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Windows 7: creating a 2 OS thumb drive


14 Jan 2010   #1

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 
creating a 2 OS thumb drive

Is there a way to stick the installation files for 2 Windows 7 versions (in my case, x64 and x86) on 1 thumb drive, and make it bootable? Preferably, I would like to be able to select which OS setup to boot from.

If this is not possible, is there a way to combine the files somehow, so when I get to the install screen, I can choose which version/edition to install?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

14 Jan 2010   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Yes, you need to use imagex to include the editions you want into a single install.wim.

Replace the normal install.wim with that.

Then put on a thumb drive the normal way.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jan 2010   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

You inspired me. I just did it.

1. Copy the contents of the x86 dvd/iso onto a partition. I used partition G. So I had a folder G:\GRM.... ( or a similar long list of letters). Rename the GRM... folder to x86 - that makes it easier. You now have G:\x86 as the folder.

2. Copy ONLY the install.wim from the x64 installation media onto the same partition. You now also have G:\install.wim. Rename that to Win7x64.wim. You now have G:\Win7x64.wim

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3. Put a copy of Imagex in Windows\System32 of the o/s ( Vista or 7) you are booted into.

imagex.zip

imagex16385.zip

4. Open an elevated command and type the following - press enter after each line and wait for it to complete ( it's quick) : [obviously, replace G: with the letter of the partition you have the files on ]

Imagex /export "G:\Win7x64.wim" 1 "G:\x86\sources\install.wim" "Windows 7 Home Basic (x64)"

Imagex /export "G:\Win7x64.wim" 2 "G:\x86\sources\install.wim" "Windows 7 Home Premium (x64)"

Imagex /export "G:\Win7x64.wim" 3 "G:\x86\sources\install.wim" "Windows 7 Professional (x64)"

Imagex /export "G:\Win7x64.wim" 4 "G:\x86\sources\install.wim" "Windows 7 Ultimate (x64)"

5. Delete the ei.cfg file from the x86\sources folder.

6. You can now use the contents of the x86 folder to create a bootable flash in the usual way . All editions of 32 and 64 bit can installed from it.

Or make a bootable .iso from the x86 folder.

The .iso is only 3.65gb

Have fun.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


15 Jan 2010   #4

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Thanks! I tried that, and it works perfectly.

Do you know if there is a way to stick both the 32 and 64 bit repair discs on the drive? I tried using the same method as above with the boot.wim files, but it didn't work. It automatically started the x86 version.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2010   #5

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Jonathan_King View Post
Thanks! I tried that, and it works perfectly.

Do you know if there is a way to stick both the 32 and 64 bit repair discs on the drive? I tried using the same method as above with the boot.wim files, but it didn't work. It automatically started the x86 version.
This helped me JK.

How to create a combined x86 and x64 Windows 7 installation DVD - Overclockers UK Forums

Cheers!
Robert
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2010   #6

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by iseeuu View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Jonathan_King View Post
Thanks! I tried that, and it works perfectly.

Do you know if there is a way to stick both the 32 and 64 bit repair discs on the drive? I tried using the same method as above with the boot.wim files, but it didn't work. It automatically started the x86 version.
This helped me JK.

How to create a combined x86 and x64 Windows 7 installation DVD - Overclockers UK Forums

Cheers!
Robert
Thanks Robert. I succeeded in creating a installation disc, but the repair functions don't work. I have a 64-bit system, and I merged the x64 file into the x86 one, but it is only loading the x86 repair.

Is there a way to combine the 32 and 64-bit Repair discs into 1?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2010   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Thanks Peter,

That's no different from what I posted - and from what Johnathan did.

It doesn't resolve the question of having both the x86 and the x64 Repair My Computer options on the dvd.

The repair functions do work - but since the x64 was merged into the x86 - you can only get the x86 repair functions directly from the dvd.

I am not sure how that could be done Johnathan , short of creating a multiboot dvd.

I suppose if you are going to install the 64 bit - it doesn't matter , because you can immediately run off the recdisc from within 7 x64 anyway.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2010   #8

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Jonathan_King View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by iseeuu View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Jonathan_King View Post
Thanks! I tried that, and it works perfectly.

Do you know if there is a way to stick both the 32 and 64 bit repair discs on the drive? I tried using the same method as above with the boot.wim files, but it didn't work. It automatically started the x86 version.
This helped me JK.

How to create a combined x86 and x64 Windows 7 installation DVD - Overclockers UK Forums

Cheers!
Robert
Thanks Robert. I succeeded in creating a installation disc, but the repair functions don't work. I have a 64-bit system, and I merged the x64 file into the x86 one, but it is only loading the x86 repair.

Is there a way to combine the 32 and 64-bit Repair discs into 1?
Well ... as I not the one who created the "How-to", just used it as a guide, I am sure I am not the authority on the topic. My understanding is that a 32 bit DVD, or CD, is required to repair a 32 bit system, and a 64 bit DVD, CD, is required to repair a 64 bit system. The process described in the "How-to" uses the 32 bit as the basis and adds the 64 bit options. This is just a guess, there may be a way to use the 64 bit as the basis and add the 32 bit options (however you will not be able to repair a 32 bit system with this setup). I don't know and I have not done this. I have both 32 bit and 64 bit "System Repair" CDs. I also understand one can have more than one ISO on a bootable USB flash drive, so perhaps you could just add the 64 bit CD ISO to your USB drive?

Cheers!
Robert
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2010   #9

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

How would I create a multi-boot DVD?

Really, I am just playing. My dream is to have a thumb drive with several bootable images on it. GParted, 2 Windows 7 installation sets (like I have now), repair discs for whatever machine I encounter.

It would be nice to have 1 very versatile thumb drive, so when I work on a machine away from my home workshop, I have everything I need in my pocket.

Don't know if this is possible.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2010   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

It is possible - but I am not finding it easy.

The lovely people at Paragon sent me a Linux menu/loader to use for that purpose.

Strangely, I can create a multiboot .iso using that - The .iso boots - a nice Paragon menu comes up , with the individual .iso's I put inside all listed - I select one - and it loads up. It works great.

BUT - it only works if I boot it from the HD - if I burn it to cd - it boots, but the menu won't load.

I have a suspicion my dvddrive is not compatible with the Linux filesystem being used and it doesn't burn properly - I could be wrong.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 creating a 2 OS thumb drive




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