External HD Question...PLEASE Help.

Could I boot from an External HDD on my laptop? My hard drive connector on my laptop board has a bent pin and it continues to burn up hard drive after hard drive. I wanted to see if I could just connect an external to it and be done with it if it will allow me to install an OS on it. Is that possible?
 
The answer as I've come to understand it is basically "no", for any MS-Win OS later than Win 98. Microsoft is working on it :roll: .

However I understand that Linux can, as long as the machine's BIOS supports USB or FireWire booting.

(Related) Recently my laptop became unbootable due to mysterious corruption of some XP system files. Even the restore points and "safe mode" tricks didn't work. I'd just gotten a Mepis Linux demo CD to test how the latest Linux distro works with my HP Pavilion laptop. Earlier distros didn't very well.

I booted from the Mepis demo CD and the Linux desktop came up without a hitch :) . I was then able to save any files to a USB memory stick that I didn't want to lose in a full HDD restore. After that I gave the hard drive a complete physical with SpinRite and Fujitsu's own diagnostics. Then I was able to restore from an external USB drive with an Acronis full image backup I'd made just before our May chase trip and add back more recent files from the memory stick. :D
 
Originally posted by David Wolfson
The answer as I've come to understand it is basically \"no\", for any MS-Win OS later than Win 98. Microsoft is working on it :roll: .

However I understand that Linux can, as long as the machine's BIOS supports USB or FireWire booting.

(Related) Recently my laptop became unbootable due to mysterious corruption of some XP system files. Even the restore points and \"safe mode\" tricks didn't work. I'd just gotten a Mepis Linux demo CD to test how the latest Linux distro works with my HP Pavilion laptop. Earlier distros didn't very well.

I booted from the Mepis demo CD and the Linux desktop came up without a hitch :) . I was then able to save any files to a USB memory stick that I didn't want to lose in a full HDD restore. After that I gave the hard drive a complete physical with SpinRite and Fujitsu's own diagnostics. Then I was able to restore from an external USB drive with an Acronis full image backup I'd made just before our May chase trip and add back more recent files from the memory stick. :D

I have an HP Pavillion ze4100 and I was able to boot from CD using KNOPIX. I'll have to work on the issue a little bit....thanks.
 
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