Unusual USB Media

In a few cases with oddly formatted or partitioned USB media, image writing may fail.
You can install Red Hat Enterprise Linux on 32-bit x86 systems and BIOS-based AMD64 and Intel 64 systems using a USB flash drive, provided that your hardware supports booting from this type of device. Note that you cannot install Red Hat Enterprise Linux on POWER systems or UEFI-based AMD64 and Intel 64 systems from a USB flash drive, although you can use a USB flash drive to boot the Red Hat Enterprise Linux installer on UEFI-based AMD64 and Intel 64 systems — refer to Section 2.3, “Making Minimal Boot Media”.
This procedure describes the steps to take on a system that runs Red Hat Enterprise Linux, but the commands are broadly similar for any Linux or UNIX operating system.

Warning — These instructions could destroy data

When you perform this procedure any data on the USB flash drive is destroyed with no warning. Make sure that you specify the correct USB flash drive, and make sure that this flash drive does not contain any data that you want to keep.
  1. Plug in your USB flash drive.
  2. Find the device name for your USB flash drive. If the flash drive has a volume name, look up the name in /dev/disk/by-label, or use findfs:
    su -c 'findfs LABEL="MyLabel"'
    If the media does not have a volume name, or you do not know it, run dmesg after you connect the USB flash drive. The device name, similar to /dev/sdc, appears in several lines towards the end of the output.
  3. Ensure that the file system type of the USB flash drive is vfat.
    su -c blkid device
    You should now see a message similar to:
    LABEL="LIVE" UUID="6676-27D3" TYPE="vfat"
    If TYPE is anything other than vfat (for example, TYPE="iso9660"), clear the first blocks of the USB flash drive:
    dd if=/dev/zero of=device bs=1M count=100
  4. Use the dd command to transfer the ISO image to the USB device:
    dd if=path/image_name.iso of=device
    where path/image_name.iso is the ISO image file of the installation DVD that you downloaded from the Red Hat Customer Portal and device is the USB flash drive. For example:
    dd if=~/Downloads/RHEL6-Server-i386-DVD.iso of=/dev/sdc