Boot openSUSE From An External Drive


does anyone know that if i can boot from an external hard drive with “openSUSE” installed on it?

how about FireWire, will it work?

i’m trying to set up a triple boot for me newly bought iMac.

any suggestion would be apprecialted.


In short: YES

You’d have to configure a bootloader capable of booting the other 2 OS’s.

But mind: running an OS from a USB disk will never give you the performance of a SATA/IDE disk (at this moment :wink: )

Firewire: I wouldn’t, for various reasons.


so you mean it’s possible to boot opensuse from my usb 2.0 linked external hard drive?

but how do i edit the bootloader? i know that apple boot menu can have 2 options. (don’t know if there can be a third os or not.)

so do you mind telling me what i should do?



ps. i have simply installed opensuse 11.2 on my external drive without any editing of the system. and it failed to boot.

There are several sites, postings, and utilities available online for setting up booting Linux from and external USB drive (disk or flash drive). This one is one of two that looked promising to me:

How to Install SUSE to a USB Hard Drive | USB Pen Drive Linux

I have successfully and reliably created a full 11.2 system on a 40 GB external USB drive. Alas, so far, I have had success only getting the initial installation to boot (i.e. on the computer from which the install was performed). The final step, using the author’s portablesuse.tar.gz script to make the system completely portable across any PC, does not work for me. The script runs fine, but the modified system fails to boot b/c the external root partition seems to get mounted before fsck runs. So fsck chokes, boot halts, and you are dropped to a minimum shell that can’t do much useful.
There is another utility, Netbootin, available from sourceforge. I haven’t tried it, but I see there are several posts or listings of it.

Please report back with any results you get.
==Mel Strom

You may also want to check this post:

Seperate Boot for external drive and internal drive how to - openSUSE Forums