Creating multiboot Windows 8/8.1 without typing Installation Keys, need help!

Discussion in 'Windows 8' started by kaleb112494, Dec 8, 2013.

  1. kaleb112494

    kaleb112494 MDL Novice

    Dec 8, 2013
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    Hey, MDL. I'm new to the forum, so I apologize if I mess up.

    I've recently made a Windows 8 and a Windows 8.1 installation disc from the ISO images on MSDN. Each image includes Core/Core VL and Pro/Pro VL, 32 and 64 bit editions of each. I have the installation keys for all of these installations, but I don't want to have to type an installation key every time I go to use this disc. I've tried adding an installation key using WinReducer8 (which I do not recommend), but it only adds one key, which means I cannot choose which edition I want to install.

    When I made my AIO Windows 7 ISO, I had no issues, as Windows 7 doesn't force you to add an installation or product key; you select your desired edition and you're good to go. Attached Image 1 shows what I'm referring to.

    Now, however, Windows 8 has to choose your edition by the product key you enter (well played, Microsoft), and I want to find a way around this. Any ideas? If at all possible, I'd like to avoid programs to do this, but am open to suggestions. Thanks in advance!

    Win7 64 Test.png Win8.png
     
  2. abbodi1406

    abbodi1406 MDL KB0000001

    Feb 19, 2011
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    #2 abbodi1406, Dec 8, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    Create EI.CFG and place it in sources folder:
    Code:
    [Channel]
    _Default
    
    [VL]
    0
    
     
  3. kaleb112494

    kaleb112494 MDL Novice

    Dec 8, 2013
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    #3 kaleb112494, Dec 8, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    (OP)
    Did this, and now the ISO is not bootable in VirtualBox or VMWare. I copied and pasted what you typed right into a text document, saved as EI.CFG on desktop, moved to where I have the files extracted to my hard drive, "F:\Disk Images\Win8.1AIO\Disk Files\sources\ei.cfg" Open all the documents in MagicISO, make sure it says "Bootable," and attempt to use in VBox and VMware, says BCD is corrupt. Thoughts?
     
  4. Tito

    Tito Super Mod / Adviser
    Staff Member

    Nov 30, 2009
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    @kaleb112494

    Ditch MagicISO & use UltraISO or something similar. MagicISO isn't updated after 2010 & not fully compatible with newer BIOS/UEFI hybrid bootable ISOs (often corrupts the boot image).
     
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  5. kaleb112494

    kaleb112494 MDL Novice

    Dec 8, 2013
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    Thanks for the suggestion, Tito. I downloaded the trial of UltraISO, and I followed the same steps:
    1. Extract Boot Image File (.bif) from original ISO using UltraISO
    2. Extract ISO to location on hard drive
    3. Edit ei.cfg to include text mentioned by abbodi1406 (thanks again)
    4. Rebuild ISO using UltraISO, including Win8.1.bif

    However, testing this new image in VirtualBox and VMware still results in "BOOTMGR is corrupt" and "The file is possibly corrupt. Please check the file header checksum." The ISO I had originally made still works fine. Thanks again for the help.
     
  6. kaleb112494

    kaleb112494 MDL Novice

    Dec 8, 2013
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    #7 kaleb112494, Dec 8, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2013
    (OP)
    I'm testing this now, I didn't see this before I replied to @tito. Thanks again.

    EDIT: Thanks to abbodi1406, I got this image to work. I thought I had to repack the ISO image every time, I didn't think to just edit it using UltraISO. Oops :biggrin:
     
  7. Tito

    Tito Super Mod / Adviser
    Staff Member

    Nov 30, 2009
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    Your procedure is wrong. Just drag-and-drop the file (ei.cfg) in the sources folder & save the modified iso.
     
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  8. kaleb112494

    kaleb112494 MDL Novice

    Dec 8, 2013
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    I know that now. I had only known to extract the iso in order to be able to edit it. It's amazing how oblivious to how many ways there are to do just one task. o_O
     
  9. WinDev

    WinDev MDL Expert

    Jul 6, 2013
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  10. kaleb112494

    kaleb112494 MDL Novice

    Dec 8, 2013
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    Good tip, I'll keep that in mind later. For now, I managed to make it bootable with UltraISO. Works great, thanks for the help, everyone! :worthy:
     
  11. Aninvitedsoul

    Aninvitedsoul MDL Senior Member

    Sep 14, 2012
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    I think installing the key is easy.:confused: Anyway it's fine as long as you're happy to install this way.Good luck.:)
     
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  12. sanjose

    sanjose MDL Member

    Jan 23, 2012
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    Hi All,

    I have a Retail Key for Windows 8.1 .... I want to add this retail key in .ISO ( Windows 8.1 Pro Retail MSDN) instead of entering Generic key as installing . What should I do now ???

    Thanks in advance.
     
  13. genet

    genet MDL Novice

    Mar 10, 2013
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    #14 genet, Dec 10, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
  14. sanjose

    sanjose MDL Member

    Jan 23, 2012
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    #15 sanjose, Dec 10, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017