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Installing Vista from Hard Disk, USB Disk or Memory Stick

I wrote before about installing Vista from a HDD.

I didn't give complete details last time, so here is the complete sequence I used to install the final build of Vista.

This assumes you have two hard disks. One a live working version of Windows and the other the target of the new installation.

If you want to install from a USB HDD or Memory Stick onto another disk, it's much simpler, steps 1 to 3 should give you a bootable Vista installer.

Steps 5 and 6 are required if the target of the installation is the same disk you are installing from.

  1. Format the target disk as NTFS.
  2. Copy the boot and sources directory and the bootmgr file from the Vista DVD or Image to the root of the newly formatted disk.
  3. Start a command prompt and issue the following commands - where x is the drive letter of the newly formmated disk.
    x:
    cd /boot
    bootsect x:
  4. Boot from the disk - Windows setup should load
  5. Choose the Repair option - skip through the prompts until you can start a command prompt.
  6. Issue the following commands
    c:
    cd /boot
    del bcd
    bcdedit /createstore
    cd ../sources
    setup
  7. Continue as you would with a normal installation.

Running setup again in step 6 is important. If you dont do this and continue with the current setup process you will get an error about missing CD/DVD drivers.