Help me create a bootable multiOS and utilities hard drive

Discussion in 'Application Software' started by jtadeo, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. jtadeo

    jtadeo MDL Novice

    Aug 30, 2009
    Good evening,

    I want to create a bootable hard drive that has multiple operating systems and utilities. I have an old xp install disc (cd-r) that contained a list of options when you booted into it.

    From what I can remember it had Windows XP home, Winxp pro, winxp pro corporate, norton ghost, and partition magic.

    I want to create something similar to this...

    I want Windows 7 ultimate (x64 and x86), Linux Unbuntu, some hard drive utilities, a password recovery utility, etc...

    I'm pretty sure this is possible, but I don't know where to start.

    I also want to be able to update Windows 7 with the latest service pack/patches.. also pre patch it with removewat32.

    Hopefully you guys understand what I'm trying to accomplish... if anyone knows how to do this please help me out.
  2. urie

    urie Moderator
    Staff Member

    May 21, 2007

    HALIKUS MDL Addicted

    Jul 29, 2009
    To get you started, i'd say install XP (if you want it) first, then Windows 7 (it will create the BCD), then add things like a Win7PE wim to the BCD with EasyBCD or BCDedit, and then install Ubuntu that will (i think) install a Grub4Dos loader with all your entries. I do this regularily on a quadrouple boot with XP, Win7 x86, Win7 x64, a Win7PE and Backtrack Linux (Slax).
  4. jtadeo

    jtadeo MDL Novice

    Aug 30, 2009
    I'm sorry, I didn't make myself clear. I do not want to multi-boot, I want to have an external hard drive with the OS install images so I can reformat multiple computers. I don't like having to dig through dvd/cds for the OS I'm trying to install. I hope that cleared things up.
  5. Rosco

    Rosco MDL Addicted

    Oct 29, 2007
    Here is a solution I know works.

    Install Windows 7 to an external E-Sata drive - remove all drives from your computer to make sure the boot code is written to the E-Sata drive - besides you don't really want it included in Windows boot manager if it's not connected. Not essential though.

    (Hardware differences can interfere with the use of such an E-Sata disk so I tend to back it up using Acronis and restore using their universal restore which removes hardware dependencies - allegedly.)

    Install Ubuntu through their WUBI capability and it appears as a boot choice from Windows bootmanager menu.

    Add all disk images, utilities in what ever directories you like - I'm not saying install simply have the setups available.

    There are complicated guides to enable install onto an external USB disk but an E-Sata is a no brainer.

    You need some form of OS to install from - why not the flexibility of a Windows 7 environment or a full Ubuntu - the other choice is a WinPE or similar.

    You could also choose another version of Windows or Linux.

    This boots from any available sata port on the new host computer even if no E-Sata port is available - bit of a problem for a laptop though so I only give myself 7.5 out of 10 for this suggestion.

    The same scenario may work for a bootable USB Disk but that is a lot more trouble - but apparently achievable if you search the net. The E-Sata solution is just like a normal install to create the external bootable disk.
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...