Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Experiment 6 on Making Bootable Ms Windows Flashdisk

This experiments were performed in order to install Ms Windows OS into a netbook which does not have a CD-ROM. The description of this successful experiments below are my email contents sent to my colleagues at Strathclyde on 9 December 2008.

I just wanna share my successful experience in creating 'bootable Ms Windows OS flashdisk' which was carried out by me a few weeks ago. It is useful in installing Ms Windows OS into a netbook which is not supported with built-in cd-rom drive.

Actually in the first time, I tried to use 'Unetbootin' application to perform it, after the process finished, I used the flashdisk to boot netbook but it didn't work. After that I tried to use 'USB Startup Creator'from Intrepid release for Ubuntu 8.10, but it also didn't work although the message displayed the process finished successfully. When I used 'Unetbootin' and 'USB Startup Creator' for another OS such as Ubuntu, Helix and so on, it worked well except Ms Windows OS.

I hunted by browsing the internet to find out how to overcome this case, then finally I found a clue that there are 3 tools, namely usb-prep8, PeToUSB and bootsect which can be used to make a bootable Ms Windows OS flashdisk. These tools run under Ms Windows OS.

First of all, I run usb-prep8.cmd then it automatically loads PeToUSB which is used to format the flasdisk in order to make it become ready for next actions.

While the windows of usb-prep8 and PeToUSB are still open, run the command prompt of cmd.exe, then run bootsect.exe with the command 'bootsect.exe /nt52 F:' where F is the drive letter of target flashdisk. The bootsect is used for installing the boot code into flashdisk. After this finishes, close the PeToUSB window, so that it will load a new interface for usb-prep8 with some choices to do.

In these choices, there is a sequence to do. Firstly press 1 to browse the location of original Ms Windows OS cdrom, then press 2 to enter the virtual drive letter, after that press 3 to enter the drive letter of target flashdisk, lastly press 4 to start the process.

The process runs formatting virtual drive, copying files from original Ms Windows OS cd into virtual drive, then copying those files into target flashdisk. The whole process takes time approximately 15 to 20 minutes in my machine.

After it finishes, so the flahdisk can be inserted into a netbook to boot from USB in order to install Ms Windows OS. When the booting from USB comes up, there are 2 choices, please select 'text mode setup', then the installation process runs as usual. Once it completes, then reboot, so please select 'GUI mode setup'to continue the rest installation. After it completes, then it will reboot again, so please select again 'GUI mode setup' to complete the whole installation of Ms Windows OS.

I hope this my experiment could be useful in a positive meaning.

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