boot from ISO image

#1
Strange I shearched and found no results for "ISO"

Here's the thing. In our new batch of windows 7 computers I wasnt to be able to boot from an ISO image, specifically the image of a Ghost 14 boot CD. This way if I have to restore a previously saved image I don't have to look around for the CD, just choose the Ghost image in the boot menu. And while I'm at it I'd like to add to the boot menu the Windows 7 Recovery CD image.

I tried using the EasyBCD gui menu to set it up but when I then select that menu item on startup I get a Grub prompt is all. Obviously Grub is looking for entries in a nonexistant or empy config file so it just gives me the prompt.

Using EasyBCD 2.02. I did see in the setup there is an option for Neogrub that says if I use this option I have to write my own config file. But I used the option below that: Portable/External Media, then the "ISO boot" tab and for "Path" I browse to the ISO file (which I placed on the boot partition) According to Info I found on the web (for version 2.0 Beta) there is no need to edit a Grub file using this option. The boot partition is normaly hidden but I unhid for the purpose of running the easyBCD gui tool.

Did I miss something?

edit: Just adding the comment that the ISO image I am trying to boot (the Ghost boot CD) is based on a WinPE OS (at least I assume this because when it boots it displays the "starting Windows" progress bar). I only mention this because I did see that Linux install ISO images do not boot under EasyBCD. Well, this image I am using is clearly not based on any Linux kernel

edit2: I don't need to add the windows recovery ISO to the boot menu any more because I just discovered there is already a Windows Recovery WIM image in the boot partition. I just pointed EasyBCD to it and it boots. Still need to get Ghost image booting though.
 
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mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#2
Hi,

Words less than 4 letters don't appear in the search, sorry.

Try using a different ISO mode. i.e. if you chose "load from disk" try "load from memory" or vice versa.
 
#3
Ah, I'll try a longer search term.

Yeh, I already tried "from disk" and "from memory", all the same result


Addendum:


OK, I give up. I seached and didn't find anyone that actually did this.

Has anyone actually done this? How? did you edit a grub config file somewhere? There was no menu.lst file placed in my boot partition so at this point there is nothing to edit.


At this point, If I find that it is not possible using the EasyBCD "ISO Boot" option I imagine I have 2 choices:
  1. Use the EasyBCD "NeoGrub" and read the Grub lierature to find out how to edit the menu.lst to boot from an ISO image
  2. Use the EasyBCD "WinPe" option if I can figure out how to convert my ISO to a WIM.
I think option 1 would be much simpler so unless anyone has pointers on how to proceed with the "ISO Boot" option that is how I will tackle this.
 
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#4
Now, I have my particular situation solved without using the "ISO boot" option. But I will keep watching this forum to see how others get it to work as it may come in handy in the future.

Anyway, here is how I got a working Ghost CD to boot from the boot menu:
  • creat a new partition and format fat32 (In my case I just formated the existing HP_RECOVERY partition becausewe won't need it since we are using Ghost for imaging
  • Insert the Ghost CD in to DVD drive (or mount ISO) and copy contents into newly formatted fat 32 partition
  • Create a new "NeoGrub" entry and add the following lines to menu.1st
    rootnoverify (hdX,Y)
    makeactive
    chainloader +1
    boot
Obviously you'd have to change the (hdX,Y) to match your partition location. In my case I use (hd0,5). I thought it would be (hd0,4) but didn't work, so I tried (hd0,5). The partion I used is the second logical drive within an extended partition. I have 4 partitions, 2 prmary and 2 logical. I would have thought it worked like this:
(hd0,0) = 1st primary partition (Win 7 boot partition)
(hd0,1) = 2nd primary partition (Win7 OS)
(hd0,2) = Extended partition
(hd0,3) = 1st logical drive (where I store Ghost images)
(hd0,4) = 2nd logical drive (where I put contents of live Ghost CD for booting)
But no, my second logical drive seems to be (hd0,5). As long as it works though I am happy.

In the end EasyBCD has done what I want, thanks for making your efforts available to us all Mahmoud. I sent in a donation.

Addendum:

Now I feel kind of stupid. I discovered there is a boot.wim on the live Ghost CD and of course that is the image of the live system. So I just copied the boot.wim to my boot drive and use the EasyBCD "WinPe" option to add it to the boot menu
 
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