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#1 2021-12-26 04:55:58

lomaharshana
Member
Registered: 2020-11-06
Posts: 16

[Solved] Installing Arch on USB

I am trying to install Arch from an Arch host on to a USB. After following the steps from https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/Instal … ting_Linux , the installation is completed without errors, however,  BIOS is not detecting the USB.
Any ideas on how to troubleshoot the cause?

There is a tip related to grub-mkconfig detecting devices incorrectly, which suggests setting use_lvmetad=0 in /etc/lvm/lvm.conf. Can this be a problem? If yes, in which section of the conf file the setting should be added?

Note: There were no errors after grub-install or grub-mkconfig from chroot on the USB.

Here is briefly what I did (listing only the relevant steps):
- partition USB with 2 partitions - 512 MB (EFI) and 30 GB
- Format partition 1 with mkfs.fat and 2 mkfs.ext4
- mounted the partitions
- pacstrap on the  ext4 partition
- genfstab
- arch-chroot on the ext4 partition
- install grub and efibootmgr
- grub-install and grub-mkconfig

Last edited by lomaharshana (2021-12-26 14:36:32)

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#2 2021-12-26 11:25:59

Head_on_a_Stick
Member
From: London
Registered: 2014-02-20
Posts: 6,217

Re: [Solved] Installing Arch on USB

lomaharshana wrote:

BIOS is not detecting the USB.

What does this mean, exactly? What do you expect to see and how does this differ from what you actually experience?

lomaharshana wrote:

- grub-install and grub-mkconfig

You should post the full commands. See also https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=57855

Did you pass the --removable option to grub-install? Did you check /boot/grub/grub.cfg (on the USB stick) for a valid menuentry? Did you remember to install a kernel?

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#3 2021-12-26 12:42:04

lomaharshana
Member
Registered: 2020-11-06
Posts: 16

Re: [Solved] Installing Arch on USB

@Head_on_a_Stick Thank you for your reply.

By BIOS not detecting USB I mean, when I invoke BIOS menu (by pressing F2 on start-up), I don't see the GRUB option for USB. I have 2 other local LINUX installations, which are both listed in the BIOS boot menu. If I choose to boot from USB (which is listed without 'GRUB') there is a brief pause and I get back to the BIOS menu.

Here are the full commands for grub-install and grub-mkconfig:

# grub-install --target=x86_64-efi --efi-directory=/efi --bootloader-id=GRUB
# grub-mkconfig -o /boot/grub/grub.cfg

Both these commands run without any problem.

USB EFI partition is mounted at /mnt/install/efi and the Linux partition is mounted at /mnt/install.

The above commands are executed after doing

# arch-chroot /mnt/install

I have uploaded the generated USB grub.cfg here if that helps.

And yes, the kernel was installed:

# pacstrap /mnt/install base linux linux-firmware base-devel

In fact I could even install plasma desktop and sddm and also login once. But afterwards I am unable to get into the USB installation.

Could you please elaborate on --removable option and why it's needed? I did not pass it anywhere.

Last edited by lomaharshana (2021-12-26 12:42:55)

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#4 2021-12-26 13:36:56

Head_on_a_Stick
Member
From: London
Registered: 2014-02-20
Posts: 6,217

Re: [Solved] Installing Arch on USB

lomaharshana wrote:

Could you please elaborate on --removable option and why it's needed? I did not pass it anywhere.

That option copies GRUB's EFI loader to /EFI/Boot/bootx64.efi on the EFI system partition of the USB device. That should allow the device to be booted even without any NVRAM entries. It might also allow the device to be recognised as bootable by the UEFI firmware ("BIOS").

See also https://www.rodsbooks.com/efi-bootloade … ive-naming

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#5 2021-12-26 14:38:21

lomaharshana
Member
Registered: 2020-11-06
Posts: 16

Re: [Solved] Installing Arch on USB

Adding --removable option did the trick. Now the USB can be chosen as an install medium from the UEFI firmware (not BIOS big_smile)

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