How to boot Pi 400 from USB SSD only

Can I install Manjaro Xfce or Mate onto a Crucial SSD to boot without the microSD card being present?
If so, is there a procedure somewhere…
Or is it as simple as using balenaEtcher (or equiv) direct to the SSD without using the microSD card first.

You dont need a SD card. The Pi supports USB boot.

Yes but you need the eeprom flashed with the right firmware first for it to boot. So if it does not boot you need to do that. I have no clue what version of firmware it is flashed with from the factory.

I heard today that the Rpi 400 should ship with the updated eeprom already flashed, so you should be able to just plugin a USB and boot from it without SD card.

@Strit is right. I used balenaEtcher (on Windows 10) to flash my 500G SSD.
Very straight foward. balenaEtcher warned about size of SSD.
Rufus didn’t allow the SSD to be selected.
Booted from USD and Manjaro started its install choices and resized /dev/sda2 to 435G.
Alas, though, the WiFi is not working and I can’t see in journalctl -b the chip even being detected.
WiFi works on Ubuntu 20.10 which I can boot separately from the microSD card.

No doubt this will be fixed in due course.
If there is anything I can check please do say.

Very happy with performance on Xfce. 918.5MiB used with FF running.

Until we can redo some packages do this I posted in another thread.

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