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How to build and run LiveXp as an HDD on a USB Pen?


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#1 wildcat71

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 05:07 PM

Hi all, finally i decided to ask for your help as i am not able to find a solution or the way to do it.
After loooong sessions of S.R.T. (Search-Read-Try) without much success i am here to ask your help.
I am very new to PE world and i am trying the best to understand it enough to reach my goal but i am stuck.

I'll try to be short and clear.

What i need
-to have a small OS, compatible with almost all hardware, new and old, to run repair apps, anti-virus ...you know...this stuff.
-to have it running on a usb pen like if it was an hd so i can save on it the drivers i can "take" from every system i plug the usb-key in.
-Put portable apps in a folder i can reach either running the LiveXp or not (just plugging the usb-key, using the os on the hard disk) and these folder must be readable and writable so i can add-remove apps without compiling LiveXp again and again.

What i can do
Unfortunately my Xp source is not compatible with most of the projects i found here so i can only use my source with no errors with LX.061412 and the result could be nice for my needs

I can build a working LiveXp with the project of above, put it on usb and run it nicely but...

What i am not able to do
the livexp i create (with standard settings) is loaded into ram (i suppose...i am very confused at the moment) but immediately after the usb-key become unmounted and i can't see anything on it because livexp doesn't see it. Also unplugging and plugging it again has no effects.

For this reason if i put some portable app in a root folder i can't load it within livexp.
In the same way, as the os is in the ram, i can't save nothing i need onto it...then... no drivers taken from the host pc are saved on my key

So...
  • Is it possible to run livexp as a normal hd, but on an usb key, so i can add files to it, in root folders?
  • If yes, which settings i have to change?
  • I understood that is possible to take more and more drivers as we use livexp on other systems so that the db of them grows with the use...did i misunderstand? how to do it?
  • Which format to choose to have a "flexible" system? Wim, Iso, Sdi?
  • Is livexp what i need or i need something else?
I am very sorry if i asked something that, probably, is very obvious and under my nose but i can't really find the way ... too many tutorials, info, bookmarks in few hours... my brain is overloaded eheheh :lamo:

Thank you in advance for having the patience to read all this post.

Ricky

EDIT: I found some answers from this thread reboot.pro/17240/ so i deleted what i think i understood

Edited by wildcat71, 27 August 2012 - 05:55 PM.


#2 saddlejib

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 09:42 PM

I can answer the portable apps part of your question just create a folder (mine reside in a separate partition on the usb drive) on your USB Drive filled with ppApps and locate and run the Apps from your Live XP which as you summised is loaded into ram. Dare I say google Soporific and live xp to see examples.
RMPrepUSB is always an informative and concise source of information.
No you cant save to LiveXp as its an .img file. What is missing here is a persistent option like Linux, Kanotix or others.
There are driver loading utilities for Live XP but they are only pertinent (only work) with your current session. Again LiveXp lacks a persistent factot. Good Luck.

#3 amalux

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 02:18 AM

You need to choose between PE (LiveXP, Win7PE etc) or full OS (XP, Win 7 etc) running from USB. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, isn't that how life is? PE's are fast and lite, perfect for portables and (with a little tweaking) should work on most hardware without issue. What they won't do is save complicated installations, updates, driver installations and the like. For this you need a full (lite) OS running from USB which act in every way just like a full OS installation but even here you won't get perfect results on all hardware. Do what I do, have 'em all at the ready; start with LiveXP and most of the time that's all you need ;)

Yes, my LiveXP projects are (default) loaded to RAM so nothing is saved to PE on reboot. However, if you setup the portables on a writable drive you can save many settings, updates etc to the programs themselves. With a little creativity you can save most things needed for the PE as well. I know you've read a lot but you you should read my tutorial again, there's lots of good info on adding drivers etc :)

:cheers:

#4 RoyM

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 02:19 AM

Have a look here for relevant info
"Universal HDD Image files for XP and Windows 7"
http://reboot.pro/9830/

#5 wildcat71

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 02:02 PM

First of all...thank you all for the replies!

I can answer the portable apps part of your question just create a folder (mine reside in a separate partition on the usb drive) on your USB Drive filled with ppApps and locate and run the Apps from your Live XP which as you summised is loaded into ram. Dare I say google Soporific and live xp to see examples.
RMPrepUSB is always an informative and concise source of information.
No you cant save to LiveXp as its an .img file. What is missing here is a persistent option like Linux, Kanotix or others.
There are driver loading utilities for Live XP but they are only pertinent (only work) with your current session. Again LiveXp lacks a persistent factot. Good Luck.


didn't yet searched i will do it asap, the fact is that as soon as live xp is on ram the usb key is unmounted (without the light on ... to be clear) and it is simply invisible to livexp, so the portable apps i have in there are not reachable.

i am trying to understand what i am missing. To have my portable apps would be a great thing.

About the drivers... i like the non.persistence of livexp, i don't need in anyway to modify it during the sessions. I was just thinking, because is what i understood reading tutorials, that would possible to grab drivers from each machine where i would run livexp and save them on a folder, not in livexp itself. I understood that in this way that external folder could become a rich db of other drivers that can be loaded by livexp only if needed so the main core still remain small and fast. Did i misunderstand? I will do more searches. Thank you ;)

You need to choose between PE (LiveXP, Win7PE etc) or full OS (XP, Win 7 etc) running from USB. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, isn't that how life is? PE's are fast and lite, perfect for portables and (with a little tweaking) should work on most hardware without issue. What they won't do is save complicated installations, updates, driver installations and the like. For this you need a full (lite) OS running from USB which act in every way just like a full OS installation but even here you won't get perfect results on all hardware. Do what I do, have 'em all at the ready; start with LiveXP and most of the time that's all you need ;)

Yes, my LiveXP projects are (default) loaded to RAM so nothing is saved to PE on reboot. However, if you setup the portables on a writable drive you can save many settings, updates etc to the programs themselves. With a little creativity you can save most things needed for the PE as well. I know you've read a lot but you you should read my tutorial again, there's lots of good info on adding drivers etc :)

:cheers:


As i wrote before, my choice is to go for PEs because i like their persistence. I don't really need a real slim os, because i just need a base to run tools to fix issues, av scanning, mbr fix etc... that i need to run outside from the resident dameged/infected os

Especially becasue there is LODR that is made for thinapp apps (i made mine apps) so it would be perfect. But at the moment i can't do what i want. I just need to run the main app (liberkey, portableapps.com, codesafe....) and from these reach the real portable apps located in the external folder (outside livexp so i can add and remove easily but in the same usb key)

So, it is not a real problem for me if the pe itself is not writable, i just need to save on the usb-key what i need, i don't nee to modify the pe.
I try to read your tutorial again, probably surely i missed something important... thank you for your help and "productions"

Have a look here for relevant info
"Universal HDD Image files for XP and Windows 7"
http://reboot.pro/9830/


I am following this tutorial too, just to test it. thx mate.




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