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Re: How to boot installed system from a usb disk? (Warning: newbie)

On 5 November 2013 21:09, Ottavio Caruso
<> wrote:
> Hello and first post here.


> Coming from the Linux world (Slackware lately) I find the Netbsd
> documentation a bit terse. I have researched this topic on both the
> Netbsd online guide and the install.html file but I couldn't find an
> answer.
> My goal is to install the 64bit port from a usb image onto a local
> partition of my drive (currently Win 7 Home) but I don't want to
> install the bootloader yet. I want to be able to boot from a usb disk
> (either the installation one or a different one). My questions are:
> 1) At the stage "Installing the boot selector":
> should I select "no"?

Doesn't really matter - you can always bring back Windows 7 boot
afterwards. But yes, if you want to keep the state of the boot, say
"no"  here.

> 2) If so, how would I then boot the installed system? Should I drop to
> command line prompt and type some commands?

You can boot any partition from Windows 7 boot selector - I've done it
at the time, something along the lines of
should do it (the example is for Linux, of course, but if you install
NetBSD boot block in its partition, not on the MBR, it'l be the same).

> 3) How would one normally create a USB boot rescue disk on Netbsd?

NetBSD script has live-image and install-image targets; I am
not aware of these being regularly published, I have a NetBSD
Xen3_DOMU VM running under XenServer setup to do overnight updates and
builds of the ISOs; on it I occasionally run the live-image and
install-image targets (live-image is also the best if one wants to try
NetBSD on the Raspberry PI). The live-image of course can be used as a
rescue system (frankly speaking, I've never had the need of one so

If tha machine is what you have got at the moment, you could setup a
VirtualBox NetBSD VM under Windows 7 to create the install-image and
live-image targets (it will be slow, but should work).

> 4) When I change my mind and install the bootselector on the hard
> drive, how would I make sure it wouldn't overwrite the Windows boot
> sector?

It will never overwrite the partition boot record; it will overwrite
the MBR if you say it so. It is pretty esy to recover that anyway.

My (now dead) ThinkPad T61p used to boot on bare metal simultaneously
(i.e. without disk swapping) Windows 7, Windows 8, Solaris 11 and
NetBSD-current. In this case the main bootloader had to be grub2 from
Solaris11. I first installed Windows 7 on the first hard disk (one can
install second hard disk in a tray replacing the DVD), shrank the
large W7 partition (and was left with two primary partitions already
used). NetBSD had to use another primary partition (it cannot boot
from a logical one, unfortunately). I then created and extended
partition, which I split between the Solaris 11 installation and small
(~15GB) FAT32 partition, used as common store for all the OSes
installed. Solaris 11 can install into and boot from a logical
partition, but using its grub2 setup is necessary (however, the
installation of Solaris 11 recognizes all other partitions and creates
the necessary grub entries). The last bit was to install Windows 8 on
a second disk, which forced its boot setup on top of the Windows 7 BCD
entries, letting me choose between Windows 7 and Windows 8; after that
it was the simple matter of reinstating Solaris 11 Grub2 control over
the MBR to be able to choose between S11, NetBSD or Windows; if I
select the latter, I had one more choice to make from the Windows menu
- 7 or 8.

A bit crazy, but worked well until the machine packed up.

> Many thanks in advance.
> --
> Ottavio



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