genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:46 pm

Hi peeps,

I have two Raspberry Pi 3B+ and can't get them to boot from USB. I've followed every guide on this site and googled til I was up to results page 6 and it just won't work.

I have two of them, multiple SD cards, thumb drives and HDDs but this feature seems to be just a distant and unobtainable dream for me.

Can you help me troubleshoot? It's clearly a user rather than hard/software error because neither of them will boot from USB and they are unlikely to both have a problem.

I mainly use Raspian Stretch.

Suggestions please? Give me the magical order of buttons and clicks that I'm clearly not doing properly.

(I have a RPI 3 which works just fine).

I'm feeling super stupid.

Thanks

klricks
Posts: 7290
Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:01 am
Location: Grants Pass, OR, USA
Contact: Website

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:04 am

If it boots on 3B but not 3B+ then likely you need to either update the OS while booted in the 3B or download and install a fresh Rasbian Stretch.
If the card has NOOBS on it AND/OR Jessie is installed then forget it and install new.

To update the existing OS (not NOOBS):

Code: Select all

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade
Unless specified otherwise my response is based on the latest and fully updated RPiOS Buster w/ Desktop OS.

User avatar
davidcoton
Posts: 5503
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2014 2:37 pm
Location: Cambridge, UK
Contact: Website

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:22 pm

klricks wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:04 am
To update the existing OS (not NOOBS):

Code: Select all

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade
To ensure that any earlier Stretch is upgraded to support Pi3B+, you may need:

Code: Select all

sudo apt update
sudo apt full-upgrade
Location: 345th cell on the right of the 210th row of L2 cache

User avatar
HawaiianPi
Posts: 5996
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 14, 2018 7:08 pm

What are you using for a power supply?

What kind of USB drive is it?

Normally all you need to do is grab the latest Raspbian image from https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/raspbian/ and use Etcher to write the image to the USB drive (same as you would an SD card). You don't even need to program the USB boot OTP bit, as that has already been done on the 3B+ (USB boot is enabled by default).

If you are trying to copy an already in use OS, that can get tricky, as older versions aren't compatible with the newer 3B+ model.

As others have said, if your older OS is an early version of Raspbian Stretch, then boot it in the older Pi3B and update it with,

Code: Select all

sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y
and then it should work in the newer 3B+ model.

If Raspbian was installed using NOOBS, note that NOOBS will not get updated when you update Raspbian, so you will have to do that manually.

If you have an older version of Raspbian (Jessie/Wheezy), forget it, it's not compatible with the 3B+ model. If you have any other OS (Ubuntu, etc.) contact the developers of that OS to see if they plan on updating it for the newer 3B+ model (which requires a new kernel and firmware).
My mind is like a browser. 27 tabs are open, 9 aren't responding,
lots of pop-ups...and where is that annoying music coming from?

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 14, 2018 11:19 pm

What are you using for a power supply?

What kind of USB drive is it?
I'm using a 5v 2.5ma power amp designed for the Pi, never get the thunderbolt warning so that's not the issue, and I've used multiple memory sticks, an SD card in a USB reader, a powered HDD, none work. I burn the image with Etcher. I've booted with and without the SD card. If I boot with an SD card as well as the USB, it just boots the SD card.
If you have an older version of Raspbian (Jessie/Wheezy), forget it, it's not compatible with the 3B+ model.
I've only been using stretch, have done apt update and upgrade as well as rpi-update.
I'll try the full upgrade command and let you know what happens. I should be able to just plug in the freshly baked USB device and boot without a memory card, right?

LTolledo
Posts: 4122
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2018 7:29 am
Location: Anime Heartland

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Thu Nov 15, 2018 4:38 am

genodesiful wrote:I'm using a 5v 2.5ma power amp designed for the Pi
I think you meant "5V 2.5A power supply" and not a "5v 2.5ma power amplifier"

Lets go over the installation procedure once again:

1. Prepare the USB device (thumbdrive, HDD, SSD). For HDD/SSD the recommended adaptor cable is the Eluteng SATA to USB3.0 adaptor.
2. In a windows pc download the latest Raspbian Stretch with Desktop image
3. Plug the USB device to the USB port of the windows PC
4. Using Etcher, flash the Raspbian image to the USB device (no need to format, Etcher will do it for you)
5. Once flashing is completed, remove the USB device from the windows PC and then plug it to the RPi3B+
6. Plug in the other peripherals to the RPi3B+ (monitor, mouse, keyboard)
7. Power on the RPi using supply from a 5V 2.5A Power Supply Unit (not any phone charger)
8. Let it boot, wait at least 10 secs on the initial bootup.
9. Once the boot up has passed the rainbow screen it should boot to the desktop.

one thing you have to take into consideration is the capacity of the USB boot device. The larger it is, the longer it might take on its initial boot, due to file system expansion. So be a little patient.......

Other SATA to USB3.0 adaptors that have work for me has ASM 1153E chipsets, so you might want to check the chipsets on the adaptors you plan to acquire.

And as HawaiianPi mentioned before on other post, its usually a combination of chipsets, firmware and/or HDD/SSD maker/model that will determine if your USB device will boot the RPi3B/RPi3B+.
"Don't come to me with 'issues' for I don't know how to deal with those
Come to me with 'problems' and I'll help you find solutions"

Some people be like:
"Help me! Am drowning! But dont you dare touch me nor come near me!"

User avatar
HawaiianPi
Posts: 5996
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Thu Nov 15, 2018 8:54 am

genodesiful wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 11:19 pm
I'm using a 5v 2.5ma power amp designed for the Pi, never get the thunderbolt warning so that's not the issue
Which power supply (got a link)?

Note that it's possible to have voltage low enough to affect USB devices (<4.75V) without tripping the low voltage warning (>4.63V).
The SoC runs on 3.3 and 1.8 volts.

and I've used multiple memory sticks, an SD card in a USB reader, a powered HDD, none work. I burn the image with Etcher.
Odd that multiple devices would fail, but that's exactly what happened to me the first time I started playing with USB boot. The first 3 or 4 devices I tried failed to boot, which led me to believe that USB booting on the Pi was very hit and miss (with far more misses). Curiously, though, almost every USB drive I've tried since then has succeeded, so it seems I was just unlucky enough to have several incompatible devices in my first tests. While things have improved since then, the boot-loader is still not 100% compatible with all USB drives.

I've booted with and without the SD card. If I boot with an SD card as well as the USB, it just boots the SD card.
That's normal. SD card has priority over USB boot, so that would happen even if your USB drive was working.

I should be able to just plug in the freshly baked USB device and boot without a memory card, right?
Yes, with the latest Raspbian Stretch you should be able to write the image to the USB drive with Etcher and boot it with no card in a Pi 3B+ model (which has USB boot enabled from the factory), or a 3B which has had the USB boot OTP bit programmed.

Note that OS images from before May 2018 will not work on the 3B+ model.

Please post the output of the following commands:

Code: Select all

cat /sys/firmware/devicetree/base/model;echo
vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 17
vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 66

Try this as a test:
Format a micro SD card with the FAT32 file system and copy just the bootcode.bin file from the "boot" partition of the imaged USB drive to the SD card. Insert that bootcode.bin only SD card into your Pi and boot it with the USB drive connected. It should boot from the USB drive.

You can also download the master branch bootcode.bin file here (bootcode.bin).

If it still doesn't boot there are a few more things you can test.

Make an empty file named "timeout" on the bootcode.bin only SD card to increase USB wait time.
  • If it only boots with both bootcode.bin and timeout on the SD card, your USB drive is taking too long to get ready (*see below).
Try the next branch bootcode.bin on the card (may be a newer version with fixes ... or bugs ...) If it still does not boot, your power supply may be inadequate, or your drive is not compatible with USB boot mode.

* If it boots with both bootcode.bin and timeout on the SD card, there is another OTP bit that increases the wait time for USB drives from the default 2 seconds to 5 seconds. To enable the additional wait time, add "program_usb_boot_timeout=1" to config.txt on a Raspbian SD card and boot it once in the system. This is a permanent change that sets bit 24 of register 66 in the OTP memory block (for either the 3B or 3B+ models).

To verify that bit 24 has been set, the command is:

Code: Select all

vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 66
which returns the following hexadecimal values.
  • RPi model 3B
  • 66:00009daa (default)
  • 66:01009daa (bit programmed)
  • RPi model 3B+
  • 66:02009eaa (default)
  • 66:03009eaa (bit programmed)
If you're looking for an adapter for 2.5 inch drives, I've had very good luck with this ELUTENG USB 3.0 to SATA III adapter cable, and this ORICO USB 3.0 tool-free external enclosure (both tested with SSD and HDD on 3B and 3B+ with the official Raspberry Pi universal PSU).
Last edited by HawaiianPi on Wed Dec 05, 2018 10:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
My mind is like a browser. 27 tabs are open, 9 aren't responding,
lots of pop-ups...and where is that annoying music coming from?

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Tue Nov 20, 2018 5:26 pm

cat /sys/firmware/devicetree/base/model;echo
vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 17
vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 66
pi@raspberrypi:/ $ cat /sys/firmware/devicetree/base/model;echo
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Plus Rev 1.3
pi@raspberrypi:/ $ vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 17
17:3020000a
pi@raspberrypi:/ $ vcgencmd otp_dump | grep 66
66:02009eaa
pi@raspberrypi:/ $

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Tue Nov 20, 2018 9:48 pm

Next I just need to know how to change SSID/hide SSD and change password (post setup, already forgot password :lol: :lol: :lol:

User avatar
HawaiianPi
Posts: 5996
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Tue Nov 20, 2018 10:19 pm

genodesiful wrote:
Tue Nov 20, 2018 9:48 pm
Next I just need to know how to change SSID/hide SSD and change password (post setup, already forgot password :lol: :lol: :lol:
Changing or hiding your SSID is done in your router. There is no point in hiding your SSID. The SSID was never meant to be hidden, and hiding it does not increase network security (it doesn't do what you think it does), it only causes unnecessary connection problems. If you insist on making your life more difficult, then add "scan_ssid=1" to your /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf file.
My mind is like a browser. 27 tabs are open, 9 aren't responding,
lots of pop-ups...and where is that annoying music coming from?

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 21, 2018 1:06 pm

Changing or hiding your SSID is done in your router. There is no point in hiding your SSID. The SSID was never meant to be hidden, and hiding it does not increase network security (it doesn't do what you think it does), it only causes unnecessary connection problems. If you insist on making your life more difficult, then add "scan_ssid=1" to your /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf file
I'm only hiding it as setting up a wifi hotspot in my dorm room is against my uni's T&Cs, I'm hoping that the will just see the pi (I'm on a computer science course) attached to the LAN (our dorm rooms have LAN ports) and they won't know that I'm running it as a (secret) access point

User avatar
RaTTuS
Posts: 10601
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:12 am
Location: North West UK
Contact: Twitter YouTube

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 21, 2018 1:31 pm

genodesiful wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 1:06 pm
.....
I'm only hiding it as setting up a wifi hotspot in my dorm room is against my uni's T&Cs, I'm hoping that the will just see the pi (I'm on a computer science course) attached to the LAN (our dorm rooms have LAN ports) and they won't know that I'm running it as a (secret) access point
if they are serious then they will find it even faster
How To ask Questions :- http://www.catb.org/esr/faqs/smart-questions.html
WARNING - some parts of this post may be erroneous YMMV

1QC43qbL5FySu2Pi51vGqKqxy3UiJgukSX
Covfefe

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 21, 2018 5:20 pm

[quoteif they are serious then they will find it even faster][/quote]

How so?

It's pretty liberal WiFi rules here, nonVPN bans, TOR access

User avatar
davidcoton
Posts: 5503
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2014 2:37 pm
Location: Cambridge, UK
Contact: Website

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 21, 2018 5:28 pm

genodesiful wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 5:20 pm
[quoteif they are serious then they will find it even faster]
How so?

It's pretty liberal WiFi rules here, nonVPN bans, TOR access
[/quote]

Hiding the SSID is not the same as hiding the AP.
It will show up on any scanner looking for APs, unless the scanner hides it.
If I were responsible for enforcing the uni's T&Cs, you would be busted within a week.
Location: 345th cell on the right of the 210th row of L2 cache

User avatar
HawaiianPi
Posts: 5996
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 21, 2018 9:07 pm

Hiding the SSID does not actually hide it, it just changes who broadcasts it. When your router stops broadcasting the SSID, your devices do it instead (when looking for the access point). This won't be seen by another computer looking for a router/gateway, but it will easily be seen by any kind of WiFi sniffer software. If your university is serious about security, your access point will not be a secret for long.

What's worse is that your mobile devices will search for the SSID any time they are not connected to the hidden SSID. So your phone will be constantly searching for the access point wherever you go, exposing your hidden SSID in the process.
My mind is like a browser. 27 tabs are open, 9 aren't responding,
lots of pop-ups...and where is that annoying music coming from?

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:11 am

Ok this is just Wiered, or is it expected behavior? I got the pi3b+ to boot by using HawaiianPi’s command
sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y
And rpi-update, but if I flash a new image to theSD card, I can’t boot from usb again unless I write sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y each time.


This shouldn’t be the case should it? It means when I installed other OSS via Noobs, to the USB drive, it wouldn’t boot them after a restart.

How can I make this stick permanently?

It’s very frustrating when it should just work out of the box.

User avatar
HawaiianPi
Posts: 5996
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:36 am

genodesiful wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:11 am
...but if I flash a new image to the SD card, I can’t boot from usb again unless I write sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y each time. This shouldn’t be the case should it? It means when I installed other OSS via Noobs, to the USB drive, it wouldn’t boot them after a restart
Exactly what are you doing? You say flash image to SD card, then install to USB drive with NOOBS? :?

You really shouldn't use NOOBS for USB boot. Flash Raspbian images directly to the USB drive with Etcher. The latest Raspbian images should be compatible with USB boot and have the firmware needed for newer models (like the 3B+/3A+).

The problem with NOOBS is it doesn't update with Raspbian, so it doesn't get the latest firmware fixes. Even when a new version of NOOBS is released, the old version does not update. You have to manually download it, extract it, and copy it over the older version on your card.

As far as other operating systems go, it's up to their devs to make them USB boot compatible (and compatible with newer models). The Raspberry Pi foundation has no control over the development of Ubuntu, Kali, or whatever OS you prefer (unless it's Raspbian, of course).
genodesiful wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:11 am
It’s very frustrating when it should just work out of the box.
NOOBS is not recommended or supported for USB boot, but even with Raspbian there are no guarantees. While it would be nice if they could make it "just work out of the box" the reality is that they don't have much room for boot-loader code on the SoC. There just isn't enough on-board storage for a large, comprehensive boot-loader.

The Pi boot-loader is simple out of necessity. They have improved things, but those fixes can't be incorporated into the SoC without re-masking (basically, making a new version of the chip). The boot-loader in the 3B+ is improved over that of the older 3B, but the latest version is in the bootcode.bin file (which is why putting that on an SD card can get some non-booting devices working).

When HDD/SSD USB boot doesn't work the fault often lies with the power supply or USB adapter, but sometimes it's the drive, or a combination of both. Avoid the cheap crap SSD models you find on ebay and Alibaba. They're junk, and also poor performers, so I don't know why anyone would want them. You'd be better off with A1 micro SD cards.

I do play with Silicon Power A55 SSD models on my Pi 3B(+), which are inexpensive, but pretty good performers. For my main PC, though, I use Samsung or Crucial (500GB Samsung 960 Pro NVMe boot drive and 1TB 860 EVO storage drive in gaming laptop, Crucial MX500 in other box).
My mind is like a browser. 27 tabs are open, 9 aren't responding,
lots of pop-ups...and where is that annoying music coming from?

incognitum
Posts: 576
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2018 3:34 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Dec 05, 2018 1:28 pm

HawaiianPi wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:36 am
NOOBS is not recommended or supported for USB boot,
NOOBS certainly does support USB boot.
If NOOBS does boot, but a specific operating system you installed with it does not, fill a bug.

User avatar
HawaiianPi
Posts: 5996
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Dec 05, 2018 7:24 pm

incognitum wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 1:28 pm
NOOBS certainly does support USB boot.
I never said NOOBS could not USB boot, I said it wasn't recommended or supported (by official documentation). NOOBS can USB boot, but just because you CAN do something, it doesn't mean you SHOULD.

The officially recommended and supported way to USB boot is to write a Raspbian image to the USB drive.
My mind is like a browser. 27 tabs are open, 9 aren't responding,
lots of pop-ups...and where is that annoying music coming from?

genodesiful
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:49 pm

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:15 pm

NOOBS is not recommended or supported for USB boot
I only tried it once, to see what the other OSs were like. I usually use Raspian Desktop
Exactly what are you doing? You say flash image to SD card, then install to USB drive with NOOBS?
No, I mainly use Raspian on the Pi on an SD card, but if something goes wrong, and I re-image the SD disk, the USB boot stops working again until I do "sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y"

I don't use USB for my main OS because it seems slower that way (I did disk read/wwrite speed tests with USB stick, micro SD card, HDD, and SD came out on top...)

abhilash7
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2019 10:22 am

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 04, 2020 9:51 am

genodesiful wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:11 am
Ok this is just Wiered, or is it expected behavior? I got the pi3b+ to boot by using HawaiianPi’s command
sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y
And rpi-update, but if I flash a new image to theSD card, I can’t boot from usb again unless I write sudo apt update && sudo apt full-upgrade -y each time.


This shouldn’t be the case should it? It means when I installed other OSS via Noobs, to the USB drive, it wouldn’t boot them after a restart.

How can I make this stick permanently?

It’s very frustrating when it should just work out of the box.
Hi genodesiful!
I have been struggling with this issue since I bought my RPi 3 B+ in October 2018. Can you please elaborate how you were able to boot Raspbian (now Raspberry Pi OS) from USB. I have tried everything mentioned on this post (bootcode.bin on SD card, timeout and its OTP).

RonR
Posts: 1691
Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 10:29 pm
Location: US

Re: Can't boot RPI 3b+ from USB

Wed Nov 04, 2020 6:50 pm

abhilash7 wrote:
Wed Nov 04, 2020 9:51 am
Can you please elaborate how you were able to boot Raspbian (now Raspberry Pi OS) from USB.

Take a look at: Running Raspbian from USB Devices : Made Easy

Return to “Troubleshooting”