Can't boot to USB storage device or change boot sequence on Dell Optiplex 755 BIOS

dcellini

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Jul 1, 2017
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Hello. I have a Dell Optiplex 755 SFF system that came with Windows XP and I've been having some issues related to its BIOS. Recently, I lost the option to boot to a USB device when hitting F12 repeatedly. I've done this countless times to install Linux distros from a USB flash drive, but now the option is missing. When I went to check the boot sequence, the BIOS refused to give me access to change it. There's not even a boot option for USB listed in the boot sequence. All of the USB controllers are enabled and I've already tried resetting the BIOS to its defaults. I even messed with the jumper on the motherboard and flashed an older revision of the BIOS, but I haven't got any luck. I did boot to a recovery disk through an external DVD drive before this happened, but I'm not sure if this had an effect on the BIOS. Will I have to get a new motherboard or is there a way to fully reset the BIOS?
 

Grobe

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Jan 22, 2009
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I know this answer will be to little help but - I had an Optiplex 780 at work where we did numerous attempts to boot to a usb stick that contains Windows 10 an faced the same problem as you. We really never found out what was the problem despite wasting hours looking at different bios settings.
 

dcellini

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Jul 1, 2017
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Yeah, so far the hours I spent messing with this computer's BIOS were just a waste of time. At this point I'd be really surprised if there was a solution because I feel like I've tried everything.
 

Grobe

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It does have a CD/VDV rom, hasn't it?

I'm just in the process of learning Linux, and I have some old (anchient in fact) computers that isn't capable to boot on usb sticks. The solution for me was to use a boot loader named Plop Boot Manager (plpbt).

That is a ISO file (bin actually) that you write to CD, then you boot this CD and choose wich medium to boot from.
 

dcellini

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Jul 1, 2017
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I can confirm this works as I have tested it myself, so I marked it as the best answer. The best way that I found to use Plop Boot Manager was to add it to the Windows 10 boot menu which gets rid of the need to make a bootable CD entirely. It can be done by running the batch script from the Plop website. I no longer use this Dell Optiplex machine since I have upgraded to a newer HP desktop, but this solution did work for me before I stopped using it. Thanks for putting this solution out there because it can help out other people with the same frustrating problem
 

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