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ilko_t

How to install Windows from USB- WinSetupFromUSB with GUI

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Version 1.0 released which can be downloaded from here. Apart of the missing beta in the name, there are a few important changes since beta8:

  • Ability to add multiple Windows Vista, 7, 8, Server 2008/2012 sources from ISO file as a source. Use the same option to add PE2 (Vista/Server 2008) and above based utility. Thanks to synchronicity for his amazing wimlib project.
  • Ability to add almost any Linux based ISO which uses hybrid cd-rom/hard disk mode, credits to cdob . Refer to this page for a non exhaustive list of tested ISOs
  • Auto-format option when used with NTFS would do its best when formatting the disk, to avoid fragmented large files on this volume later on by moving $MFT at the beginning of the partition. This way $MFT zone remains at the beginning of the volume and there should be way more contiguous space available large files to occupy
  • DPMS updated to DPMS2, thanks to Steve
  • the command prompt window during GUI mode of XP/2000/2003 setup is now hidden, thanks to cdob. It’s needed to keep the USB drive mounted throughout the GUI mode of setup
  • added ability to copy all log files to the relevant WINSETUP sub-folder during PE phase of NT6 (Vista and later) boot. Create an empty file debugme with no extension in the relevant sub-directory, e.g \WINSETUP\Win7x64\debugme, and all log files from the start of PE phase will be copied next to it
  • offer custom boot menu name when Linux/Other ISO is added
  • when XP/2003/2000 source is added and incorrectly the i386 folder is pointed as root directory, program uses its parent directory
  • updates of the tools included

I've also modified the first post since it became quite outdated. Versions would be from now on in the form of X.Y. Honestly, I'll miss those betas :)

The program now also has it's own web page, with some hopefully useful info and download links - www.winsetupfromusb.com .

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Guest

Thanks, ilko_t. However, I'm having problems downloading the latest version from your link. In Firefox 24.0 under XPx64SP2 I get the following error:

post-62992-0-85746000-1382075287_thumb.p

In IE8 with the same OS I get the following error:

post-62992-0-19345400-1382075362_thumb.p

EDIT: Resolved. AV interference: false positive.

Edited by 5eraph

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Can you try again? You must have started downloading when I was updating the web site.

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Guest

It's not you. Avast 2014.9.0.2006 (defs: 131017-1) was interfering with the download without popping up toast in the notification area. It works when I temporarily disable the AV. :)

VirusTotal report

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Hi guys. Thanks for creating this awesome tool. However, when I created the USB boot for my Windows 8 and Windows 7 64 bit ISOs and boot it up on a laptop, it loads and allows me to select the distribution. However, when setup starts, it gives a command prompt of "X:\Windows\System32" and says "A winpesh.ini file is present, but no commands were successfully launched. This could be caused by incorrect formatting or an invalid executable name."

I created this using the x64 executable and tried to run both the Windows 8 and Windows 7 distribution, but both came up with the same issue. Please advise? Thanks!

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Can you put in a zip archive winsetupfromusb.log found in program directory and attach it to your next post?

The last log is in next to WinSetupFromUSB.exe, previous logs are in the backup folder, date-time stamped.

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I'm very pleased to try out this fine utility. My goal is to create USB flash drive with windows XP installed on it. So here is what I did:

1) Installed WinSetupFromUSB version 1.0

2) Used AOMEI Partition assistant to create NTFS partition of 4GB size on my 8Gb flsh drive. Marked it as active and set MBR to Windows XP;

3) Copied all contents of Nlite slipstrimmed XP SP3 to my hard drive

4 ) Launched WinSetupFromUSB and chose that XP directory as a source;

5) In Advanced options ticked a checkbox "Prepare Windows XP to be installed on USB"

6) Hit a GO button.

It took me like 20 to 25 minutes to create the flashdrive with WinSetupFromUSB on my desktop pc. I also have a Dell laptop and I removed hard drive from it.Then I booted my Dell laptop with a flash drive and Plop manager displayed a choice to install windows xp (part1). I clicked there and windows setup copied files and gave me a choice to install XP to the same partition where WinSetupFromUSB was(it was drive letter U). Then machine rebooted and graphic interface started. It took me more than an hour to finish installtion. Now I have a bootable USB stick with windows xp installed on it.

The problem though is that it starts up a little bit on a slower side and then displays Limited Virtual Memory message: Your system has no paging file or the paging file is too small.... Then I hit OK button and it loads windows xp. I have some questions for you guys:

1) Did I do everything correctly?

2) What are those utilities in WinSetupFromUSB installation folder: MULTIpartitionUSBstick, imdisk and etc? Was I supposed to use any of those?

3) Is there a way to force USB flash drive to be determined by XP like a fixed drive? In that case I probably could've had two partitions on USB stick and install XP to the second partition...

4) How can speed XP up to work on my usb drive as a minimum components OS - sort of like MINI-XP?

5) How to fix that paging file missing error?

6) I have a file in the root of USB flash disk, called "usbdrive.tag". For some reason it is Zero byte (0B) size. Is it normal?

Edited by juzzie

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1) Did I do everything correctly?

Yes, spot on.

2) What are those utilities in WinSetupFromUSB installation folder: MULTIpartitionUSBstick, imdisk and etc? Was I supposed to use any of those?

Each for different purpose :)

MULTIpartitionUSBstick - installs dummydisk driver, making all removable disks to appear as fixed(basic) disks, thus allowing multiple partitions and so on operations, which are not allowed on removable disks.

ImDIsk- virtual disk driver, mount CD, hard disk etc. images as virtual drives, similar to DaemonTools for example, but free, open source and actively maintained

I think Google will help you a lot about the rest. Ask here if in doubt. Most of the tools are there just for user convenience, a good toolbox. And please, be very careful, some of the tools could lead to data loss if used in a wrong way or on the wrong disk/volume.

3) Is there a way to force USB flash drive to be determined by XP like a fixed drive? In that case I probably could've had two partitions on USB stick and install XP to the second partition...

Ditto. MultiPartitionUSBstick, or since you asked, another alternative is DiskMod which should also get you around the pagefile errors.

4) How can speed XP up to work on my usb drive as a minimum components OS - sort of like MINI-XP?

You may install XP in disk image and load it completely in ram. Wimb has made some nice tools and guides, look at his signature for more:

http://www.911cd.net/forums//index.php?showtopic=23553

In addition- use decent USB stick, most of them are quite slow with reads/writes of small files. Here are some tests:

http://usbflashspeed.com/

http://hardwarebg.com/forum/showthread.php/92033-USB-%D1%84%D0%BB%D0%B0%D1%88-%D0%BF%D0%B0%D0%BC%D0%B5%D1%82-%D0%A2%D0%B5%D1%81%D1%82%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%B5-%D0%B7%D0%B0-%D0%BF%D1%80%D0%BE%D0%B8%D0%B7%D0%B2%D0%BE%D0%B4%D0%B8%D1%82%D0%B5%D0%BB%D0%BD%D0%BE%D1%81%D1%82

5) How to fix that paging file missing error?

Windows won't make pagefile on USB disk, use DiskMod.

6) I have a file in the root of USB flash disk, called "usbdrive.tag". For some reason it is Zero byte (0B) size. Is it normal?

Yes. It's an empty tag file, used to find the USB disk among all disks by the presence of this file on it, hence the name and size.

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Thanks ilko_t for detailed answer. I will install DiskMod and look into buying decent USB stick. Mine is couple of years old and maybe not the best one :)

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@juzzie

About the Mini-XP it greatly depends on how much "mini" you want it.

See this:

http://minixp.reboot.pro/docs/files/index.html

and the old thread starting from around here:

http://reboot.pro/topic/3717-xpsp1-with-full-commandline-and-ntfs-below-10-mb/?p=152819

I personally tend to read "mini" as "micro", wimb :) reads it as "midi", most probably the MiniXP and/or the XPCLI projects are actually "too reduced" for your uses, and wimb's mini midi compact XP is the "right size":

http://www.911cd.net/forums//index.php?s=&showtopic=23553&view=findpost&p=171411

make sure to get the latest version of the tool, it is "cumulative", right now it should be IMG_XP_78

jaclaz

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Hi guys. Thanks for creating this awesome tool. However, when I created the USB boot for my Windows 8 and Windows 7 64 bit ISOs and boot it up on a laptop, it loads and allows me to select the distribution. However, when setup starts, it gives a command prompt of "X:\Windows\System32" and says "A winpesh.ini file is present, but no commands were successfully launched. This could be caused by incorrect formatting or an invalid executable name."

I created this using the x64 executable and tried to run both the Windows 8 and Windows 7 distribution, but both came up with the same issue. Please advise? Thanks!

Hi!

I have the same problem as moujack888 did. I tried with different versions of Windows 7 x86 / x64 and Windows 8.1 x86 / x64 and everywhere I get the same problem.

However the Windows XP installation worked fine for me (here I have a question on how to disable the automatic choosing of keyboard and location at the second part of the installation??)

I'm attaching a log file from WinSetupFromUsb v1.0 if anyone can find the problem:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ymr9tm5eupclpn9/WinSetupFromUSBlog.zip

In this test i only used a Windows XP image and Windows 7 x86 image.

Thank you for any answer!

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I can't see anything wrong in the log file, nor can reproduce the problem.

Any chance for remote desktop connection to your computer? I've sent you a PM with details.

However the Windows XP installation worked fine for me (here I have a question on how to disable the automatic choosing of keyboard and location at the second part of the installation??)

It shlould be in winnt.sif, in your case in F:\WINSETUP\XPpSP3\I386\WINNT.SIF :

http://unattended.msfn.org/unattended.xp/view/web/82/

http://unattended.msfn.org/unattended.xp/view/web/19/

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For anyone having the same issue as Marlu and moujack888 above, please read this post for details and fix until a new version is out.

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