vincen
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:32 pm

SSD drive boot experience ??

Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:42 pm

Hi

Is there some people that succeeded to make it work the external drive procedure ??

I'm trying to setup my Pi3 to boot from SSD drive in USB but killing my head with that :(
I have burnt the img file with Etcher to an SSD (128Go ones) that I have connected through a USB/SATA adapter either directly to USB of PI or through a powered USB hub.
I have also updated internal fw of Pi to latest one, same for raspbian (I have one on a SD card) and have setup fw to boot in USB mode.
Whatever I try my raspberry never boots from the SSD :(
Any ideas what I can look for to find the problem ?? or should I go with the other solution to keep SD card just for boot but move everything to an external SSD ?

Thanks

Vincèn

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HawaiianPi
Posts: 1641
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:54 pm

USB boot on the Pi3 is a troublesome beast. Due to limited space for the bootloader on the SoC, it's quite primitive and not compatible with some devices (a lot, actually, in my experience). If you are absolutely certain you have setup USB boot correctly, then your only option is to try different SATA-USB adapters until you find one that works.

In my case I found that booting was fine, but restarts and shutdowns were unreliable. After some troubleshooting I finally went the old-school route of starting the boot process from SD and loading the OS from the SSD. That has been working 100% reliably for me.

There are 2 options for starting boot from SD and then loading the OS from USB. The original method was to keep the /boot partition on SD and load and run the / (root) OS from USB. The more recent method is to put just bootcode.bin on the SD card and run the entire OS (including the /boot partition) from USB. You might need the latest bootcode.bin from git to do the latter.
My password is the last 8 digits of Pi.

n67
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 4:55 pm

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:19 pm

HawaiianPi wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:54 pm
USB boot on the Pi3 is a troublesome beast. Due to limited space for the bootloader on the SoC, it's quite primitive and not compatible with some devices (a lot, actually, in my experience). If you are absolutely certain you have setup USB boot correctly, then your only option is to try different SATA-USB adapters until you find one that works.
This.
In my case I found that booting was fine, but restarts and shutdowns were unreliable. After some troubleshooting I finally went the old-school route of starting the boot process from SD and loading the OS from the SSD. That has been working 100% reliably for me.
This.
There are 2 options for starting boot from SD and then loading the OS from USB. The original method was to keep the /boot partition on SD and load and run the / (root) OS from USB. The more recent method is to put just bootcode.bin on the SD card and run the entire OS (including the /boot partition) from USB. You might need the latest bootcode.bin from git to do the latter.
Is there any advantage to the fancy "bootcode.bin only" method? I doubt it.
It sounds like just another fancy thing like the "pure USB boot" itself; nice, cool,yeah, but not useful in the long run.

Also, I think I've seen words to the effect that the "bootcode.bin only" method has some or all of the same limitations that the "pure USB boot" method has (which you've outlined in the text above).

So, I'd stick with the "50 megs on the SD card" method. It always works.

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rpdom
Posts: 12114
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 5:17 am
Location: Essex, UK

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:27 pm

vincen wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:42 pm
I have also updated internal fw of Pi to latest one, same for raspbian (I have one on a SD card) and have setup fw to boot in USB mode.
There is no internal firmware on the Pi. It is all held on the SD card or USB/network storage (for the Pi 3B/2Bv2).

I presume you have set the one-time option to enable USB booting?

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HawaiianPi
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Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Sat Jan 20, 2018 5:46 pm

n67 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:19 pm
Is there any advantage to the fancy "bootcode.bin only" method? I doubt it.
It's mainly to keep as much as possible on the USB device, and not write to the SD card, ever. The main disadvantage is that it will not work reliably if you have more than one USB storage device connected, because will only attempt to boot the first device it sees, and if that device is not your boot device it fails. In my case I have both my SSD and a regular USB flash drive connected. The SSD is the boot device, and the other is used for backups. About 9/10 times the USB flash drive is detected first (/dev/sda), so bootcode.bin would fail 90% of the time for me.

By keeping all of the boot partition on SD you can point to the UUID of the root OS device in cmdline.txt, so it will always boot correctly. The boot partition is treated as read-only most of the time, but it is written to during kernel/firmware updates, so the SD card will be written to occasionally with the SD card mounted as /boot.
My password is the last 8 digits of Pi.

n67
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 4:55 pm

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Sat Jan 20, 2018 6:26 pm

Thanks, HawaiianPi. That confirms everything I posted previously.

wpballa1
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 12:49 am

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:48 am

I've got a Model 3 B booting from an SSD with no SD card working just fine (I did set the one time boot bit). Be sure you use the root=PARTUUID= method in the config.txt and add rootwait. I only have one drive plugged in, the the PARTUUID should fix it. See the sticky for how to find the right PARTUUID.

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HawaiianPi
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Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:01 pm

wpballa1 wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:48 am
I've got a Model 3 B booting from an SSD with no SD card working just fine...
Which SATA-USB adapter are you using?
My password is the last 8 digits of Pi.

wpballa1
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 12:49 am

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Thu Jan 25, 2018 12:43 am

The USB-SATA adapter came with the MyDigitalSSD OTG drive, and I can't tell who made it, could be they did. I got it from Amazon...

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rpdom
Posts: 12114
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 5:17 am
Location: Essex, UK

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Thu Jan 25, 2018 6:55 am

Can you post the output of lsusb when using that adaptor? That will tell us some details about which type it is.

goestr
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2018 12:54 pm

Re: SSD drive boot experience ??

Tue Feb 20, 2018 1:23 pm

Hello,
I'm new in this forum and I am investigation on "booting on rpi3 with ssd and without SD" for some weeks. I tested a lot of SSD/USB-adapters – without or with small success. Today there was a big success. The new solution is running flawlessly.
My configuration:
• RPI 3 with actual Raspbian Lite (USB-Bit set, boot_delay_ms=1000, disable_splash=1)
• 2,5 A powersupply
• ADATA SSD Premier SP580 (128GB)
• Headless remote operation, operated from Apple with the program ZOC.
The definite breakthrough was the purchase of a new SSD-USB3-Adapter: Sabrent 2,5" SATA Hard Drive/SSD to USB 3.0 Adapter, bought from Amazon for the price of 9,99€ (Germany) plus transportcosts.
This configuration work well for me, it starts and reboots flawlessly .

nice day

goestr

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