MBT-2220 won't boot from Memstick

  • I just received a brand-new MBT-2220 from Netgate, along with the bundled pfsense installer on a USB key. Per the online instructions I plugged the USB key into the bottom (USB 3.0) port, a USB keyboard into the top port, and connected a powered-up monitor to the HDMI port.

    It always boots into the shell instead of from the memstick.

    I've also tried putting the EFI USB Device as the "next boot device" and then rebooting, but it always boots into the shell.

    Once I'm booted into the shell, the Mapping Table shows:

    FS0: Alias(s) :HD1b0b:;BLK2:
    PciRoot (0x0) /Pci (0x14,0x0)/USB (0x1,0x0) /HD (1,MBR,0x024B35FD,0x40,0xEFFFC0)

    which looks like it sees the memstick. But it won't boot from it.

    What am I doing wrong?


    I've gone into the BIOS and moved EFI USB Device to the top of the boot order, but it still boots into the shell.

    I've swapped USB ports so that the the keyboard is in the bottom port and the Memstick is in the upper port, and then re-selected the EFI USB Device as the first boot device, but it still boots into the shell.

    Is there a key I need to press during boot to force or request USB boot?

  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    Can you plug the installer disk card into a different computer and see what its contents are? It should contain a pfSense installer image (ufs) and most operating systems will complain they can't read the disk.

    If you see an empty/blank partition such as a FAT32 partition, then that might mean the installer image didn't write to that card correctly.

    You can download the pfSense 2.4.4 CE installer image (VGA memstick) from https://www.pfsense.org and write it to that card or another USB memstick using Etcher.

  • Yeah, I thought about that just after I posted, and the installer disk card appears to be empty. ☹

    My Mac recognizes it as a FAT32-formatted device with 8.04 GB capacity and 8.04 GB free.

    So it appears that I was shipped an empty card.

  • Netgate Administrator

    Hmm, not sure how that happened. I apologise.
    That should have this image on it:

    I suggest writing that onto the card with Etcher, I've yet to see that fail.


    Edit: And now I see jimp was ahead of me. 😉

  • @jimp

    Thanks! It's installing now . . .

    I actually called Support, and the nice guy there knew exactly what I was talking about, and in fact had just responded on a ticket to a different user.

    So it looks like someone at Netgate put the box of un-imaged memory cards in the wrong place!

    But it's all good; pfsense 2.4.4 CE is installed and configured now on my MBT-2220.

    Since I have everyone's attention, I also need to update my two APU2 boxes to the latest edition, and I can't do an in-place upgrade because they're running 32-bit 2.3.x.

    Can I use this same installer to install onto an APU2?

    How about an ancient Alix-based m1n1wall?


  • Ah, never mind. I see that @jimp replied to my other thread last week. I need to download a serial console image instead.

  • @thewaterbug

    I just bought another MBT-2220, for another location, and this time the USB key/card/storage-thingy was bootable, so whatever the problem was 2 weeks ago, it's been fixed.

  • Netgate Administrator

    Thanks for the follow up!


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