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I have an old sony laptop that doesn't support booting from USB and its CD ROM drive is broken. Previously I was able to boot from USB through plop boot manager, but recently I deleted partitions and installed Zorin OS to try it.

Now I wanted to install Xubuntu, but I could not boot from USB since plop boot manager is no longer available given that the MBR was over written by Zorin. I tried intalling plop boot menu from Zorin, but I wasn't able to.

I tried different entries but I get error messages like

unknown file system/ partition not found!

I am able to run Zorin normally.

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I finally found a way to fix the problem. I used this guide

Download Plop boot manager from here - use plpbt-5.0.14.zip

Assuming it was saved to your Downloads directory, unzip it and copy two files to /boot:

cd ~/Downloads
unzip plpbt-5.0.14.zip
sudo cp plpbt-5.0.14/Linux/plpbt.bin /boot
sudo cp plpbt-5.0.14/Linux/plpcfgbt /boot

Now you need to edit the file /etc/grub.d/40_custom, but you need some of the contents of the file /boot/grub/grub.cfg so open it with your favourite text editor and use it to find something similar to these lines (starting with insmod ext2 and ending with something close to the output of cat proc/cmdline). There may be several entries that are similar (one for each installed kernel):

 insmod ext2
 if [ x$feature_platform_search_hint = xy ]; then
      search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root  4ee1bbce-9d64-44b6-821b-511e06a804e0
 else
      search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root 4ee1bbce-9d64-44b6-821b-511e06a804e0
 fi
 linux   /boot/vmlinuz-4.8.0-27-generic.efi.signed root=UUID=4ee1bbce-9d64-44b6-821b-511e06a804e0 ro  resume=/dev/mmcblk1p3 initcall_debug no_console_suspend intel_idle.max_cstate=1

Copy those lines, and then open /etc/grub.d/40_custom with your favourite text editor, for example

 sudo nano /etc/grub.d/40_custom

And add at the end of the file

menuentry "Plop Bootmanager" {

Then paste the lines from /boot/grub/grub.cfg but change the last one and add a closing } so finally the whole file is something like:

#!/bin/sh
exec tail -n +3 $0
# This file provides an easy way to add custom menu entries.  Simply type the
# menu entries you want to add after this comment.  Be careful not to change
# the 'exec tail' line above.
menuentry "Plop Bootmanager" {
insmod ext2
 if [ x$feature_platform_search_hint = xy ]; then
      search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root  4ee1bbce-9d64-44b6-821b-511e06a804e0
 else
      search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root 4ee1bbce-9d64-44b6-821b-511e06a804e0
 fi
 linux16 /boot/plpbt.bin
}

Note: if there is a line starting with set root instead of the if/else statements then leave that line, but if there is a line starting with echo, remove it

Make sure you leave at least 2 newlines at the end of the file.

Save, exit, and run

sudo update-grub

And Plop Bootmanager will be added to your GRUB menu.

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