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Use USB to boot from SSD?


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Hi guys,


I've been thinking about this for way too long without trying to see if it can work.

I figure i'll ask the question and see if it's possible.

Ultimately I want to run an SSD and 4 HDD's in AHCI mode and boot from the SSD in the 5th slot on my HP Gen 8.

I don't want to run through the raid controller because the HDD's never spin down.

I don't want to use an add in raid card because i'm hoping to add a graphics card to the only PCI-E slot available (when NVidia's next gen low power cards come out).


Is it possible to "boot" from USB, but have the bootloader direct the server to boot from the SSD?

If so, could anyone share how this may be possible?

I'm running WHS2011 but hopefully it can be used for any OS.


Any help or thoughts would be much appreciated.

Edited by fury
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Any reason why you need the HDDs to spin down?


I have four HDDs in mine and I can't hear them.  If it's for power saving, I don't really think it's worth the effort.


Waiting for a drive to spin up when accessing it is quite infuriating after a while too.

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Power saving is the main reason.

Heat is the secondary reason.

This server will be on 24/7, and usage will be minimal (3-4 hours per week usage only).

It will also be in a fairly enclosed comms cupboard with no current ventilation.

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This process worked great.

Only issue i had was the bootsect command didnt work.

I ended up creating a boot disc under WHS2011 tools and everything worked fine.

Just means i have to use the internal USB over the SD slot (no big deal).



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