Make a USB SUSE Bootable Flash Drive from CD

Create a USB SUSE bootable flash drive using the OpenSUSE Live CD. This procedure works much like the install to an external USB hard drive with the exception that the user is performing a full OpenSUSE install to a USB flash drive. As such, the process does differ slightly!

This tutorial was made possible due to a custom Portable SUSE script originally created and provided by James Rhodes.
Please note that due to the limited number of write functions a flash drive can handle before going bad, you may reduce the life of your NAND based flash drive by performing this installation. It is recommend to use a Fast SSD flash drive, or an external SSD hard drive, instead.

Open SUSE running from Bootable USB

OpenSuse on USB

Basics to make a USB SUSE

  • USB flash thumb drive 4GB+
  • OpenSUSE Live CD
  • Portable SUSE conversion script

How to make a Portable SUSE Bootable USB

Warning: Before proceeding, backup all data you wish to save from your flash thumb drive. In addition, physically disconnect any internally attached hard drives to avoid the possibility of installing to the wrong device. If your flash drive contains a fat filesystem it will be shrunk and new partitions will be added for the SUSE OS (so you will still have a Windows accessible partition).

  1. Download OpenSuSE Live CD KDE (685MB) ISO, burn to a CD and start your system from the CD.
  2. Once SUSE is up and running, insert your USB flash drive.
  3. When prompted that a new medium has been detected:
    (1) select the option to Do Nothing
    (2) check the box to Always do this for this type of media
    (3) Then click OK
    media prompt 1
  4. Next, click the My Computer icon from your SUSE desktop.
  5. Locate your USB device from the Disk Information section on the page.
  6. Right click on the device and select Properties
    device properties 2
  7. From the Properties window that appear, click the Mounting tab,
    (1) Uncheck the Mount automatically box
    (2) Click OK
    mount automatically 3
  8. From the Disk Information section,
    (1) right click on the device again.
    (2) Select Safely Remove
    safely remove 4
  9. * Now unplug and reinsert your flash drive.
  10. You may be prompted again that a new medium has been detected,
    (1) Select the option to Do Nothing
    (2) Check the box to Always do this for this type of media
    (3) Finally, click OK
    media prompt 1
  11. Next, start the installer via the install icon on your desktop and proceed to follow the onscreen instructions. Once you get to the Live Installation Settings page, click Partitioning.
    partitioning 6
  12. Next, from the Suggested Partitioning page,
    (1) Choose the option to Base Partition Setup on This Proposal
    (2) And click Next
    suggested 7
  13. Now from the Expert Partitioner page,
    (1) Select your Fat32 partition
    (2) Then press Resize
    fat select 8
  14. From the resize pop up window that appears,
    (1) Reduce the size of your windows partition to around 200MB or less.
    (2) OK
    resize fat 9
  15. In the pop up that appears click Yes to allow the Linux partiton to use the new empty space.
    yes 10
  16. Next, Accept and continue the install. Once the installer has finished, reboot your computer. Remove the CD from the drive and proceed to boot from the USB device
  17. Continue the onscreen setup process… users and passwords etc. * Skip the Online Update Configuration step. (Select Configure Later)
  18. Once your up and running again, press alt+f2 and type konsolesu then press Enter
  19. From the console window, type:
  20. Then to extract the archive, type:
    tar -zxvf *.tar.gz
  21. To install, type the following and then proceed to follow the instructions from the program:
  22. Finally, to reboot and ensure that everything is still working, type:

That's all there is to it. You should now be able to run your SUSE Bootable USB from any PC that can boot from a USB device. You can now re-attach any internal drives to your PC and run your Portable SUSE wherever you want.