runs from memory so cpu can access it and blah de blah

    but i may be wrong
     
  8. Maveric169

    Maveric169 The Voices Talk to Me

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    Well on some Mobo's i think there is built in support (might be in the Cmos) for USB boot drives, but I know with my mobo I can't do anything with the usb's untill after XP loads (I have a USB wireless optical mouse and USB keyboard) And neither work till XP loads. No if the mobo has a built in "hot" support for usb (meaning that generic usb drivers are stored on a chip on the mobo) then it might be possible, but you would also need an option in the bios settings to tell the system to load from that device.