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VMLite VBoot - Boot any Windows from VHD/VMDK/VDI/Raw


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#1 huisinro

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 07:59 AM

VBoot 1.0 for Windows has been released. It allows you to natively boot Windows 2000, XP, 2003, Vista, Winodws 7 and 2008, 32- and 64-bit, any service packs and editions, from a virtual disk file in VHD, VMDK, VDI and Raw format.

(1) support installing Windows into a virtual disk file from ISO file or physical cdrom.

(2) support differencing disk files and snapshots.

(3) support one click snapshot and recovery

(4) support booting Windows PE based ISOs

(5) support immutable boot sessions where all system changes will be discarded after reboot

(5) support converting Windows 7 VHD to vbootable disks

more info and download can be found here:

http://www.vmlite.co.../products/vboot

instructions can be found here:

http://www.vmlite.co...structions.html

Attached is a screenshot that shows how easy to take a snapshot and perform a recovery:

Posted Image

#2 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 01:18 PM

Just for the record:
http://reboot.pro/13075/

:)

:(
Wonko

#3 flok3r

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 04:17 PM

This is INCREDIBLE!!!
Waited for this sooo loong !!
Just the thought of it makes me become :) ...

But thanks for sharing it ;D

#4 huisinro

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 06:07 PM

to boot a Windows PE based iso, it's very easy

menuentry "Windows PE" {
vboot cdrom=(hd0,1)/my-win-pe.iso
}

the iso can be anywhere, non-contiguous sectors

You can also use ISO files to install Windows, the process is about same, except you pick a virtual disk to install.

#5 Mr.Tran

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 08:01 AM

i can not download,why i not reg account????

#6 steom

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 11:03 AM

can be used in 'runonce'?
-I have a pc in the lan....
-remote install
-reboot
-vmlite boot a PE-ISO file for example.
-after the next reboot, everything turn back exactly as before remote installation.

#7 sambul61

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 03:43 PM

Is it possible and how to chainload Vboot from Grub4DOS as its menu item?

#8 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 03:55 PM

If you press 'i' at boot time, or append "immutable" keyword, e.g.,

vboot harddisk=(hd0,1)/vista.vhd immutable

then the system changes will be discarded after reboot

can be used in 'runonce'?
-I have a pc in the lan....
-remote install
-reboot
-vmlite boot a PE-ISO file for example.
-after the next reboot, everything turn back exactly as before remote installation.



#9 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 03:59 PM

should be very easy to do, you just need to chainload to vbootldr.mbr file.

However, there will be issues, pls read this thread:

http://www.vmlite.co...ddress-00090000

By the way, VBoot does iso boot much simpler than Grub4DOS. For example, to boot an Windows PE ISO, you just do this:

vboot cdrom=(hd0,1)/my_pe.iso

no complex map stuff, the file can be anythere, non contiguous


Is it possible and how to chainload Vboot from Grub4DOS as its menu item?



#10 sambul61

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 04:08 PM

VBoot does iso boot much simpler than Grub4DOS.

Possibly, since its based on Grub2. Yet Grub4DOS was said to be further developed to boot some more complex or uncommon file types, so it remains unclear, to what degree their abilities overlapped. Therefore its unsafe IMHO to say that Vboot can replace Grub4DOS in daily routing use even after that memory issue is resolved. Don't you think so?

#11 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 04:17 PM

It really depends on what you are currently booting using G4DOS. VBoot also provides disk int 13 emulation, and it supports many file systems. Yes, you may want to keep both until you are sure all works to your satisfaction.

About that memory conflicts, we can simply add an option for vboot to ignore that. After chainloading, G4Dos is not needed anymore so we can actually discard its reserved memory, and let VBoot to proceed.

Possibly, since its based on Grub2. Yet Grub4DOS was said to be further developed to boot some more complex or uncommon file types, so it remains unclear, to what degree their abilities overlapped. Therefore its unsafe IMHO to say that Vboot can replace Grub4DOS in daily routing use even after that memory issue is resolved. Don't you think so?



#12 steom

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 04:47 PM

If you press 'i' at boot time, or append "immutable" keyword, e.g.,vboot harddisk=(hd0,1)/vista.vhd immutablethen the system changes will be discarded after reboot


immutable swith for the PEISO?
i want "immutate" the original boot loader.
remotely install vboot, remotely restart the pc that launch the peiso only one time, and after a reboot, the system restart with no changes to the original Windows boot manager entry.

#13 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 04:57 PM

no, not for that. You need somehow installed VBoot Loader first on real harddisk. immutable only refers to the virtual disks, which should be the main usage anyway.

immutable swith for the PEISO?
i want "immutate" the original boot loader.
remotely install vboot, remotely restart the pc that launch the peiso only one time, and after a reboot, the system restart with no changes to the original Windows boot manager entry.



#14 steom

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 05:10 PM

I was thinking of a kind used on the fly. once.
-vbootedit.exe install /drive C: /mbr
-vboot cdrom=(hd0,1)/my_pe.iso
-the system reboot, vboot immediately reinstall the old -original- mbr, and start the peiso.

#15 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 05:12 PM

you can add a program inside your iso to remove the vboot stuff, that can do the work you described.

Once booted, no files will be needed, everything is inside memory. So you can safely remove all, and restore your original boot loaders.

#16 steom

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 05:35 PM

no, it is out. if something goes wrong, the computer crashes, then you nedd to go on site to restore it.
The original mbr should be restored immediately, absolutely the first thing, after the POST. So that even if you reset the system then starts normally.
this is something that could make only the vboot bootloader.

#17 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 05:46 PM

recover original mbr can be done easily. We can add an option, e.g.,

vboot cdrom=my_pe.iso recover_mbr

immediately after vboot loader is called, the original mbr is replaced back.

Delete other files will be difficult, as the boot loader itself doesn't support file writes yet. We are implementing that, when writes are supported, win98/95 vhd should boot nicely too.

#18 steom

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 05:57 PM

This would be great!
delete the other files is not a problem, one may do so even after, or leave them where they are - for future use - , maybe hidden out of sight from the root of the user's hard disk.

#19 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 06:02 PM

As I think a bit more, deleting may not be difficult to implement, it's just some flags. Will try to add the option for next update to at least put back the mbr.

#20 flok3r

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 07:11 PM

Sorry for my ignorance, but does anybody know a free P2V utility in order to virtualize my existing win 7 onto VHD??
Software of Paragon didnt work for me.

Thanks in advance ;D
Flok3r

#21 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 07:22 PM

@huisinro

Am I correct in supposing you are somehow connected to the development team of vboot and/or vmlite.com (or "remotesoft")?

If yes, could you spend a little time clarifying the Licensing of the app? :thumbsup:

Please see here:
http://reboot.pro/13075/page__st__17

I don't seem to understand waht is GNU, what is personal use only and what is time-limited trial. :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko

#22 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 07:46 PM

Our goal is to make a commercial product. The open source license is there because we use some VirtualBox (look at VBoxRT.dll) and GRUB2 code.

We are considering to offer a personal license too for free use with some limitations, which might be the confusion part.

About wimgapi.dll, if it's not redistributable, we will remove it from final release, and replaces with our own implementation. It's a temporary solution at the moment.

Next update, we will extend the trial period to a couple of more months.

One reason we added the time expiration is that we don't want people to upload our software to all of file sharing servers.

#23 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 07:52 PM

As a part of the commercial product, we will make VMLite Workstation to work from the booted vhd session to run the same vhd as virtual machine, trying to blur the difference between a real machine and a virtual machine, and some incremental backup solution perhaps, with natively bootable solution, etc.

#24 Giraffe

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 08:14 PM

If the license somehow points a trial period, its useless!

edit: I think karyonix is not far away :cheers: hope you guys don't buy him. On the second thought, reboot.pro must be your worst commercial nightmare :thumbsup:

#25 huisinro

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 08:21 PM

maybe not to you who don't want to pay a cent to software !