How do I create a bootable USB pen drive for installation?

The server I need to install Red Hat Enterprise Linux on does not have a floppy drive or CD-rom drive, but it has a USB port. What are the steps to configure a USB pen drive to boot and install Red Hat Enterprise Linux?

To configure a USB flash/pen drive perform the following steps:

  1. Format the USB flash drive as one FAT partition.

    #mkdosfs /dev/

  2. Copy the contents of /RedHat/isolinux/ from the first installation CD to the USB flash drive. NOTE: isolinux.bin, and TRANS.TBL can be removed or deleted.

  3. Rename isolinux.cfg to syslinux.cfg.

  4. Copy /RedHat/images/pxeboot/initrd.img from the first installation CD to the USB flash drive.

  5. OPTIONAL: To configure any boot settings, edit the syslinux.cfg on the USB flash drive. For example to configure the installation to use a kickstart file shared over NFS,specify the following:

    #linux ks=nfs:://ks.cfg

  6. Make the USB flash drive bootable. Be sure to UNMOUNT the USB flash device.

    #umount /dev/
    #syslinux /dev/

  7. Install GRUB on the USB flash drive.

    #mount /dev/ /path/to/local/USB/mount
    #grub-install --root-directory=/path/to/local/USB/mount /dev/

  8. Verify that the USB flash drive has a /boot/grub directory. If it does not, create the directory manually.

    #cd /path/to/USB/local/mount
    #mkdir -p /boot/grub

  9. Create the grub.conf file. Below is a sample grub.conf:

    root (hd1,0)
    kernel /vmlinuz
    initrd /initrd.img

  10. Copy or confirm the created grub.conf file is on the /boot/grub/ directory of the USB flash drive.

This makes the USB drive bootable.

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