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Windows XP In Your Pocket

Zonk posted about 9 years ago | from the happy-to-see-you dept.

Windows 208

BoredStiff writes "Tom's Hardware has a review of the Bart PE Builder software utility takes Windows XP and shrinks the OS to your USB flash drive. Besides converting your mini-drive into an emergency boot disk, you can use the utility to load a Web browser, media burning software and more - to have handy anywhere you go. And by the way, it doesn't violate the Windows XP EULA." From the article: "If your PC has a relatively new motherboard, its BIOS will already include the functions necessary to support USB-attached boot media. If so, you need only make the right selections in that BIOS menu to boot from a USB flash drive. Older PCs, on the other hand, won't accept USB drives as valid boot devices. This means a BIOS update that supports USB boot options is necessary. You can find information about where to obtain such updates from your PC's (or motherboard's) user manual, on the driver CD included with the PC (or motherboard) or on the vendor's Website."

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LiveCD Windows (5, Informative)

geomon (78680) | about 9 years ago | (#13522929)

I've been running BartPE on machines at work and it is the best. We tried similar commercial products based on Windows PE and have found this open source tool to be the most flexible way to get a bootable Windows image customized to our corporate profile.

But Bart's is not the officially sanctioned Windows PE: In the Technet Webcast about Windows PE a Microsoft Program Manager (not calling any names) says: "BartPE is an unlicensed version of WinPE and of Windows XP. Something to we really encourage people to stay away from because it is actually an improperly licensed version of Windows".

"The Man" doesn't like BartPE; all the more reason to use it.

"The Man" doesn't like... (2, Funny)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | about 9 years ago | (#13523087)

Gee, this is the kind of reasoning my momma warned me about: "The Man" doesn't like ______; all the more reason to use it.

Fill in the blank...
a) crack
b) dirty needles
c) pot
d) fried food
e) Linux

But mom! all the cool kids are doing it!

Boring (1)

ImaLamer (260199) | about 9 years ago | (#13523483)

I've tried all of those...

Since it's illegal anyway.. (1)

MikeFM (12491) | about 9 years ago | (#13523182)

Who has disk images for this? I have no idea where my original Window's discs are but would like to have a handy lil tool like this. Anyone have an image from the Flash Drive they produced this way?

A Flash Drive image for a dual-boot Linux/Windows system would be cool too!

Re:LiveCD Windows (1)

putko (753330) | about 9 years ago | (#13523202)

So what sort of violation are you looking at?

DMCA violation? Copyright violation? Breaking your shrinkwrap?

It would seem that given the illegality of this, you'd might was well not do it, and use a different OS, like NetBSD, FreeBSD or some Linux-based OS.

The last thing I need is the BSA (Business Software Alliance) coming to my place of business with a bunch of pigs and poring over my crap to find violations and then hit me for $20K per violation.

Re:LiveCD Windows (5, Informative)

geomon (78680) | about 9 years ago | (#13523280)

So what sort of violation are you looking at? DMCA violation? Copyright violation? Breaking your shrinkwrap?

None, no, no, and ummmm...., no.

It would seem that given the illegality of this,

Why? The OS is Microsoft's. The builder is Bart's. He just bypassed the WinPE, not the OS. You still have to create the LiveCD with Microsoft products and follow the EULA for their OS. The same is true for WinPE products developed commercially and with the blessing of the Borg.'d might was well not do it, and use a different OS, like NetBSD, FreeBSD or some Linux-based OS.

Why? If my customers are using Windows, and I am trying to correct a problem in Windows, so that my customer can continue using... Windows, why would I use some *other* OS? If they were using Linux, I would use Knoppix to fix their system.

The last thing I need is the BSA (Business Software Alliance) coming to my place of business with a bunch of pigs and poring over my crap to find violations and then hit me for $20K per violation.

Then don't use pirated software. BartsPE is his own work, free from Microsoft's code. He just came up with a method for creating a LiveCD that is different from other companies who use Microsoft's PE software.

Re:LiveCD Windows (5, Informative)

jdigriz (676802) | about 9 years ago | (#13523212)

According to Bart PE's own web page, that Program Manager is in error.
  It says "Q. "BartPE is an unlicensed version of WinPE and of Windows XP."
A. This is not correct, BartPE is not WinPE and will never be WinPE. BartPE builds from Windows XP or Server 2003 files. BartPE is not built from any WinPE file and does not use any files that belong to Windows PE!
Note: Previous versions of PE Builder did instruct the enduser to download certain WinPE network components from the internet when enabling the network support, but v3.0.30 and higher have built-in network support."

From: [] under the Legal Information section.

I can't wait (1)

ImaLamer (260199) | about 9 years ago | (#13523471)

To run this at the telemarketing firm where I work. They have just installed brand new Dell computers with no CD-ROM or floppy drives - but they have a USB port right out front.

Can't wait to play games and browse the web instead of taking calls!

Unlicensed version of winPE? (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 9 years ago | (#13523520)

No, i dont think so.

Its something similar, but its not a 'unlicensed version'.

Insert (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13522934)

Linux vs. Windows diatribe here...

Cool, but why? (0, Offtopic)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | about 9 years ago | (#13522936)

You can certainly get more tools on the same storage space with GNU/Linux than XP.

Re:Cool, but why? (0, Offtopic)

CDMA_Demo (841347) | about 9 years ago | (#13522949)

But you won't get Xtra Problems that way!!!

Re:Cool, but why? (1)

ranolen (581431) | about 9 years ago | (#13522954)

Simple answer. More people know how to use windows then linux. User friendly is the key...

Re:Cool, but why? (1)

kryten_nl (863119) | about 9 years ago | (#13522978)

Editing the windows registry?

Re:Cool, but why? (1)

parasonic (699907) | about 9 years ago | (#13522992)

Mod him up to +5, troll. Then make me +5, offtopic.

Re:Cool, but why? (1, Insightful)

NanoGator (522640) | about 9 years ago | (#13523040)

"You can certainly get more tools on the same storage space with GNU/Linux than XP."

OSS is all about choice until one of those choices is provided by Microsoft. I love Slashdot.

Re:Cool, but why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523161)

No, Open Source is about, uh, being open.

Free software is about being Free.

Where do you get "all about choice"?

Yeah, I guess some people "choose" Microsoft, but that's their problem.

Re:Cool, but why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523299)

> Where do you get "all about choice"?

No freedom == no choice.

Whatever. Trying to win by being too literal is weak.

Re:Cool, but why? (1)

JPyun (911266) | about 9 years ago | (#13523269)

OSS might be about choice, but some choices are glaringly obvious.

Re:Cool, but why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523366)

Being a close minded zealot sure does make the decision making process simpler. "I hate Microsoft so it's okay to close my mind to any benefits there would be to running their products."

Spare us the lame rationalizations for your hypocracy.

Re:Cool, but why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523065)

Mounting and writing to NTFS volumes. That's what I've used BartPE for in the past. Saved my bacon.

Funny you should mention that... (1)

martinultima (832468) | about 9 years ago | (#13522939)

...because Damn Small [] and Puppy [] can both do that, too. And as far as I know, it doesn't violate any license agreements either.

So, fellow Slashdotters... (3, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | about 9 years ago | (#13522941)

> Windows XP In Your Pocket

So, fellow [male] Slashdotters, is that Windows XP in our pockets, or do we all just have a case of blue balls?

Re:So, fellow Slashdotters... (1)

graveyardduckx (735761) | about 9 years ago | (#13523000)

It's not Microsoft... it's IBM, and it's known to millions as Big Blue.

Re:So, fellow Slashdotters... (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | about 9 years ago | (#13523472)

LOL you just gave all those IBM commericals new meaning.

Re:So, fellow Slashdotters... (5, Funny)

shigelojoe (590080) | about 9 years ago | (#13523014)

or do we all just have a case of blue balls?

With Windows involved, wouldn't it be the Blue Balls of Death (BBOD)?

And to update your BIOS (3, Funny)

moonbender (547943) | about 9 years ago | (#13522947)

This means a BIOS update that supports USB boot options is necessary. You can find information about where to obtain such updates from your PC's (or motherboard's) user manual, on the driver CD included with the PC (or motherboard) or on the vendor's Website.

And to flash your updated BIOS, just boot the system to DOS using your USB boot drive! See how useful those things are!

Re:And to update your BIOS (1)

jschoenberg (828313) | about 9 years ago | (#13523097)

Maybe you are not familiar with PE, but it's a 32-bit OS, with full device driver compatibility (uses XP drivers) that also will execute shell scripts (VBS, and various other laguages supported). It's really the next generation DOS (in your context of DOS), and there will be a new version shipped with Windows Vista.

mirror and comment (2, Informative)

winkydink (650484) | about 9 years ago | (#13522953)

All pages mirrored here [] .

Why not just boot one of the gazillion linux distros and fix it that way? You'll get a ton more tools for your capacity as well.

Re:mirror and comment (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13522973)

What about mirror dot? Hasn't that already mirrored it?

Re:mirror and comment (1)

winkydink (650484) | about 9 years ago | (#13522979)

See how many pages mirrordot has mirrored. Then check networkmirror. 'nuff said.

Re:mirror and comment (1)

Synli (781075) | about 9 years ago | (#13523138)

> See how many pages mirrordot has mirrored. Then check networkmirror. 'nuff said

These sites are scrapers not mirrors. Just see how many google ads are attached to the stolen content...

Re:mirror and comment (1)

winkydink (650484) | about 9 years ago | (#13523455)


or perhaps (3, Insightful)

834r9394557r011 (878286) | about 9 years ago | (#13522955)

you could run qemu or knoppix and have a secure os for that kind of stuff.

Re:or perhaps (5, Insightful)

tbonius (837427) | about 9 years ago | (#13523078)

the WindowsPE/Bart PE concept is actually pretty handy for setup and deployment of Windows based systems, as well as a great recovery tool for Windows.

Some might reply "try !insert favorite Linux distribution here!", but as stated earlier, when you need a tool for Windows, this actually works pretty well.

Another concept we have implemented here at my place of employment, is to create a small PE partition at the beginning of the drive.. and then install the actual production OS on the secondary partition. When any issues arise, we can remotely reboot to the first partition and run one of many different build/recovery options.

It is interesting that an older tool such as PE is just now making news in some places.

Re:or perhaps (2, Informative)

ari_j (90255) | about 9 years ago | (#13523100)

Only if you don't want the ability to write to an NTFS filesystem. I had the same thought - Why would you want a Windows XP LiveCD? And that's the answer I came up with - to make changes to my NTFS filesystem.

Re:or perhaps (1)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about 9 years ago | (#13523377)

And just in case someone comes back with "Knoppix can write to NTFS if you use the NTFS driver from windows", I've used a LOT of versions of Knoppix and I've NEVER gotten that to work correctly.

Re:or perhaps (1)

Council (514577) | about 9 years ago | (#13523464)

And just in case someone comes back with "Knoppix can write to NTFS if you use the NTFS driver from windows", I've used a LOT of versions of Knoppix and I've NEVER gotten that to work correctly.

Me neither.

In fact, the documentation was unchanged from 3.3 to 3.7 but in 3.7 the options they referred to were GONE. They said to click on a particular setting that was absent, they referred to nonexistent files, etc. Hopefully this was fixed in 3.8 but I don't have high hopes.

Re:or perhaps (1)

sconeu (64226) | about 9 years ago | (#13523480)

The 3.6 CD in "Knoppix Hacks" works fairly well.

Bart PE works great (5, Informative)

Nerd Systems (912027) | about 9 years ago | (#13522965)

I've used Bart PE many times in my PC business, [] and it has saved the day so many times. I routinely fix computers for people that have registry errors, video issues, and more, that have me locked out of the system, not even able to get into things using safe mode...

I'm currently running Bart PE off a CD, where I just pop the CD in, boot off it, and a few minutes later I have full access to the machine, and can repair anything that I need to get done...

This USB method will work even better, can just load Bart PE onto my USB drive, load all the applications that I use often, such as Anti-Spyware and more, and go from there....

I wonder if USB drives being so fast, and being read/write, if one day I could just run the entire OS off this USB drive, and pretty much have my complete system working wherever I go....

Bart PE is great... going to try out the USB method right now as we speak...

Re:Bart PE works great (1)

big_groo (237634) | about 9 years ago | (#13523098)

Nice plug. Your web page jumps my CPU up to 20%. Good job.

Do you design web pages too? Lots of flash please.

Read/write. (1)

Poromenos1 (830658) | about 9 years ago | (#13523268)

Indeed, BartPE is saving my ass RIGHT NOW, the desktop is booted in BartPE and salvaging files after a hard disk (a Seagate Barracuda) crashed a week after I bought it (still no idea how that happened, I have NO luck with HDDs). Booting from the CD takes quite a bit of time, and I think booting off my USB 1.1 drive would take much, much more. Does anyone have a USB 2.0 and has tested it on it? How does it compare to the CD/DVD version? Also, since the USB drive is read/write, it is much easier to run many programs who require to write (although BartPE creates a temporary RAM drive for that reason). Plus, HUGE bonus on being created as drive A:\, as some stupid programs will only back up partition tables, etc on a floppy drive (I can't even find floppies any more).

Re:Bart PE works great (1)

nickheart (557603) | about 9 years ago | (#13523450)

hmmm.....usb 2.0 = 480Mbps...... EIDE = 133Mbps..... maybe we should just start hooking up all our hard drives via USB........

Re:Bart PE works great (3, Informative)

sconeu (64226) | about 9 years ago | (#13523466)

Unit conflict

USB 2.0 = 480Mbps = 60MBps

I have no idea what SATA data rates are, but they're bits per second rather than bytes.

Re:Bart PE works great (2, Informative)

BrianRaker (633638) | about 9 years ago | (#13523493)

SATA is rated at up to 150MBytes/s. SATA-II is supposed to be good up to 300MBytes/s.

Not bits.

Abount Licensing (1)

rolfwind (528248) | about 9 years ago | (#13522975)

Asking as a business consultant - Would you be able legally put this on a usb stick w/o another license just like you can make a back_up cassette of your CD's under the fair_use clause or would you need another license?

This would be used as a recovery stick.

Re:Abount Licensing (1)

Punboy (737239) | about 9 years ago | (#13523171)

I assume this would be fine... i often run two or three installs of Windows on the same machine for testing purposes, all under one license. AFAIK, licenses limit the number of machines you can install on, not the number of installations you can have. So long as you only use it on one machine, or as long as that machine has an already licenses version of Windows XP on it, you should be fine.


Re:Abount Licensing (1)

rolfwind (528248) | about 9 years ago | (#13523405)

Yeah, I was thinking along the same line but wanted confirmation - even though the summary says it's okay (I have take time to read the article past the first page - it's pretty long) I learned not to trust the typical /. summaries.

Is this news, or a dupe? (4, Interesting)

eander315 (448340) | about 9 years ago | (#13522982)

This was covered long ago [] . I fail to see how it becomes newsworthy because the goons at Tom's just discovered it. Putting it on a USB flashdrive rather than a CD doesn't really cut it either, though from RTFA, I gather that's what has gotten them breathing heavy.

Yeah, my 4GB iPod nano flash drive ... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13522988)

Show me XP booting from a 1.44MB floppy, or heck, a 100MB Zip disk...

Is that an OS in your pocket..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13522991)


EULA (5, Funny)

kdark1701 (791894) | about 9 years ago | (#13523004)

"And by the way, it doesn't violate the Windows XP EULA."

Like anyone here honestly cares about that silly text file.

Re:EULA (5, Funny)

ch-chuck (9622) | about 9 years ago | (#13523075)

If you don't read the EULA and agree to the TOS, they can't give you a COA and lower your TCO, then you'll be SOL.

Re:EULA (1)

NanoGator (522640) | about 9 years ago | (#13523132)

" then you'll be SOL."

Argh! That'd suck if they forced me to watch cheesy movies!

Re:EULA (1)

eosp (885380) | about 9 years ago | (#13523296)

It legally does not apply in reality. On the box it says "by using the software inside, you agree to the EULA. If you don't want to, take it back and return it." But few if any stores do software returns. And as a sidenote, old ones said "by opening this package, you agree to all the terms inside that you haven't seen yet."

Rejoice! (1)

gunpowda (825571) | about 9 years ago | (#13523006)

Excellent: this will come in really useful on a key-ring for those urgent recovery moments when your Windows installation is...

Oh, wait.

A7N8X Drivers? (1)

r2tincan (893666) | about 9 years ago | (#13523009)

I formatted about a month ago and I was looking for a BIOS update to my Asus A7N8X that would allow for USB device boot, but I couldn't find one. Anyone know where I can find one or a pirate bios that supports it?

Re:A7N8X Drivers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523192)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but Asus have never traditionally supported USB booting. My last 5 or so motherboards (I tend to upgrade every 12 months) have all been ASUS and none have supported USB booting. I currently own an A7N8X Deluxe v1.04. Because of this I had planned for my next motherboard to probably be Gigabyte or some other mobo that supports USB booting - I'm dead serious I want this feature!

Get out of my head!!!! (1)

AnotherEscobar (852831) | about 9 years ago | (#13523013)

Where is my tinfoil hat? I was just downloading something for this this morning to repair an XP home machine from a lost password. Cool timing

Re:Get out of my head!!!! (1)

nicnac__001 (740538) | about 9 years ago | (#13523145)

Just boot to safe mode... XP home doesn't require a password in this mode :) (or so i've heard, as I've never used XPhome)

Re:Get out of my head!!!! (1)

CyanDisaster (530718) | about 9 years ago | (#13523256)

XP will require a password, provided that one was already set up on the account you're trying to get in to. By default though, I believe the administrator account in XP Home has no password, and you aren't given the option to set a password during the install.

Hope be with ye,

And the crazy thing is (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523019)

The crazy thing is that a "full" install of WinXP (which BartPE is not) can NOT boot from USB. If you don't believe me, try it.


Windows bloat... (1)

Pig Hogger (10379) | about 9 years ago | (#13523028)

Are you happy to see me, or is that a Windows USB key in your pocket??

Someone make a bootable image (1)

hattig (47930) | about 9 years ago | (#13523041)

Which boots into several virtualised operating systems - one Linux, one FreeBSD, one Mac OS X, and one of these shrunken Windows XPs...

Do your graphics work in Mac OS X, copy it across to the Windows machine to do whatever Windows does well, then upload it to the web server test platform on the Linux partition, which accesses the database you've set up on the FreeBSD part. hehe

Re:Someone make a bootable image (1)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | about 9 years ago | (#13523384)

OSX might be a little difficult...

I've seen boot CDs that boot into different versions of DOS/FreeDOS and also Linux, but never one with XP on it - presumably because distribution of the complete CD would be illegal...

No reason why someone couldn't modify the method of building bartpe though and add a load of other stuff.

How fast are USB flash drives? (4, Interesting)

GPS Pilot (3683) | about 9 years ago | (#13523054)

I've never tried to boot from one. Since flash drives are solid-state, are they faster than a real hard drive?

(I assume that if you're connecting it to a USB 1.0 port, the USB connection would be the bottleneck, and you'd get much faster boot times connecting to a USB 2.0 port.)

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (5, Informative)

KillShill (877105) | about 9 years ago | (#13523226)

no. most usb thumb drives and the like have hideously lower performance than a hard drive. the so called "hi-speed" 40-60x flash memory is approximately 10-15 MB/s which compared to recent hard drives are in the 30-50 MB/s range.

if it's cheap, you can be guaranteed that it's around 7MB/s. this is still faster than 52X cdroms (which never reach 52x in the real world). and 15MB/s is faster than 8x DVDs.

solid state doesn't automatically make it fast or faster. it depends on the characteristics of the device in question. flash is getting faster by the year. and there are even some "dual channel" drives which combine more than one flash chip to increase throughput.

next gen flash memory is rated at 40-60MB/s, which
is quite a bit faster than most end-user 5400rpm hard drives and on par with high end disks. of course, you still have the problem of flash being small in storage size. and the biggest devices are no more than 4-8GBs; far too low to be of use in replacing HDs.

still they have their uses. they run cool and take up very little space. these would be perfect for embedded devices and small form factor systems. among many other uses one can conceive of.

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (1)

Waffle Iron (339739) | about 9 years ago | (#13523605)

I assume that even the crappiest flash drive trounces any magnetic disk drive on random seek time though.

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (1)

Pendragn_tk (809357) | about 9 years ago | (#13523270)

All the machines I have that boot off of USB only do so at 1.1 (even though both the machine and the USB key are 2.0). That makes it much slower than a hard drive. Still damned handy though. tk

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (1)

gearmonger (672422) | about 9 years ago | (#13523282)

ATA/133 has a theoretical max transfer rate of 133 MB/sec. USB 2.0 has a theoretical max transfer rate of about half that (~60 MB/sec). A decent USB 2.0 flash drive will have a transfer speed of 8-10 MB/sec. Given that seek times for the HDD probably aren't going to have significant impact on overall load time, these figures suggest that booting from the flash drive will be significantly slower, although probably less than a factor of 10. Just a hunch.

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (1)

hattig (47930) | about 9 years ago | (#13523286)

Not that fast sadly, they're not RAM. I think you'd get more bandwidth out of a 0.85" hard drive!

However the latency should be lower than a hard drive.

Sorry, I don't have any concrete figures. I do remember reading recently that an SD card maker had released a card that was 20x faster than other cards in its class, and was capable of reading at something like 50MB/s now.

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (1)

strcmp (908668) | about 9 years ago | (#13523325)

USB is quite a bit slower than disk access. You can see this if you try to use Portable Firefox, or edit large documents stored on your USB (very long load/save times).

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | about 9 years ago | (#13523328)

They're the wrong kind of solid state for speed, and repeated "write" operations will wear them out far faster than a typical disk.

They're extremely useful for occasional boot use, transferring data, and running an OS like the Knoppix live CD os that writes nothing to the bootable media itself.

Re:How fast are USB flash drives? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523532)

Don't know about 2.0, but USB 1.0 works well: my thin client boots out of one everyday in 20 to 30 sec.

Some screenshots (1)

mattOzan (165392) | about 9 years ago | (#13523083)

The CD Forum has screenshots [] from various folks' BartPE builds.

Some people are way too into this. But when you see M$ Virtual PC running from a RAMDrive, that's just pretty cool.

We use a custom BartPE CD at work for data recovery and malware removal. Makes it easy to run SMART checks and copy off critical data from unbootable HDDs.

And you can run Adaware, McAfee Stinger, HijackThis and other tools on a drive without waking up TSR malware.

Works, but a little limited (2, Informative)

HermanAB (661181) | about 9 years ago | (#13523085)

BartsPE has a limit on the number of processes you can run and it has to restart after 24 hours. Despite that, it is quite useful as an emergency Windoze especially since it cannot get infected by crapware. However, even the teenie tiny Puppy Linux has more useful features...

Re:Works, but a little limited (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523261)

Incorrect, Windows PE has tht limit. BartPE comes with no less than 2 plugins to disable this limitation.

Re:Works, but a little limited (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523549)

links please. Thanks.

BartsPE and Windows Server 2003 Evaluation version (4, Interesting)

wrecked (681366) | about 9 years ago | (#13523096)

I've had to make a BartsPE [] CD so that I could use a Windows-only firmware utility. It wouldn't work in Wine, and I didn't know how to use qemu or the like, so I thought of going through the BartsPE route.

I didn't want to pirate a copy of XP, so I downloaded the evaluation version of Windows Server 2003 [] instead (BartsPE needs at least XP or Server 2003). Although the Server 2003 evaluation version on the harddrive expired after 180 days, the BartsPE CD created from that install still works.

I found that BartsPE was a real pain to build, because you have to hunt down all the software and drivers, and edit *.ini files.

BartsPE is kind of cool, and is better and faster for accessing NTFS partitions than captive-ntfs, but compared to Knoppix (and its derivatives), it's not that useful.

Knoppix has far more and useful software and networks automagically. Unlike BartsPE, you don't need to build Knoppix, you just download it and burn it to CD.

Re:BartsPE and Windows Server 2003 Evaluation vers (1)

kayen_telva (676872) | about 9 years ago | (#13523360)

excellent find, trying it now I wonder what the legal ramifications are ?

Re:BartsPE and Windows Server 2003 Evaluation vers (1)

HikingStick (878216) | about 9 years ago | (#13523514)

You're taking a legal risk there. The files on the CD are in support of the eval copy and are not licensed for other uses. That is where MS is going to come back against Bart's PE and similar products. They are not the full MS software, but they rely on MS files to make them work. That places them in the derivative works category. I'll stick with my trusty Knoppix CD. An audit finding that even suggests unlicensed software can cause years of pain...

Virus infects users orffice!!!! (1)

FragHARD (640825) | about 9 years ago | (#13523112)

So it is just a matter of time before we see the first virus of it kind jump from pocket drive to users back orffice 0=:

Visual Studio .NET (1)

KefabiMe (730997) | about 9 years ago | (#13523122)

Okay, I'm just looking for help here, so hopefully I don't get flamed. I run both WinXP and SuSE at home, so I'm not a Microsoft fanboy.

This is the question I'm looking to answer:

Can I use Bart PE to carry around a LiveDVD that contains both WinXP and Visual Studio .NET? If not, is there any other way I can do this?

Re:Visual Studio .NET (1)

HermanAB (661181) | about 9 years ago | (#13523198)

It's been a few months since I last played with Bart's, but I would say yes you could. The big problem is to create the initial Bart's disk - then you can add pretty much whatever you want to the image. Plan on wasting a weekend on it. Note that you need a proper Windows CD which is kinda costly for something that you may end up not using much. A workaround is to download the Server 2003 evalation version from MS and use that to build the system.

Not new, but pretty cool! (2, Interesting)

Mr. Cancelled (572486) | about 9 years ago | (#13523143)

Bart PE's been arond awhile! I came across an iso image which someone had put on the p2p networks awhile ago... I think they called it "Windows PE" at the time, but whatever... it was Bart.

Anyways... The iso resulted in a bootable cd which allowed you to boot into a stripped down Windows client, a windows installer, partition magic, and a whole host of other useful (and obviously unlicensed ) software.

It looked to be a very helpful "toolkit" to have, since you could basically fix any Windows boot issues, in addition to performing formats, partitions, and such, with the point and click familiarity of Windows. I remember just thinking that being able to boot into Partition Magic was a pretty neat trick, much less to have a workable system (not 100% "working", but useable).

If I recall, BartPE walks the fine line of licensing by requiring the user to create the Windows discs, using their own personal software, so the p2p version was obviously someone's creation they chose to share with the world, but it was still very cool! At the time I remember thinking that it was more accessible than Knoppix for the avg. non-*nix person, at which this is obviously aimed.

Carry Windows Xp around in my pocket? (0, Flamebait)

frinkacheese (790787) | about 9 years ago | (#13523151)

I think I'd rather carry around a festering rat corpse.. There's enough spyware on my Windows desktop at work (I use it for Visio, NOTHING ELSE!) without having a portable spywarefest in my pocket.

Unstable on USB flash drives? (1)

Suddenly_Dead (656421) | about 9 years ago | (#13523179)

From the BartPE website:

"Q: Can BartPE boot from USB flash drives (UFD)?
A: Maybe. Does your BIOS supports booting from UFD as if it were a harddisk? The Windows XP FAT bootsector code does not behave correctly when booting from UFD. Bart already "fixed" the FAT bootsector code. But booting from UFD is not stable at the moment. It is very dependent on what exact hardware is used. Some bioses cannot be set to the correct emulation and other systems hang or abort when the windows USB drivers are loaded. Tricky stuff, maybe better support in future..."

(I've used BartPE on a LiveCD, and it works great. One useful link for this is UBCD for Windows [] , a pretty nice set of plugins.)

Re:Unstable on USB flash drives? (1)

jonfr (888673) | about 9 years ago | (#13523273)

The pocket BSOD, or RSOD pocket or a mixture of the both, PSOD (Pink Screen Of Death).

emergency boot disk (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523200)

What, just in case you need an emergency?

USB Problems (4, Informative)

SLOviper (763177) | about 9 years ago | (#13523218)

I use this tool at work all the time - mostly for recovering files from problematic systems and for virus/adware scanning. It works great! That said, I tried putting BartPE on a USB key back about 6 months ago to no avail. It works great right up to the point that XP initializes your USB devices - then *POOF*, no more boot drive. The RAM drive is a clever workaround and I will have to give that a shot. If you're using Dell's, however, I wouldn't expect too much luck. The older Optiplex's don't support USB booting and the newest ones seem to not like the BartPE variant. I did have luck with the GX270 series, however. Just posting my experiences for others to learn from... (2, Informative)

leftyfb (71398) | about 9 years ago | (#13523247)

I've posted this article and others about running applications and OS's(linux) from USB drives and other portable devices on my site [] . There's also a downloads section for registered users (free) to download and post such applications.

Re: (1)

theinfobox (188897) | about 9 years ago | (#13523410)

I've been playing with a bunch of stuff from and I even made a collection of these available in a BitTorrent: 2920.torrent/ThumbdriveApps.rar.3362920.TPB.torren t []

For more info on the collection I created a tutorial: pps []


Using PE on systems around me... (2, Interesting)

kcb93x (562075) | about 9 years ago | (#13523272)

I type this as 40+ machines in the same room as me use PE to launch the installer for our client's baseline system image. It installs the following:

-Windows XP Pro
-Drivers for the system (detects model and installs appropriate drivers, and extra software - like IBM's Rapid Restore Ultra on all IBM/Lenovo machines)
-MS Office (I'm just a monkey here to run this site's deployment, I don't make any decisions)
-Extra stuff used by the client (firewalls on all laptops, burning software on IBMs with burners, DVD players, etc)

All in all, it's a rather powerful (and simple but extendable) automated Windows installer. I like it.

In fact...I think I'll look into this tonight, and tommorow when I'm back in (Hey, overtime is enough reason for me to not play WoW and come to work, seeing as it's 10 blocks to work :D)

Another great couple of options (1)

billnad (206934) | about 9 years ago | (#13523292)

I have been using the Ultimate Windows Boot CD [] for a couple of years now. It is built on Barts PE and adds a lot of freeware to the mix. Also for troubleshooting I use a Dos boot CD [] that has a tone on software for troubleshooting and fixing as well as a way to shell out to Linux.

Wow.. that's just what I need (0)

tuxtastic (859281) | about 9 years ago | (#13523336)

Yay. I'm so happy that I can have windows on my flash drive. I wonder what a flash drive core dump looks like?? hmmmmm... gee

I'm using partpe right now (1)

Yogger (24866) | about 9 years ago | (#13523412)

I'm actually using it right now.
my windows machine got a virus, booted up and cleaning it with the mcaffee tool.
While thats running, i'm vnced into my linux box (runs headless normally) and using mozilla to post this.

The sad fact is this is all true.

Re:I'm using bartpe right now (2, Funny)

Yogger (24866) | about 9 years ago | (#13523441)

and i'm still not bothering to check spelling or preview

bootable USB drives -not just for firewire anymore (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523431)

hey, it's cool that pc's can now do what macs have done from day one - which is boot from firewire.

but can mac's boot from usb? ... i didnt think this was possible! (at least usb1; not sure about usb2) ... can anyone elaborate with specifics?

the new opod NANO looks like it would make an awesome boot drive (i was hestiating to buy it for precisely this reason: i didnt know usb was bootable!)

now if someone can only figure out a reliable way to have multiple (bootable) partitions (hfs/ntfs/ufs etc) on a flash drive, then there will be nirvana!

thanx: dlf

I can finally shit on it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13523583)

Portable Windows XP. Tomorrow morning, I'll connect my USB drive with a really long USB cable and place it in my toilet, with Windows XP loaded on the drive. Then I'll unload on it. And then we'll be even. Heehee...evil genius.

Better than just BartPE (2, Informative)

Jety (882981) | about 9 years ago | (#13523598)

If you're looking for Windows type rescue disks, go one step further and check out the Ultimate Boot CD for Windows - [] It is BartPE bundled with all of the most useful utils, includeing antivirus, antispyware, file manager, disk diags etc etc etc.
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