Jump to content











Photo
- - - - -

Windows Embedded 7 VHD - can it replace WinPE ISO?

vhd wes7 win7 winpe

  • Please log in to reply
7 replies to this topic

#1 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:50 PM

Does WinPE ISO still resemble an optimal approach to servicing a PC or installing OS? Why it remains an attractive target for developers? I was wondering lately, if the need to write WinPE scripts and adapt applications would still remain, when servicing a PC or installing OS by applying Install.wim to a hard drive from a booted from a USB Thumb WES7 VHD (Windows Embedded Standard) instead of WinPE ISO? :dubbio:

Lets consider some development scenarios:

- all developers still write scripts and adapt apps for WinPE ISO :wodoo:

- one developer decided to copy WinPE ISO content and boot it from a fixed VHD via Grub4DOS, and posted in the forum - it boots! :happy_dance2:

- another developer read the post and figured out ahead of the crowd, ALL that PE scripting might not be needed anymore, and instead installed & injected native apps & added source packages & drivers, needed to service PCs and install OS, to a WES7 VHD :yahoo:

Now he natively boots the VHD from a USB Thumb every time he needs to service a PC or install OS. Since WES7 SP1 is deeply trimmable and customizable with supplied tools - Image Builder Wizard (IBW) and Image Configuration Editor (ICE) - and supports native boot from VHD, it appears to represent an ideal long overdue replacement for aging WinPE ISO concept. :1st: It also has a cousin - ThinPC 7, suggested for replacing WinXP on legacy PCs.


Makes a byte of sense? :go_fish:

Just looking for ways...to cut some needlessly wasted development time, while accomplishing a lot more, and giving users unlimited flexibility to install own service apps...without any scripts. :photo:

#2 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 26 December 2011 - 05:22 PM

Why don't you use a Thin7pc VHD image instead?
(I know nothing about those, but according to some other member they are the solution to everything :dubbio:)

I need to stress, they indeed ARE. :beer:

Because being Thin is the sign of healthy habits, PC is inseparable from most people lives, 7 is a magic number indicating contemporary thinking, and VHD is strategic MS direction, we'll all inevitably follow just like we follow new Windows releases (with rare member exception :dubbio:).

So the victory line goes like this: Sliced Bread ---> Grub4DOS ---> ThinPC 7 VHD. :3th:
  • Nuno Brito likes this

#3 sfinktah

sfinktah

    Frequent Member

  • Advanced user
  • 217 posts
  • Location:Der Äther
  • Interests:/(C(++|#)|P(HP|XE)|(OS|Linu)X|8051)/
  •  
    Australia

Posted 28 December 2011 - 06:07 AM

I used before a truncated 1.5Gb WinXP VHD for service tasks, but after WES7 and ThinPC7 came along, given their 3Gb footprint I turned to ThinPC for testing due to notable advantages, and the possibility to enable Native Boot. :thumbsup:


Jebus wept. I seriously can't keep up with VMware and M$ virtualization products anymore. So it's a thin client version of embedded windows 7... a subset of a subset of a bloated operating system?

#4 bwiese

bwiese

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 12 posts
  •  
    United States

Posted 28 December 2011 - 06:41 AM

Windows ThinPC is not a subset of Windows Embedded Standard 7. It is actually a (mostly) full installation of WES7 with some additional ThinPC specific features, such as a keyboard filter driver that lets you disable Ctrl-Alt-Del and other key combinations. ThinPC comes with no configuration wizard to trim it down like WES7, so it's actually a bloated version of WES7.

If you install a full blown WES7 and ThinPC, the footprints aren't so different, and the differences are pretty minor.

The big difference is the licensing. You can install Microsoft Office on ThinPC and it will run, but you're not allowed to do that by the EULA.

Both can be installed directly to iSCSI. I haven't tried VHD boot on either yet.
  • Nuno Brito likes this

#5 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 28 December 2011 - 08:31 PM

While Windows ThinPC is a subversion of WES7, it was designed for owners of older PCs to help replace legacy OS like WinXP, while WES7 can support a variety of platforms. Hence, ThinPC may have a smaller or larger footprint depending on a targeted by WES7 platform. Yes, from customization & shrinking & adapting instead of WinPE standpoint WES7 can be a better target to play with. :)

One can find more about differences btw ThinPC and WES7 from ThinPC 7 FAQ. In my tests both can run on native HW and inside a VM. WES7 has native boot from VHD activated by default, while ThinPC also supports native boot from VHD after applying the fix. :dubbio:
  • Nuno Brito likes this

#6 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 29 December 2011 - 05:14 PM

I wonder, if anyone tried yet to download WES7 SP1, or customize & truncate it aiming for possible WinPE replacement using the supplied WES Toolkit?

Any impressions from that package - advantages & drawbacks of WES7 VHD compare to WinPE ISO concept for OS Service & Install? :dubbio:

One can also download and try ThinPC 7 on an old PC to see if it works well as WinXP replacement. :confused1:

And if you're unsure how to customize Windows - look through this comprehensive source:

Windows 7 Tutorials Quick Reference Index

#7 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 05 January 2012 - 10:48 PM

Interesting, was looking for USB Boot info, and found this cdob's post clearly explaining how to make Win7 Setup VHD that can install Win7 after booting the VHD from a USB Thumb. This can be an example of moving towards small WES7 Service VHD aimed at replacing WinPE.

#8 sebus

sebus

    Frequent Member

  • Advanced user
  • 305 posts

Posted 31 March 2012 - 06:42 PM

That would be really interesting. Additionally I would not mind having the content of WES7 install moved back to .wim to boot over the network (as I do with WinPE images)
Which should be pretty easy as per this discussion

But the resulting .wim would be still few times bigger then the simplest WinPE...

Maybe Windows Embedded Compact 7 would be a better choice?

sebus





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: vhd, wes7, win7, winpe

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users