Install openELEC on RaspberryPi into SD Card to boot and USB Stick as Storage on Windows

 

There is a fix for problem with a SD card get corrupted occasionally or on power loss even if you don't overclock your RaspberryPi. There is also a speed increase using a USB stick as Storage for openELEC so why don't use this advantage.

First of all we have to downlaod a free partition manager sofware under this link

and install it on your system.

Assuming you have an SD card (at least 128MB capacity or more) and USB stick (pendrive) with at least 512MB capacity.
You have to be sure that you don't connect any USB device to the rPi but only an USB stick - for a while.

Preparing a SD Card for boot

Run a MiniTool Partition Manager.
Insert your SD card into PC.
Remove/delete any partitions from SD card.
Create partition on SD card -
- type PRIMARY (important!)
- filesystem - FAT32
- label - System
Commit changes (with format).
Check if drive is accessible from Windows.

Now, download openELEC build 3.2.4 Legacy for rPi (yep, still works the best)

direct link: OpenELEC Legacy - Raspberry Pi ARM Version:3.2.4

and from the archive COPY (i.e. using Total Commander or similar tool) files to the root of a SD card

OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\openelec.ico
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\target\KERNEL
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\target\SYSTEM
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\3rdparty\bootloader\bootcode.bin
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\3rdparty\bootloader\config.txt
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\3rdparty\bootloader\fixup.dat
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\3rdparty\bootloader\LICENCE.broadcom
OpenELEC-RPi.arm-3.2.4\3rdparty\bootloader\start.elf
 

Important! Rename file: KERNEL to kernel.img
(filename SYSTEM can stay as it is, no change needed)

Second, create textfile named cmdline.txt with above content:

boot=/dev/mmcblk0p1 disk=LABEL=Storage ssh quiet
#boot=/dev/mmcblk0p1 disk=/dev/mmcblk0p2 ssh quiet
 

This lines simply mounts Storage volume orginally from SD card second partition (commented #) BUT we want the storage partition on our USB so we're putting an option to mount Storage from USB and by label - 'Storage'  which states for a label of our USB partition we created before. Of course you ma use less convinient but accurat by-UUID method (disk=/dev/disk/by-uuid/596fcf53-34f1-cf01-506d-cf5334f1cf01) where that string is every device in the world unique number. 
second line commented # just for safekeeping and explanation)

So if you open a SD card drive in Windows you'll get:

g:\bootcode.bin
g:\cmdline.txt
g:\config.txt
g:\fixup.dat
g:\kernel.img
g:\LICENCE.broadcom
g:\openelec.ico
g:\start.elf
g:\SYSTEM
 

(in my scenario that will be a G:\ drive but you can have any other letter assigned)

Now we have a booting SD card with openELEC trying to mount required Storage volume from USB Stick.

Remove a SD card if you still have it inserted into PC.

Preparing an USB stick


Run a MiniTool Partition Manager.
Insert your USB stick into PC.
Remove/delete any partitions from USB stick.
Create partition on USB stick -
- type PRIMARY (important!)
- filesystem - EXT4 (important!)
- label - Storage (important!)
Commit changes (with format).

Your drive won't be accessible from Windows as the operating system doesn't support EXT4 natively.

You may wan't to download and install Open source ext3/4 file system driver for Windows (2K/XP/WIN7/WIN8) called Ext2Fsd Project - download here
(tested on the 0.53 version) - then you will be able to see read/write files to EXT3/EXT4 partitions within Windows

Put your SD card and USB stick into raspberryPi and plug the power.

That's all for now.