Easy2Boot V1 - Make a USB MultiBoot drive that is easy to set up and maintain

Discussion in 'Application Software' started by steve2926, Apr 20, 2013.

  1. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    #1 steve2926, Apr 20, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2016
  2. pisthai

    pisthai Imperfect Human

    Jul 29, 2009
    6,861
    2,029
    210
    Was look at the website from Easy2Boot and didn't found it's possible to use 32bit and 64 Environment for installation of 32bit and 64bit OS's.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  3. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    #3 steve2926, Apr 20, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013
    (OP)
    Easy2Boot V1 - boots directly from the ISOs, so if you have 64-bit install ISO it will boot 64-bit winpe, if you boot from 32-bit ISO it will boot 32-bit winpe. What problem did you have exactly and did you try Easy2Boot V1 in last few weeks?
     
  4. pisthai

    pisthai Imperfect Human

    Jul 29, 2009
    6,861
    2,029
    210
    I haven't use Easy2Boot yet, just other apps and none of them couls use both environment (from USB 3.0 HDD)!
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  5. Weedy

    Weedy MDL Member

    Mar 9, 2011
    205
    69
    10
    Often when creating multiboot usb sticks using GRUB or syslinux, you'll boot into the windows installer, and it will show an error stating that a dvd or media driver was not found, and installation cannot continue.
     
  6. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    #6 steve2926, Apr 20, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2013
    (OP)
    Easy2Boot v1 has been tested by me and used by many people. There is no problem with 'DVD not found' error because Easy2Boot uses an AutoUnattend.xml file on the USB flash drive which mounts loads the ISO into memory as a RAM drive. Setup then sees the Drive and gets the Install.wim from it. You can use a USB HDD but if you want to install Windows Vista or later OS's, you must also plug in a USB Flash drive which has a AutoUnattend.xml file. You do not have to make/edit this file - just copy it onto any spare USB Flash drive that you have around.
    Please try Easy2Boot V1 - you can put all your Windows Install ISOs on it and it will work.
    For Win8, it will use a Pro or Consumer Product Key so you are not prompted for one during the install. You are prompted to choose which key you want to use before the ISO is booted.
    I have been a computer engineer/programmer for over 30 yrs and deal with MS Windows installs every day.
    Not only can Easy2Boot install Windows from Windows Install ISOs, you can also automate the install by using your own Unattend.xml file (this is all without editing a standard MS ISO in any way).
    In addition, Easy2Boot can boot pretty much ANY linux ISO - just copy it on and go - even those that don't support 'cheat codes' for booting from an ISO work!
    There are YouTube videos for you to watch too.
    This is not hot air from some newbie! It has all been tried and tested. Please try it and let me know how it goes for you.
    cheers
    Steve
     
  7. Weedy

    Weedy MDL Member

    Mar 9, 2011
    205
    69
    10
    I understand, and agree, that this method would be good if you were constantly deploying the same image over and over.

    However, from a more "I want to fix customer's computers" point of view, this is kinda pointless.
    Firstly, it means you have to carry around an extra device.
    Secondly, its taking too much control away. It might not always be the case that I want to install win7 ultimate. I might need starter. I might need win8pro, proWMC, core, enterprise. In all these situations, an autounattend.xml isn't going to really help me. Either because I'd need at least one for every version of windows, or because not every system will end up being partitioned the same. Some customers might potentially want a recovery partition, some might want a data partition. I would have so many different autounattends, it would be funny.

    9 times out of 10, I also don't want to install with a product key at all. For example, if I install with key and activate, then half hour later a rogue update bricks the system and I have to reinstall, thats 2 activations I've had to go through, which is more likeley to make MS kick up a stink when activating.

    And finally, a Ram disk is not reliable enough. When I say not reliable, I mean the install.wim of any OS since Vista isn't going to fit on a 1Gb ramdisk if that is all that the system I am installing to has got.

    I will take a gander at this program however, and see if theres anything that might change my mindset. Always keep an open mind and all that.
     
  8. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    First, you can have ALL ISOs on one USB device.
    2nd - you are prompted for which SKU you want (Basic/Home/Pro/Ult) for each ISO - so for each OS you just need one 32-bit and one 64-bit iso.
    It is only Win8 that you need a product key defined. Setup on Win8 will not install without it!
    3rd the Autounattend.xml on the Flash drive is overwritten by the grub4dos menu system - the correct xml file is chosen automatically. You can install Vista 32-bit on one system and then 7 64-bit on the next, etc. No changes to anything is required.
    Lastly, the install.wim is not all loaded into the ram drive, the ISO is mounted as a volume (but not all held in RAM) using ImDisk or firadisk. You can install on a 1GB netbook easily.
     
  9. Weedy

    Weedy MDL Member

    Mar 9, 2011
    205
    69
    10
    #9 Weedy, Apr 20, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    If you add the file ei.cfg to the sources folder in the iso, you can install win8 without a key and you get to choose which version you want.

    Code:
    [Channel]
    _Default
    
    [VL]
    0
    is all that is in the ei.cfg.


    As I said, I'm gonna check this tool out. If it's everything it's claimed to be, I will be converted.
     
  10. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    #10 steve2926, Apr 21, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    (OP)
    Sure, but the whole idea is to make it simple for the user. Withe Easy2Boot you just choose which install you want anyway and a temporary key is chosen by Easy2Boot, so it is no problem. Please watch the Easy2Boot YouTube videos (make sure it is the V1 video).
     
  11. pisthai

    pisthai Imperfect Human

    Jul 29, 2009
    6,861
    2,029
    210
    Steve, you really try hard with the promotion of Esay2Boot!!:D NO Offences meaning!!

    I'm busy to get the latest 9374 to work and finally had just the installation finish (with burned DVD) after quite many atemp's. Will later carry on with your apps. Have HDD now ready for it and need to retest all ISO's I like to place on it and than again start to test again after each placing! Will need some time. If it works as you told, than it would be just excellent!
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  12. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    Sure (and I am trying to get my number of posts up so I can post links!) - the feedback I have got so far has been very good and I am looking for more ideas to improve it. Please let me know how you get on and don't forget you need to prepare a 2nd USB Flash drive if you are going to use a USB HDD for Easy2Boot.

    Note: If you are prepared to modify each of the Windows ISOs by adding two files to the boot.wim, you do not need the USB flash drive. See Addendum on Tutorial #43 for details.
     
  13. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    Burning DVD's??? How quaint! Don't you have a Zalman VE-200 or 300 or 400? No-one burns DVDs any more (except as the very last test!).
     
  14. pisthai

    pisthai Imperfect Human

    Jul 29, 2009
    6,861
    2,029
    210
    I've a lot external devices but had problem with the new build. USB 3.0 enclosure will not work because via USB 3 sockets! USB 2 works but got with 3 different device problems with the installation! So, I was go with DVD and that was working. It's installed and activated now.

    Tomorrow I'll carry on for to prepare the Esy2Boot HDD and see how that is working. The idea with to copy those 2 files to the Wim filw seems to be good, but time intensive!! Will test first with 2-3 OS's.

    Whats about older Windows OS's like 98/2000 and Server 2000/2003? We still have quite some companies in Thailand which using Windows 98, special Accounting Departments. Has to do with the Thai Language and Letters. All of them using Dot Matrix Printers for to print the Journals etc. for the Revenue Department. And the Revenue Departments having problems for to change to newer system. Maybe another 2-3 years and it will be up to date in Thailand but now!
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  15. sebus

    sebus MDL Guru

    Jul 23, 2008
    5,935
    1,805
    180
    The solution works VERY well indeed. Tested in on W7 x64 so far (as I just happen to need to install one)

    I might never try XP (as it is of no interest to me any more)

    Probably might choke on POS2009 (as it is not supported iso in the list)

    sebus
     
  16. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    New version BETA17 now available which allows the user to select any menu item as the default and set a countdown timer to auto-run it on first boot or reload (still can't post links yet - sorry!).
     
  17. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    #18 steve2926, Apr 21, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2013
    (OP)
    The Zalman VE-200/300 is a hard disk caddy but it emulates a USB CD drive. Just select (it has an LCD display and a jog wheel) any ISO on the internal HDD and it will emulate that as a USB CD/DVD drive. I test all my Windows ISOs using it. It saves a lot of time and blank DVDs!
    You will have to try 98/2000 ISOs with Easy2Boot - they should work - if not try renaming as .isowinv
     
  18. steve2926

    steve2926 MDL Member

    Nov 13, 2010
    114
    50
    10
    If it is a bootable ISO, just drop POS2009 into the \_ISO\mainmenu folder. If you point me at a free trial download ISO I will try it for you and, if required, make a .mnu file for you...
     
  19. Tito

    Tito Super Mod / Adviser
    Staff Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    17,647
    15,576
    340
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...