Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W boot from USB?

Hi Guys,

From my understanding the Raspberry Pi Zero was unable to directly boot from an SSD without the use of an SD card where the bootloader is.

Since the Pi Zero 2 has the same SoC as the Pi 3 B which supports USB boot I would assume it should?

It is very new and I have had no luck finding this information elsewhere.

Thank you


Hi Samuil,

It looks like some other users tried to get it up and running over on the RPi forums: USB boot on the Pi Zero 2 W? - Raspberry Pi Forums

I’d say the best way to figure it out would be to jump in and experiment with one!


Hi Samuil,

I just found this info in the official tech docs, thought I’d share:

On the Raspberry Pi 2B v1.2, 3A+, 3B, Zero 2, and Compute Module 3, 3+ you must first enable USB host boot mode. This is to allow USB mass storage boot, and network boot. Note that network boot is not supported on the Raspberry Pi 3A+.

To enable USB host boot mode, the Raspberry Pi needs to be booted from an SD card with a special option to set the USB host boot mode bit in the one-time programmable (OTP) memory. Once this bit has been set, the SD card is no longer required.

IMPORTANT Any change you make to the OTP is permanent and cannot be undone

NOTE On the Raspberry Pi 3A+, setting the OTP bit to enable USB host boot mode will permanently prevent that Pi from booting in USB device mode.

Here’s the link:


Tried SSH or GUI?
sudo raspi-config
Advanced Options (Option 6)
Boot Order (Option A6)
Option SD Card Boot - Boot from SD Card if available, otherwise boot from USB (Option B1)

I have it like that on my Pi4 and using SSD connected to USB to boot. I can also use SD card if I want to.

If you want, I can check on RPi Zero WH, when I boot it up the next time (SSH or GUI) - I installed full Raspbian on the Zero as well.