Is it possible to use a 250GB USB hard drive to install Windows 7

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by GeneralZod, Dec 5, 2009.

  1. GeneralZod

    GeneralZod MDL Novice

    Oct 21, 2009
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    I have tried to use a 250 GB hard drive (not a flash drive) to install Windows 7. It will not boot from this drive. If I use an 8GB flash drive it will boot and install Windows 7. Is it possible to use a hard drive and not a flash drive? How do you do that if it's possible?

    Thanks
     
  2. genuine555

    genuine555 MDL Expert

    Oct 3, 2009
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    #2 genuine555, Dec 5, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: May 23, 2017
  3. GeneralZod

    GeneralZod MDL Novice

    Oct 21, 2009
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    #3 GeneralZod, Dec 5, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: May 23, 2017
    (OP)
  4. GeneralZod

    GeneralZod MDL Novice

    Oct 21, 2009
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    genuine555 I tried the methods on your link and the message I get when I boot is "no boot sector on USB drive". Is there a different method to make a USB hard drive bootable. The methods all work for my flash drive.

    Thanks
     
  5. genuine555

    genuine555 MDL Expert

    Oct 3, 2009
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    So you first marked the partition on the drive as active, then extracted the iso to the drive's root folder, then set boot order in bios to boot usb devices first, and then rebooted ?
     
  6. GeneralZod

    GeneralZod MDL Novice

    Oct 21, 2009
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    That is all correct.
     
  7. genuine555

    genuine555 MDL Expert

    Oct 3, 2009
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    gonna test this quickly myself...
     
  8. ailef

    ailef MDL Senior Member

    Nov 30, 2007
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    should be better to install it on an E-sata HD, USB2 is a bit slow to be used as system HD.
    but using a bootable USB key to install windows 7 is way faster than DVD.
    it tooks me approximately 5 minutes with the USB key where u need 15 min with the DVD.
     
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  9. GeneralZod

    GeneralZod MDL Novice

    Oct 21, 2009
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    I don't want to use the HD as a system HD. I only want to use it to install Windows 7 like the USB Key you mentioned.
     
  10. HotCarl

    HotCarl MDL Addicted

    Jul 21, 2009
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    Do you have an older copy of Windows on the computer you are trying to install Windows 7 on?

    If you are already running XP or Vista, all you would need to do is copy the extracted .iso image to your external HD, then from within Windows Vista/XP/whatever, run the setup file...then follow along with setup normally.
     
  11. genuine555

    genuine555 MDL Expert

    Oct 3, 2009
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    And logicaly that will work also, when you think about it. :rolleyes:
     
  12. HotCarl

    HotCarl MDL Addicted

    Jul 21, 2009
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    That is what I did... I just ran the setup from within Windows XP, then once Win7 was installed I just deleted the Windows.old folder after I grabbed all the stuff I wanted to keep out of it. (The Win7 installer puts your old WinXP installation into a Windows.old folder so you can just open the folder in Win7 after, grab what you want, and then delete the folder. You will have to take ownership of the folder first if you want to delete it.)
     
  13. genuine555

    genuine555 MDL Expert

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    Yeah. The issue was that when booting from the drive, it won't do it on an NTFS partition. FAT32 works if you want to boot from the drive.
    That way setup will be the same as if booting from the dvd, and you can just delete/format the xp partition in the process.
     
  14. tuvi123

    tuvi123 MDL Addicted

    Jul 29, 2009
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    I don't think you have to format the drive to FAT32... (for me it boots fine with my 160GB external HD, which is NTFS).

    try to run this command:
    "bootsect /nt60 L /force"
    L= is the volume drive Letter of your external hard drive.
    it will apply the master boot code sector that is compatible with BOOTMGR
     
  15. genuine555

    genuine555 MDL Expert

    Oct 3, 2009
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    FAT32 worked for me without the /nt60 switch. Maybe you know why ? I'd like to know :)
     
  16. GeneralZod

    GeneralZod MDL Novice

    Oct 21, 2009
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