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I have acquired some Dell PowerEdge 1950 servers. Within each seems to be a single erased 3.5 inch SATA hard disk. There does not appear to be a DVD drive. They do not boot a Flash drive (containing an installable Ubuntu) on a USB port. The setup menu shows 2 options for booting: an IDE CD-ROM device and Hard drive C. Perhaps some but not all servers offer a third option of booting from a "NIC".

The facilities I have to work with are a typical laptop (Ubuntu), an external DVD drive (USB), a 2.5 inch SATA circuit board (USB) extracted from a "drive enclosure", and a 48 port switch.

What is my best option for getting Ubuntu booting on each and every server hard disk? I accept that I may have to purchase some items.

Correction: I found the optical drive and quite possibly that solves the problem.

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I have a few old 1950s that I haven't been able to get rid of yet. They will boot my Windows and Debian Install media just fine off USB. Have you tried highlighting the 'C:' option, to see if a sub-menu pops up? In my cases it shows the RAID volume and my 'Sandisk Cruzer' in the sub menu, when I have the C: selected.

Verify that you can actually boot your Ubuntu install media on other systems, so you can be sure you created your media correctly.

If that doesn't help, maybe reset all the BIOS (system setup) options back to the defaults. After that maybe look into updating your firmware.

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