Jump to content











Photo
- - - - -

Trouble running Windows 8.1 from external HDD (with VHD)

usb booting windows 8.1 external hdd

  • Please log in to reply
38 replies to this topic

#1 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 11:40 AM

Hello guys, I try to install windows 8.1 on my external HDD using Windows 7 and HP Compaq 610 laptop. I have WD My Passport 500GB with two partitions (75GB + ~400GB).

 

I try to install Windows 8 to a VHD(saved in the 75GB partition) and then boot from external device but I get the following error after the first reboot after Windows 8.1 setup finished 

 

ERROR IMAGE

 

If I place the VHD on a internal hdd partition boot succedes, but I need to use externall hdd for for the extra space I got there. Can you give me some suggestions on what should I do.

 

I have updated the HDD firmware to the latest.

 

Here is info of my `bcdedit` output:

 

Windows Boot Manager
--------------------
identifier {9dea862c-5cdd-4e70-acc1-f32b344d4795}
device partition=\Device\HarddiskVolume1
description Windows Boot Manager
locale en-us
inherit {7ea2e1ac-2e61-4728-aaa3-896d9d0a9f0e}
default {01a862ab-3215-11e3-82df-ace6e18ce6fc}
resumeobject {01a862aa-3215-11e3-82df-ace6e18ce6fc}
displayorder {01a862ab-3215-11e3-82df-ace6e18ce6fc}
{faaf0d6f-eb89-11df-8dad-e0e695943637}
toolsdisplayorder {b2721d73-1db4-4c62-bf78-c548a880142d}
timeout 30

Windows Boot Loader
-------------------
identifier {01a862ab-3215-11e3-82df-ace6e18ce6fc}
device vhd=[G:]\windowseight.vhd,locate=custom:12000002
path \windows\system32\winload.exe
description Windows 8.1
locale en-us
inherit {6efb52bf-1766-41db-a6b3-0ee5eff72bd7}
allowedinmemorysettings 0x15000075
osdevice vhd=[G:]\windowseight.vhd,locate=custom:22000002
systemroot \windows
resumeobject {01a862aa-3215-11e3-82df-ace6e18ce6fc}
nx OptIn
bootmenupolicy Standard
detecthal Yes

Windows Boot Loader
-------------------
identifier {faaf0d6f-eb89-11df-8dad-e0e695943637}
device partition=C:
path \Windows\system32\winload.exe
description Windows 7
locale en-GB
inherit {6efb52bf-1766-41db-a6b3-0ee5eff72bd7}
recoverysequence {0b48fa7d-0913-11e3-af9e-1cc1de8d6927}
recoveryenabled Yes
allowedinmemorysettings 0x15000075
osdevice partition=C:
systemroot \Windows
resumeobject {faaf0d6e-eb89-11df-8dad-e0e695943637}
nx OptIn
bootmenupolicy Standard

 



#2 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 11:56 AM

See Step 3 in http://www.rmprepusb...ls/win8vhdonusb

 

Boot from a Win8 install ISO and use BCDBoot and BootSect.


  • korun likes this

#3 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 12:01 PM

Thanks for the link, I will try this in a couple of hours and post the result here.



#4 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 01:48 PM

I did all the steps again and I am still getting the same error, might that be that the HDD is not ready before the bootloader executes and it cannot load the VHD? And if this is the case is there a workaround?

 

When I installed on another 16GB USB with a simular method, it didn't give this error but it was way to slow for normal usage.

 

This is the case of a normal boot, if I go boot from USB device it says: 

Error loading operating system_

Edited by korun, 12 October 2013 - 01:52 PM.


#5 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 14916 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 12 October 2013 - 02:41 PM

Wait a minute.

Which error is it?

I cannot see the image you posted a link to (get a 404).

 

If it is an issue with the initial booting part it is possible that it is "device specific", the WD passport drives *may* have inside one of those "green" drives that are known troublemakers at boot time (on USB bus).

If it is a 2.5" drive, you could try using an external power supply (typically a USB Y cable + *any* USB charger) to power on the drive BEFORE the actual PC.

 

If I get it right you are trying to boot from a VHD residing on the USB disk starting the boot from the BOOTMGR and \boot\BCD residing on your internal hard disk. :unsure:

What happens if you try booting "plainly" from USB?

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#6 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 02:47 PM

Wait a minute.

Which error is it?

I cannot see the image you posted a link to (get a 404).

 

If it is an issue with the initial booting part it is possible that it is "device specific", the WD passport drives *may* have inside one of those "green" drives that are known troublemakers at boot time (on USB bus).

If it is a 2.5" drive, you could try using an external power supply (typically a USB Y cable + *any* USB charger) to power on the drive BEFORE the actual PC.

 

If I get it right you are trying to boot from a VHD residing on the USB disk starting the boot from the BOOTMGR and \boot\BCD residing on your internal hard disk. :unsure:

What happens if you try booting "plainly" from USB?

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

I think the same, WD might be the problem. I am trying out PLOP boot manager and it seems it will do the job, but can I don't really know how to start VHD from plop.

 

Here is the img link:

https://www.dropbox....1011_030050.jpg

(i have currently issues with dropbox but hopefully this link will be valid)



#7 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 02:55 PM

Can you post bcd after running bcdboot as in the tutorial.

It can't seem to find winloader.exe so maybe the BCD has the wrong drive (I think it should be [boot] or [default] ???)



#8 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 14916 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 12 October 2013 - 03:14 PM

I think the same, WD might be the problem. I am trying out PLOP boot manager and it seems it will do the job, but can I don't really know how to start VHD from plop.

 

Here is the img link:

https://www.dropbox....1011_030050.jpg

(i have currently issues with dropbox but hopefully this link will be valid)

Well, you don't actually need PLoP (or other boot manager) apart the BOOTMGR.

Just make sure that there is a copy of both the actual BOOTMGR file and of the \boot\BCD folder on the "external" hard disk's primary and active partition.

Or make the partition active and copy to them the files, if the volume has been formatted under Windows Vista :ph34r: or later it already has the bootsector that involes BOOTMGR.

The actual \boot\BCD will be "in use", you may need to use a bcd utility or use bcdedit to create a new store in the "external" hard disk partition.

Optionally (but it may be of use for troubleshooting) add in the same "external" disk active primary partition root a file (simple text file, notepad would do) called BOOT.INI with these contents:

[boot loader]
Timeout=30
default=c:\grldr

[operating systems]
c:\grldr="grub4dos" 

 

and the file grldr from this download:

https://code.google....-03.7z&can=2&q=

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#9 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 03:21 PM

Can you post bcd after running bcdboot as in the tutorial.

It can't seem to find winloader.exe so maybe the BCD has the wrong drive (I think it should be [boot] or [default] ???)

I will.

in the meantime I should note that I tried editing the bcd with both bcdedit and EasyBCD 2.2 to add the VHD in the bootloader and both tries resulted in blank screen after selecting the VHD option in the bootloader. I also tried copying the same VHD file to the C: partition and booting from there and I got it going, Windows 8.1 booted and worked no problem.

 

Also I should note that during the install and initial mounting the external HDD partition is mounted as I:\ and when I boot in windows the drive letter is G:\



#10 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 03:25 PM

Did you boot to WinPE and run BCDBoot? I think then it sets the BCD to [boot] rather than a drive letter.



#11 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 03:33 PM

Here is my `bcdedit` output after repeating step 3 (running cmd from live usb) from the tutorial in the #2 post. sorry for the picture quality...

 

procedure:

https://www.dropbox....1012_172702.jpg

 

output:

https://www.dropbox....1012_172909.jpg


Edited by korun, 12 October 2013 - 03:33 PM.


#12 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 05:35 PM

The commands look OK.

Did you prepare the VHD as in the tutorial in post #2?



#13 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 05:36 PM

I finally managed to boot it with PLOP in the USB option. No other options worked in both plop and windows bootmanager.

 

edit: since we both posted in the same time :)) No i didn't, I had created fixed VHD from Disk Management before booting into W8 Live USB but since its practically the same I did't redo that action.


Edited by korun, 12 October 2013 - 05:38 PM.


#14 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 05:41 PM

Sounds like the BIOS is 'strange' on your target system then?

Can you boot it from bootmgr on a different system?

 

It would be interesting to install grub4dos on the USB drive and add a menu entry to boot to bootmgr

title Win8 Boot
root
find
ls (hd0,0)/
pause
chainloader /bootmgr

and report back what you see. It may be that the BIOS is not booting from the USB drive as hd0. If that is the case then you can swap over the drives in grub4dos. Then you wouldn't need to use Plop.



#15 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 14916 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 12 October 2013 - 05:50 PM

It would be interesting to install grub4dos on the USB drive and add a menu entry to boot to bootmgr

 

Well, if I may the idea - already posted - would be to NOT install it NOR add a BOOTMGR entry for it (but simply add the grldr and the BOOT.INI file).

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#16 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:02 PM

I did try to load the VHD on my desktop PC and got similar error. Adding the VHD entry was done by EasyBCD. I don't remember the exact message of the error but it was kind of that the entry for VHS is invalid and only Windows 7 option was shown.

 

As for the grub4dos, I didn't really get the idea of what is done and how is installed so I am not sure if I can install it safely.

 

 

edit: Also, I just installed windows 8 without the VHD, simply following http://www.rmprepusb...orials/win8togo and I still must do the same startup procedure(plop->usb) to get the Windows 8 running.

 

edit2: My device is listed as NON-bootable in wd website:

http://wdc.custhelp....m-to-install-an

It says for mac but I'm pretty sure its messed up for windows too


Edited by korun, 12 October 2013 - 06:20 PM.


#17 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 14916 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:10 PM

As for the grub4dos, I didn't really get the idea of what is done and how is installed so I am not sure if I can install it safely.

There is nothing to "install".

You just follow the posted instructions (post #8).

The suggested method is actually intended to AVOID installing anything and to AVOID modifying the \boot\BCD\.

The windows BOOTMGR will "pick" any entry (exception made for the the arcpath ones) present in a file "BOOT.INI" in the same root as BOOTMGR is.
And the posted BOOT.INI wil allow to boot the grldr in the same place.

 

 

:cheers:

Wonko


  • korun likes this

#18 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:12 PM

You can run RMPrepUSB and click on the Install Grub4dos button and then answer Yes for MBR.

That will install grub4dos

Then press F4 and create a menu.lst file - contents as I posted before.

Then try to boot it on your target system and report back what you observe.

 

You can 'undo' the changes by running RMPrepUSB again and selecting 'Bootloaders - Install Std MBR (Ctrl_M) - then delete the grldr and menu.lst file.

 

Or you can try Wonko's method of adding a boot.ini 


  • korun likes this

#19 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 14916 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:19 PM

You can 'undo' the changes by running RMPrepUSB again and selecting 'Bootloaders - Install Std MBR (Ctrl_M) - then delete the grldr and menu.lst file.

 

OT :ph34r:, but not much, does the "Install Std MBR" also re-zero the excess sectors beside the first one previously occupied by grub4dos grldr.mbr code? :unsure: :dubbio:

(if not, it could be a good idea to add a provision for this in RMPREPUSB, i.e. the disk after an install an uninstall should be identical to how it was before)

As a side note, for this kind of "temporary installs" it could be a good idea to use the grub4dos feature of saving the original MBR on the second sector and then add a provision to RMPREPUSB to restore that MBR (as opposed to the "standard" one).

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#20 ztron

ztron

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    United States

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:28 PM

Here is my `bcdedit` output after repeating step 3 (running cmd from live usb) from the tutorial in the #2 post. sorry for the picture quality...

 

procedure:

https://www.dropbox....1012_172702.jpg

 

output:

https://www.dropbox....1012_172909.jpg

hi korun,

 

on your procedure, where it says "Bootcode was successfully updated", they are a liar, it is false

 

above that where it says "Access is denied", that is the truth

 

you must use the FORCE switch:

 

bootsect /nt60 i: /force

 

best regards,

ztron



#21 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:34 PM

OT :ph34r:, but not much, does the "Install Std MBR" also re-zero the excess sectors beside the first one previously occupied by grub4dos grldr.mbr code? :unsure: :dubbio:

(if not, it could be a good idea to add a provision for this in RMPREPUSB, i.e. the disk after an install an uninstall should be identical to how it was before)

As a side note, for this kind of "temporary installs" it could be a good idea to use the grub4dos feature of saving the original MBR on the second sector and then add a provision to RMPREPUSB to restore that MBR (as opposed to the "standard" one).

 

:cheers:

Wonko

No, the other sectors are left alone - as I don't know what they were before...

The user can use DIskDoctor to read LBA1 and write to LBA0, or use the Disk->File for LBA1 and then File->Disk for LBA0.



#22 korun

korun

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    Macedonia

Posted 12 October 2013 - 06:47 PM

You can run RMPrepUSB and click on the Install Grub4dos button and then answer Yes for MBR.

That will install grub4dos

Then press F4 and create a menu.lst file - contents as I posted before.

Then try to boot it on your target system and report back what you observe.

 

You can 'undo' the changes by running RMPrepUSB again and selecting 'Bootloaders - Install Std MBR (Ctrl_M) - then delete the grldr and menu.lst file.

 

Or you can try Wonko's method of adding a boot.ini 

I installed grub4dos on my external HDD (i forced listing large partitions ~500gb). This is what I get when I boot from usb for around 2-3 seconds before I am redirected to the default windows bootloader:

 

https://www.dropbox....1012_204250.jpg

 

Wonko's method displayed Missing operating system when booting to the usb hdd containing BOOT.INI and grldr.mbr


Edited by korun, 12 October 2013 - 07:04 PM.


#23 steve6375

steve6375

    Platinum Member

  • Developer
  • 7030 posts
  • Location:UK
  • Interests:computers, programming (masm,vb6,C,vbs), photography,TV,films,guitars, www.easy2boot.com
  •  
    United Kingdom

Posted 12 October 2013 - 07:15 PM

Did you have the menu.lst file present?

HDD should have

vhd

grldr

bootmgr

menu.lst



#24 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 14916 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 13 October 2013 - 09:16 AM

The Booting mechanism is (for the "standard" booting):

  1. MBR (there needs to be the "standard" MBR code, i.e. any code that chainloads active primary partition)
  2. Partition (primary) must be active and contain
  3. Bootsector - invoked by the MBR code (there needs to be the "standard" bootsector code)
  4. BOOTMGR - invoked by the bootsector code
  5. \boot\BCD <- read by the BOOTMGR
  6. BOOT.INI - read by BOOTMGR
  7. grldr <- invoked by the entry in BOOT.INI

If grub4dos is installed the booting mechanism is the following:

  1. grldr.mbr <- installed to the MBR+hidden sectors
  2. grldr <- invoked by the grldr.mbr
  3. menu.lst <- read by grldr
  4. BOOTMGR <- chainloaded by the contents of menu.lst
  5. \boot\BCD <- read by the BOOTMGR

The "missing operating system" may be due to BOOTMGR or \boot\BCD missing :unsure:

 

The grub4dos screenshot may be due to issues in finding the menu.lst, I seem to remember that some BIOSes may have issues, by themselves or in combination with grub4dos if the USB device is bigger than 128 Gb, it is possible that this is the case.

 

PLoP provides an "independent" USB stack and thus bypasses this limitiation (if it is there).

 

@Steve6375

Maybe it is the case of testing the newish grub4dos 0.4.6a with USB stack? :unsure:

 

:cheers:

Wonko


  • korun likes this

#25 ztron

ztron

    Newbie

  • Members
  • 13 posts
  •  
    United States

Posted 13 October 2013 - 12:45 PM

The Booting mechanism is (for the "standard" booting):

  1. MBR (there needs to be the "standard" MBR code, i.e. any code that chainloads active primary partition)
  2. Partition (primary) must be active and contain
  3. Bootsector - invoked by the MBR code (there needs to be the "standard" bootsector code)
  4. BOOTMGR - invoked by the bootsector code
  5. \boot\BCD <- read by the BOOTMGR
  6. BOOT.INI - read by BOOTMGR
  7. grldr <- invoked by the entry in BOOT.INI

If grub4dos is installed the booting mechanism is the following:

  1. grldr.mbr <- installed to the MBR+hidden sectors
  2. grldr <- invoked by the grldr.mbr
  3. menu.lst <- read by grldr
  4. BOOTMGR <- chainloaded by the contents of menu.lst
  5. \boot\BCD <- read by the BOOTMGR

The "missing operating system" may be due to BOOTMGR or \boot\BCD missing :unsure:

 

The grub4dos screenshot may be due to issues in finding the menu.lst, I seem to remember that some BIOSes may have issues, by themselves or in combination with grub4dos if the USB device is bigger than 128 Gb, it is possible that this is the case.

 

PLoP provides an "independent" USB stack and thus bypasses this limitiation (if it is there).

 

@Steve6375

Maybe it is the case of testing the newish grub4dos 0.4.6a with USB stack? :unsure:

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

hi folks, you know I am a noob
 
but step 3 & 4 of standard booting must be perfect for plain NT6 booting
 
if access is denied during bootsect.exe, like Korun has shown in his JPG,
that is therefore imperfect
 
which is why I said in my above post:
use the force luke
 
ztron






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: usb booting, windows 8.1, external hdd

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users