This tutorial is a guide to create a Win7RescuePE, bootable as either a CD/DVD or as a UFD (USB Flash Drive). Win7RescuePE is a project that can be downloaded and run within the WinBuilder utility to create boot disks based on WinPE 3.0, while also providing a user-friendly Windows environment to work from.
Build source: Building a Win7RescuePE boot disk will require a Microsoft Windows7 DVD (32 bit only). 64 bit Windows7 DVDs are currently not supported.
You can use free available Windows7-RC1.
Installed Windows Advanced Installation Kit (Windows AIK).
Windows AIK is available from Microsoft for free, and can be downloaded, burned to a DVD, and then installed in Windows from the DVD. It is available for download when you type “WAIK” on Google.
Build environment: A Windows XP or later operating system (32 or 64 bit) is recommended.
Build utility: WinBuilder is the program that actually builds the boot disk. From within WinBuilder, Win7RescuePE itself can be downloaded. It is necessary that you use WinBuilder 077 RC 2 or above. The WinBuilder download page can be found by typing “WinBuilder” at Google as well.
Hard drive space: Approximately 2 GB of free space is required during the Win7RescuePE build process. Installing Windows AIK requires up to 1.5 GB of free space.
Memory (RAM): The target system requires a minimum of 256 MB, with 512 MB or more recommended.
As a further clarification, the Win7RescuePE boot disk can be built from a Windows 64 bit OS, but it cannot be built using a 64 bit Windows7 DVD as the source.
The remainder of this tutorial covers the steps required to create a bootable Win7RescuePE CD/DVD or UFD. The procedure was written while using WinBuilder 077 RC 2 and Win7RescuePE, and was tested on both Windows XP SP3 and Windows7-RC1 as the build environment.
Step 1: Download and install WinBuilder
Download WinBuilder from the link below. Version (077 RC 2 as of this writing) is recommended.
The WinBuilder download page will look similar to the the screenshot below:
The WinBuilder download will be in the form of a zip file containing one file (WinBuilder.exe). Extract this file to the folder where you want to run WinBuilder from. It is recommended that you create a new folder in the root of a drive, such as C:WinBuilder, D:WinBuilder, etc., and extract WinBuilder.exe there. It is also recommended that the path to the folder and folder name itself do NOT contain any spaces, as this can cause problems under some circumstances.
Step 2: Start WinBuilder and download Win7RescuePE
Start WinBuilder by executing WinBuilder.exe. If running from Windows Windows7, WinBuilder will need to be run as administrator by right clicking WinBuilder.exe and choosing Run As Administrator.
Since no projects yet exist in the WinBuilder folder, it should go immediately to the Download Center screen as shown below.
Since Win7RescuePE is a new project, you must add the download server to WinBuilder.
You can do that by selecting a available project, and then pressing the Add a new web server button. Name of new web server is: rescue.w07.net/Projects
See screenshot below.
Select updates.boot-land.net and rescue.w07.net/Projects in the bottom-right section. For the first try, it is recommended that you leave “Recommended” selected in the drop down list, and leave all other items as they are by default. Select the Download button to start downloading Win7RescuePE. The screenshot below shows the download in progress:
If you get one or more messages stating that a file cannot be found or downloaded, acknowledge the message and let the download complete with the missing file(s). Then select Download from the main WinBuilder screen, and choose Download again on the Download Center screen. Doing this should cause WinBuilder to download just the missing file(s) so that you now have a complete Win7RescuePE installation.
If you want to start the Win7RescuePE download over again from the beginning, close WinBuilder, delete everything in the WinBuilder folder except WinBuilder.exe, and then run WinBuilder again to start over.
When finished with the Win7RescuePE download, the main WinBuilder screen will look as shown below:
Step 3: Install Windows AIK
Windows AIK will be required to build the Win7RescuePE boot disk.
Windows AIK can be downloaded from the Microsoft web page.
The file downloaded from Microsoft will be an ISO file, approximately 1.3 GB in size. Once downloaded, burn the ISO file to a DVD with a utility such as BurnCDCC. This utility can be downloaded from Terabyte Unlimited.
To start the install, insert the DVD and wait for the Windows AIK welcome screen to appear. If the DVD doesn’t autorun when inserted, you can open the DVD drive in an Explorer window, and the double click startcd.exe. Be sure to note the installation requirements on the welcome screen, which specify which versions of Windows (and Service Pack levels) are supported by Windows AIK.
Select Windows AIK Setup from the welcome screen menu. After some initialization and the license agreement screen, the following dialog will come up:
The defaults shown above will work fine with Win7RescuePE. Be sure to check the required disk space before proceeding by using the Disk Cost button. Clicking Next will start the install. At completion, the following screen will appear:
Windows AIK requires both the.NET Framework and MSXML 6.0 to be installed. If they are not already installed on the system, Windows AIK Setup will detect this, and request that you install either/both of these items first. Both are available to install from the same DVD, and appear on the welcome screen menu as.NET Framework Setup and MSXML 6.0 Setup.
Step 4: Configure Win7RescuePE before building the boot disk
Start up WinBuilder to the initial screen, which should show the Win7RescuePE project available. Note again that if running from Windows Windows7, WinBuilder needs to be run as administrator by right clicking WinBuilder.exe and choosing Run As Administrator.
With the Win7RescuePE item highlighted in the left pane, click on the Source button at the top. The Paths configuration screen will now be visible as shown below:
The key item on this screen is the Source directory, which tells Win7RescuePE where to find the source for building the boot disk. The Target directory and ISO file items can be left as they are by default.
If using a Windows7 DVD as the source, insert the DVD in a drive, and use the browse button in the Source directory dialog to select the drive letter for the Vista DVD. In the screenshot above, the F: drive is the Windows7 DVD. For convenience and a somewhat faster build, you can also copy the contents of the Windows7 DVD to a drive/folder of your choice on the hard drive, and then specify that location in the Source directory dialog. For example, if you copy the contents of the DVD to the folder D:Windows7, then that location should be specified in the Source directory dialog.
Next, select the Script button at the top, and then select Configuration in the left pane. This brings up the Configuration screen for Win7RescuePE as shown below:
The settings shown above are recommended for the first build.
Next, expand the Build section in the left pane, and highlight the 0 – PreConfig item.
If you installed Windows AIK to a location other than the default of “C:Program FilesWindows AIK”, then use the browse button to select the folder where it is installed. The screenshot below reflects the default installation location.
Step 5: Build the Win7RescuePE boot disk (the ISO file)
This step will build the boot disk and create the Win7RescuePE ISO file, which will be created (by default) in the ISO folder under WinBuilder, and will be named Win7RescuePE.iso. Please note that creating Win7RescuePE on a USB flash drive will require some additional steps after this one. Those steps will be covered in Step 8 below.
Highlight the Win7RescuePE item at the top of the left pane, and select the Play button at the top-right of the screen to start the build. The Win7RescuePE main screen is shown below as a reference:
The screenshot below shows the build in progress:
When the build completes, a Build Successful message box will be shown:
Click OK to complete the build. If you are creating a UFD rather than a CD/DVD, you can move on to Step 8 at this point. Otherwise, continue below to create the CD/DVD.
The file Win7RescuePE.iso will be created in the ISO folder as shown below. The actual size of the file will depend on the configuration options chosen, as well as the source (Windows7 DVD).
The ISO file can be burned to CD/DVD by using a CD/DVD burner application capable of burning ISO files.
Step 6 (optional): Create the Win7RescuePE boot disk as a USB Flash Drive (UFD)
Once you have completed Steps 1 through 7 above, you are now ready to create a bootable UFD.
Expand the Finalize section in the left pane, and then highlight the Copy to USB-Device item. On the right, select the Script button, which will bring you to screen shown below:
Plug in the UFD (if not already plugged in) and determine its Windows drive letter. At the bottom of the screen above, use the browse button to select the root directory of the UFD (the example above has it set to G:).
To go ahead and create the UFD, select the “Make USB boot device” item. After a short time, you will be prompted to format the USB drive. Click OK to continue. The HP USB Storage Format Tool window will come up, as shown in the screenshot below.
In the Device field, carefully select the target UFD device from the drop down list. Double check that you select the correct device since all USB drives on the system will be listed.
In the File system field, select NTFS (recommended), and then select Quick Format under Format options.
Check the settings carefully (especially the Device), and then select Start to format the drive. Before the format actually starts, there will be a confirmation screen where you can cancel the format if necessary:
When the format completes, a summary screen will be displayed as shown below:
Click OK, and then Close the format dialog to continue. If you use Grub4Dos as bootmanger, a screens as shown below will be appear.
After selecting your UFDD, and pressing Install, the process of setting up the UFD to boot, and copying the required files to it will be continued.
During the file copy process, the screen below will be shown (shows file copying in progress):
At completion, there will be an All Done message as shown below:
Click OK to finish. The UFD device is now ready to boot. You will need to set the UFD as the boot device in order to boot from it. Typically this can be done by either by going into the BIOS setup and changing the boot order, or by selecting the UFD device from a menu of boot devices that can be brought up (on some systems) at boot time by pressing a hot key.
The Win7RescuePE Desktop:
Booting and initializing Win7RescuePE will typically take from 1 to a few minutes, depending on the system, how the boot disk was configured, and what type of device it is booting from. A UFD will boot faster than a CD/DVD on most systems.
The Win7RescuePE desktop will look similar to the screenshot below, depending on the options selected in the Win7RescuePE configuration. The PENetwork utility (shown on desktop below) can be used to configure the network and map network drives if needed.
Additional Information: Optimizing For Size
If you would like to reduce the size of the boot disk to achieve a faster boot time, as well as require less RAM, some/all of the following configuration items can be considered:
In the NET section, uncheck all items except PENetwork. If you do not require PENetwork (for mapping network shares), that can also be unchecked.
Uncheck the entire APP section.
Uncheck the entire Tweaks section.
Uncheck the entire Addons section.
Source by Nuno Brito