Monday, 22 June 2015

E2B: How to install debian from an ISO

Some linux install ISOs, such as debian-based ISOs, will boot to a Live OS fine using Easy2Boot straight from the .ISO file.

However, if you want to install linux from the ISO, some linux installers specifically look for a CD-ROM drive rather than looking for the installation source files, or they do not automatically mount the 4th partition, which E2B has mapped to the ISO file by grub4dos, and so the installer cannot find the source files.

Often, however, there is a simple solution. When installing linux onto another device, you just need to specify the source device. E2B changes partition #4 so that it points to the ISO file that we are booting from. So we just need to specify that partition as the 'cdrom'!

Here is an example using debian-8.1.0-i386-CD-1.ISO.


1. Copy the ISO file to your E2B USB drive and boot it in the usual way.

2. If there is more than one boot option in the debian menu, choose the Install option or Graphical Install option.

3. If you are prompted to 'Load CD-ROM drivers'   say No

4. When prompted to manually select a CD-ROM module and device  say Yes

5. From the device list,   select 'cdrom'

6. Specify the new device path which is the USB 4th partition (/dev/sdX4) where X is the USB drive letter.

If you are not sure what device to specify, you can try sdb4, sdc4, sdd4, sde4, etc. until one works.

Alternatively, you can execute a Shell and type   fdisk -l  to view the disk partitions and look at all the 4th partition entries on all disks. The USB drive 4th partition will have an Id of '0 Empty'.

7. The linux installer should now find the source files and you can continue the installation.