operating system on a removable drive
Posted 31 July 2006 - 07:31 AM
Posted 31 July 2006 - 07:57 AM
Windows XP when installed scans your computer for motherboard, video, RAM and all the other stuff. It can only be installed on a computer once.
It stores this information so people cannot reinstall XP on other machines.
Microsoft is watching.
Posted 01 August 2006 - 12:03 AM
mridang_agarwal, yes it is possible, entirely so. I did it myself, once. Today's modern BIOSs allow you to select between different boot devices, and therefore you can tell it to try and boot from the removable drive. Installing it on the removable is a bit different.
Now, when you want to install it on the external, just run windows setup, and select the 2nd hdd ( windows setup shows it clearly that it's 2 diff hdd's)
setup will be normal, and automatically, the boot will allow you to run it and switch between the 2 windows, using xp's bootloader.
All this being said, installing on a removable has its drawbacks. If done improperly, it can make it so that the computer won't boot without having the external running
Also, dont even think about taking that hdd and making it a "moble" computer. Windows needs to stick to the same hardware system. You try to run it off another tower, you'll crash windows, instantly.
Bottom line is that there isn't much point to installing on an external, even if with today's BIOS's supporting USB natively, and allowing you to switch boot devices, etc, it can be done. I recommend, if you still do want to try this, to disconnect your harddrive inside the tower, install windows on the external, and then replug the main drive. That way, windows will be seperate on both drives, and by switching boot devices you'll have 2 functionning, independent systems. It'll also allow you to scrap the external windows later without fuss, cause otherwise you'll have to tweak xp's bootloader to put it back to original state.
Feel free to ask for more specifics, I'm assuming you know quite a bit about all this already.
Also, keep in mind that if you try to use the same windows CD, the external install won't be updated by microsoft, as it is illegal... And you run the risk of invalidating your windows alltogether. I personally have no quirrels with using a windows CD twice, but it isnt recommended and generally banned by geekstogo, seeing how it's illegal. I answer ur question cause it's pretty general, and applies to many different systems too, per example you could install a free linux distro on the 2nd drive just as easily. Anyway, I'm rambling on. Good luck.
Edited by Vaillant, 01 August 2006 - 12:06 AM.
Posted 01 August 2006 - 02:08 AM
And now for the ladt question: When i do install a OS on a external drive do i have to disconnect the internal hdd everytime i boot the pc?
Posted 01 August 2006 - 09:35 AM
What to do then, and I can't give you a direct download because that would be totally illegal, but what to do:
You need to hide the windows partition on the system. As much as you can install multiple partitions, multiple windows, you can also hide a partition, like some manufacturers do, to protect the contents, and it is only visible if you enable it. This is also true in windows setup. If you hide the partition, and start another windows install, setup will think it's the only OS on the system, and will install like so.
It's up to you to find a tool to do it. Personally I use gDisk that came with my copy of Norton Ghost, but scince you may not have that luxury, google something like "need to hide partition" or "utility to hide partitions" I recommend Super Fdisk, it looks promising, but I didnt try it.
Anyways, by having the existing windows hidden, install your windows, and after thats done unhide the old windows. To switch from the 2 windows afterwards, when booting up, use the BIOS boot device selection, and go to your removable drive, instead of the primary drive.
You won't need to touch the internal hdd this way
But installing it on another computer is no-way... this HAS to be done on the same system, installed, and run.
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