Laptop doesn't detect bootable flash drive containing Windows 7

Discussion in 'Operating Systems' started by General Crespin, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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    G'morning all,

    I have a Sony Vaio VGN-FZ140E laptop that's about a year old or thereabouts. It came with, and has, Vista Home Premium 32-bit. I'm trying to install the 64-bit Windows 7 beta.

    Maximum PC had an article on how to create a bootable USB flash drive to install Windows 7 from. I followed the instructions to the letter, and the desktop listed in my sig will boot off this flash drive. I got all the way to the Windows 7 install screen before I cancelled, as I don't want to install it on my desktop.

    However, for the life of me, my laptop REFUSES to pick up the flash drive. I've enabled the "External Drive Boot" option and moved all the USB drive options to the top of the boot order list, but it WILL NOT pick it up. This laptop has 3 USB ports and I tried all three.

    This is the only flash drive I have laying around that's large enough, but I've got one at work somewhere and I'll try that too on Monday... Does anyone have any ideas why my laptop won't boot from the USB flash drive when my other computer will?

    Thank you!
     
  2. eeyrjmr

    eeyrjmr [H]ardness Supreme

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    try a BIOS update.

    also check your BIOS some BIOS's have an option for additional boot device to treat as a floppy or treat as a hdd - choose hdd if you have such an option
     
  3. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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    Didn't find any BIOS update, and it doesn't have those options.
     
  4. eeyrjmr

    eeyrjmr [H]ardness Supreme

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    you sure the USB has a valid bootsector?
     
  5. Joe Average

    Joe Average Ad Blocker - Banned

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    My first guess is you didn't make the USB stick properly, but that's just me.

    Try this one, just 5 steps, and then you boot off it:

    http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1381323

    I used it myself for Windows 7 (even though the thread was titled that it was for Vista) and it works exactly the same... for good reasons, of course. :D
     
  6. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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    Did you read my post? I said my desktop BOOTS OFF IT FINE.
     
  7. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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  8. requiemnoise

    requiemnoise Gawd

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    If you have an option for enable USB keyboard, please enable USB keyboard in your bios. That will load a generic USB driver. Another issue might be you haven't properly format the bootsector.

    added
    Also try installing memtest in your pen drive to make sure your laptop is 100% capable of running from a pen drive. This is a very simple instruction.

    http://www.pendrivelinux.com/testing-your-system-for-usb-boot-compatibility/
     
  9. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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    I don't have a USB keyboard option in the BIOS either. If my boot sector isn't properly formatted why are the other three computers I've tried it on now booting from it?

    But thanks for the link to that Memtest USB, I'll give it a try.
     
  10. DeaconFrost

    DeaconFrost [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Do you have an option to pull up a quick boot list, without actually going into the BIOS? For my Dell's, you hit F12, and you can choose from a list of bootable devices.
     
  11. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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    From what limited documentation I've found on this laptop's BIOS, the only way to get the "quick boot" list is to go into the BIOS and then exit and hit ESC. Hitting ESC before going into the BIOS doesn't do anything. :rolleyes: But in that list, the flash drive is not visible.

    I just tried that Memtest flash drive and my laptop did boot from that. However, it's not the flash drive that I have the W7 beta on. I've got another big one here at work and I'll try it tonight when I get home.

    Why doesn't the laptop like this one particular flash drive?
     
  12. requiemnoise

    requiemnoise Gawd

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    Some memory sticks use a compression technology that is totally different the standard drive. They are known to have issues writing to the boot sector. You know now where to troubleshoot your problem. Least, you are one step toward your achievement.
     
  13. General Crespin

    General Crespin 2[H]4U

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    Well, the other flash drive I got from work is working. So it's some odd incompatibility between the laptop and this particular flash drive. *shrugs*

    Thanks for the help, all.
     
  14. requiemnoise

    requiemnoise Gawd

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    Not all flash drives are the same. You can't really go by the size. You have to read the reviews.