Rich Megginson (richmegginson) wrote,
Rich Megginson

Installing RHEL6 using a USB thumb drive

My cd/dvd drive conked out, and I wanted to install RHEL6 on a machine. The machine is able to boot from a USB drive. There is no Live RHEL6 DVD/CD/USB, so it is a manual procedure. This is what I did:

1) format an 8GB USB drive
2) From RHN, go to the channel you want to use - in my case RHEL6 Workstation, and choose your arch
3) Download both the minimal/network install ISO, and the full package DVD ISO - you will need both
4) Using the Fedora Live USB Creator, make the USB drive bootable using the minimal/network install ISO - be sure to leave plenty of space for the full package DVD ISO
5) once the USB drive is complete, copy the DVD ISO to the USB thumb drive - then eject the thumb drive
6) Plug the USB drive into your computer and reboot
7) You may have to hit F-12 or some other function key to get to the BIOS boot menu - select the USB device
8) You should then see the RHEL install screen - select your install option
9) Go through the install screens - you will eventually get to a screen that says something like
Install from:
Hard Drive
Choose "Hard Drive" - if it prompts you for the path, just hit Enter or "/" if you must enter something - this is the location of the DVD ISO

Q: Why is this necessary? Why can't I just create the live usb from the DVD ISO, boot from that, and install from that?

A: If you select to install from a Hard Drive, the RHEL installer program must have an ISO file to install from - it doesn't understand that you are booting from the Hard Drive that has the packages too.

I suppose you could use the DVD ISO to create the live usb, but you would also need to have the entire ISO as well.

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