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I'm sick of burning DVDs that become coasters after a single install, so I figured I'd jump on this new USB install bandwagon. First up, I'm using my laptop for this -- which was booted into Windows 7. The creation tool ran disturbingly quickly - about 5 seconds and obviously the resulting image didn't work.

So, we grab and unpack it. There's a directory called headimg on the disk with files 0.dat, 1.dat, 2.dat and 3.dat. These a gzipped boot headers that are concatenated with the downloadable .usb file to create a bootable USB stick.

The files are device size dependant:

Filename Size
0.dat 1GB (probably useless these days)
1.dat 2GB
2.dat 4GB
3.dat 8GB

You'll need to decompress the correct file with gzip -d/gzcat/gunzip/etc and then cat the header file and the .usb and pump it through to the raw device for your USB stick.

eg, on the next nearest machine which is a Mac,

gzcat 1.dat >2gb.dat && cat 2gb.dat oi-dev-147-x86.usb | dd of=/dev/disk4

Get the device wrong and there will be tears before bedtime. This will take a while, so go make a cup of coffee and come back -- especially if you're using a Mac, where the I/O is so slow you might need to make it two cups of coffee or twiddle block sizes for dd.