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NT 6.x fast installer: install win7 directly to usb external drive


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#1 fujianabc

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 06:18 PM

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I reopen the removed post request by the admin

As you know, stupid setup.exe for nt 6.x (vista/win7/2008/2008 r2) has many limitations:

1. You can't start install vista/win7 under xp based pe (winpe 1.x) and can't install win7 under win2000
2. You can't install win7 directly to USB hard disk
3. The stupid setup.exe may put the boot files to a wrong drive when you boot winpe with USB device and there is even no way to choose the boot partition Posted Image
4. When you install win7 from winpe, the drive letter of the OS partition will always be C:, no matter which partition you choose.

On the other hand, the fastest way to install nt 6.x is imagex+bcdboot, e.g

imagex f:\sources\install.wim 5 c:

bcdboot c:\windows /s c:

bootsect /nt60 c:

And no setup.exe is needed.

Based on this, I wrote an "nt 6.x fast installer" which has the following advatages compare to the original M$ setup.exe:
1. You can install nt 6.x directly from iso file mounted by any kind of virtual drive.
And you needn't extract or burn the iso.
2. You can directly install nt 6.x from any version winpe and win2000 above windows
3. You can install the OS directly onto a USB external hard drive.
And no virtual machine, copy tool or complicated "tutorial" is needed.
4. You can manually choose which partition is the boot partition.
5. You can decide which letter the OS partition will occupy in Win7/2008 R2.
6. The install speed is very fast. With this installer, you can install win7 in 11-12 min for 5400rpm notebook hdd, and in less than 10min for desktop 7200 hdd (vista needs about 2 min more because of the score evaluation)

Attached Thumbnails

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#2 fujianabc

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 06:20 PM

This installer is a set of cmd batch files.
Attached File  NT6.X_fast_installer_100219.7z   162.16KB   125683 downloads

Download and extract it to a folder. For copyright reason, I can't include the imagex, bcdboot and bootsect. You need to find them by yourself and put them in the folder.
You need:
1. imagex.exe from win7 7600 waik (imagex from vista can't show the wim contents properly)
2. bcdboot.exe from win7 (win7 beta 7000 is recommended, higher version may not run in xp based winpe and win 2000 )
3. bootsect.exe from vista or win7 (win7 7600 is recommended).

Then, run the installer.cmd.


PS:
1. If you install vista or 2008 from the original iso with this installer, the windows partition will occupy d:.
2. After installing the OS on a USB hard drive, you should open the write cache of the hard drive in device manager to speedup the system.
3. If you want to plug the usb OS to another PC, please run the command as administrator
\Windows\System32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /oobe /generalize /shutdown
After the shutting down the computer, you can plug the hard disk to another computer.

Edited by fujianabc, 25 February 2010 - 12:51 PM.


#3 Nuno Brito

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 06:35 PM

This is really interesting, excellent work! :)

#4 Lancelot

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 07:58 PM

Thanks again fujianabc,

I feel there are lots of interesting things in your magic box :)

#5 agni

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 12:30 AM

Suppose I already have Windows XP installed.Then if I use your NT6.x fast installer to install Windows Vista or 7,will the boot menu contain an entry to Windows XP?

#6 Shirin Zaban

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 05:19 AM

This looks very very interesting.
really excellent work.

Thanks a lot for sharing

shirin zaban

#7 shinji257

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 08:40 AM

Very nice work on this.

-------

@agni: My experience says no but I am not the op for this topic so he may have had a different experience than I have. I have used wim2vhd to "install" directly to an external drive before for a friend.

@fujianabc: I have found that sysprep will require you to create a new user again. You can do this as a dummy though since you already have one there. Once you are booted up login to your usual login and delete the dummy. I found that out when I had to switch controller modes. This was how I got to keep the same OS install.

#8 delicatepc

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 08:48 AM

Very very interesting.... setup.exe is indeed very limited. Lets see if this helps it tall.

-dpc

#9 tamenem

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 09:38 AM

Very interesting, Thank you so much! for sharing :) :)

#10 fujianabc

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 09:55 AM

Suppose I already have Windows XP installed.Then if I use your NT6.x fast installer to install Windows Vista or 7,will the boot menu contain an entry to Windows XP?

Yes. I already include the code to add the boot.ini menu to bcd, if xp/2000/2003 exists.

The code is in SetupComplete.cmd

#11 zaimaa

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 12:45 PM

:)

***Service Note***
posting to a topic is the only way to receive email notification of replies. Probably zaimaa did this.

#12 s4b3r6

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 12:51 PM

3. If you want to plug the usb OS to another PC, please run the command as administrator

\Windows\System32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /oobe /generalize /shutdown
After the shutting down the computer, you can plug the hard disk to another computer.


Just checking, you run the sysprep command from within the USB Win 7 OS right?
Calarification:
You run the
\Windows\System32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /oobe /generalize /shutdown
command once you have booted off the USB into Windows 7, is that right?

#13 fujianabc

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 01:28 PM

Just checking, you run the sysprep command from within the USB Win 7 OS right?
Calarification:
You run the

\Windows\System32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /oobe /generalize /shutdown
command once you have booted off the USB into Windows 7, is that right?

Yes. :)

#14 Leonam2006

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 02:50 PM

Thanks To share Fujianabc.

Just a question, Your "magic box" can be used to install OS in a Pen Drive?

TKS.

#15 fujianabc

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 03:06 PM

Thanks To share Fujianabc.

Just a question, Your "magic box" can be used to install OS in a Pen Drive?

TKS.

No. It can only be used to install nt 6.x onto usb hard disk.

#16 JohnK

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 06:29 PM

Well, this kind of thing has me paranoid about serial number and product activation ever since M$ made me phone in on my last Vista reinstall. Because of that I am very reluctant to commit my Windows serial numbers to any kind of experimental installations for fear it will cause me troubles with my primary installations in case of need to reinstall.

How is everyone dealing with this issue?

#17 andex

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 06:48 PM

This is nice idea. One question. Can the new installer, formate/delete partition?
By the way, I just posted a related topic (guide) which talks about how to make a bootable Windows Vista/7 backup with all application pre-installed. You can get it here. :)
http://www.boot-land...showtopic=10137

#18 amalux

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Posted 03 January 2010 - 11:33 PM

Thank you very much fujianabc :)

Works as advertised, I just setup a laptop with only one usable partition, no CD drive and no usb boot. Booted from iso on C, formatted and ran your setup on C and was at Win7 desktop in 12 minutes, nice! Another indispensable tool :)

--
Noticed this (maybe language related):
2010_01_03_125833.jpg
occurs after this text:
xcopy is missing*
Everything is completed*
continue the installation*
in installer.cmd

I already fixed at my end, just reporting :)

Thanks again :)

#19 ziboy

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 01:01 AM

Thanks,it's really fast.
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#20 rocketero

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 03:22 AM

Hello, I was reading this post as I am intrested in install win7 over an Usb-Hdd stick

but I don't understand this part:

1. If you install vista or 2008 from the original iso with this installer, the windows partition will occupy d&#58;.

I have 9 partitions in 4 harddrives so I have letters from C:\ to M:\ because it includes 2 extra letters for the CD and the DVD.

I need to know if I mount the win7 ISO on a virtual drive, let's day virtual drive L:\ (using magicIso virtual cd/dvd), then what should I do? should I edit any of the *.cmd or *.conf files that are in the 7zip files?

And if I have to change any file, after installing this way, would it overwrite any of the files in the drives C:\ to M:\ that I have ?

#21 fujianabc

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 10:25 AM

This is nice idea. One question. Can the new installer, formate/delete partition?

This is only an "installer" :) , which means you should create/format the partition yourself.

Noticed this (maybe language related):
2010_01_03_125833.jpg
occurs after this text:
xcopy is missing*
Everything is completed*
continue the installation*
in installer.cmd

Thank your for your reporting, I have corrected these punctuations in #post2.

I have 9 partitions in 4 harddrives so I have letters from C:\ to M:\ because it includes 2 extra letters for the CD and the DVD.

I need to know if I mount the win7 ISO on a virtual drive, let's day virtual drive L:\ (using magicIso virtual cd/dvd), then what should I do? should I edit any of the *.cmd or *.conf files that are in the 7zip files?

And if I have to change any file, after installing this way, would it overwrite any of the files in the drives C:\ to M:\ that I have ?

No, you needn't change anything.

By default, the os partition of win7 will occupy the letter C: after the installation no matter which partition you choose. But if you like, you can change the letter as shown in the 3rd picture in #post2

#22 newprouser

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 05:31 PM

Is it possible to have the installer install windows 7 to an image file (VHD) instead of directly to the USB-HDD.

http&#58;//blogs.msdn.com/knom/archive/2009/04/07/windows-7-vhd-boot-setup-guideline.aspx


#23 agni

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 07:12 AM

This batch cannot completely replace the official setup.exe ,because this batch does not have the option to partion,resize and format partitions and disks.

It would be nice if you can include some nice free partition tool (with gui preferably) which will pass on the drive letter to the installer.cmd

#24 fujianabc

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 09:14 AM

Is it possible to have the installer install windows 7 to an image file (VHD) instead of directly to the USB-HDD.

This installer wants to have the widest compatibility, which allows you to install nt 6.x from 2000 above windows and any x86 version winpe.

But only winpe 3.0 and win7 supports directly mount vhd, for xp/vista/winpe 1.x/2.x, you need to find other software to mount vhd (e.g vhdmount). So this installer doesn't support install win7 directly onto a vhd file.
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#25 was_jaclaz

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Posted 06 January 2010 - 06:50 PM

Maybe it is possible to not use imagex (and thus need not the WAIK) by using WimcaptEx.exe :):
http://nativeex.boot...x/WimCaptEx.htm
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=9765

jaclaz




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