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Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby dpweeks » September 4th, 2015, 10:04 am

danskeman wrote:1. secure boot on or off will not affect anything. Petty sure mine was disabled by default.
2. my usb hub setup is basically same as you described.
3. I will try and get a an image of my tablets settings, bit pretty sure just the normal defaults.

Without going back over all old posts

1. you have tried other usb sticks?
2. have you tried a usb hard drive instead (a fixed drive rather than a removable drive?
3. is your bios up to date?


Hi danskeman,

Many thanks for all the screenshots. My Linx 8 is configured identically to yours, and therefore seem to be as per factory default settings. Also, I assume my bios is therefore up to date if yours is.

Yes I have tried one other different USB stick, same results, still not visible in the EFI Bootable device list.

No I have not tried a fixed USB hard drive yet. I am currently able to see a Seagate 2TB USB2.0 External Hard drive at the Win 8.1 level when also plugged into my EasyAcc Hub, but it's also not visible at the Bios/UEFI level. I'd assumed that was because the Seagate USB external drive was not configured as a bootable device. I will give this approach a go ...

In the meantime, this is the Disk Management view of the MACRIUM USB Repair drive that I am currently trying to boot off: You need to be registered to view this link, please log-in or register. Please let me know if you think anything is amiss there. It is FAT32 formatted with MBR partitioning style.

Regards
Dave
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby danskeman » September 6th, 2015, 9:15 am

How did you create the Macrium disk. You need to create a 32bit version (create from Linx).

You are still getting confused about eufi or legacy boot. USB sticks unless special ones do not support eufi.
However boot USB sticks have EUFI drivers that allow them to boot on EUFI PCs even if they use classic MBR partitioning (DVDs do not even have this).

If you create a 32bit Macrium rescue disk USB, and that does not work, then I am stumped as to what your problem is.
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby dpweeks » September 13th, 2015, 8:58 pm

Hi danskeman,

I created the Macrium Rescue USB drive using Macrium reflect Free software that I installed onto the Linx 8. When at Win 8.1 level, if I look at the USB drive, I see that in folder "EFI/Boot" there is a file named bootia32.efi, so I assume this confirms that I have correctly created a 32 bit version.

What exactly have I written that leads you to say that I am "still getting confused about uefi or legacy boot". Is it the term "Bios/UEFI level"? Should I have just used "UEFI level"? I do admit to being a bit confused about how the Linx 8 is shipped as default. My understanding is that UEFI was invented to allow the concept of Secure Boot to be supported, allowing only digitally signed boot software to be executed on startup. However both my and your Linx 8, and presumably therefore all Linx 8's, seem to be shipped with Secure Boot disabled, meaning that this facility is not being used. If Secure Boot is disabled, then presumably the system is reverting to booting in some 'legacy' approach. I'd appreciate some clarification in this area if my understanding is incorrect in some way.

As you suggested previously, I have tried creating a bootable USB external hard drive. I used a 150GB 2.5" drive that is mounted in a USB 3.0 bus-powered caddy. Since it was NTFS formatted, I used Win 8.1 Disk Management utility on the Linx 8 to "Delete Volume", and re-create a new one just 2Gb in size and formatted it as FAT32. I then used Macrium Reflect Free under Win 8.1 on the Linx 8 to create a MRF Rescue disk on that USB external hard drive. This succeeded, so I then Shutdown, and used Power + Vol+ to boot to UEFI level. Once again, no option to boot from any kind of USB device appears in the Boot Manager "Boot Options" list, and I notice that I am still unable to use a USB keyboard at this level. Only touch screen options work.

Is seems that the problem is not with my USB pen drives or USB hard drive, but with the ability for USB to operate at all when at the UEFI level. To pursue this further, I have finally tried changing the settings for "OTG Support" and VBUS. I have tried all of the following combinations:
1. OTG Support = Disabled, VBUS = ON (these were the original settings)
2. OTG Support = PCI Mode, VBUS = ON
3. OTG Support = PCI Mode, VBUS = OFF
4. OTG Support = Disabled, VBUS = OFF
In _all_ cases, my EasyAccess USB 3 Hub and it's attached devices (bootable Macrium Rescue USB pen drive or bootable Macrium USB hard drive, USB keyboard, and USB mouse) were visible and worked perfectly at Win 8.1 level, with Linx 8 power indicated as "plugged in, charging", but after Shutdown and using Power + Vol+ to boot to UEFI level, none of the USB devices are visible or work. i.e. changing these settings seems to have no effect at all at either Win 8.1 level or UEFI level! I am using the "Exit Saving Changes" each time I make these changes. Am I missing something else that is fundamental? (Aside: I was surprised to see that the Linx 8 charged in all four cases when at Win 8.1 level, since based on other posts I thought Case 2 configuration was required for charging to work, implying that any other combination would not work)

Just to recap on exactly how I have the EasyAcc USB 3 Hub connected: I am using it in "Self-powered mode" i.e.
a. EasyAcc Hub's supplied power cable plugged into the power IN socket, and the USB Standard A connector on the other end plugged into the 2 amp Wall plug charger that came with the Linx 8 (i.e. I am NOT using my Y cable at all)
b. Linx 8 connected to the EasyAcc USB IN socket, using the Micro USB B to Standard USB A cable that came with the Linx 8
c. Either the bootable Macrium Rescue USB pen drive or the bootable Macrium USB hard drive connected to EasyAcc USB OUT port 1
d. USB Keyboard connected to EasyAcc USB OUT port 2
e. USB Mouse connected to EasyAcc USB OUT Port 3

For item b above, one aspect that I would like to understand better is how the Linx 8 gets to know that it is supposed to act as "host". My understanding of USB cables is that the equipment connected to the "A" side of a USB cable is meant to act as "host", and the equipment connected to the "B" side is meant to act as a peripheral "device". But in the situation of Linx 8 tablet connected to a USB Hub using a "Micro USB B to Standard USB A" cable, the Linx 8 must be "host" and the USB Hub must be "device" (i.e. contrary to what the "Micro USB B to Standard USB A" cable implies.). I can only conclude that if the cable is used to initially choose the USB Hub as "host" because it's connected to the Standard USB A end of the cable, that some negotiation must take place to reverse the roles, so that the Linx 8 becomes "host" even though it is connected to the Micro USB B end of the cable. Is this what the OTG standard is all about? If so, then clearly this OTG negotiation is working when at the Win 8.1 level, but not at the UEFI level. Could this be because Win 8.1 drivers are handling the OTG negotiation when Win 8.1 is running (so all USB devices on the Hub are visible), but the OTG negotiation is not working when at the UEFI level (resulting in all USB devices remaining invisible)? Even if this reasoning is correct, I'm still baffled as to why everything works at Win 8.1. level in all cases 1 through 4 above. I would have expected Win 8.1 level to stop working in cases 1 and 4 in which OTG Support is Disabled, on the basis that Win 8.1. is constrained by whatever USB settings are configured at the UEFI level. Note: I have found nothing in the Easycc USB 3 Hub documentation to indicate that it even supports the OTG protocol, but maybe that's implied if is a USB 3 Hub as OTG was originally introduced as an extension to USB 2 standard, and USB 3 is backwards compatible with USB 2.

Could you post me picture of exactly what you see in your Boot Manager menu? I see only a list of "EFI Boot Devices" with 2 choices: "Windows Boot Manager" and "Internal EFI Shell". Could you also post me a picture of exactly what you see on under the "SCU", "Boot" configuration screen for "EFI Boot Order Settings". Again, I only see two items under an "EFI" heading: "Windows Boot Manager" and "Internal EFI Shell".

Any comments on any of the above or suggestions on what to try next? Is anyone else experiencing the same frustrating problems that I am?
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby nememo » September 14th, 2015, 6:20 am

danskeman wrote:You are still getting confused about eufi or legacy boot. USB sticks unless special ones do not support eufi.
However boot USB sticks have EUFI drivers that allow them to boot on EUFI PCs even if they use classic MBR partitioning (DVDs do not even have this).

USB sticks DO support UEFI and have done for many years. You don't need any special ones - Just look at the standard Windows recovery drive - that creates a UEFI one. Some can be picky but thats more to do with cheap media than not specifically supporting UEFI. They also all support GPT partitioning - you only need to look at how far back Mac OS X has let you do this to see it's not a new feature. Its just that Windows has defaulted to MBR since day dot.

dpweeks wrote:Hi danskeman,
My understanding is that UEFI was invented to allow the concept of Secure Boot to be supported, allowing only digitally signed boot software to be executed on startup.

No. Common misconception. Secure boot is just a feature of UEFI, it wasn't the main reason for migrating from BIOS to UEFI. You don't have to use secure boot to use UEFI (as the tabelts show), and you still get the benefits of UEFI (Fast booting, better power management, not based on the 80's BIOS).

Out of interest, have you tried with a flash drive as opposed to an external HDD? Even with the hub, the linx tablets (and bay trail in general) can be finicky about power output over the usb port. As flash drives use much less power, they typically have a greater chance of working.
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby dpweeks » September 14th, 2015, 10:47 am

Hi nenemo,
I have tried creating various bootable USB flash drives (see post viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1190&start=20#p7773) using two different USB sticks, as well as a bootable external USB hard drive (2.5" drive in a caddy). Nothing ever shows up as a boot option and USB keyboard does not work at the UEFI level.
Regarding power output over the USB port, at the Win 8.1 level, the setup I described shows the Linx 8 as charging, so when I switch to UEFI level, I assume the tablet is still charging. This seems to be confirmed by the fact that the charging light near the Micro USB B port on the tablet is lit when powered off, when at UEFI level as well as when at Win 8.1 level.
I have tried both with EASYAcc USB 3 Hub, and without. In the latter case, I have tried with the Linx supplied Micro USB B to Standard USB A cable and a Female to Female Standard USB A Adaptor (i.e. USB stick bus-powered from the Linx, with Linx using it's own battery power), and also with a USB Y cable (i.e. USB stick bus-powered from 2 amp USB wall plug charger, as well as Linx 8 powered from the same 2 amp USB wall plug charger). No joy in all cases ...
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby nememo » September 14th, 2015, 4:49 pm

Have you tried creating a recovery drive using this method: viewtopic.php?f=35&t=890. I know it's not what you're after, and it's quite a big download, but if you can get that USB drive to show up in the UEFI menu then you know your hardware works. If it doesn't work, I'd suggest buying a new defined OTG cable (not a simple micro b to type A cable) and giving that a try.

The fact even your keyboard isn't picked up in UEFI suggests something isn't quite right with your OTG adaptor.
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby dpweeks » September 18th, 2015, 11:55 am

Hi troggy, danskeman, nememo,

I have solved the problem! Based on all your feedbacks, I eventually concluded that my problem was something fundamental at the USB cabling level. Since one was not supplied with my Linx 8, I went back to my supplier (Wiziwoo) and acquired one of the OTG cables normally supplied with Linx 7 and Linx 10 systems (i.e. cable with Micro USB B connector on one end and female Standard USB connector on the other). I now find that both of the following configurations allow me to finally see a bootable Macrium Reflect Free Rescue USB flash drive:

1. MRF Rescue USB drive connected directly to female Standard USB connector of the OTG cable, and micro USB B connector connected to Linx 8. I now see a "EFI USB Device (General UDisk)" option under EFI Boot Devices in the Boot Option Menu! I can boot up Win PE and get into Macrium Reflect Free, but then cannot do anything since touch is not supported and I have no keyboard or mouse available, plus I cannot see my MRF backups on a external USB hard drive. However I can presumably use this solution for a bootable Win 8.1 USB Recovery drive (have not tried that yet).

2. Using my EasyAcc USB 3 Hub connected in "Self-powered mode" i.e. (You need to be registered to view this link, please log-in or register):
a. EasyAcc Hub's supplied power cable plugged into the power IN socket, and the USB Standard A connector on the other end plugged into the 2 amp Wall plug charger that came with the Linx 8
b. Linx 8 connected to the EasyAcc USB IN socket, using both the above-mentioned Linx 8 OTG Cable and the Standard USB A to Standard USB B that came with the EasyAcc Hub! (Previously, I was using the Micro USB B to Standard USB A cable that came with the Linx 8, which does NOT work).
c. Bootable Macrium Rescue USB flash drive connected to EasyAcc USB OUT port 1
d. USB Keyboard connected to EasyAcc USB OUT port 2
e. USB Mouse connected to EasyAcc USB OUT Port 3
f. External self-powered 2Tb Seagate USB hard drive containing my MRF backups connected to EasyAcc USB OUT Port 4

Using approach #2, I also now see a "EFI USB Device (General UDisk)" option under EFI Boot Devices in the Boot Option Menu! (You need to be registered to view this link, please log-in or register). I can boot up Win PE and get into Macrium Reflect Free, and I can also use USB keyboard and mouse, plus I can see my Linx 8 MRF backups on the external 2 Tb USB hard drive. I can also still see all these devices from Win 8.1 level on my Linx 8.

This means I should be able to create and restore complete Macrium Reflect Free image backups of all drive partitions on my Linx 8, which was a pre-requisite for me for attempting upgrade to Windows 10, in case all goes belly up, and I need to restore the Linx 8 to Win 8.1.

Note: at the UEFI level, I still had "USB OTG Support"='PCI Mode' and "VBUS"='ON' and I could access all USB devices on the EasyAcc Hub. I tried changing "USB OTG Support" back to it's shipped default value of "Disabled", and I can still access all USB devices on the EasyAcc Hub. HOWEVER, with approach #2, my Linx 8 is no longer charging when at Win 8.1 level (regardless of the "USB OTG Support" setting), whereas when I use the Micro USB B to Standard USB A cable that came with the Linx 8 in step 2b above, the Linx 8 DOES charge when at the Win 8.1 level (also regardless of the "USB OTG Support" setting).

This means that I have to choose which cabling arrangement to use depending on what I am trying to do, namely

A. Linx 8 connected to EasyAcc Hub using Micro USB B to Standard USB A cable that came with the Linx 8: normal operations at Win 8.1 level, with OTG charging of Linx 8 working
B. Linx 8 connected to EasyAcc Hub using both the new Linx 8 OTG Cable and the Standard USB A to Standard USB B cable that came with the EasyAcc Hub: operations performed at UEFI level, with OTG charging of Linx 8 not working (at Win 8.1 level)

I can live with these limitations, though would be nice if I could get OTG charging to work in case B as well :-)

Many thanks for all your inputs!
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby danskeman » September 18th, 2015, 7:13 pm

Good news.
Now you are ready to go to 10, do following:

1) make that 8. 1 macrium backup of course.

2) export 8.1 drivers to a usb stick or sd card.
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3) upgrade keeping all files in place.

4) once upgraded, use disk cleanup to get rid of install files etc (select option to delete old system files, and check all boxes in list of files to be deleted).

5) may need to delete 5GB wimboot partition.

6) Backup pc again using macrium.

7) enjoy!
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby dpweeks » September 22nd, 2015, 6:45 pm

Hi danskeman,

Re "3) upgrade keeping all files in place."
What is the best way to do this step?

Re "2) export 8.1 drivers to a usb stick or sd card."
What is the purpose behind exporting the 8.1 drivers? Do I need to reinstall some of them after upgrading to Windows 10? If so, which drivers need re-installing, and how do I do that?"
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Re: Unable to see bootable USB Recovery drive

Postby danskeman » September 22nd, 2015, 7:44 pm

Upgrade keeping all files in place is one of the upgrade options.

Re exporting drivers - just an insurance in case somehow something goes wrong and you need a driver. Probably won't need it.
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