I have an older i386 Sony Vaio desktop PC where the BIOS only allows boot from floppy, CD or very specific USB device types, none of which seem to recognize USB flash drives for some reason. Floppy is not an option because the drive no longer works and I have no media for it if it did. I've tried assorted CD and DVD drives, the CD drives all give read errors and DVD drives all say "unsupported emulation".
My next possible option that I would like to try, is to install the hard drive into another machine as a second HD and figure out a way to format it and save an Ubuntu installation to run from that HD once it is moved back into the target machine. IS this possible and if so, how would I go about doing so? The currently running machine uses Windows XP.