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How to create Recovery Boot or Recovery Partition?


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#1 vazurahan

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 12:10 PM

There is this thing that usually comes with laptops where it shows on your screen to press a key like 'F7' or something in order to enter Partition Recovery mode. From there you can restore your C: drive from its original state or shipped state just like it was new. Of course your own files would be missing.

How do you create this kind of stuff to your own pc?


I can't find any guide for this.

#2 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 12:51 PM

I can't find any guide for this.

It depends where you looked and how you searched for it.
Like:
http://en.lmgtfy.com...cov...tion"&l=1

It is likely that you find this:
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=8296

and maybe also this:
http://www.msfn.org/...howtopic=108515

and maybe also these:
http://www.911cd.net...showtopic=18480
http://www.911cd.net...showtopic=12447


:lol:
Wonko

#3 vazurahan

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:08 PM

@Wonko the Sane

I already found the software thanks to your post.

It has a readme with a sample but I need a more delatailed guide and explanation.

These are the instructions.

mbr 0 /install sel 5 12 "Press F12 to boot the recovery partition"

MBR.EXE will install a MBR to hard drive 0. The MBR will display the
message "Press F12 to boot the recovery partition" for 5 seconds, and
the F12 key will cause a hidden FAT/FAT32 to be selected for booting.

"But which partition is it referring?"

mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 "Press F9 for recovery" 0xC 0xDB

MBR.EXE will install a MBR to hard drive 0. The MBR will display the
message "Press F9 to boot the recovery partition" for 10 seconds.

If the F9 key is pressed within 10 seconds, it will cause a partition
with the file system ID 0xDB to be booted from. The MBR will then be
modified to mark the new boot partition active, and the file system ID
of it will be changed to 0xC.

Once booted in the partition whose file system ID was originally 0xDB,
the command line "mbr 0 /reset" should be run, in order to set the MBR
back to the state it was in before the file system ID and active
partition values were changed.

"I don't know anything about he file system ID it modifies"

maybe you can help me out with the first one.

Please help...

http://www.terabyteu...wnloads/mbr.zip

#4 steve6375

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 09:16 PM

Hi
This application can be used to make your system boot to a different partition when pressing a Fx key.

Suppose you prepare a hard disk like this

Partition 1 - NTFS type 07 - WinPE v2 or version 3 which contains you imaging tool - e.g. ImageX
Partition 2 - NTFS type 07 ACTIVE - Windows XP OS (boots to this partition)
Paritition 3 - NTFS type 07 - Backup partition

Now you can use MBR to hide the first partition by using the command

mbr 0 0 /set 0xDB

Now you can use this command to install the MBR code

mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 "Press F9 for recovery" 0x7 0xDB

Now you will always get this message when you boot, if you press F9 it will instead boot to the first WinPE partition.

When it boots to the winpe partition you need to run the command mbr 0 /reset to make sure that the next time it boots, it will default to the Windows XP partition.

Now you have to put an imaging tool such as Ghost or ImageX on the first WinPE partition. For instance you can use ImageX to make a backup of drive C: like this:

ImageX /capture D: E:\backup.wim "my backup"

and if you want to restore the image use:

format D:
imagex /apply E:\backup.wim 1 D:



(note that I have guessed at the correct drive letters in the above example, because when you boot to WinPE using F9, the WinPE partition will be C:, so the other partitions should be D: and E:).

Obviously do NOT test this on your main computer if it contains valuable files - try it on a test system first!

#5 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 23 May 2010 - 08:52 AM

"But which partition is it referring?"

mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 "Press F9 for recovery" 0xC 0xDB

MBR.EXE will install a MBR to hard drive 0. The MBR will display the
message "Press F9 to boot the recovery partition" for 10 seconds.

If the F9 key is pressed within 10 seconds, it will cause a partition
with the file system ID 0xDB to be booted from. The MBR will then be
modified to mark the new boot partition active, and the file system ID
of it will be changed to 0xC.

Once booted in the partition whose file system ID was originally 0xDB,
the command line "mbr 0 /reset" should be run, in order to set the MBR
back to the state it was in before the file system ID and active
partition values were changed.

"I don't know anything about he file system ID it modifies"

The selm switch is more flexible.

Each entry in the partition table has an ID, see here:
http://www.win.tue.n...on_types-1.html

The line:

mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 "Press F9 for recovery" 0xC 0xDB


means in plain English:
install a mbr to disk 0 that when you press F9 key will display the message "Press F9 for recovery" for 10 seconds and that, once you press F9, will search in the partition table an entry marked as DB and will change it to 0C (FAT32 LBA mapped) and will boot from it.

0xC (as used in MBR.EXE) and 0C (as used in actual partition table and in partition types list) is the same hex number represented in a slighly different way.

jaclaz

#6 vazurahan

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 02:01 PM

How can I know the current flag of the partition?

Like if it is currently set as 0xC or 0x7 ?

You might say if it is fat32 it is 0xC or if it is 0x7 it is NTFS.

but currently I'm having problems so I asked if there's a way I can check what the current flag of a partition is.

#7 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 02:12 PM

It's not a "Flag" it is a Partition ID.

You can use any number of utilities that deal with the MBR, or a hex/disk editor.

See here:
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=8734
http://www.msfn.org/...mp;#entry886392
http://thestarman.pc...otToolsRefs.htm

For some links/suggestions.

:thumbsup:
Wonko

#8 vazurahan

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 02:22 PM

The first thing I did is

Create a partitions

C:
D:

Then installed DOS on C:
Then installed XP on D:

after installing XP even without editing boot.ini it created the menu where you can choose to boot from DOS or XP

I tested both and they both work, no problems. after that I boot on DOS where I placed the mbr.exe
and entered this commands

mbr 0 0 /set 0xDB

then

mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 "Press F9 for recovery" 0xC 0xDB

Now if you press F9 it will say no operating system found.
But if you don't press F9 and just boot XP on the menu, it will work just fine.
And if you boot DOS from the menu it wouldn't boot on DOS correctly.

It's suppose to boot to DOS on drive C: if I press F9 but it won't. That's the problem.

#9 steve6375

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 02:51 PM

was the DOS partition ID 0xC before you used mbr? Did you use a primary FAT32 partition or an extended / logical partition?
Can you run a tool (e.g. Diskpart in XP) to view the disk partitions? Does it show an 0xDB ptn?
if you type mbr 0 /reset (run Windows version or boot from a floppy disk) do you get it working again?

from what you have described it should work.???

#10 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 03:24 PM

The first thing I did is
.....


What you describe are more like "random attempts" than anything else :cheers:, but more than that you completely fail to give relevant information.:thumbsup:

As an example ;):
  • You created two partitions, HOW?
  • HOW big in size?
  • With WHICH filesystem? (FAT16, FAT32, NTFS)
  • If FAT 16, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (06 or 0E)
  • If FAT 32, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (0B or 0C)
  • Primary or Logical volumes inside Extended?
  • WHICH one was made active?
  • On WHICH one is the NTLDR/BOOT.INI?
  • WHICH DOS did you "install"?

If the first partition was NOT originally 0xC it is very possible that if you make it 0C (or DB) it won't work. :w00t:

:cheers:
Wonko

#11 vazurahan

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 04:14 PM

What you describe are more like "random attempts" than anything else :cheers:, but more than that you completely fail to give relevant information.:thumbsup:

As an example :cheers::

  • You created two partitions, HOW?
  • HOW big in size?
  • With WHICH filesystem? (FAT16, FAT32, NTFS)
  • If FAT 16, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (06 or 0E)
  • If FAT 32, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (0B or 0C)
  • Primary or Logical volumes inside Extended?
  • WHICH one was made active?
  • On WHICH one is the NTLDR/BOOT.INI?
  • WHICH DOS did you "install"?

If the first partition was NOT originally 0xC it is very possible that if you make it 0C (or DB) it won't work. :w00t:

:cheers:
Wonko


Disk is partitioned 1GB and 79GB approx.

Let's just say that I did it the default way. Like DOS was first installed in C:. 1GB

format C:/s

Didn't set the partition active or anything. Just installed DOS on C: So I guess you already know which is active.

Tested it and it boots to DOS. So assumed DOS is installed correctly.

Then installed XP. Insert CD then follow install procedure, install to D:.

After that when the PC restarts it automatically shows a menu whether to boot to DOS or XP.

Tested both DOS and XP, they both work. I guess you now have a idea where the boot.ini or something is. Didn't touch anything.

Now I boot to XP, open EASEUS Partition Master and check the Partition Type on the Properties of each partition.

C: is 0xB
D: is 0x7

After that I open the directory of mbr.exe on cmd

then type these commands

mbr 0 0 /set 0xDB

mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 "Press F9 for recovery" 0xB 0xDB


I then restart.

Now the PC says Press F9.

After pressing F9, it says

No Operating System Found instead of going to DOS.

#12 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 05:12 PM

Questions that remain UNanswered:
  • You created two partitions, HOW? <- with WHICH program, running WHICH OS, etc.
  • HOW big in size?
  • With WHICH filesystem? (FAT16, FAT32, NTFS)
  • If FAT 16, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (06 or 0E)
  • If FAT 32, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (0B or 0C)
  • Primary or Logical volumes inside Extended?
  • WHICH one was made active?
  • On WHICH one is the NTLDR/BOOT.INI?
  • WHICH DOS did you "install"?

Really, I am asking because I need this info in order to try and help you.

Or, if you prefer, get the MBR and bootsectors of each partition (you can use HDhacker), once for the PhysicalDrive and twice, one for each partition, the corresponding LogicalDrive.
Compress the three files together in a .zip archive and attach them to your next post or upload to any file hosting and post the link.

I will need ANYWAY the answer to question #8.

:thumbsup:
Wonko

#13 steve6375

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 05:22 PM

What you have done seems logical based on the documentation.
Presumably the hard disk is now stuck in this mode?
Can you boot from USB to see what partitions you have on the hard disk in this state?

#14 vazurahan

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Posted 28 May 2010 - 12:12 PM

Questions that remain UNanswered:

  • You created two partitions, HOW? <- with WHICH program, running WHICH OS, etc.
  • HOW big in size?
  • With WHICH filesystem? (FAT16, FAT32, NTFS)
  • If FAT 16, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (06 or 0E)
  • If FAT 32, CHS mapped or LBA mapped? (0B or 0C)
  • Primary or Logical volumes inside Extended?
  • WHICH one was made active?
  • On WHICH one is the NTLDR/BOOT.INI?
  • WHICH DOS did you "install"?

Really, I am asking because I need this info in order to try and help you.

Or, if you prefer, get the MBR and bootsectors of each partition (you can use HDhacker), once for the PhysicalDrive and twice, one for each partition, the corresponding LogicalDrive.
Compress the three files together in a .zip archive and attach them to your next post or upload to any file hosting and post the link.

I will need ANYWAY the answer to question #8.

:thumbsup:
Wonko


It was partitioned before, by using Windows XP CD.

How about I start from scratch but can you please give me specific instructions on what to do and what software to use.

This time I won't miss since I'll be having the correct procedures and software.

#15 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 28 May 2010 - 01:49 PM

How about I start from scratch but can you please give me specific instructions on what to do and what software to use.

Fine for me, but since I don't know which tools/utilities/hardware you are familiar wih or have access to, you will need to fill the gaps.
The general idea is:
  • boot from the XP CD
  • make a 1 Gb Primary Partition, make it active, format it as FAT32
  • make a 79 Gb Primary Partition in the rest of the space, format it as NTFS
  • DO NOT install XP
  • boot from something else (like the UBCD or whatever tool you have handy
  • "install" DOS to the first partition (I HOPE 7.x or later and NOT 6.22 or earlier)
  • verify it boots normally to DOS
  • add to it grub.exe from grub4dos (as a hopefully "failsafe" measure)
  • when booted to DOS, run grub.exe, and you should be able to get to the grub> prompt
  • in it type:
    chainloader /io.sys
    [ENTER]
  • and you should be back to the DOS
  • HIDE this partition (again using UBCD or whatever tool you are familiar with) AND make the second partition Active
  • boot from the XP CD
  • install XP to the second (and ONLY viewable partition)
  • verify it boots normally to XP - this time XP will have C: as drive letter, as it would "normally")
  • copy to the XP partition grldr from grub4dos (as a hopefully "failsafe" measure)
  • add to the existing BOOT.INI a line:
    C&#58;\grldr=&#34;grub4dos&#34;
  • try re-booting, you should be able to get to the BOOT.INI choice
  • choose "grub4dos" and you should be able to get to the grub> prompt
  • in it type:
    chainloader /ntldr
    [ENTER]
  • and you should be back to the BOOT.INI choices

Post when you have managed to replicate the above successfully or if you have questions BEFORE attempting the above.

Use latest grub4dos:
http://nufans.net/gr...-2009-10-16.zip

:thumbsup:
Wonko

#16 vazurahan

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Posted 29 May 2010 - 11:16 AM

Fine for me, but since I don't know which tools/utilities/hardware you are familiar wih or have access to, you will need to fill the gaps.
The general idea is:

  • boot from the XP CD
  • make a 1 Gb Primary Partition, make it active, format it as FAT32
  • make a 79 Gb Primary Partition in the rest of the space, format it as NTFS
  • DO NOT install XP
  • boot from something else (like the UBCD or whatever tool you have handy
  • "install" DOS to the first partition (I HOPE 7.x or later and NOT 6.22 or earlier)
  • verify it boots normally to DOS
  • add to it grub.exe from grub4dos (as a hopefully "failsafe" measure)
  • when booted to DOS, run grub.exe, and you should be able to get to the grub> prompt
  • in it type:
    chainloader /io.sys
    [ENTER]
  • and you should be back to the DOS
  • HIDE this partition (again using UBCD or whatever tool you are familiar with) AND make the second partition Active
  • boot from the XP CD
  • install XP to the second (and ONLY viewable partition)
  • verify it boots normally to XP - this time XP will have C: as drive letter, as it would "normally")
  • copy to the XP partition grldr from grub4dos (as a hopefully "failsafe" measure)
  • add to the existing BOOT.INI a line:
    C&#58;\grldr=&#34;grub4dos&#34;
  • try re-booting, you should be able to get to the BOOT.INI choice
  • choose "grub4dos" and you should be able to get to the grub> prompt
  • in it type:
    chainloader /ntldr
    [ENTER]
  • and you should be back to the BOOT.INI choices

Post when you have managed to replicate the above successfully or if you have questions BEFORE attempting the above.

Use latest grub4dos:
http://nufans.net/gr...-2009-10-16.zip

:thumbsup:
Wonko


This is doesn't include terrabyteunlimed mbr.exe at all.

This is just like a dual-boot XP.

I guess it won't have the Press F9 thingy you can use when your OS gets corrupted.

#17 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 May 2010 - 11:55 AM

This is doesn't include terrabyteunlimed mbr.exe at all.

Sure it doesn't :cheers:, the above are the steps that you need to take BEFORE attempting use of MBR.EXE.
In other words they are not the "whole story", just the first chapter. ;)

Think of it as a serial, until you do not have the described situation and post confirming so, I won't post next "episode" or next set of instructions, remember, you asked to re-start from scratch....

:thumbsup:
Wonko

#18 vazurahan

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Posted 29 May 2010 - 04:00 PM

I know how to partition using XP CD but I don't know how to make it active from there.

By the way, can I make the drive C: larger like 10GB instead of 1GB?

It's not to rush you but I might not have access to the internet for the following days and I'm currently using a laptop and the target PC is on the other house where I don't have an internet connection. Could you please post the remaining steps so I can just try them later completely.

#19 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 May 2010 - 05:10 PM

I know how to partition using XP CD but I don't know how to make it active from there.

AFAICR it is set automatically. :cheers:
Anyway it is completely irrelevant:
  • in the tutorial as I posted it, you make first partition Active from the whatever tool you use to install DOS (probably FDISK) in step #6.
  • then, later, you again set the Active status from another tool (possibly grub4dos or the same MBR.EXE run from DOS or the whatever you booted from) in step #12.

By the way, can I make the drive C: larger like 10GB instead of 1GB?

Sure you can, the 1 Gb and 79Gb were only to follow your previous choice. :w00t:

It's not to rush you but I might not have access to the internet for the following days and I'm currently using a laptop and the target PC is on the other house where I don't have an internet connection. Could you please post the remaining steps so I can just try them later completely.

No prob for me :w00t:, it is just that if you are not in the described situation, i.e. being able to access grub4dos as a failsafe, it is possible that you find yourself in a dead end without any way to get out of it.

Next steps are:
  • verify the partition type of the first partition (the one with DOS), which, given that you are now using a 10 Gb one, will probably be 0xC
  • boot to XP
  • open a command prompt and simply run in it:
    mbr 0 /install selm 10 9 &#34;Press F9 for recovery&#34; 0xC 0xDB
It should work, but you never know. :cheers:

As an alternative, you can try using MBLDR:
http://www.boot-land...p?showtopic=334
http://sourceforge.n...ts/mbldr/files/

Which is maybe easier to setup. ;)

An example is given here:
http://www.msfn.org/...o...1620&st=105

Once again, be careful it is easy to lock oneself out of the system :cheers: when experimenting with these tools.

:thumbsup:
Wonko

#20 vazurahan

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Posted 30 May 2010 - 04:25 AM

I thought you tested it before?

#21 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 30 May 2010 - 08:37 AM

I thought you tested it before?


Naaah, I never test anything. :thumbsup:

I simply post semi-random advice on things I never tried myself and usually know nothing about :cheers:, in order to let other people do the experimenting by themselves.;)

Last time I actually tried something was some 5 years ago, and I used partita:
http://jaclaz.alterv...B/USBstick.html
(point #17)
http://www.pedrofrei...om/crea1_en.htm

:cheers:
Wonko

#22 Pudd

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Posted 01 June 2010 - 02:03 PM

Hi Guys, First of all great forum, I have found it very informative.
I am also in the middle of setting up a restore partition option.
Basically what I am trying to achieve is as follows.
*Have a 3 partition system
- 1 = restore partition
- 2 = system partition (Windows XP)
- 3 = Data partition (redirect user documents here)

*Have a "Press F5 to boot to recovery mode" option
*When you boot to recovery mode it will boot into a win pe environment, use ghost32.exe to auto restore and image from partition 1 onto Partition 2

* Once imaged reboot into windows, auto login, rename the machine using serial number (WMIC commands)
* Restart, Join to domain using Netdom

and a few other tasks. So far I have worked out how to do almost all of this but the thing I am having trouble with is the 'Press F5 for recovery' option.

I have used mbr.exe and
mbr 0 1 /set 0xDB
mbr 0 /install selm 5 9 "Press F9 for Recovery Mode" 0x7 0xDB

Which works but the problem I am having is that if you press F5 it will boot into winpe but if you cancel that session without re-imaging it will then always default to the winpe boot not Windows XP.

What I would like to know- is there any way to make it so that the default boot won't change? I.E no matter how many times you boot into winpe it will still default to the windows XP.
I know you can run mbr 0 /reset but you have to run this manually.

Any help would be great.
Thanks
Pudd

#23 steve6375

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Posted 01 June 2010 - 02:29 PM

Hi Guys, First of all great forum, I have found it very informative.
I am also in the middle of setting up a restore partition option.
Basically what I am trying to achieve is as follows.
*Have a 3 partition system
- 1 = restore partition
- 2 = system partition (Windows XP)
- 3 = Data partition (redirect user documents here)

*Have a "Press F5 to boot to recovery mode" option
*When you boot to recovery mode it will boot into a win pe environment, use ghost32.exe to auto restore and image from partition 1 onto Partition 2

* Once imaged reboot into windows, auto login, rename the machine using serial number (WMIC commands)
* Restart, Join to domain using Netdom

and a few other tasks. So far I have worked out how to do almost all of this but the thing I am having trouble with is the 'Press F5 for recovery' option.

I have used mbr.exe and
mbr 0 1 /set 0xDB
mbr 0 /install selm 5 9 "Press F9 for Recovery Mode" 0x7 0xDB

Which works but the problem I am having is that if you press F5 it will boot into winpe but if you cancel that session without re-imaging it will then always default to the winpe boot not Windows XP.

What I would like to know- is there any way to make it so that the default boot won't change? I.E no matter how many times you boot into winpe it will still default to the windows XP.
I know you can run mbr 0 /reset but you have to run this manually.

Any help would be great.
Thanks
Pudd



when you boot to the winpe session the FIRST thing it should automatically do is a mbr /reset. On WinPE v2 and v3 you would put this command into the startnet.cmd file.

#24 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 01 June 2010 - 02:39 PM

What I would like to know- is there any way to make it so that the default boot won't change? I.E no matter how many times you boot into winpe it will still default to the windows XP.

With mbr.exe alone, NO. :(

(Unless you "only" cancel the WinPE session AFTER it has booted)

But nothing prevents you from having the "WinPE" partition boot (as an example) grub4dos (invoked by the bootsector) that BEFORE loading the WinPE resets the Active partition.

This way you have a very, very short period in which the Active partition is "shifted" from the XP one, and, if you cancel the session, the most that can happen is that the WINPE partition is not re-hidden.

Of course you can use directly grub4dos as the "main" MBR, but unlike the tools listed here that fit in 512 bytes, it will use a few hidden sectors.
grldr itself can reside on the "hidden" partition, however, so you won't notice the difference.

Not being limited to 512 bytes, grub4dos can do almost everything, an example of a "complex" setup:
http://www.boot-land...?...ic=7138&hl=

:)
Wonko

#25 Pudd

Pudd
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Posted 03 June 2010 - 02:29 PM

Thanks for the advice guys.
A guy I work with has come up with a F9 boot solution too, so I will have to ask him about how he did it too. I wanted to try to work it out myself first which i think i kinda have but miight be good to get another opinion too.
Once this project is finished I will post up exactly what i did.

Cheers again




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