How can I boot my Aspire TC-710 from a bootable USB

I have a bootable linux USB drive (works on my other computers).  But when I plug it into the USB ports on this computer and reboot, and press F12 to bring up the boot menu, it is not listed.  The only entry is Windows boot manager. 

 

In trying to resolve this, I've gone into BIOS configuration by pressing DEL during initialization, and turned off Secure Boot.  But that did not solve the problem.  Rebooting and pressing F12 to bring up the boot menu still shows only the Windows boot manager entry.

 

Thank you for your assistance.

Best Answer

FAQ & Answers

  • a__l__a__na__l__a__n Member Posts: 6

    My BIOS particulars:

     

    BIOS Version/Date    American Megatrends Inc. R01-A3, 3/18/2016
    SMBIOS Version    3.0
    Embedded Controller Version    255.255
    BIOS Mode    UEFI

  • a__l__a__na__l__a__n Member Posts: 6

    Here's what I have found.  I'm hoping there is a better way - one that doesn't require BIOS reconfiguration between boots!

     

    Boot Acer Aspire TC-710 from USB

    1.  Boot to BIOS config (<Del> during init)
    2.  Turn off secure boot
    3.  Turn on CSM and set filter to legacy (not UEFI)
    4.  Save and exit.
    4.  Be sure USB is plugged in.

    Return to Secure Boot of Windows

    1. Boot to BIOS config (<Del> during init)
    2. Turn on secure boot
    3. Save and exit

  • IronFlyIronFly ACE Posts: 18,416 Trailblazer

    what OS are you trying to boot?

     

    if it's not UEFI compliant, you need to switch from UEFI to Legacy (LaunchCSM) everytime.

    I'm not an Acer employee.
  • a__l__a__na__l__a__n Member Posts: 6

    It's Linux Mint.  I'm following instructions here:

     

    https://www.lifewire.com/create-uefi-bootable-linux-mint-usb-2202084

     

    See also:

     

    http://www.pcworld.com/article/2951559/operating-systems/how-to-install-linux-on-a-pc-with-secure-boot-enabled.html

     

    Quote:

    There is one catch here. While Microsoft does sign Linux boot loaders with a Microsoft key, these boot loaders are signed with a separate key from the one Microsoft uses to sign Windows. PC manufacturers aren’t required to include the Microsoft key for third-party UEFI applications as part of the Secure Boot specification, which means that these Linux distributions may not actually work on all Secure Boot PCs. But, in practice, most PC manufacturers do install this Microsoft key.

     

    So I'm suspicious that Acer has not installed the Linux signing key in the TPM on this machine.  I'm wondering whether anyone has confirmed that matter one way or the other.

  • a__l__a__na__l__a__n Member Posts: 6

    I'm guessing my previous reply was deleted because it contained URLs to the instructions I'm following... :-P

     

    Anyway, the USB contains bootable Linux Mint 18.1.  According to PC World, Microsoft uses a separate signing key for linux boot loaders, and that signing key isn't required to be installed in the TPM for Secure Boot compliance.  And according to other sources, the Linux Mint boot loader is signed.  I'm wondering whether anyone can confirm whether or not the public portion of the Microsoft / Linux signing key is installed by Acer in this model.

     

    A Linux USB boot loader signed by that key should be trusted, so the USB will be listed in the F12 boot options with Secure Boot enabled.  The fact that it is not shown tells me the key is probably missing.  If the key has not been installed in the TPM by Acer, perhaps there is a way for me to install it.  The BIOS certainly shows an option for doing that.

     

    Again, any help would be appreciated!

  • IronFlyIronFly ACE Posts: 18,416 Trailblazer
    Accepted Answer

    as far as i know, Linux distros are UEFI compatible only on x64 build.

    you can try to disable only secure boot and check with a x64 distro, like Ubuntu.

     

    if it's not booting, probably is the key missing on TPM; you can try to update bios to the latest R01-A4 but i doubt it will fix the issue:

    http://global-download.acer.com/GDFiles/BIOS/BIOS/BIOS_Acer_R01.A4_A_A.zip?acerid=636023526550201861&Step1=DESKTOP&Step2=ASPIRE&Step3=ASPIRE%20TC-710&OS=ALL&LC=en&BC=ACER&SC=PA_6

    I'm not an Acer employee.
  • a__l__a__na__l__a__n Member Posts: 6

    > as far as i know, Linux distros are UEFI compatible only on x64 build.

     

    That was the missing piece of information.  With a USB boot drive containing the 64 bit edition of Linux Mint 18.1, I can boot from the USB with Secure Boot enabled.  It is NOT necessary to disable Secure Boot.  Just hit F12 during init and I can select the USB drive, or Windows boot manager. 

     

    It was not necessary to update the BIOS.

     

    Thanks!

  • IronFlyIronFly ACE Posts: 18,416 Trailblazer

    you welcome. Smiley Happy

    I'm not an Acer employee.
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