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#51 Sha0

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Posted 06 February 2011 - 11:26 PM

...But I have one problem: a floppy was needed for me because using a folder containing winvblock generates an error "file not found" when attaching the iso.

That particular error is irritating me. Windows appears to send a "remove device" signal to the WinVBlock "bus" device, but sometimes does not follow that with an "attach" signal. Sending both signals is normal for when it properly installs the bus device using the .INF file. But there seems to be a race condition of some sort which is causing this problem. I have to figure it out and fix it. You might have luck with simply trying again, as my testing demonstrates about a 50% success rate. :dubbio:

I did try mapping winvblock.img as fd0 but there's no a: unit (or other letter) into the prompt to explore and finding drivers from.

Well, if you are mapping (fd0) using GRUB4DOS, then you would need for WinVBlock to be working in order to get an A: drive for that GRUB4DOS disk. If it's not working, you won't get the A: drive. But really, if you try again, you might not get the "file not found" when attaching the .ISO.

I'd like to do so, but need help for menu.lst.
thanks

You can use either GRUB4DOS or winvblk.exe to attach the disk/disc image files. If you use one, you shouldn't need to use the other. The important bits are:
  • Disable Driver Signature Enforcement.
  • That the bus device is properly functioning once the service has been started.
You can test that the bus is working properly with:

winvblk.exe -cmd detach -d 12

should give "Parameter is incorrect" instead of "The system cannot find the specified file". What this command attempts to do is detach the 12th virtual disk (which doesn't exist). The former error means that there is no 12th virtual disk. The latter error means that winvblk.exe couldn't talk to the WinVBlock bus at all.

But really, whatever this problem is needs to be fixed.

#52 Vortex

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 09:28 AM

Hi Sha0,

Thanks for your winvblock release. Here is my report.

My setup source is the Windows 7 DVD. The setup destination is a file-backing disk. The files were expanded successfully without freezing but the installer placed the folder boot and bootmgr to my real system partition C. After the expansion of installation files, the system rebooted and I moved boot and bootmgr to the root of the file-backing disk. I used NativeEx for this operation. On the next boot, grub4dos executed the following commands :


map --mem /winvblock.ima (fd0)

map /Win7HD.img (hd0)

map --hook

root (hd0,0)

chainloader /bootmgr


The Win 7 installer displayed the Windows 7 boot screen and the message "Setup is updating registry settings" A little later, the installer freezed displaying the message "Setup is starting services" No any continuation and no any hard disk activity. Removing the first line in the menu.lst entry above didn't change the result.

#53 davlak

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 10:43 AM

That particular error is irritating me. Windows appears to send a "remove device" signal to the WinVBlock "bus" device, but sometimes does not follow that with an "attach" signal. Sending both signals is normal for when it properly installs the bus device using the .INF file. But there seems to be a race condition of some sort which is causing this problem. I have to figure it out and fix it. You might have luck with simply trying again, as my testing demonstrates about a 50% success rate. :dubbio:

yes I've understood and experienced, in fact most of the times it's simply needed to retry.

Well, if you are mapping (fd0) using GRUB4DOS, then you would need for WinVBlock to be working in order to get an A: drive for that GRUB4DOS disk. If it's not working, you won't get the A: drive. But really, if you try again, you might not get the "file not found" when attaching the .ISO.

this was a problem with one of my bios that I've forgotten...
with that spedific pc I have to map 2 fd...never understood why...while no problem under other PCs.

You can use either GRUB4DOS or winvblk.exe to attach the disk/disc image files. If you use one, you shouldn't need to use the other. The important bits are:

  • Disable Driver Signature Enforcement.
  • That the bus device is properly functioning once the service has been started.
You can test that the bus is working properly with:

winvblk.exe -cmd detach -d 12

thanks again.
will try it soon

#54 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 10:47 AM

this was a problem with one of my bios that I've forgotten...
with that spedific pc I have to map 2 fd...never understood why...while no problem under other PCs.

This is a known issue, also for Firadisk, see here:
http://www.msfn.org/...aded-iso-image/
http://www.msfn.org/...age/page__st__4
though there isn't an actual explanation found AFAIK.

:dubbio:
Wonko

#55 Sha0

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 01:57 PM

This is a known issue, also for Firadisk, see here:
http://www.msfn.org/...aded-iso-image/
http://www.msfn.org/...age/page__st__4
though there isn't an actual explanation found AFAIK.

While interesting, I do not expect that to have ever been a WinVBlock issue. Also, since those virtual floppies simply occupy "slots" in the GRUB4DOS INT 0x13 hook, there shouldn't be a reason why two is any better than one; the code walks through all the slots just the same... And since we don't use BIOS at all, it doesn't make a lot of sense that it could have anything to do with a particular BIOS. If anyone can report a model and an affected WinVBlock-installed environment, I'd appreciate that.

#56 Aye Htay

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 02:36 PM

Hi Sh0,

I've missed a nice Topic and Project as busy with my heavy works these days.
Thanks for your valuable project.
But I cant download from your URL: showing nothing to download bla bla....
Fortunately, got last one in this topic, but no luck because I can't install in my Win7.vhd.
I made my vhd with Paragon P2V with a fresh installed partition.
Do you have a way to install WinVBlock in real OS, not from setup optipn?
When I install with Right click on .inf --> there is not a way to install.
When I install with sc.exe, nothing installed, drvload --> installed but blue screen when restart Error.. inappropriate hardware installed ....
Because I don't have setup disk, and always use "NT6.X_fast_installer" with multiple wim files.
I want to run vhd from USB flash with G4D direct mapping, because I don't want to use map --mem. That is my intension.

Thanks in advance.

ah
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#57 Sha0

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:30 PM

...
Fortunately, got last one in this topic, but no luck because I can't install in my Win7.vhd.
I made my vhd with Paragon P2V with a fresh installed partition.

Fresh installation of what? Windows 7?

Do you have a way to install WinVBlock in real OS, not from setup optipn?

Yes, it's pretty well the same.

When I install with Right click on .inf --> there is not a way to install.

That's true. The most recent development version of the ReadMe.txt file has instructions for using winvblk.exe. If they do not appear to work, you can fall back to the sc.exe method and report the failure.

When I install with sc.exe, nothing installed, drvload --> installed but blue screen when restart Error.. inappropriate hardware installed ....

Disable Driver Signature Enforcement. F8 can do this. bcdedit /set testsigning on can do this.

Because I don't have setup disk, and always use "NT6.X_fast_installer" with multiple wim files.
I want to run vhd from USB flash with G4D direct mapping, because I don't want to use map --mem. That is my intension.
...

GRUB4DOS doesn't support .VHDs. Also, what advantage is there to booting a Windows 7 .VHD when that OS natively supports it? Why not use bootmgr? I'd like to better understand the why along with your use case, if you please.

#58 Vortex

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:35 PM

Hi Sha0,

On a different hardware, I tried the same installation procedure as I mentioned in my post #52 The result is the same, setup is freezing after displaying the message "Setup is starting services"

#59 Aye Htay

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 04:59 PM

Hi Sha0,

Thanks for your long explaination.
Now I m clear that .vhd could not be direct map in g4d.
I want to know something about .vhd boot.
I am talking about only Windows 7.
I've made a vhd with Paragon and changed bcd and I can direct boot from bcd menu as same as other windows in bcd boot menu.
So I am sure it is a key to boot a .vhd file direct from bcd registry hive.
I've used easybcd and located vhd file, e.g. f:\7.vhd.
So if I change bcd menu and locate vhd file in my USB it must boot from it.
Only one thing is that we have to use bcd boot menu. We can set it up in Win7pe boot menu.
I'll try it later time.

Thank your time again.

Yes, I know there are 3 methods to disable Driver Signing.
1. F8 --> Force to disable driver signing.
2. bcdedit /set testsigningon3.
3. Tools/Internet options/Advance -->Allow software to run or install even if the signature is invalid.
But non of them is possible in my new installed win7. I'm not sure becasue of removing too much stuff in it. :cheers:
will think other way and try it later. :)

ah

Edited by Aye Htay, 07 February 2011 - 05:09 PM.


#60 sambul61

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 05:37 PM

A restriction now is that one cannot have a page-file on a file-backed disk. Since so many users are interested in the image-file-on-USB-storage scenario, they shouldn't be paging to USB flash storage anyway, so this might be better for them. Non-flash is a bit better for paging, but oh well...

Is it possible to clarify reason(s) for that restriction? Many ppl use USB 2.5" HDs in external enclosure. Is it allowed or possible in this scenario to save Windows Page file on such drive outside of .VHD? It should be possible in terms of Windows allowing to select any mounted drive for saving its page file... Otherwise its kind of hard to service a non-working PC, unless there is plenty of RAM to place the page file into by using eBoostr or similar approach. :dubbio:

#61 Aye Htay

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 06:07 PM

Also, what advantage is there to booting a Windows 7 .VHD when that OS natively supports it? Why not use bootmgr? I'd like to better understand the why along with your use case, if you please.
Sorry I missed to answer.
My intention is that I want to run multiple vhd files form USB flash likely to run multiple ISO files with g4d.
Now I've got some idea to do so.

Thanks.

ah

#62 Sha0

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 09:31 PM

On a different hardware, I tried the same installation procedure as I mentioned in my post #52 The result is the same, setup is freezing after displaying the message "Setup is starting services"

Thanks. I guess I'll have to try to reproduce this.

...
Thanks for your long explaination.
Now I m clear that .vhd could not be direct map in g4d.

"Fixed" .VHDs are basically raw HDD image files with an appended footer. GRUB4DOS can map these, but the .VHD footer is pretty useless, so it might make sense to simply use raw HDD images (for now). If the time comes when we have a free and/or open source means to provide an INT 0x13 hook for .VHD files, then the situation will obviously be pleasantly different.

I want to know something about .vhd boot.
I am talking about only Windows 7.
I've made a vhd with Paragon

I'm unfamiliar with Paragon. What type of .VHD did it produce for you? "Fixed," "dynamically expanding," or "differencing?"

and changed bcd and I can direct boot from bcd menu as same as other windows in bcd boot menu.
So I am sure it is a key to boot a .vhd file direct from bcd registry hive.

Right. bootmgr can boot any kind of .VHD, as far as I know.

I've used easybcd and located vhd file, e.g. f:\7.vhd.
So if I change bcd menu and locate vhd file in my USB it must boot from it.
Only one thing is that we have to use bcd boot menu. We can set it up in Win7pe boot menu.
I'll try it later time.

Thank your time again.

Best of luck to you.

So I am sure it is a key to boot a .vhd file direct from bcd registry hive.
Yes, I know there are 3 methods to disable Driver Signing.
1. F8 --> Force to disable driver signing.
2. bcdedit /set testsigningon3.
3. Tools/Internet options/Advance -->Allow software to run or install even if the signature is invalid.
But non of them is possible in my new installed win7. I'm not sure becasue of removing too much stuff in it. :buehehe:
will think other way and try it later. :ranting2:

You don't have the bcdedit.exe command? You can copy that from another installation or perhaps from boot.wim from the installation disc.

Is it possible to clarify reason(s) for that restriction?

Yes, sure. Please also note the trailing portion of the post omitted from your quotation block: MS doesn't do it, either.

Many ppl use USB 2.5" HDs in external enclosure. Is it allowed or possible in this scenario to save Windows Page file on such drive outside of .VHD?

Absolutely. And that's what MS does, too.

It should be possible in terms of Windows allowing to select any mounted drive for saving its page file... Otherwise its kind of hard to service a non-working PC, unless there is plenty of RAM to place the page file into by using eBoostr or similar approach. :)

If your service utilities have strong memory requirements, I agree.

Sorry I missed to answer.
My intention is that I want to run multiple vhd files form USB flash likely to run multiple ISO files with g4d.
Now I've got some idea to do so.

Whoa. But why not have the .ISOs outside of .VHDs? A sample utility set might look like:
  • USB disk
  • GRUB4DOS
  • FreeDOS .ISO
  • Ghost superfloppy .VFD image
  • BOOTMGR (to be chained from GRUB4DOS)
  • gPXE or iPXE kernel
  • MEMDISK
  • A Win7 PE .WIM (to be chained from BOOTMGR)
  • A miniature XP .HDD image (used with MEMDISK or GRUB4DOS)
  • A BartPE .ISO (used with MEMDISK or GRUB4DOS)
  • A stripped-down, non-PE Win7 .VHD (to be chained from BOOTMGR)
I'm not sure why one would wish to put stuff inside a .VHD, other than Windows itself.

#63 Icecube

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 09:43 PM

"Fixed" .VHDs are basically raw HDD image files with an appended footer. GRUB4DOS can map these, but the .VHD footer is pretty useless, so it might make sense to simply use raw HDD images (for now). If the time comes when we have a free and/or open source means to provide an INT 0x13 hook for .VHD files, then the situation will obviously be pleasantly different.

There exists a free (not open source) VHD bootloaders: VHDloader.
It supports fixed and dynamic VHD images. Only FAT32 (readonly) is currently supported.
http://www.plop.at/en/vhdloader.html

#64 Vortex

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 09:03 PM

Hi Sha0,

Did you have the opportunity to reproduce the freezing screen "Setup is starting services" ?

#65 Sha0

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 09:21 PM

Did you have the opportunity to reproduce the freezing screen "Setup is starting services" ?

I actually haven't yet attempted to reproduce that issue. I've been working on some other WinVBlock features.

I find it odd that it should freeze there, since having graphics suggests that the driver has already started (it's a boot-start driver). For the record, could you possibly confirm:
  • That you are using a file-backed disk scenario (not RAM disk)
  • How much RAM is in the system
?

I'm wondering if there's trouble because you have no page file. I wonder how you could setup the page file to the real HDD. Hmm...

---EDIT---

Actually, I just remember that I did try to reproduce the issue, but ran into a limitation: I cannot find a size of image file which GRUB4DOS is happy with (I've ensured contiguity) and that is big enough for Windows 7 to agree to install to. If you could possibly provide the exact sector count of your image file, I'd appreciate it. GRUB4DOS insists that my 16 GB image file is not contiguous, but contig.exe insists that it is. It seems that some GRUB4DOS error condition is "falling through" to that error message.

#66 Vortex

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 09:36 PM

Hi Sha0,

I am using a file-backed disk sized 10 Gb. The test computer is at my work place and tomorrow I will report the sector count. The system memory is 2 Gb.

#67 Vortex

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 09:31 AM

Hi Sha0,

Here is the info : 20971520 sectors , 10737418240 bytes

#68 Sha0

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 11:41 PM

Here is the info : 20971520 sectors , 10737418240 bytes

Thanks. I am now able to reproduce the issue.

For the curious, after installing Windows 7 into my 10 GB W7.HDD image file, Windows determined that BootMgr belonged on the real HDD. So I had to do the following from GRUB4DOS:

root (hd0,0)

map --heads=0 --sectors-per-track=0 /W7.HDD (hd1)

map --hook

chainloader /bootmgr

BootMgr then booted the Windows 7 in the virtual disk. Then I had to hit F8 immediately(!) so that I could Disable Driver Signature Enforcement and Windows 7 started.

Reproducing the scenario in a virtual machine reveals that something is repeatedly accessing the optical disc drive at regular intervals, but there is no HDD activity. A nice WinDbg session should be revealing. In order to achieve this, I have booted back into Windows 7 Setup and done:

cd /d c:\

bcdedit /set {default} testsigning on

bcdedit /set {default} debug on



#69 sara - pmedia

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 07:27 AM

hi sha0
I wonder if you can make a .bat script to integrate winvblock driver to win7>>boot.wim so we can install directly from iso to img file or real harddisk without any comand line needed?

maby someone else can make it No matter with which one (winvblock,firadosk,imdisk) What matters to me is not to require intervention and typing commands

#70 Sha0

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 09:20 AM

I wonder if you can make a .bat script to integrate winvblock driver to win7>>boot.wim so we can install directly from iso to img file or real harddisk without any comand line needed?

I am sorry to say that the last testing I did revealed problems which haven't been resolved. Since Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 do not natively support virtual-disks-from-images, I am also sorry to report that WinVBlock's development will focus on those OSs. Windows 7 has .VHDs. I don't know if it has virtual-optical-disc-from-image support.

Please do feel free to share why installing Windows 7 from an .ISO is advantageous; what your deployment scenarios look like, for example. I don't really understand the benefit in installing from an .ISO, but would like to learn. :thumbsup:

#71 wimb

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 09:37 AM

I wonder if you can make a .bat script to integrate winvblock driver to win7>>boot.wim so we can install directly from iso to img file or real harddisk without any comand line needed?

Direct Install of Win7 in VHD Image file is possible with WinNTSetup2_x86.exe of JFX

http://www.msfn.org/...-winntsetup-v2/

The program creates the VHD for you and can install from mounted Win7 ISO.

#72 Doodoo

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 10:13 AM

Direct Install of Win7 in VHD Image file is possible with WinNTSetup2_x86.exe of JFX

Yes, and that's a real push-over :thumbsup:
The only thing is, direct install to VHD (or native boot from VHD) is only supported by Win7 Ultimate/Enterprise. Presumably Win7VBlock would provide the same functionality for other editions of Win7, which suffer from the same lack of virtual disk driver as 2000, XP and 2k3

#73 sara - pmedia

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 10:23 AM

Please do feel free to share why installing Windows 7 from an .ISO is advantageous; what your deployment scenarios look like, for example. I don't really understand the benefit in installing from an .ISO, but would like to learn. 


for example, install multi versions of win7/2008/vista/32bit/64bit Simple and fast way without leave thousands of files on usb disk

Using image files (iso,img,vhd) for run/install os's convenient and effective for many reasons
* Viruses can not destroy files - (A few month ago I was attacked by a virus (logo1.exe,rundl1.exe) that destroyed my multi boot disk - He planted malicious code in all executable files on disk)
* Quicker and easier to pass new disks without losing files
* One copy command can override the old/corrupted system with new/good file system backed up in advance
* faster search in disk (I use a lot with "everything" - It takes a long time to prepare an index when there is a lot of files on disk)

#74 sambul61

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 04:04 PM

Sara

Sorry to hear you got a virus. Hopefully, everything is good by now. :dubbio:

Sha0

I was out of the loop for awhile (postal workers are on strike in Samoa), but recently faced a dilemma of installing Win Server 2008R2 from ISO (the only method, most users would now prefer regardless of arguments), and the first prompt was to find out about Win7VBlock progress if any. Did you have a chance to finalize this milestone - auto installing Win7 from ISO with Win7VBlock?

Its a very important task for many, and hopefully you didn't get side-railed by irrelevant polemics which is natural for a forum with such diverse audience. :)

#75 sara - pmedia

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 04:09 PM

Sha0

I was out of the loop for awhile (postal workers are on strike in Samoa), but recently faced a dilemma of installing Win Server 2008R2 from ISO (the only method, most users would now prefer regardless of arguments), and the first prompt was to find out about Win7VBlock progress if any. Did you have a chance to finalize this milestone - auto installing Win7 from ISO with Win7VBlock?

Its a very important task for many, and hopefully you didn't get side-railed by irrelevant polemics which is natural for a forum with such diverse audience. :cheers:


+1 :) :)




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