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Drive not recognized in legacy mode?
#1
Hi guys,

I am just testing Ventoy and find myself in this situation, for now I just want to be sure this is something that should be working before wasting too much time in something ventoy is not designed to do.

I installed Ventoy on an external HDD using the Linux script. No problems there.

But when I boot in legacy BIOS mode the drive is not listed as an available boot drive. This is how I always set up the system and have used many USB creator in the past.

BIOS settings are correct regarding legacy mode active, boot order, etc. etc. and I was in Legacy mode both times I installed Ventoy on this HDD.

If I switch to UEFI mode the drive is listed and can boot ISO images from there, but only UEFI compatible ones, and that excludes ISOS such as boot-repair-disk and many other tools I normally use.


My question then is if this situation where my drive is not listed on Legacy mode is to be expected or something is going wrong on my side.

Thank you.
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#2
Some BIOSes have an annoying bug. If both a UEFI and a Legacy partition are present on the same USB boot drive, they will only present you with the option to boot from the UEFI partition.
To prove this, I suggest you rename the \EFI folder on the second partition of the Ventoy USB drive to say EFIxx. Then see if the BIOS lists the drive as a Legacy boot drive.
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#3
(11-29-2020, 02:50 PM)Ren Wrote: Hi guys,

I am just testing Ventoy and find myself in this situation, for now I just want to be sure this is something that should be working before wasting too much time in something ventoy is not designed to do.

I installed Ventoy on an external HDD using the Linux script. No problems there.

But when I boot in legacy BIOS mode the drive is not listed as an available boot drive. This is how I always set up the system and have used many USB creator in the past.

BIOS settings are correct regarding legacy mode active, boot order, etc. etc. and I was in Legacy mode both times I installed Ventoy on this HDD.

If I switch to UEFI mode the drive is listed and can boot ISO images from there, but only UEFI compatible ones, and that excludes ISOS such as boot-repair-disk and many other tools I normally use.


My question then is if this situation where my drive is not listed on Legacy mode is to be expected or something is going wrong on my side.

Thank you.

Is it the same problem if you use a normal USB stick with small capacity?
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#4
Hi, thanks for your replys.

I changed the EFI folder name but this didn't make any difference.

With the HDD a tested a different enclosure in case the issue might be in the adapter' s PCB but this had no impact either.

Then I tried a 4 GB USB stick and it did show as a bootable drive in legacy mode and worked, as far as I saw, as expected.

In the past I had been using the HDD as the internal drive of this same laptop so I don't think there is a problem with the drive, but I will test a different disc if I can get my hands on one.
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#5
What is the size of the hard drive and how are the partitions arranged?
Does the disk have MBR partitions or GPT partitions?
What is the system and what is it's age (mainboard and BIOS revision)?
As an experiment, you could try deleting the second partition on the USB hard disk, just to see if an MBR boot option is then listed.
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#6
(12-01-2020, 08:54 PM)Steve2926 Wrote: What is the size of the hard drive and how are the partitions arranged?
Does the disk have MBR partitions or GPT partitions?
What is the system and what is it's age (mainboard and BIOS revision)?
As an experiment, you could try deleting the second partition on the USB hard disk, just to see if an MBR boot option is then listed.

Thank you for your interest.
I got a bunch of additional info but I will answer this first just for clarity' s sake.

The intended HDD drive is an 320GB HDD, but the same happens on an 1 TB drive. I also have a 500GB HDD booting to GRUB without issues.

I only tried the MBR scheme, and I am letting Ventoy do it process. On the 320 GB drive I used the whole disc, but in recent tests with the 1 TB drive I told Ventoy to spare half of the total space.

This is a Lenovo B40-70, BIOS 9DCN29WW v2.09. I am not too  inclined to flash it to be honest.

Deleting the UEFI partition didn't help, but more info on that in my next post.... ->



ok, so this is getting weird now .D …

After many tests and reformats I've found that the only scenario in which I can boot an USB HDD in Legacy BIOS in this laptop is when I also have either one of two specific bootable pendrives attached....

I have two crappy HP v165w bootable pendrives, and only when any of them is attached the Ventoy drive shows as available and I can boot from it...

How odd is that?!?!


One of these pendrives is MBR and the other one is GPT, so that doesn`t seem to make a difference.

Swapping HDDs, enclosures or any of the many bootable sticks I tried didn't make a difference either.


Interestingly, using a 120GB SSD in this very same enclosure did work...
And the original HDD and enclosure on a different laptop worked too...


So it seems to me that, for some reason, 'this laptop will not boot a Ventoy drive in BIOS mode when it is an HDD disc', but it will boot from it if it's a stick, or an SDD, or UEFI, or any of these but on a different computer...


My guts "tell me" this might be related to A) the laptop no liking the blank space before the first partition and ignoring the device a bootable medium, or B) the HP sticks create at slight delay at boot that allows/forces the BIOS to find the Ventoy drive as bootable.

I guess this is probably a very edge situation and not worth investing dev time in it.


Some additional notes, FWIW:

- This could also be related to USB-HDD/USB-ZIP/USB-FDD modes? But I haven't found way to determine what mode is being detected on each drive.

- When both the stick and the HDD are attached, they are both properly listed as bootable (one BIOS and one UEFI entry for each drive)

- No change resulted from deleting the UEFI partition at Ventoy nor from changing the ISOs partition from exFAT to NTFS.

- Unfortunately I am not too keen of flashing the laptop's BIOS to see if that fixes it.


Regards


[Edit: The board system is not allowing me to post as two separate messages as I'd like, so all together it is..., sorry]
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#7
OK. To remove some variables....

1. Always switch off the laptop each time before you test a 'scenario'.
2. Always try all the USB ports (switching off after each test) - not all ports are the same.
3. You can use RMPrepUSB to check if a drive is removable or fixed (Windows 10 will show as Local Disk or  USB Drive)
4. You can use RMPrepUSB - Drive Info - 0    to view the MBR partition table of a USB drive

If two USB devices seem to be needed - which USB ports must be used and where? For instance, the BIOS may not be looking at USB Port 1 ON A WARM RESTART but may only be looking at USB Port 2.

For instance, on my Lenovo IdeaPad 300, the bootable USB flash drive in the left-hand USB port of the laptop (USB 3) is only detected on switch on - but if I reboot/reset the laptop then it is not detected - however, if I plug the same USB drive into the right-hand USB port (USB 2), it is always detected (even after a warm reset). So if I want to use the left-hand port (which is USB 3) - I must remember to always switch off the laptop and switch it on again because a warm reset\reboot will fail to detect it!

Some BIOSes only detect the type of USB drive on power-on - if you do a warm reset\restart\ctrl-alt-del then they just treat the USB drive in the same way as they did on the first power-on boot! This means you must switch off the power and then switch it on again each time. It can get very confusing if you don't do this (for instance you could change the contents of the same USB drive and it would not be re-detected if you just used Ctrl-Alt-Del to reboot or may be detected as the same initial type when you have actually change it to a different type - e.g. 'FDD/ZIP' with no MBR vs. 'HDD' with MBR).

If there is any BIOS option, USB HDD should be used (but this is not usually found in laptop BIOSes).
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#8
I will be resuming these tests in a couple of days when some gadgets I bought online will be delivered.

Regards.
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#9
--by the way i needed to tell u 1 more thing.when i click the open button the drive opens,but my comp cant detect it.

does dis mean anything else?
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#10
Hi all,

OK, so after much "fun" swapping HDDs and USB Keys around this is what this seems to boil down to:

I this Lenovo B40-70 laptop, if there is an internal HDD detected as a bootable drive then a Ventoy external MBR HDD is not listed as a bootable option.

Meaning:

- B40-70 + BIOS Mode + Intenal MBR HDD + external MBR USB HDD + Ventoy = Ventoy not detected.

- Change laptop = HDD detected
- Change to UEFI = HDD detected
- Change external HDD for external SSD = SSD detected
- Change external HDD for USB key/stick  = USB Key detected
- Add bootable HP USB key (*) = HDD detected

(*) So far only two HP USB keys have caused the BIOS to detect the Ventoy USB HDD, I haven't confirmed if this is due to the keys themselves (hardware) or the way they are formatted/partitioned (software).

At one point I thought this could be caused by the way the internal HDD is partitioned but I have ruled that out now, so I am guessing this an issue in the BIOS and not in Ventoy nor in the internal drive or the way I am creating my drive.

In a few days will test with yet another laptop (an HP unit) to this is not happening on more devices.

Regarding the power cycling before each boot attempt, this Laptop requires me to power it off and push a little button with a pin in order to enter the boot selection menu or the BIOS config, so every attempt starts from a "power off" state.

The ports the drives are connected to make no difference (left, right, 2.0, 3.0 I tried them all) .


Regards.
Ren.
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