[LinuxBIOS] Booting from USB

Corey Osgood corey.osgood at gmail.com
Thu Nov 8 06:47:21 CET 2007

Gregg C Levine wrote:
> Hello!
> I have a project taking shape that would eventually have a system booting a
> file-system from USB.

Sweet! I look forward to your results!

> I remember that we had a method of doing something of a sort from USB, using
> the contents of the v1 release. To be honest I am not even sure I remember
> the details behind it, or the individual who was the developer behind it,
> just that it was possible. Up to a point of course.

FILO has support for USB, but unfortunately UHCI is broken and EHCI is
unsupported. OHCI works AFAIK, but I can't even confirm that much. I
started some hacking on FILO to use a USB interface similar to the linux
kernel, so that EHCI could be put in place easier, but gave up. I'm no
expert on USB (or IDE, or SCSI, or ATAPI), so I was in over my head.

> Now the project, essentially it would be an EPIA type board with a USB
> device a file-system, when booted we'd have a Linux prompt and all of the
> usual features thusly. The networking card would be a commodity wireless
> one. 
> The problem is that of selecting the board, and then configuring it to do
> that. I would like recommendations. The problem is of course money I would
> like it to be under 100 dollars US for the board. Preferably below 60
> dollars US for it.

Take a look at the Jetway J7F2WE. I'm working on the last stages of
bringing it in to LB as I'm writing this. I think the cost is ~$150 USD.
Other options include the ALIX.1C, ~$140 and fully supported, and this
Elite C7VCM, seen here:
http://www.mini-box.com/Elite-C7-1-5G?sc=8&category=99 which is
unsupported, but shouldn't be too hard once the CN700 stuff is in for
the Jetway. I'm not an expert, but I'd say from the looks of things
Elite is another PCChips brand, so I'd be cautious. Each has its own
advantages/disadvantages, all the features are listed on mini-box.com.
There are of course other options (an ebay Epia-M, for instance), but
these boards are all still in production.


> Currently the file-system I've chosen is that of RUNT Linux, the fact that
> is a UMSDOS based arrangement built using Slackware Linux is that of the
> reason.
> And naturally when the thing came up and started the classic doing something
> specific phase, that's where I'd be ending up with designing a gizmo to do
> most of that. And coding the programs behind it. 
> --
> Gregg C Levine hansolofalcon at worldnet.att.net
> "The Force will be with you always." Obi-Wan Kenobi

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