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VIDEO HOWTO: Install Windows Vista / 7 from a USB flash drive

#1
I've finally completed our video tutorial on how to install Windows Vista (and Windows 7) from a USB flash drive (aka thumbdrive)!

What this tutorial shows you is how to specially prepare a 4GB USB flash drive to boot the windows installer from it, and how to copy all of the Windows installation files from the DVD to the USB drive.

Why install Vista / 7 from a flash drive?

1. Dramatically increased installation speed - Windows Vista and Windows 7 will typically install 30% - 60% FASTER using this method versus installing from the DVD disc. The reason for this is that flash memory is MUCH faster than reading from a spinning optical disc.

2. Portability and reliability - No more carrying a Windows install DVD around! Today's USB flash drives are really tiny and fit in any pocket, on any keychain, and lots of other places where a DVD would get scratched, broken, or just wouldn't fit. Plus you no longer have to worry about your Windows DVD being scratched and having the dreaded disc read error.

It's a win-win situation!

So without further adeu, here is my video tutorial. It's about 40 minutes in length but it's been seperated into five Youtube friendly portions.

Video is 720P high-def and portions were recorded both with FRAPS and with my Panasonic Lumix FZ28 camera.


[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5tUCR3T8jAY"]YouTube- HowTo - Make a thumb drive into a portable Windows Vista or Windows 7 installer 1/3[/ame]

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi0oMGsJ08I"]YouTube- HowTo - Make a thumb drive into a portable Windows Vista or Windows 7 installer 2/3[/ame]

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuglpqYWRok"]YouTube- HowTo - Make a thumb drive into a portable Windows Vista or Windows 7 installer 3/3[/ame]


Supplemental short video explaining why we need to use DISKPART to prepare the USB drive, as well as an observation on different BIOS way of booting to a USB drive:

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FEPLFTkmWw"]YouTube- HowTo - Make a thumb drive into a portable Windows Vista or Windows 7 installer - Supplemental[/ame]


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#2
Well, now I have a reason to buy a 4gb (or bigger) flash drive.
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#3
/bump. you should uhh...maybe re-up those vids eh? eh? eh? pweeeze!!??!

EDIT: microsoft actually has a tool to do this HERE but you do have to have a "valid" iso file. Help page is HERE
∆Mi-1=-a∑Di(n)(∑Fij(n-1)+Fexti(n-1))
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#4
The MS tool doesn't work right half the time, especially if the drive has been used for other stuff in the past.

1. Copy Windows 7 or Windows Vista files from the DVD to a directory on your hard drive.
2. Insert your USB flash drive or memory stick.
3. Go to an elevated command prompt. (Open start menu, type CMD, right click on command prompt and select run as admin)
4. You should be at a command prompt. Type 'diskpart' and hit enter.
5. You should be in Microsoft's command line Disk Partitioning tool. Type 'list disk' to get a list of disks attached to your computer. Figure out which one is the USB disk and make a note of the number. (VERY IMPORTANT!)
6. Type 'select disk #' where # is the number you just noted in step 5. (VERY IMPORTANT!)
7. Type 'clean' and hit enter. (VERY IMPORTANT!)
8. Type 'create partition primary' and hit enter. (VERY IMPORTANT!)
9. Type 'active' and hit enter. (VERY IMPORTANT!)
10. Type exit and close the command prompt window.
11. Find the USB drive in Windows Explorer, right click on it, and select 'Format'. Format the disk as NTFS... repeat NTFS and NOT FAT/FAT32. (VERY IMPORTANT!)
12. Copy all of the Windows Vista or Windows 7 files (the ones you copied in step 1) to the newly formatted USB stick.
13. Back up all your shtuff, reboot, choose the USB stick as the boot device via the BIOS menu or the quickboot menu if your BIOS is so equipped. Ta-Da! You're installing Windows Vista/7 from a USB memory stick/thumbdrive/memory card!
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#5
By the way, working on a new video tutorial. I still have the old one in archives, but the newer method I just walked through above works better.
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#6
Done making the video, just importing, editing, and uploading to go!
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#7
cool cool. I actually found the cmd prompt way to do it last night.
∆Mi-1=-a∑Di(n)(∑Fij(n-1)+Fexti(n-1))
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#8
New and improved videos uploaded!
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