Can Macs boot from USB devices?

Discussion in 'Mac & OS X' started by Yerffej, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. Yerffej

    Yerffej New Member

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    I have an old 256MB jump drive that's sitting around doing nothing, so I was thinking of giving it new life by putting Linux on it or possibly Windows XP.
    My question is, do macs have the ability to boot from USB devices? I have a 5,5 MBP.
  2. Teslanaut

    Teslanaut Well-Known Member

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    If you want to boot Linux from it, you need to use rEFIt: http://refit.sourceforge.net/

    Macs do not use BIOS like regular PC's do. Also, not all Windows version on USB will boot. Vista & 7 most likely will. Not sure about XP. OS X will definitely boot from USB, SD, Firewire, and whatever else.

    Now these are all install Discs I'm talking about.
  3. xitz your fearx

    xitz your fearx Member

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    You can boot off USB with XP.

    But to be able to install the OS onto your USB it requires you taking apart the ISO and editing a few files, putting it back together and burning to a CD. But there are also some hardware limitations to being able to install to a USB.
  4. Yerffej

    Yerffej New Member

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    All that info is cool, but I'm not entirely sure if my question was answered or not. If it was, I guess I'm slow.
    So... can I plug a jump drive into my mac and boot an OS from it, regardless of what it is, and if so, how? I've done this with a couple non-macs before, so I'm wondering if it will work with a mac.
  5. xitz your fearx

    xitz your fearx Member

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    Intel Macs can.
  6. Yerffej

    Yerffej New Member

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    That's all I needed to know. Thanks
  7. Shawa

    Shawa Super Moderator

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    As long as it GUID partitioned, it should work.

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