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Success booting CD from a GRUB prompt

From: Dr A V Le Blanc
Subject: Success booting CD from a GRUB prompt
Date: Mon, 17 May 2004 14:36:11 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.4i

I mention this here since people often ask for it.  I found that it
is possible to use the CD booting feature of smb from the GRUB
prompt with the help of memdisk.  I'm using GRUB 0.93, incidentally.

SBM, the Smart Boot Manager, is available at http://btmgr.sourceforge.net/
and allows you to boot from a CD or DVD even on machines whose BIOS
does not support this.  Of course, you do need a CD or DVD drive
respectively.  Memdisk is part of the SysLinux project at
http://syslinux.zytor.com/.  Long ago support was added to GRUB
to allow using memdisk as a 'linux kernel' to boot a virtual
floppy; in the present case I use this in my menu.lst file:

     # CD-ROM via Smart Boot Manager
     title           Boot CD-ROM or DVD
     kernel          (hd0,0)/image/memdisk
     initrd          (hd0,0)/image/sbm.bin

as memdisk and sbm.bin are about 14 and 18 kb in size respectively,
they can live on the disk without using up a lot of resources.
Selecting this from the menu boots a CD or DVD in the drive.

Copies of the memdisk and sbm.bin I am using are available at
ftp://ftp.mcc.ac.uk/beta/local/teaching_cluster/disks/ .  The use
of SBM is a bit awkward, but it stops people from changing the
BIOS to allow CD-ROM boot and forgetting to put it back.  The menu
from which the above entry is accessible is password-protected.

     -- Owen

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