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 Firadisk how to use this new driver, Easiest way to make image
post Sep 22 2009, 02:59 PM
Post #1
Bukvod
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I have read most of the thread on Firadisk and it sounds pretty cool and I would like to try it but Ive got no idea of the simple basics of how to start. Could someone direct me exactly how and what to do to make a image to use? How big can it be? Can you install windows xp on a small disk say 2gig and use that to make a image to start with. I hope this post does not come across completely stupid. Also how do you use the script file? what is it for? and is the image, with the use firadisk, truely live? as in saving changes made? Any further information would be great just remember I know very little so please use very disciptive "How to" Thanks


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post Sep 22 2009, 03:44 PM
Post #2
Lancelot
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  Joined: 8-May 08 From: Turkiye/Izmir

Posts: 733
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Turkiye


LiveXP part:

enable firadisk script, make a build with createiso, boot livexp.iso with grub4dos
no size limit cheers.gif

bootsdi is under development. lamo.gif


--------------------
I Galapo's LiveXP and King Amalux's Great LiveXP Package (tutorial and everything)
Lancelot Tips For LiveXP
I hate Medusa problems of WinBuilder, Cryptic codes, syntax rules fakingly mismatching working lines, not having even basic fundemantal syntax rules and mostly 'lies' and 'post games'.
('post games' = includes dishonest, childish posts that have goal to annoy others in community)
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post Sep 22 2009, 07:13 PM
Post #3
Bukvod
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Is the use of bootable usb limited to only a computer that has the firadisk driver installed?
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post Sep 25 2009, 06:06 PM
Post #4
Bukvod
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I have used Winbuilder to create both a image with Create ISO and BootSDI with vfiradisk script included but I must be doing something wrong or do not have my menu.lst correct. Can anyone help me? my ISO is 728mb and will start to boot with CreateISO image with the 1st title on my menu.lst but fails with a BSO 7D.I'm using xp install files as my source. Here a copy of my menu.lst that I have tried.

title Boot Live XP (livexp.iso)
root (hd0,0)
map --mem/livexp.iso (0xff) ll map --mem /livexp.iso (0xff)
map --hook
chainloader (0xff)

title LiveXP-Fira-ISO
root (hd0,0)
map --mem (0xff)/LiveXP.iso (0xFF)
map --hook
chainloader (0xFF)

title (hd0,0) (hd32)=livexp.iso
root (hd0,0)
map --mem (0xff)/livexp.iso (hd32)
chainloader +1

title mem Loading PE (set root)
find --set-root /livexp.ISO
map --mem /livexp.ISO (0xFF)
map --hook
chainloader (0xFF)

title mem Loading PE
map --mem /livexp.ISO (0xFF)
map --hook
chainloader (0xFF)

As you can see I'm still learning. Do I not have any these correct or is something wrong with my build?
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post Sep 25 2009, 06:46 PM
Post #5
Lancelot
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Group: .script developer

  Joined: 8-May 08 From: Turkiye/Izmir

Posts: 733
Thank(s): 620


Turkiye


QUOTE (Bukvod @ Sep 25 2009, 08:06 PM) *
title mem Loading PE
map --mem /livexp.ISO (0xFF)
map --hook
chainloader (0xFF)
this should be working,

a list is here post 23 , after new bootsdi in couple of days, List will be updated including firadisk/grub4dos usage with bootsdi.


--------------------
I Galapo's LiveXP and King Amalux's Great LiveXP Package (tutorial and everything)
Lancelot Tips For LiveXP
I hate Medusa problems of WinBuilder, Cryptic codes, syntax rules fakingly mismatching working lines, not having even basic fundemantal syntax rules and mostly 'lies' and 'post games'.
('post games' = includes dishonest, childish posts that have goal to annoy others in community)
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post Sep 26 2009, 04:37 AM
Post #6
Peter O
  
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  Joined: 6-April 09
Posts: 8
Thank(s): 0


Australia


QUOTE (Bukvod @ Sep 22 2009, 02:59 PM) *
I have read most of the thread on Firadisk and it sounds pretty cool and I would like to try it but Ive got no idea of the simple basics of how to start. Could someone direct me exactly how and what to do to make a image to use? How big can it be? Can you install windows xp on a small disk say 2gig and use that to make a image to start with. I hope this post does not come across completely stupid. Also how do you use the script file? what is it for? and is the image, with the use firadisk, truely live? as in saving changes made? Any further information would be great just remember I know very little so please use very disciptive "How to" Thanks


I'm with you on this, it looks very interesting but I fear its well into "expert territory".
My RAM is only 512MB which I saw somewhere might be big enough but reading further I don't think so.
As usual with this "PE boot disc" stuff it's almost never straightforward & I don't think it's yet suitable for the non-techie types to play with - you just end up wasting lots of time. What's wrong with the simple expedient of making a C drive image on a second HD, - not that I can say I fully understand how to either do this or use it.
I do wish posters would attempt to indicate the degree of difficulty, time required, probability of first time success, & the target audience. Thay would save us less technically experienced folk many hours of fruitless reading.
None of this is intended to obscure the fine achievements posted here.
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post Sep 26 2009, 07:24 AM
Post #7
Bukvod
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United States


In post #23, You say "LiveXP.iso --> Enable Firadisk script (LiveXP\Drivers\4 Storage\vFiraDisk.Script ) before creating LiveXP.iso". When you say enable, do you just mean to select it for it to be included in your build or is the something you need to do with it before running the script in the build?
And are you selecting "Create Iso" only in the Winbuilder?
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post Sep 26 2009, 10:03 AM
Post #8
diddy
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  Joined: 3-July 08
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Some basics.

The image is mapped (loaded) to RAM before it is booted - you must therefore have enough system RAM to contain the image + additional RAM to run the operating system. As an example, if loading a full Windows XP from a 1GB disk image you must have 1GB RAM for the disk image + enough to run Windows XP. Although it is possible to run Windows XP with 256MB RAM I would personally recommend at least 512MB - you will therefore need at least 1.5GB RAM (1GB for disk image + 512MB for running XP).

PE systems can generally run on a lot less system RAM and the RAM requirements will therefore be less than with a full XP, but you will still need enough RAM to contain the disk image + the OS requirements.

You do not necessarily need to image a disk using disk image software (e.g. Ghost, Winimage, Drive Snapshot, etc) as robocopy or the xcopy command can be used to copy files to an existing (empty) disk image - this task cannot however be completed from the operating system you are copying. If using a file copy method then copy the files to a mounted disk image from a PE environment or another installed OS.

Any changes made to the OS booted from the disk image (e.g. programs installed, changes made to OS configuration, etc) will not be saved on reboot.

Running a full XP in RAM is not possible without some tweaks. As the pagefile alone is generally larger than the total RAM it will need to be either reduced, removed or moved to another partition. It is also sensible to remove \Windows\System32\dllcache\*.* - this will save approximately 300MB of disk space and is not IMHO needed in a RAM loading image. System Restore can also be safely disabled.

If the disk image is formatted using compressed NTFS then a smaller disk image can be used. My XP Home install is approximately 1.09GB after being tweaked - this easily fits in a 1GB disk image if NTFS compression is used (it actually takes up just over 700MB leaving the remainder of the image as writable disk space once the disk image is booted).

It is not (currently) possible to map the disk image to a memory address above 4GB - the image file can therefore be a maximum of 4GB in size. Unfortunately using a 4GB image will result in Windows 32-bit systems not having any RAM in which to run, as they also cannot access memory > 4GB address.

QUOTE
Is the use of bootable usb limited to only a computer that has the firadisk driver installed?

No - as long as the firadisk driver was installed in the OS on the disk image you are booting this is not required.

Just a reminder to everyone. A full Windows XP system requires product activation - you cannot simply image an existing sytem, copy it to USB and expect it to run on another computer as this is likely to be in breach of the EULA. Windows is unlikely to work as the hardware changes detected on the new computer will require re-activation. If you are lucky enough to have a VLK version of Windows that does not require activation you will still have issues with the hardware changes unless using systems with very similar hardware.

A quick guide to creating a full XP, you will require the following -

* Either a PE environment or another install of Windows from which to copy the Windows files to your disk image (e.g. a multiboot system with the XP you are copying/imageing on (hd0,0) and another XP installed on (hd0,1)).

* A disk image - download a selection of disk images (1 to 2GB in size) from http://diddy.boot-land.net/misc/zipped_disk_images.zip

* Imdisk installed on your PE environment (or the Windows install used to copy your Windows XP files)

* Firadisk

* Grub4dos installed (see link to Grub4dos Guide in my signature)

To create the Image -

* Tweak the Windows XP you plan to image to reduce its size (e.g. remove pagefile, disable system restore, delete \Windows\System32\dllcache\*.*) and install firadisk to the image using the Add/Remove Hardware method.

* Boot into PE (or the other Windows install)

* Mount the downloaded disk image (e.g. 1.0.ima) by right-clicking on the file and selecting option Mount as ImDisk Virtual Disk.

* Assuming that the image was mounted as drive E: and the XP you plan to image is mounted as drive D: - use the following command to copy the files to the mounted disk image
CODE
xcopy "D:\*.*" E:\ /E /H /R /Y


* Open boot.ini in the mounted disk image (e.g. E:\boot.ini) and ensure that it uses the following path
CODE
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)


* Edit (or remove) the MountedDevices registry key in the mounted disk image - assuming disk image is mounted as e: use command -
CODE
reg load HKLM\_Remote_SYSTEM e:\windows\system32\config\system
Now open regedit - the registry hive will be mounted as HKLM\_Remote_SYSTEM. Edit or delete the key then use the following command to unmount the registry hive
CODE
reg unload HKLM\_Remote_SYSTEM


* Unmount the disk image by right-clicking on the drive letter it was mounted as (e.g. e:) in explorer and selecting option Unmount ImDisk Virtual Disk

* Add a menu.lst entry - e.g.
CODE
title XP RAM Load
find --set-root /1.0.ima
map --mem /1.0.ima
map --hook
root (hd0,0)
chainloader /ntldr


Hope this helps

diddy


--------------------
1 user(s) said "Thank you!" to diddy for this fantastic post:
TheHive
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post Sep 26 2009, 10:05 AM
Post #9
diddy
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  Joined: 3-July 08
Posts: 78
Thank(s): 43


QUOTE (Peter O @ Sep 26 2009, 04:37 AM) *
I'm with you on this, it looks very interesting but I fear its well into "expert territory".
My RAM is only 512MB which I saw somewhere might be big enough but reading further I don't think so.
As usual with this "PE boot disc" stuff it's almost never straightforward & I don't think it's yet suitable for the non-techie types to play with - you just end up wasting lots of time. What's wrong with the simple expedient of making a C drive image on a second HD, - not that I can say I fully understand how to either do this or use it.
I do wish posters would attempt to indicate the degree of difficulty, time required, probability of first time success, & the target audience. Thay would save us less technically experienced folk many hours of fruitless reading.
None of this is intended to obscure the fine achievements posted here.


I would estimate that the majority of forum members (myself included) are not techie types. Fortunately boot-land is a very helpful forum and I have been able increase my knowledge by following instructions in various topics and posting questions both here and in other similar forums (911cd forum). I have found that many hours of work have been required for achieving some goals/tasks, however things have gotten easier the more time I have put in. In terms of indicating the degree of difficulty, time required, etc, for any particular project - I don't think this is possible as it depends on how many tools might be required and an individuals knowledge of these tools. In addition it also depends on the instructions in the topics - which can be confusing at times. I would state that the firadisk topic is perhaps too experimental at this stage for a lot of people to follow, having said that I am sure that detailed instructions/tutorials will follow in due course.

Luckily for me I was able to create a working full XP RAM loading image using firadisk within an hour, however this is only because I have already spent countless hours over the past few years working with disk images and various imaging software and already knew many of the steps involved, as well as having a fairly good understanding of Grub4dos.

As for the target audience, I can confidently say that it's anyone who wants to follow any given project as long as they have some time and are prepared to experiment and ask questions. Probability of first time success increases with knowledge - my first PE build (pebuilder) took %@*&ing ages and countless attempts. My first LiveXP build on the other hand worked pretty much first time.

diddy



--------------------
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post Sep 26 2009, 12:27 PM
Post #10
Bukvod
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United States


I would like to ThankYOU you very much for your time in making it fairly clear how to complete this, I am geared now to get to were I can boot Livexp but then I will try to boot a full Xp as you have stated. This actually sounds as something I might be able to accomplish with your easy to follow instructions. I also happen to be one of the lucky ones that has a copy that does not need activated. Question? Can you use something like ImportDriverPE Script or DriverForge to be able to import drivers into such a system as a ram driven XP? and could this make it a portable OS?
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