Sunday, April 7, 2013

If my computer wont boot a linux live cd, does that mean it wont but a xp cd either?

Q. the laptop is set to boot from cd first. the linux live cd used to work but it has stopped working, does this mean this particular function wont work for other live cd's?

A. There are a lot of things that can cause a failure to boot so it depends on how far along in the process you are getting and what is causing the failure to boot. I've used knoppix as a boot cd for testing and diagnostics on hundreds of machines and it has booted on nearly every machine I've tried it on. The only failures to boot were due to not having enough ram in the computer to load the OS into memory.

However if your computer BIOS does not recognize the concept of bootable cd's then that computer won't boot from any cd. If that is the case then you might be able to add that capability with a bios upgrade.

It's also possible that the bios configuration excludes the CD from the systems search for bootable media. You may need to modify the bios to move the CD up in the boot order or use the "boot menu" (usually accessed by hitting f12 during post)

edited -- another possibility is that you have a CD drive which is not able to read a DVD. The DVD may be bootable but it can't be read by a cd drive.

Now you rule out most of these possibilities since you state that it used to work. That suggests to me that the disk has been damaged, (scratched?). The only other likely cause would be that the CD drive itself is dirty or damaged which might prevent it from reading the disk.

Have you tried other boot disks?

How to create a custom linux live CD?
Q. Hi,

I want to create a small linux live CD with a few small programs on it (and nothing more, could even be command line only)

Anyone knows how I can do that?

Thanks in advance!

A. Have a look at these web pages they should give you an idea of how to do this.

What linux live cd should i get?
Q. I want to get a linux live cd which would you prefer.
I want it to run just like a desktop and reconize all my hardware and play my media and files.
Also can you give instructions on what to burn it as and how to boot it?

A. I'd recommend Ubuntu. It's available at

You might also try reading to get an idea of what it's like to use Ubuntu - it has some nice screenshots and pros and cons.

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