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Install XP onto USB pendrive?


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Jimmy the Hand's Avatar
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04-Jan-2008, 07:08 AM #1
Install XP onto USB pendrive?
Is it possible to install XP onto a USB pendrive and boot it from there? If it is possible, how to do it?

Also, does it have any drawbacks, disadvantages? I think I read somewhere that flash drives have a maximum lifetime, which is measured in write operations performed on them. If the number of write operations exceed this number, the flash drive will eventually get unreliable.
And, given that Windows is using the pagefile almost constantly, it will ruin a flash drive in a few hours. Can any expert confirm this?

Thanks,

Jimmy

PS: A little background for those interested.
I want this because I want to separate my internet banking operations from all the rest I do with my computer. So I need a second system, which is securely away when I work or surf or play, and which, therefore, is inaccessible for any possible attacks originating from viruses or hackers. (So a 2nd partition won't do, because it's part of the system all the time.) I don't like the idea of always changing hard drives, whenever I want to do banking, so I need an external source for booting the OS. USB pendrives came to mind.
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04-Jan-2008, 03:31 PM #2
Hi,
I 'Googled' : "install xp on USB" this was the first result and this person reckons you can. I've never tried.

http://www.ngine.de/index.jsp?pageid=4176
He's not offering 'hacks' or 'cracks' as he lists that you need registered versions:

"# An existing Windows install for carrying out the steps in this tutorial
# A USB2-compliant Hard disk drive (or a big USB2 stick, see remarks below)
# An original Windows XP CD (tested only against SP1 so far, but reported to work on other versions)
# A registered version of WinISO (or any other software that allows direct editing of ISO files)
# The Microsoft CAB SDK
# A CD-burning software that can handle ISO files. I like the free burnatonce"

I'm sure I've seen the same question asked before here at TSG but cannot find the thread.

Richard.
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04-Jan-2008, 03:34 PM #3
Rich-M's Avatar
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04-Jan-2008, 05:50 PM #4
It is possible to install it and it will never boot right.
Jimmy the Hand's Avatar
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06-Jan-2008, 06:14 AM #5
1002richards:

Thanks for the link
I'm going to give it a try, as soon as I'm ready.

leroys1000:
Thanks for the tip.
I have tried Bart PE already. It worked, as far as it was described. However, internet banking requires the best security I can do, and I'm not sure I can rely on Bart PE, as it is an XP stripped of many functionalities. I assume it has security leaks by the dozen. I could not even install a firewall on Bart PE, even though it is of primary importance.


Rich-M:
What do you mean by that? What could go wrong at booting?


Also, what about my question concerning XP ruining the USB stick? Any suggestions?
Rich-M's Avatar
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06-Jan-2008, 11:19 AM #6
I have never seen a pc boot effectively from an external drive of any kind regardless of what the bios allows.
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06-Jan-2008, 03:49 PM #7
I have built 6 different versions of linux live installers for USB flash drives
and they all boot fine.
Rich-M's Avatar
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06-Jan-2008, 03:51 PM #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by leroys1000 View Post
I have built 6 different versions of linux live installers for USB flash drives
and they all boot fine.
Linux is completely different
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