I am trying to boot BAMT, a Linux distribution based on Debian via USB on a brand new Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3 motherboard. I tried various flash drive and various OS. I never had this problem with ASUS and MSI. The problem is from Gigabyte hardware.
I found that my BIOS is very strict about MBR compatibility. Now, I can boot in DOS mode. The flash drive needs to be formatted as a Windows 98 Startup Disk using the HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool.
Unetbootin creates bootable USBs, but it doesn't support BAMT. If I use the Windows or Linux disk imager, the working MBR is deleted. I tried converting the BAMT
.iso, but it still doesn't boot from Unetbootin.
Is it possible to boot BAMT (Debian Linux) from a Windows 98 DOS command prompt? Maybe some way to burn the image and use the working MBR instead?
Remember that if the working MBR is not used, the flash drive is not recognized at all by the BIOS.
This is the info I found that got me booting for the first time in DOS:
GB's BIOS will only boot USBs formatted to FAT-32, conforming to normal MBR bootloader. I've seen this before, and surmised that the 'stick-maker' was formatting in ReiserFile, or one of the EXT 'flavors', but no one ever followed up to confirm or deny... Also, if it's putting the bootloader into its own partition - won't work!
In the BIOS, on the "Integrated Peripherals" page, the "USB Storage Function" item must be enabled (which should be the default) to allow USB booting...
I've put a little work into a 'GB USB booting tutorial', and frankly, I'd just go ahead and finish it up for you, but I really don't want to reboot the several times it will take me to 'firm up' procedural details, and take the BIOS/boot pictures for the post - just noticed VAIL finally went 'public beta', so will be downloading for likely twenty-six hours or so There's likely enough there to test a 'raw DOS boot', just to see if your hardware (especially the USB stick itself) will do it...
Some post later:
Fixed. Here is a brief summary. Since my ubuntu live usb sticks (2gb kingston and 8gb sandisk sd/usb reader - fat32, created in ubuntu 10.04) would not boot this board even though they would boot my ga-ep45-ud3p, I decided to try bilbat's suggestion with the HP usb boot program. I created the win98 boot disk on the kingston 2gb stick without reformatting. It booted right up. Next, I used windows version of unetbootin to write the ubuntu live cd to the kingston disk. This fired right up and completed the install. Everything seems to be in good order now.
Unfortunately, I can boot in DOS mode but can't boot to BAMT.
EDIT: I can run Debian but not BAMT.