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Running full winxp on usb disk.

winxp usb grub4dos winvblock

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#1 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 08:23 AM

Hi guys,

In this post, I'll show you how to make a full winxp running on usb disk. Hope it will make you love winxp for more ! :)

Objective :
To make this works, you will need to put a full winxp (full or mini or lite is up to you) installed with winVblock driver in a vhd disk image. Then use grub4dos to boot the image.

Terminologies :
vhd (Virtual Hard Disk) : It looks like a file which contains a whole harddisk (and its partitions inside).
winVblock : SCSI driver to make winxp read/write to vhd disk image. Many thanks to Sha0 for this.
grub4dos : bootloader is used to load/map the vhd file.

Primary steps :
1. Create vhd disk image includes winxp (installed with winVblock) :
+ Install VirtualBox (http://www.virtualbox.org). We will use VirtualBox to make the vhd disk.
+ Create new virtual machine using vhd harddisk format, fixed-size. Notice the harddisk size need to be smaller than the usb size (2GB for example - full winxp).
+ Install winxp to the virtual machine as usual.
+ Disable page-file.
+ Update the IDE/ATAPI controller to use Standard driver. => to boot to different machine.
+ Update the System Devices to use Standard driver.
+ Install winVblock driver.
+ Defragement the windows drive (c:)

2. Make the usb disk bootable :
+ Plug the usb disk to a real PC running winxp.
+ Format the usb with ntfs (backup it first !!!). Set it active.
+ Copy file ntldr, ntdetect.com, boot.ini to the root of usb disk.
+ Use "bootsect.exe /nt52" to place the ntloader bootcode to the boot sector of the usb disk.
+ Download grub4dos. Extract : grldr, grldr.mbr to the root of the usb drive.
+ Point the boot.ini file to load grldr.
+ Copy the vhd image (was created in step 1) to the usb disk.

3. Boot the vhd image :
+ Boot from usb disk. It will load ntldr, then load grldr. Chose command line.
+ Load the winxp by typing commands :
++ map (hd0,0)/winxpfull.vhd (hd0)
++ map --hook
++ chainloader (hd0,0)/ntldr
++ boot
+ It works !!!
+ Add menu.lst file to use menu instead of command line.

Steps in detail :
You can see steps in more detail and screenshots here : http://www.linuxbyex...nxp-on-usb-disk

Known issue :
+ Not contiguous image file : You need to defragement the image file before load it.
+ Boot hang on new machine with SATA/AHCI controllers : Enter BIOS and switch the SATA/AHCI controller to use Compatible/Legacy mode.

Feel free to feedback.
Cheers !

#2 bee4u

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 02:46 PM

Nice method will try..:)

#3 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 04 August 2012 - 12:17 AM

Next post : Boot winxp from LAN (http server) into RAM.

Under construction.

Cheer !

#4 Michele13

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 08:58 PM

Would not be more simple to install Grub4Dos DIRECTLY to the MBR of the disk and load XP from there? :)

#5 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 12:18 AM

I already tried to run bootlace.com in winxp to install grub4dos to MBR but it show me error (winxp does not allow for bootlace.com writing directly to the disk ! ).

So, I switch to use NTloader as the first stage, than NTLoader will load grldr as the second stage.

Could you show me how to directly install grub4dos to MBR in winxp ? Very pleased with that !

Thanks & BRs.

#6 bee4u

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 02:25 AM

bootlace.com will not work under windows .its Dos based tool you need to work with in Dos mode not the Dos in the windows.
you can use grubinst_gui.exe to install grub4dos on usbdisk... :)

#7 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 02:39 AM

So, we need another tool named grubinst_gui.exe for this. Awesome.

I'll try and update the post now.

Cheers.

#8 Michele13

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 08:05 AM

Why don't you try BootICE? it is my favourite tool to make usb disks (but also hard disk) bootable. If you wish to install Grub4Dos to the MBR you only have to get the lastest package of grub here, then extract the files grldr and default, this way you can also set a default OS if you want. eg. I have a multiboot system with ubuntu and windows if you write at the beginning of the file "default/default" instead of default 0 and add a savedefault at the end of every OS entry the last OS that you have booted will became the default selection next time you reboot; homeware extract these files at the root of your hardrive and make a menu.lst file then start BootICE and select your hardisk and select "Process MBR" then select Grub4Dos, click to install/config and then you can simply leave the default options and click directly to "Save to Disk" and on OK

#9 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 02:40 AM

Hi,

I've updated the post with a video show here :



Cheers.

Edited by linuxbyexamples, 20 August 2012 - 02:41 AM.


#10 TheHive

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:16 AM

Would there be another easier way to input those commands without having to remember them. Like an automatic way. The user would only have to choose a option from a list and then the step 3. Boot the vhd image would be automatically done. Like the video.

#11 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:26 AM

Yes. You can add a grub menu entry to menu.lst like this :


timeout 5

default 0



title Boot to Winxp.vhd

map (hd0,0)/winxpfull.vhd (hd0)

map --hook

chainloader (hd0,0)/ntldr


and it will appear a menu entry, users can select it to boot.

Cheers.

Edited by linuxbyexamples, 30 August 2012 - 07:28 AM.


#12 TheHive

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:51 AM

Thanks for the grub input!
Can you post the setting if you have in hand the settings for making it Liter. As commented here. http://reboot.pro/17394/



You dont happen to be creating a video with the steps .

1. Create vhd disk image includes winxp (installed with winVblock) :
+ Install VirtualBox (http://www.virtualbox.org). We will use VirtualBox to make the vhd disk.
+ Create new virtual machine using vhd harddisk format, fixed-size. Notice the harddisk size need to be smaller than the usb size (2GB for example - full winxp).
+ Install winxp to the virtual machine as usual.
+ Disable page-file.
+ Update the IDE/ATAPI controller to use Standard driver. => to boot to different machine.
+ Update the System Devices to use Standard driver.
+ Install winVblock driver.
+ Defragement the windows drive (c:)



#13 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 08:24 AM

Oops ! I did forget to save the setting file. But the hint is removing all components except for the red one. Screenshots is here : http://www.linuxbyex...with-nlite.html

1. Create vhd disk image includes winxp (installed with winVblock) :
+ Install VirtualBox (http://www.virtualbox.org). We will use VirtualBox to make the vhd disk.
+ Create new virtual machine using vhd harddisk format, fixed-size. Notice the harddisk size need to be smaller than the usb size (2GB for example - full winxp).
+ Install winxp to the virtual machine as usual.
+ Disable page-file.
+ Update the IDE/ATAPI controller to use Standard driver. => to boot to different machine.
+ Update the System Devices to use Standard driver.
+ Install winVblock driver.
+ Defragement the windows drive (c:)


This step will take alot of time, so it's hard to make screencast video for it. You can see detail steps screenshot instead here : http://www.linuxbyex...n-usb-disk.html

Cheers.

#14 linuxbyexamples

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 02:57 AM

Update with the new domain : http://www.tipstuff....n-usb-disk.html

 

Cheers.







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