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Install Windows from unmodified Windows install ISOs by using grub2 and wimboot

grub2 windows install

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#1 steve6375

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Posted 3 weeks ago

By using wimboot from the iPXE project it is possible to directly MBR-boot to grub4dos or grub2 from a USB drive and install Windows onto a target system by just using unmodified Windows install ISOs.

 

It is also possible to specify any unattend.xml you wish (optional).

 

Instead of running Setup.exe as shown in the examples, you could use WinNTSetup or DISM or some other method without needing to modify the ISO.

 

Follow my blog post here to Tutorial 145 for more details.


Edited by steve6375, 3 weeks ago.

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#2 Rootman

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Steve I tried this and it works wonderfully.  However I have a question.  Since Grub4DOS is booting the ISO it's booted into legacy mode.  For a 64 bit Windows 10 OS, is it then possible to install it to an unprepared disk as EFI / GPT?   What about a on a disk that was previously legacy boot?  Can it change it to EFI / GP without too much fuss?

 

I unfortunately didn't have time to test this out. 



#3 steve6375

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Posted 3 weeks ago

It only boots to Windows and runs Setup.exe in the normal way - i.e. you get the same limitations as when you normally MBR-boot to Windows Setup.

 

However, you could inject a winpeshl.ini into it which causes WinNTSetup.exe to run instead of Windows Setup.exe.

 

Then you could make GPT partitions and install a UEFI-based installation of Windows. WinNTSetup even allows you to run a Diskpart script so you don't have to make the partitions manually, or you can use WinNTSetup in a script to automate everything.


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