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Bootable Ghost CD to deploy images - GUIDE


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I found the original post very useful especially the bits about using WinImage to create a bootimage with an extended format and the "for....do" loop in autoexec.bat to search for the image.

It would seem that although a lot of people want to do similar things no shoe fits all.

We for example look after staff systems at our university.

Because there is no central purchasing each school of department buys there own PCs. Therefore the systems we work on are similar but often from different suppliers.

With much trial and error and after many hours we have created an image that works on the majority of our P4 systems.

We used to deliver our images across the network by booting the PC to be re-imaged/installed from a floppy disk which would load DOS network drivers and Novell client. This allowed us to connect to a dedicated server which contained the required image. This also allowed us to use the server as a backup device. We often backup users machines prior to re-imaging just in case it all goes pear shaped and so that we can preserve users data.

Unfortunately some of the new systems came with network cards which had no DOS drivers. We had to find an alternative system.

Our solution.

We use a combination of BartPE,Ghost32 and USB HD (Freecom).

Here's how it works.

We boot the PC using the BartPE CD we created.

The USB HD MUST BE CONNECTED during the bootup or it will not be visable later.

The BartPE CD contains Ghost32.

Using Ghost booted from the BartPE CD allows us to either backup the system to the attached USB HD and/or re-image the system from an image stored on the USB HD.

USB2 is fast!

You can transfer an image onto a system pretty quickly using this method. It is actually faster than from a CD/DVD or over the network.

I recommend it highly.

As an alternative method of image distribution we also have our bootable DVD.

Our config.sys and autoexec.bat files look like this:






menuitem=ONE, Install new image onto this machine?

menuitem=TWO, Run Ghost Walker (Dos)


device=a:\Dos\himem.sys /testmem:off





shell=a:\command.com a:\ /e:1024 /p


devicehigh=a:\Dos\atapicd.sys /D:cd1







goto %config%


LH a:\Dos\MSCDEX.EXE /D:cd1 /l:m



echo Ready to install new image onto this system.


echo !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

echo !!!!! Warning !!!!!

echo !!!!! All data will be lost !!!!!

echo !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



echo Please wait while image loads onto host system.

for %%i in (m:\*.gho) do set image=%%i

ghost.exe -fnf -fni -noscsi -nousb -clone,MODE=restore,src=%image%,dst=1,szeL -auto -afile=NUL -sure -rb


call ghstwalk.exe



Firstly you may notice the use of the dos [menu] system.

This is very useful for stopping the re-image -> re-boot -> re-image cycle.

(On some of our images we remove the second menu option as it is not required for all of our operatives.)

Secondly just in case you accidentally select the first option there is a PAUSE in autoexec.bat along with a reminder warning.

We sometimes need to use ghost walker so it included on our boot DVDs.

We call ghost with the following switches:

-fnf - Do not fingerprint

-fni - Disble direct IDE access

-noscsi - Disable access to SCSI devices

-nousb - disable USB support

-clone,MODE=restore,src=%image%,dst=1,szeL - restore using %image% variable to fist drive and all partitions remain same size except last which expands to fill space.

-auto - probably not required for restore.

-afile-NULL - Bin errors

-sure - Don't prompt me

-rb - Reboot when done.

Am in process of doing an inhouse guide for fellow workers which is a collection of bits and bobs gleaned from all over. When complete I will post it here too.

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  • 1 year later...
  • 1 month later...

Does anybody know if these guides for making these recovery disk will still work with ghost 12? I searched the web and the newest ones I find are like from 05. In ghost 12 the recovery images are now saved as .v2i extension. Will this still work if I just change the .gho settings to .v2i. Or is the program that much different now. Read that is actually is Powerquest Drive Image renamed because Symantec bought it out.

Edited by BigB42078
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  • 5 months later...


I would like to thank everybody for all the help which i got here. I was searching the web for creating a bootable ghost image and i found it exactly here. i would just like to add that the original solution didnt work for me perfectly, so what i did was i created a bootable DVD (using Nero burning ROM) with the Win ME startup floppy disk (in drive a:) as the source boot data. Then i added the ghost.exe and my ghost images.

Thanks all once again.


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  • 4 months later...

I do not have a copy of the Windows ME disk with all of these files. Does anyone have the .ima file that they used that they could send me? Or would these files be located on the Windows XP Pro CD?

sorry, email is ryblock12@gmail.com

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I do not have a copy of the Windows ME disk with all of these files. Does anyone have the .ima file that they used that they could send me? Or would these files be located on the Windows XP Pro CD?

Have a look here.

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  • 2 months later...

thx very much for ur explanation ..

but im confused to create the boot file .. so

could u plz send me the completed .ima boot file that carry this option when i boot up my dvd:

1- recover image automatically from dvd.

2- run ghost only.

when the user choose the first option then the msg will appear like this:





All data in the C: drive will be erased

System will restart after the recovery process.

Press Ctrl+C to abort the operation

Press any key to continue


when the user choose the second option it will run ghost only without do anythings.

could u plz create this ima boot file for me so i just simply burn it on dvd with my image file?

email: tear_drear@yahoo.com

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  • 2 years later...
  • 3 months later...

Ok not sure where you need more info exactly but i'll paste a couple of bits of info here and tell me if these help?

Ok on the boot disk be it floppy or cd it has the following files and content.

Autoexec.bat :



on the restore partition it has a go.bat file that looks like this:

GHOST.EXE -QUIET -sure -clone,mode=pload,src=Restore.GHO:1,dst=1:1 -batch -RB

What you have to remember is that if you install Xp using NTFS then when you boot from a boot disk the ntfs partition is not visible to a 98 boot disk. thus you need to make sure the restore partition is Fat32 and that is why it is shown as drive c:

Obviously while testing you can run the commands manually to test the concept.

Hope this helps?


I am using NTFS, then what DOS I have to use to make my NTFS visible to DOS?

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