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grub4dos multiboot multipass usb boot iso

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#1151 steve6375

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 10:58 AM

Thanks.

The Offset for a certain file (NTFS) returns as 38256726016

The value returned by GetFileExtents returns 1675782 which is the LBA address of the start of the file.

How do I get the LBA start value from what is returned by your app?

Also, GetFileExtents does seem to work on FAT32 drives (I was mistaken). I think the problem with non-NTFS drives was not to do with GetFileExtents...



#1152 nguyentu

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 11:07 AM

Offset / Bytes per Sector = LBA

 

@Wonko

In bytes, maybe it will help to set the length of partition without using other commands. I will update it later.



#1153 steve6375

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 11:10 AM

But 38256726016 / 512  does not equal 1675782  ??

 

Compare with GetFileExtents.exe (unzip SWITCH_E2B.exe to obtain the file).


Edited by steve6375, 09 January 2017 - 11:11 AM.


#1154 nguyentu

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 11:17 AM

Its number of sector in Integer, not Hex

 

7a59fa0360d54c968511def0e0fbeca0.png

 

getFileExtents.exe D:\2017-01-08_165052.png

File offset 0 LBA: 78d9a60 Sectors: 8
File offset 1000 LBA: 81e65a0 Sectors: 10
File offset 3000 LBA: 8530630 Sectors: 28
File offset 8000 LBA: 87fd770 Sectors: 10

 

GetFileExtents has returned multiple results, but only one of which is correct.

 

--------------

 

 

C:\Windows\system32>"C:\Users\Whoami\Downloads\Compressed\Easy2Boot v1.87\_ISO\docs\E2B Utilities\MOVE_IMGPTN\getFileExtents.exe" D:\2017-01-08_165052.png

File offset 0 LBA: 788c910 Sectors: 50
 
C:\Windows\system32>C:\Users\Whoami\Downloads\Video\GetFileOffset.exe D:\2017-01-08_165052.png
 
Offset On Disk 0        : 64719298560
Offset On Drive D:      : 1106386944
Disk ID                 : 0
Disk Style              : GPT
Bytes Per Sector        : 512
File Size               : 38693

 

64719298560 / 512 = 788c910 (Hex) -> 126404880 (Decimal)


Edited by nguyentu, 09 January 2017 - 11:38 AM.


#1155 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:00 PM

nguyentu,
with all due respect :), these are the data needed, I believe your tool can easily output them, why - since you have the possibility to provide them - you provide different units?

1) if the file is fragmented, output "File is fragmented" or a similar error message
2) the offset (from LBA 0, i.e.\\.\Physicaldriven) to the beginning of the file epressed in sectors
3) the extent (from the offset above) i.e. the size of the file expressed in sectors
4) optionally the offset from the beginning of the partition/volume (not really needed)
5) anything else is not really needed, maybe it could be output only if a -v (verbose) parameter is given.

Try using grub4dos and use its blocklist command, that is what would be useful.

For the record, there is a tool similar to getfileextents (that actually works "better" in my experience) , myfragmenter.exe part of the mydefrag tool, that outputs data in Vcn's (or clusters) on NTFS, example:

MyFragmenter.exe -i D:\Win7PE\log.html
MyFragmenter v1.2, 2008 J.C. Kessels

Commandline argument '-i' accepted.

Processing: D:\Win7PE\log.html
Fragment list:
  Extent 1: Lcn=27119138, Vcn=0, NextVcn=1367
  1367 clusters, 1 fragments.

Finished, 1 files processed.

but - since you are writing it - why not saving us the need to make calculations/conversions?


:duff:
Wonko


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#1156 steve6375

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:01 PM

doh! Sorry, I was referring to the wrong number in my notes! I am working on fixing a small bug in Switch_E2B.exe and got confused (it happens at my age!).

Yes, it does return the correct offset! Thanks :-)



#1157 steve6375

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:03 PM

Note: The grub4dos blocklist command uses the relative sector offset,

You need to add the Reserved Sectors to whatever it returns as the start block of the file.



#1158 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:26 PM

Note: The grub4dos blocklist command uses the relative sector offset,

You need to add the Reserved Sectors to whatever it returns as the start block of the file.

Sure :) which is another (perfectly understandable and simple) operation that needs to be done "outside", that piece of data corresponds to having the #4 in my above list, but what is actually needed for a "partnew" entry is obviously the sector number from LBA0, and there is no reason why a newly written tool should not provide that (#2 in my above list) directly avoiding an external operation.

 

:duff:

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#1159 nguyentu

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:36 PM

 

Also, GetFileExtents does seem to work on FAT32 drives (I was mistaken). I think the problem with non-NTFS drives was not to do with GetFileExtents...

 

Oh sorry, getfileextents supports FAT32 :lol: 

 

@Wonko Thanks for useful info  :P


Edited by nguyentu, 09 January 2017 - 12:38 PM.


#1160 Wonko the Insane

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Posted 05 February 2017 - 04:07 AM

I noticed that in E2B v1.89c you have a new GUI interface that replaces the old CLI. However, I really do like the CLI better. Is there any possibility that you might consider maintaining the old CLI interface alongside the new one?

 

Also, I noticed that I cannot run E2B from any type of type of PE or similar, it always complains that it can't get admin rights. In right-click context menu there is no "Run as admin" option. This could probably be implemented (UAC) so that programs can be run as admin, or not, but I really don't feel that UAC has any place in a PE, it's just unnecessary. How can I run E2B outside of such a "regular"/"normal" Windows installation? Maybe you can just provide an override option if admin rights aren't detected, prompting the user if they would like to continue anyway, and later erroring out if necessary? My thinking is, dont error out until an error occurs. I understand that the admin rights check is a preemptive measure, designed to prevent problems before they can occur. But I'm also an advocate of letting people make mistakes, so they can learn from them.

 

Thanks!

 

Edit: I normally run Windows with UAC completely disabled, in Control Panel, Registry, and Group Policy Editor. This doesn't normally present an issue, except that I can't run Metro apps. No big deal. I prefer to have highest possible privileges at all times.



#1161 steve6375

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Posted 05 February 2017 - 08:51 AM

Easy2Boot v1.89c is a self-extracting exe - it is for making new E2B USB drives.

I am not sure why you would want to run it under PE?

Anyway, just rename it to .zip and extract the files as usual.

The next version (E2B v1.89d) should get around the WinPE UAC problem, but I have never tested the E2B scripts under WinPE as they are not intended to run under WinPE. For instance they call 32-bit apps and use vb6 DLLs, so will not work on mimimal PEs or 64-bit PE.



#1162 steve6375

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Posted 05 February 2017 - 01:53 PM

v1.89d is available from Alternate Download Areas.

 

I am thinking of releasing this build soon as the full 1.89 Release, so please let me know soon if you spot any issues or have feedback...



#1163 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 05:47 PM

Here some suggestions. I've been wanting to write them a year ago but never had the time.
1. Remove all of the dummy help files. And merge all read-me files into a single read-me file.

2. Don't create autorun.inf and icon files. It clutters the root of the drive and is just annoying.

3. Create a main/master config script that will allow users to define their image folder location, if they want a different folder organization. Don't hardcode everything. This tools needs to be flexible.

4. The directory and file struct should be changed. Current structure is non-intuitive and you get lots of questions like: where should I put X, what is the difference between folder A and folder B, etc... . In my humble opinion, a better folder structure would've been:

menu.lst
grldr
autounattend.xml
unattend.xml
easy2boot
  bin
    firadisk
    grub
    grub4dos
    grub4dos_menu
    menu.lst
  docs
  images
    0000
    0001
    0002
    ...
    9999


root    
In the root of the drive, only critical files should be placed.
All of E2B files should be in a single folder that unquely describes it.

bin
Within it, all scripts, scratch files, function data will should be here.

docs
Documentation only.

images
ISO, IMG, IMA, FLP, VHD, WIM... should be placed here in subfolders, numbered from 0000. By default, the setup should only include 000. All images should be in this folder but if a user has many images, then he could create 0001, 0002 ... 9999 and split his collection into 10 or 20 images per folder.
Your scripts could check .\easy2boot\images for all existing non-empty folders, check contents and load the images.


The logic of this structure is:
- allows tech-savvy users to chainload e2b from other loaders while keeping a clean directory structure
- gets rid of clutter, useless file tags, and read-me all over the place
- organizes files by type
- answer files should be named after the iso, eg. win7x64pro.iso, win7x64pro.xml
- no more confusion

As is, I cannot use E2B. I find it an extrordinary piece but I can't currently use it. Congratulations on your work and research Steve.



#1164 steve6375

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 07:09 PM

Hi Alex

Thanks for taking the time to write your feedback. I will try to address the points:

 

1. Remove all of the dummy help files. And merge all read-me files into a single read-me file.

 

Well - originally there weren't any files scattered around. But then people did 'stupid' things like put windows installer isos in the \_ISO\WINDOWS folder (instead of the appropriate sub folders), etc. So I added these extra files to get the message across.

 

I could delete them all as they are not needed, but I would have deal with lots of people asking why certain things didn't work. Besides what harm are they doing and you can always delete them if you don't like them.

 

2. Don't create autorun.inf and icon files. It clutters the root of the drive and is just annoying.

 

Many people like the icon appearing on the E2B drive in Explorer.

Rufus uses the same thing.

You can always delete them if you don't like it.

(although they do cause false positives for some AV programs!)

 

3. Create a main/master config script that will allow users to define their image folder location, if they want a different folder organization. Don't hardcode everything. This tools needs to be flexible.

 

I had considered this but:

1, How do I document it - 'copy the iso to whatever folder name you happened to have chosen'

2. The Zalman/IODD needs all ISOs to be in folders below \_ISO - this is why I chose the \_ISO folder specifically. I don't like the name either, but we are stuck with it if we want to support Zalman\IODD drives

3. Consistency across different users E2B sticks

4. Difficulty - to soft-code the images folder is bound to cause many bugs because it is embedded in 100's of places. I had considered it a couple of times, but I am sure it would introduce loads of bugs due to the complexity.

 

 

4. The directory and file struct should be changed. Current structure is non-intuitive and you get lots of questions like: where should I put X, what is the difference between folder A and folder B, etc.

 

Actually I get very few Q's about that.

Many people like the arrangement of ready-made menus and menu folders. It makes it easy to know where to place ISOs, etc.

 

I don't see how anyone is going to know what they are supposed to put in a menu called 0000 or a find that more user friendly than having specific menus for AV, backup, utilities, Winpe, etc.

Granted that the WINDOWS and WIN folder names are somewhat obtuse! I would prefer to rename the WINDOWS folder to WIN_INSTALL, but it is too late now. If I changed it, then anyone who updates E2B would be in trouble!

E2B also has menu headings in different languages because they are pre-defined.

If a user has 100 ISOs, how will he know where to find the one he is looking for?

 

E2B allows you to make your own menu folders and you can delete any you don't want.

The Windows Installer folders need to be in a 'known' location because they need special treatment.

 

Only critical files in root - three extra .cmd files will be present in the root and a readme.txt. They are there so people can easily find them. You are welcome to delete them. Equivalents are in the \_ISO\docs folders.

 

your \easy2boot\bin is equivalent to the current \_ISO\e2b folder.

 

re. XML answer files should be same name as ISO file. - but this would limit you to one answer file to one ISO! The whole point of E2B is that you can use one ISO and use any XML file (install home, pro, different partitioning, different SDI_choco configs, etc.).

If there are any XML files you don't want - simply delete them.

 

You can also create a .mnu file for  any windows iso+XML file. That way you won't be prompted to choose a key or XML file, it just runs whatever menu entry you select.

 

If I could start again, I would change the folder structure a bit, but it is too late now.


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#1165 steve6375

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 07:16 PM

E2B v1.90b beta is available. It has better support for WinBuilder-based ISOs.

You should be able to just add the ISO file to E2B and it should correctly boot to PE from it with the ISO mounted as drive Y:.

Winbuilder does need the filename to not contain spaces though.

http://rmprepusb.blo...-available.html



#1166 Alexander Ceed

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 09:04 PM

I could delete them all as they are not needed, but I would have deal with lots of people asking why certain things didn't work. Besides what harm are they doing and you can always delete them if you don't like them.

 

True, they cause no harm. But even if I delete them, your next version will copy them all over again. See my point?

If the structure was intuitive, people would not need to be reminded/taught where to put what in which.

All of these things result in more work (useless work) for you to deal with.

 

Many people like the icon appearing on the E2B drive in Explorer.

Rufus uses the same thing.

You can always delete them if you don't like it.

(although they do cause false positives for some AV programs!)

 

I know Rufus does the same but it's different. With Rufus you create a bootable USB by using an ISO (one image). You are creating a bootloader (multiple images).

 

I had considered this but:

1, How do I document it - 'copy the iso to whatever folder name you happened to have chosen'

2. The Zalman/IODD needs all ISOs to be in folders below \_ISO - this is why I chose the \_ISO folder specifically. I don't like the name either, but we are stuck with it if we want to support Zalman\IODD drives

3. Consistency across different users E2B sticks

4. Difficulty - to soft-code the images folder is bound to cause many bugs because it is embedded in 100's of places. I had considered it a couple of times, but I am sure it would introduce loads of bugs due to the complexity.

 

1. You set a default location (as it is now) and allow your users to change it via config file. That's the easiest.

4. Yes, it would cause some bugs untill everyting gets settled in.

 

I don't see how anyone is going to know what they are supposed to put in a menu called 0000 or a find that more user friendly than having specific menus for AV, backup, utilities, Winpe, etc.

Granted that the WINDOWS and WIN folder names are somewhat obtuse! I would prefer to rename the WINDOWS folder to WIN_INSTALL, but it is too late now. If I changed it, then anyone who updates E2B would be in trouble!

E2B also has menu headings in different languages because they are pre-defined.

If a user has 100 ISOs, how will he know where to find the one he is looking for?

 

The main image folder is 0000. You could put your 100 images in just one folder which would cripple grub4dos. The idea of having 0000, 0001... is for the user to split the images into these folders so that the performance thing would not become an issue. What if I have 40 Windows Install ISO's, what then? How am I going to split them without a structure similar to mine?

There are 3 editions of windows 7: Ultimate, Enterprise, Embedded. 3 x 2 (x86 and x64) = 6 images. Then you get standard images, volume images... Plus your captured windows with updates, and custom images.. you could be looking at up to 20 ISO's in the same folder: WIN7.If performance is an issue, how are you going to split the images?

 

The key here is to allow yourself and your users space to grow. Currently, this space does not exist.

At some point you will need to rethink this project.

 

Good luck either way with your project.



#1167 steve6375

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 09:26 PM

The current structure can easily cope with 30 Windows Install ISOs (and up to 99) in each of the 8 sub-folders (XP, Vista, 7,8,10, svr2k8, svr2012, svr2016) - that makes 240 ISOs as a comfortable menu system (up to almost 800 Windows Install ISOs). Surely that's enough for most people? 

 

On top of that, you can add more to any other menu (and you can also add new menu folders) by using a .mnu file for each ISO.

You can also convert Windows Install ISOs to .imgPTN files and run them from any folder (and make new folders).

 

So I do think the current system is expandable/adaptable.

 

I could modify the Update script to ask if you wanted a 'tidy' system?

This would delete the autorun.inf and ico, various readme/help dummy files.

I could also delete or relocate the three scripts in the root (MAKE_CONTIG, MAKE_E2B and QEMU_Menu_test).

Where would you like these scripts to be re- located to (the \_ISO folder?).

Not sure what to do about the XML files though...?

 

You could even write your own script to tidy it up how you wanted...



#1168 steve6375

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Posted 14 February 2017 - 10:29 AM

@Alexander - Hi Alex, I have taken on board some of your comments after a bit of a think!

 

See http://rmprepusb.blo...v190c-beta.html

 

So, if you just set the \menu.lst file attribute as Hidden on your E2B drive, the Update script will hide most of the files in the root automatically each time you run it.

 

Also, you can move the three scripts in the root of the E2B drive to the \_ISO folder if you wish.

 

So now your root folder will look empty.

 

I have also moved most of the XML files into sub-folders, so they do not appear in the Windows menu folders.

 

Thanks for the feedback.

 

cheers

Steve



#1169 Wonko the Insane

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 01:28 AM

How can I add files to an already-existing *.imgPTN? I tried mounting the file with ImDisk Toolkit, adding my files, then unmounting the image, but they were available/visible later. It's as if they were never written. I would prefer to not have to rebuild the imgPTN, as it is rather large.

 

Thanks!



#1170 steve6375

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 08:56 AM

Must be the way the ImDisk ToolKit mounts it???

I either use the Control Panel - ImDisk app, or right-click on the .imgPTN file and choose 'Mount using ImDisk' or Unmount .

But usually, I just switch in the .imgPTN file and edit it directly on the USB drive.



#1171 Rootman

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 07:14 PM

How can I add files to an already-existing *.imgPTN? I tried mounting the file with ImDisk Toolkit, adding my files, then unmounting the image, but they were available/visible later. It's as if they were never written. I would prefer to not have to rebuild the imgPTN, as it is rather large.

 

 

I've added files by booting to them via Easy2Boot and then copying the files directly to the "drive".  For me, when it reboots they are still there.  You can transfer the files via another USB device, network or grab them off the PCs HDD that you boot from.  Just make sure you have room on the .imgPTN for them.

 

The way Steve recommend works too, just boot it up, switch to the .imgPTN and then stick it into any other PC, it sees the 'drive' as just any other drive partition. Since I'm having to boot the stick anyway, I usually just do it the way I outline above. 



#1172 steve6375

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 07:20 PM

By 'Switch-in' the .imgPTN file, I mean I run \_ISO\Switch_E2B.exe on my Windows system and double-click on the .imgPTN file that I want - this makes the new partition immediately accessible.



#1173 Wonko the Insane

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 01:24 AM

Well, I assume that ImDisk TK uses the same driver as the regular ImDisk, except that it has a GUI. I'm mostly using the TK because it has a ramdisk config and other tools. What do you mean, "the way it mounts it", I assume it mounts it the same too (or should, anyway). I'm not using the read-only option, drive letter is assigned, should be the same as a regular mounted image under any other software. It's just a raw image. I never use the Control Panel applet, just the right-click mount/unmount option.

 

There is no way to "switch to" the *.imgPTN without booting into it first? I assume this means I have to use NTFS? My E2B drive is NTFS but the imgPTNs on it are mostly FAT32 for UEFI-booting. This image is a mega-image containing multiple bootable tools, over 25+GB. Rebuilding will take forever on my rather weak ultrabook.

 

Thanks again!

 

Edit: Is there any possibility that in the future E2B will support boot full disk image (note "disk", not partition) booting, other than VHDs/VHDXs? I mean, like, maybe disk images that have more than one partition. I also have a number of other bootable media for which it would be convenient to just create a raw image of them, then boot that image. Or take an already existing image and just boot it directly. RMPrepUSB has an option to create such an image. I also noticed that imgPTN seems to refer to *partition* images, being an image of a partition and containing just one.

 

And thanks for retaining the old CLI interface in the new E2B GUI, just don't get rid of it. At first I didn't even notice the option. Some of us do appreciate the CLI approach.



#1174 steve6375

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 08:52 AM

To modify a .imgPTN file you should

1. Right-click on file and use 'Mounts a ImDisk Virtual Disk'

2. Ensure all options on the right-side of the 'Mount new virtual disk' form are blank and click on OK

3. Edit files

4. Ensure you do not have any file in the virtual drive open - if possible close all Explorer Windows

5. Right-click on virtual drive and use 'Unmount Imdisk virtual disk' (click Yes if prompted)

 

To switch-in a .imgPTN file, use \_ISO\SWITCH_E2B.exe under Windows or boot from the E2B drive in MBR mode.

 

Not sure what else to say? It works for everyone else AFAIK!



#1175 maanu

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Posted 4 weeks ago

hi steve6375 

 

its great to see you are are maintaining this project and making continuous updates , highly appreciated. 

 

i have been busy between job and family , and did not update my usb tools based on fbinst since 2011 . 

 

just last week my friend from IT department of my organisation asked me to make him a usb for installing windows 7 / 10 . and a windows pe 

 

long story short , i build a 2 partition usb using BOOTICE , first 2 gb fat32 , active and HIDE . with PE and boot related files , having BOOTMGR

 

main loader (to achieve UEFI ) , and on a 29GB NTFS partition DATA partition , i copied e2b 1.87 files then put the win7 iso in _ISO  . i  am

 

using same grldr and menu.lst from easy2boot folder , and i am calling grldr from BOOTMGR . it loads fine , then i select win7 iso , use 0 for

 

easy2boot xml DEFAULT option. , but after pressing " INSTALL WINDOWS " it shows me the famous A REQUIRED CD/DVD driver not found "

 

, i have verified that i am booting USB from USB 2.0 port. can you please give me any idea that why FIRADISK is not being loaded ? so that it 

 

can make virtual drive.   

 

 

oh and by the way , for some strange reason SHIFT F10 does not work , so i can not verify if my usb drive is being loaded or not , using diskpart list function.

 

 

 

I know i can always teach him , to install windows using WINNTsetup from JFX , via my PE , but i want him to go through easy route. :lol: 

 

 

 

Regards

Maanu 







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: grub4dos, multiboot, multipass, usb boot, iso

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