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Creating a multi-boot USB drive with Ventoy

May 08, 2022

This guide assumes that:

  • You’re on a Linux system that provides tar and doas (or sudo)
  • You have a USB stick already plugged in to your computer

Quoted from it’s Vetoy’s homepage:

Ventoy is an open source tool to create bootable USB drive for ISO/WIM/IMG/VHD(x)/EFI files.

With Ventoy, you don’t need to format the disk over and over, you just need to copy the ISO/WIM/IMG/VHD(x)/EFI files to the USB drive and boot them directly.

You can copy many files at a time and ventoy will give you a boot menu to select them

In order to install it, download the compressed installation package from it’s releases page on GitHub, the file name will probably look like this ventoy-<version>-linux.tar.gz, after downloading, decompress it by running the command below:

tar xf ventoy-1.0.74-linux.tar.gz

At the time of writing this, Ventoy’s latest version is 1.0.74, so this one will be used as an example

This will create a directory with the same name of the compressed archive on your current directory, now you need to check the device name of your USB drive, this can be done by running lsblk, your output might be somewhat similar to this:

sda                           8:0    0 238.5G  0 disk
├─sda1                        8:1    0   550M  0 part  /boot
├─sda2                        8:2    0    10G  0 part  [SWAP]
└─sda3                        8:3    0 227.9G  0 part
sdb                           8:16   1  14.5G  0 disk
├─sdb1                        8:17   1  14.5G  0 part
└─sdb2                        8:18   1    32M  0 part

Remember that this is just an example to illustrate how it probably might look like on your system, the device names might be totally different from the ones above, make sure knowing which one of them is your USB drive before proceeding, otherwise you might end up wiping your whole system

On the example above, sda is the HD/SSD where the actual system is installed, while sdb is the USB drive where Ventoy will be installed

With that in mind, enter the directory where Ventoy was extracted to, and run the following command as root to install it to the desired device (in this case, /dev/sdb will be used for demonstration purposes):

The command below will format your USB drive and all data contained in it will be lost after installation

doas sh Ventoy2Disk.sh -i /dev/sdb

After that, your USB drive will be divided into two partitions: