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Easy2Boot V1 BETA - Install Windows from ISOs on a flash drive - Beta testers wanted!

windows install iso flash boot grub4dos

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#76 steve6375

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 04:24 PM

I just now re-tested with BETA14 as follows:

 

USB HDD with Win 7 SP1 and Easy2Boot

USB Flash with \autounattend.xml and \winhelper.usb

 

Boot from USB HDD with both connected.

 

The blue console window appeared and asked if I wanted to repair Windows as expected.

 

I can only suggest you try BETA14  (though 10 should be OK) and try standard MS WIn7 ISO  (see External links on my site for download link).

Maybe try my setup to see if it works.

 

P.S. You did delete the winhelper.usb from your first USB drive when you tested with the 2 USB Flash drives???

P.P.S. Are the flash drives listed as Removable Drives by RMPrepUSB??



#77 nyquist

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 04:38 PM

Yea I deleted it. I'll try what you suggested and let you know if it worked. Thanks.



#78 steve6375

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 04:42 PM

OK. \grub\menuWin7.lst is the menu file for Win7 installs.

You should be able to see the code that looks for the \winhelper.usb file.

You could try typing the commands in one-by-one (press C in grub4dos menu)

 

e.g.

 

 

find --set-root /WINHELPER.USB

 ls /

 

 

 

should list the USB drive which has the winhelper.usb file on it...

 

P.S. Can you upgrade to BETA14 ???



#79 nyquist

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 07:36 PM

OK, here is what I did.

 

1. I updated to BETA14.

2. I downloaded a new Windows 7 ISO (from the link at your page).

 

1. try: I moved WINHELPER.USB and autounattend.xml to the first partition of a USB flash thumb. Easy2boot is on the second partition of the same USB flash thumb. The same error as earlier appeared.

 

2. try: After the above setup didn't work I installed easy2boot on an USB HDD. The files WINHELPER.USB and autounattend.xml are still on the first partition of a USB flash thumb. I booted the PC with the USB HDD and the USB Flash thumb plugged in. After selecting and starting the  Windows 7 ISO, the blue command prompt appeared, and everything went great.

 

So it seems to work if easy2boot is on an USB HDD, and the files WINHELPER.USB and autounattend.xml are on the first partition of an USB flash thumb, but it seems not to work if easy2boot is on a second partition of a USB Flash Thumb, and WINHELPER.USB and autounattend.xml are on the first partition of an USB flash thumb (it doesn't matter if this USB with these two files is the same USB on which easy2oot is installed, or a completely different USB -- neither works).

 

 

PS: The flash drive with the two files is listed as removable by RMPrepUSB.


Edited by nyquist, 14 April 2013 - 07:38 PM.


#80 steve6375

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 08:21 PM

Doh! Sorry - I am a bit slow today! Of course it does not work! The Autounattend.xml WILL work - but the code in the xml looks for the file \firadisk\loadiso.cmd - and, of course, this is on the 2nd partition of the flash drive which WinPE cannot see as it only mounts the first partition!  As the ISO is also on the 2nd partition, it cannot be seen either.

 

If the boot drive was a hard disk then it would work!

 

Sorry for leading you up the garden path!

cheers

Steve


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#81 nyquist

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 08:28 PM

So, it cannot be done if easy2boot is on the second partition of an USB flash thumb drive?



#82 steve6375

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 08:30 PM

Well, as the ISO is on the 2nd partition and Windows Setup cannot access the 2nd partition - no!


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#83 steve6375

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 09:28 PM

Actually, there is a way if you really want to try.

 

You can use grub4dos to swap over the 1st and 2nd partitions before you boot from the ISO. Look at Tutorial 77  (bottom of page - NTFS+FAT32).

If you look at the code in the zip file, you will see how to swap the 1st and 2nd partition over using grub4dos (but the code is for type 0C and type 07 partitions). 

You could set up a similar scheme for your pen. But it is dangerous to modify the partition table, so use a temporary flash drive to experiment with if you do this!



#84 nyquist

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 09:38 PM

I'll try it these days :). All other things work, I only need the windows installation to work and i'll have the USB setup I wanted. I'll let you know how everything worked out.

 

BTW: Easy2boot is awesome. Thanks for sharing this software with us.



#85 steve6375

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 09:43 PM

Out of interest, could you explain why you want two ptns with E2B on the 2nd ptn?



#86 nyquist

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 10:09 PM

I have a 32GB drive, the first partition I use only for sharing data. On the second one I put everything I could possible need when i'm not near my PC (puppy, tails, UBCD, Hiren, ubuntu installation...)., and all this things are "hidden" under windows. It's nice because if I borrow the USB to someone, he wont accidentally delete or change some files. Or if I pick up some malware while connecting the USB to print something in the library, I'll just boot puppy, format the first partition and get rid of them. Its basically only to protect the easy2boot configuration, and to have things nicely organized. (I know the first partition is only not recognized in windows, but there are a lot of PC-s with a windows operating system.)

 

I know i could use two USB flash drives, but to have everything on one seems more comfortable.


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#87 Motasem

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 11:08 PM

is there any one still using windows hide folder or file ! use truecrypt man and do it for the whole secund partion.

#88 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 15 April 2013 - 10:07 AM

is there any one still using windows hide folder or file ! use truecrypt man and do it for the whole secund partion.

Motasem, you seemingly completely missed the point.

 

Under Windows any USB stick set as removable (please read as 99.9999% of them) will have ONLY first partition (partition in the actual first partition entry in the MBR's partition table) visible/mountable.

 

There is nothing "hidden".

 

Simply Windows - by design - won't allow the accessing/mounting of anything but the partition which entry is in first place.

 

One can of course use a filter driver to have access to other partitions under windows.

 

:cheers:

Wonko


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#89 Motasem

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Posted 15 April 2013 - 10:20 AM

oh yes sorry :) 2nd primary partion is hidden i know that but i was reading fast LOL



#90 nyquist

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 07:18 PM

In the end I made it happen, but I choosed a simpler (but a manual way). I figured out that I wont install windows everyday, so when I need to install them I do the next:

1. Boot into Hiren's Boot CD (which is on the sam USB as windows).

2. Use the Partition Tool to change the first partition of the USB flash thumb from primary to secondary.

3. Reboot.

4. Install windows -> everything works because windows recognizes the first primary partition of a drive. In this case this is the second partition of the USB drive with easy2boot and the windows ISO (because the first partition of the USB is logical).

5. After everything installs I boot again into Hiren and use the Partition Tool to set the first partition of the USB flash thumb back to primary.

 

Changing the partition from primary to logical and from logical to primary doesn't erase the data on the partition. Everything is fine.

 

This process is not automatic, you have to spent 5 minutes for changing the first partition of the USB drive from primary to secondary and back. If you install windows every day it could get frustrating, but if you install them maybe once in a few months I think its an easy fix for the problem (not the nicest, but it works).



#91 steve6375

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 06:37 PM

BETA21 adds a new XP install method.

 

This uses TWO ISOs!

One is the XP ISO that you want to install, the other is a Vista, Win7 or Win 8 ISO.
It can be a Windows Install (DVD) ISO or just a WinPE (v2/3/4) ISO.

The system will boot to WinPE using the Vista/7/8 ISO and then mount the XP ISO and runs WINNT32.exe to install the files inside the XP ISO onto the pre-formatted hard disk.

You can specify a HDD partition size in the grub4dos menu (HDD0 is wiped)  or you can specify which partition you want to be formatted that is already present on HDD0 once it has booted. You can also specify an unattend.txt file to automate the XP install. This is all done from unmodified ISOs. The XP ISO does not even need to be contiguous!

Also, this is a 1-step process - you do not need to boot back into Easy2Boot again for Step 2.

Because Win7/8 PE has most drivers, there should be no issue with AHCI and mass storage drivers - as long as the drivers have been integrated into the XP ISO that you are installing (so no F6 to press).

Details are on the website Tut 72a. Download at bottom of page.



#92 alacran

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Posted 27 April 2013 - 10:36 PM

steve6375

 

I put your v21 in a USB 4GB exFAT formated (single partition) using BootIce 1.05 and grub4dos MBR using RMPrepUSB v2.1.665 just to test and it works flawlessly, if some ISO's can't be file booted just using the isomem (My LiveXP) or isogz (used for HDDR2011) they boot perfectly, also Acronis Disk Director 11 and True Image 2013 (Linux boot) load pretty well, I just need to test your new XP install to the end, last night just started the install atttended way fine up to the serial (I forgot to write it), then I aborted it and reloaded my GHOST image,  I don't have my testing system with me at the moment, ASAP you will have my report about that.

 

Are there any limitations for the XPUNATTEND.txt file or I can just copy my WINNT.SIF and rename it?

 

Could you provide an option for do not format the partition-volume selected?

 

I suggest to include exFAT format in RMPrepUSB, It's even faster than NTFS, and I haven't found any ISO or VHD that canNOT be booted from exFAT (and you will be providing all available boot options in your great tool).

 

 

Wonko's explanation:

Two negations make an affirmative:

I suggest to include exFAT format in RMPrepUSB, It's even faster than NTFS, and I have found that any ISO or VHD (that I tested) can be booted from exFAT .

Some talk on the matter is here:

http://reboot.pro/to...ated-usb-drive/

 

 

I have a little problem with my keyboards one is Spanish International and the other is Spanish Latin American would you please provide me the files to make them work properly, thanks in advance.

 

Best Regards


Edited by Wonko the Sane, 28 April 2013 - 10:46 AM.

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#93 steve6375

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 07:55 AM

Hi

You can format as exFAT in RMPrepUSB using the Drive - Format Volume  (Ctrl+F)  pop-up. This just uses the Windows utility. Not quite the same I know...

winnt.sif and unattend.txt are almost the same but you can add more options into unattend.txt.

 

I will add an option to skip the formatting but it may not boot to XP Setup on the next reboot...

 

I suggest to include exFAT format in RMPrepUSB, It's even faster than NTFS, and I haven't found any ISO or VHD that can be booted from exFAT (and you will be providing all available boot options in your great tool).

Did you mean 'can't' ???

 

re. spanish kbd - can you try a kbd.g4b with

!BAT
:: Espanol
setkey
setkey slash ampersand
setkey ampersand caret
setkey caret braceleft
setkey asterisk braceright
setkey parenleft asterisk
setkey parenright parenleft
setkey minus slash
setkey equal parenright
setkey quote minus
setkey underscore question
setkey question underscore
setkey braceleft quote
setkey braceright backslash
setkey colon greater
setkey greater bar
setkey doublequote at
setkey backslash backquote
setkey less backslash
setkey semicolon less
setkey plus colon
setkey at semicolon

I had to google for these using 'grub spanish setkey' - so it may not be quite right.

let me know if any problems? If any key mappings are wrong, can you correct them and let me know the changes please _ i don't have these keyboards so I cannot test?

Thank you very much for your feedback. :clap: 

Steve



#94 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 08:58 AM

Just in case, there is a "canvas" for national keyboards here:

http://reboot.pro/to...eyboard-layout/

http://reboot.pro/to...layout/?p=68522

 

(could not find many kids wanting to play with it :()

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#95 alacran

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 09:42 AM

@ steve6375

 

Did you mean 'can't' ???

 

Yes, it was a typo I didn't see, sorry for my stupid mistake, I can't edit it now, Could you or Wonko fix it please?

 

I just made my WinPE4.0 following ericgl tutorial but it is ISO, it booted very fine on exFAT, I'm planing to use it as the second ISO for XP install ASAP.

 

I'll test spanish kbd.g4b and report back.

 

@ Wonko

 

Thank's, I'm going to reed the links before doing anything else.

 

Best Regards


Edited by alacran, 28 April 2013 - 09:43 AM.


#96 steve6375

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 09:48 AM

BETA22 now available.

Spanish KBD layout file added
XP install from WinPE modified - can now choose folder where PE ISO is located and can skip partition format and install to an existing (hopefully active, primary??) partition.
download BETA22


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#97 alacran

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 10:34 PM

@ Wonko

 

Tank you for fixing my post (No. 93).

 

@ steve6375

 

The Spanish KBD layout is not 100 % accurate but it is good enough to find the more used (like  _ )

 

Best Regards



#98 steve6375

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 10:43 PM

You can easily edit the KBD file - please fix the keys that are wrong and post a better version :good: 



#99 steve6375

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 09:43 AM

I suggest to include exFAT format in RMPrepUSB, It's even faster than NTFS, and I haven't found any ISO or VHD that canNOT be booted from exFAT (and you will be providing all available boot options in your great tool).

I am working on adding exFAT to RMPartUSB and RMPrepUSB (Vista SP1 and later only). I can format as exFAT and I can patch in the bootmgr bootcode - the problem is I cannot workout how to calculate the checksum for the checksum sector.

The c code seems to be here. But if the last sectors contain lots of 0's, then I just get a 0 checksum  (or an FFFFFFFF checksum if I use shift and rotate)! It is really annoying me!



#100 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 10:31 AM

I am working on adding exFAT to RMPartUSB and RMPrepUSB (Vista SP1 and later only). I can format as exFAT and I can patch in the bootmgr bootcode - the problem is I cannot workout how to calculate the checksum for the checksum sector.

The c code seems to be here. But if the last sectors contain lots of 0's, then I just get a 0 checksum  (or an FFFFFFFF checksum if I use shift and rotate)! It is really annoying me!

Check this:

http://www.forensicf...wtopic/t=10162/

possibly the references given there can help. :)

 

:cheers:

Wonko







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