1. What can be added to the USB disk with WinSetupFromUSB?

Here is a non exhaustive list of tested sources with download links where possible.

In short:

  • Any Windows version for PC starting from 2000- XP, 2003, Vista, Server 2008, Server 2012, 8, WinFLPC and so on. It supports both 32 and 64 bits versions. For XP/2003 versions there is advanced option to prepare source to be installed onto USB disk.
  • UBCD4Win, BartPE, WinBuilder etc. PE1 based source
  • Windows PE2 and above based source
  • Many GNU Linux based sources- Ubuntu, Fedora, many antivirus rescue disks etc. etc. refer to this page for more
  • DOS based ISOs such as UBCD
  • other ISO images as long as they are compatible with grub4dos ISO emulation- Acronis True Image ISO, Paragon Boot Media to name a few

In addition the program can add Syslinux boot entry and boot such source, which boots using Syslinux or Isolinux.

2. Does it support multiple sources of the same type?

Yes, just add them one after another, i.e. add first source of the same type, press GO, when finished transferring it onto the USB disk add the second, press GO and so on. There is no need to restart the program between each source. The only two exceptions, when multiple similar sources are not supported, are PE1 (BartPE, UBCD4Win…) and Syslinux based ones.

3. My internal disk is not shown during first (Text mode) part of Windows XP (2000, 2003) setup
Windows NT4/5 (2000, XP, 2003) does not have built-in support for SATA/AHCI controllers. There are several workarounds:

  1. Try the integrated DPMS option before starting Text mode, try “Auto-detect and use F6 SATA/RAID/SCSI Driver” menu first, if that doesn’t work for you and Setup bluescreens or hangs for example, then try “Auto-detect and use F6 SATA/RAID/SCSI Driver + Firadisk“. It would select and add the appropriate mass storage driver to a virtual floppy, which will be used by Setup to add the needed drivers.
    DPMS options
  2. Integrate BTS mass storage drivers pack into your source before preparing the USB disk. Make sure Text mode option is selected. Including other driver packs (Sound, Video etc.) makes such source quite universal.
  3. Switch AHCI(SATA) mode to IDE (Compatible) in BIOS if there is such option.
  4. Integrate the proper mass storage drivers with nLite beforehand.
  5. Supply a floppy image with the appropriate SATA/AHCI drivers using the advanced option “Custom drivers/F6 floppy image for 2000/XP/2003 Setup“. It needs to have txtsetup.oem file in it and be suitable for Text mode part of the installer.
4. There is error 0x0000007B on blue background (BSOD) at start of XP (2000, 2003) Setup
Typically there are two main reasons for that

  • On some motherboards USB booting is tricky, common example are many Dell systems. A modified NTDETECT.COM usually solves the problem. Next use the advanced option “Custom NTDETECT.COM file for 2000/XP/2003 Setup” to select the custom NTDETECT.COM and use when source is  prepared
  • The source does not have the appropriate mass storage (SATA, AHCI) drivers, refer to A3 for solutions
5. Program does not display my USB disk

It expects partitioned and formatted disk with MBR (Master boot record) and an active partition. Typically, unless already partitioned with another tool or diskpart in Vista and later, Windows does not format blank USB removable media (most USB sticks) in such way, instead, they are formatted as a superfloppy with no MBR and single partition occupying the whole space, thus not bootable.

Either use the auto-format option, or use one of the tools RMPrepUSB, FBInst or BootIce to repartition and format it.

6. Are customized Windows sources supported?

Generally speaking- yes. Due to the numerous ways to customize XP for example, it’s hard to test every kind of customization, hence severely modified sources may not install properly. In case of NT6 (Vista and above) customized source, as long as updates or hotfixes are integrated into install.wim and using setupcomplete.cmd script, which seeks for files on the system drive, rather than the source DVD, there should be no issues.

7. What do the advanced options do?
  1. Display disk drives on all interfaces, not only USB – this should be self explanatory, show all detected disks, not only the ones on USB interface. Use it with caution, selecting wring disk may lead to data loss.
  2. Don’t check for and install grub4dos MBR – skips checks for grub4dos/fbinst MBR. Use it if you have custom prepared and formatted USB disk and you did take care of its boot ability.
  3. Shared BTS driver pack OEM folder – if XP/2000/2003 sources have BTS driver packs integrated, this options will set one OEM folder for all sources where the options was used, instead of each source having own OEM folder in the corresponding WINSETUP sub-directory. BTS presetup.cmd is edited accordingly.
  4. Prepare Windows 2000/XP/2003 to be installed on USB – prepares the transferred source so it can be installed to USB disk. That could be to the same USB disk, or another of the same type, i.e. USB stick with the Setup files and target USB stick, or USB fixed disk and target USB fixed disk. Internal hard disks and any other mass storage devices should be removed or disabled during setup process. USB drivers are set to start early, and a small service, USBbootWatcher, is installed which monitors the USB drivers settings in registry for changes. If there are such, they are reverted to the default settings as in usbbootw(atcher).cnf. Another driver takes care for USB boot when there are no any other disks and only USB removable one- WaitBT, without it Windows typically will crash with 0x0000007B stop error.
  5. Remove disk space requirements from txtsetup.sif – removes disk space requirements in txtsetup.sif. Useful if you are installing Windows XP/2000/2003 on disk with limited space, less than the allowed one, and you know your source would fit.
  6. Show debug messages during Text mode – show debug messages from WaitBT driver at start of Text mode of XP/2000/2003 Setup.
  7. Custom folder and menu name for 2000/XP/2003 Setup – use if you want to set custom names for the sub-directory and boot menu names for 2000/XP/2003 sources.
  8. Do not copy and use DPMS - do not add the DPMS feature to the USB disk. DPMS is an automated solution by Chenall and modified by Steve for adding the needed mass storage drivers into a virtual floppy, which is used by Windows 2000/XP/2003 setup to add AHCI/SATA/SCSI/RAID drivers.
  9. Custom drivers/F6 floppy image for 2000/XP/2003 Setup - it will be loaded as a virtual floppy before start of Text mode part of 2000/XP/2003 Setup. If DPMS does not work for you this could be another option. Please note that only the default driver as stated in txtsetup.oem could be used in setup process.
  10. Custom NTDETECT.COM file for 2000/XP/2003 Setup - browse to a custom NTDETECT.COM and include it in the selected 2000/XP/2003 source. That’s useful to prevent 0x0000007B stop error on some rare systems. Details could be found here.
  11. Custom menu names for Vista/7/8/Server Source - use if you want to set custom names for the sub-directory and boot menu names for Vista, Server 2008, Win7, Win8 and so on sources.
  12. Launch Q-Dir before Setup - this will add Q-Dir file explorer, which will be launched before start of NT6 (Vista and later) setup. When it’s closed, setup will start. Helpful if you need to browse the contents of the hard disks, backup and restore files etc. before running Setup.
8. My system won't boot from USB

There are many possible reasons, refer to this tutorial for some ideas.

9. Is (U)EFI supported?

Yes, since version 1.1, for Windows NT6 family- Vista x64 SP1 and above. Please note that until Windows 8, only 64 bit versions support boot under EFI, and the partition on the USB disk must be formatted in FAT32 in order to be recognized and booted in EFI mode.This is limitation of (U)EFI, some vendor specific implementations may support other file systems such as NTFS. More details here and here.

32 bit (U)EFI boot, supported in Windows 8 and later, is possible only on 32 bit (U)EFI hardware, such as some tables with recent Intel Atom processors. In other words, UEFI requires the firmware and operating system loader (or kernel) to be size-matched; for example, a 64-bit UEFI implementation can only load a 64-bit UEFI operating system boot loader or kernel.

There is nothing else to be modified, just use FAT32 partition, the program will do the rest. The same USB disk will also work in BIOS mode without modifications.

If your ISO file is over 4GB and can’t fit on FAT32 formatted volume, there are reports that some systems natively support NTFS, alternatively look at this thread on how to use NTFS UEFI driver.

10. How do I add another Windows or Linux source?

The same way the first one was added, there is even no need to restart the program, once the first one was transferred to the USB disk, select the new source and press GO again.

11. When adding NT6 (Vista and above setup or PE based utility) ISO occupied space on the USB disk is 150-220 MB more than my source

The program creates small ISO file for each such source, containing BOOT.WIM and few other files in WINSETUP folder, or just BOOT.WIM since 1.1 versions and boots off it first. If disk space is concern, you may safely modify the original ISO image in the corresponding WINSETUP subfolder and delete BOOT.WIM in it. This way of booting helps in some rare occasions when Setup would not start from USB disk.

12. Is the program free and may it be freely redistributed?

Program is free for personal and commercial use and can be freely redistributed as long as the licenses of the tools included are not violated and there is clear link to this page or the home page @ msfn forum if it is hosted elsewhere.

The program may not be sold or included in commercial products without written consent from its author.

13. XP/2003/2000 Setup is very slow when copying files at Text mode phase

This may happen on some machines if the partition on the USB disk where source files are is FAT32 formatted. Use NTFS instead if you do not need to boot Vista and later in (U)EFI mode with the same USB disk, or look at A9 on how to try (U)EFI and NTFS.

Here are some comparison tests for each file system, preparing and running XP Setup on XP and Windows 7 host OS.

14. How to report bugs or problems with the program?

Please put WinSetupFromUSB.log file and all .cab files in backup folder in a zip or 7zip archive, and upload it to datafilehost.com for example. These files are in the folder where program was extracted to.

Then leave a comment on the help page, mentioning what the problem exactly is, and a download link to the uploaded log files.

43 thoughts on “FAQ

  1. Hey I love your program. One question though. After adding UEFI ISO (win 7) now my system always wants to boot in UEFI mode which only takes me to windows 7 setup and I can’t get to any other options.

    I have been working around by renaming efi directory. Can a fallback to “MBR boot” be added to the EFI boot? I don’t know if this is possible and I’m sorry if that doesn’t make sense, I’m not very familiar with UEFI

    • Update.. I tried adding {ntldr} entry in \efi\microsoft\boot\bcd
      This is the same entry that exists in \boot\bcd

      Windows Legacy OS Loader
      identifier {ntldr}
      device boot
      path \grldr
      description …Back to Main Menu(Grub4dos)

      I guess that doesn’t work. I get an error 0xc0000098 “the selected entry is missing or corrupt”

      • There is no way, as far as I know, to switch using a software between BIOS and UEFI mode, the motherboard firmware does that according to certain criteria. Adding an entry to NTLDR would not help to boot directly into BIOS/Legacy mode when using the BCD store in the EFI folder.
        I’d look at your motherboard manual how to switch between and manage EFI boot entries and NVRAM.
        Does is still display Setup menus with the USB disk disconnected?
        What is the motherboard/laptop model?
        What do you have installed on the internal hard disk? Is it partitioned in GPT scheme? Is it Windows installed in (U)EFI mode?
        Which EFI folder do you edit, on the internal disk or on the USB disk?
        Did you try to disable Secure Boot?

  2. This is only happenning when I’m booting to the USB.
    The laptop is a lenovo B570, but just for testing.
    I work in computer service so the intention of this USB is to be able to install various windows and run diags on any computer I run into. So I wanted it to be very compatible.
    my laptop bios doesn’t have much in terms of options, no secure boot settings or any UEFI options at all. It will boot UEFI mode, I have installed on it now windows 8.1 x64 GPT scheme on UEFI and manjaro on mbr.

    the EFI folder I was editing is the one on the USB stick I had made with various windows setups with winsetupfromusb 1.1

    Thanks for the info. Looks like I would just need to rename the efi folder when I want to boot the USB to it’s mbr menu.


    • Yep, I guess on machines with so limited boot options you’d have to edit the EFI folder.

      Doesn’t this machine really have any boot option to select between (U)EFI and BIOS/Legacy mode? Maybe using the hotkey which brings up boot menu, or some weirdly named option inside firmware/BIOS menu?

      • On my laptop no, unless I’m totally mistaken, it simply boots in UEFI mode if it finds an efi loader.

        It lists the device, doesn’t say efi or non efi. I could add entries to nvram I think, not sure. Still new to UEFI booting.

  3. Sir I Have A Dell XPS 630i. I Use USB To Install Reintsallation Disk. I Build Using Your Software And It Boot On My HP Laptop But Unfortunately It Wont Boot On Dell XPS 630i And I Dont Know Why??

  4. Ive been playing with your program and one thing I can’t do for some reason is get xp MCE to work.

    I have good iso’s, I’ve extracted and combined them.
    I got a BSOD 0x7B.
    Even after slipstream driverpacks mass storage.

    Not sure where to look for cause. Every other version of XP I have tried works fine on the same system from the same USB drive.

    I have tried custom NTDETECT as well, same issues.
    MCE is version 2005 (SP2).

    It seems to be having issues with booting from USB, because I’m certain my storage controller is included in DP MS.

    Perhaps I need to slipstream chipset drivers as well?

    I will try this and post the results.

    • Are you testing on a Dell machine? Have you tried on another one?
      How did you insert the modified ntdetect.com, did you use the advanced option, or you put it manually?
      Have you tried vanilla MCE and the DPMS option?
      What is the HardwareID of the mass storage controller?

  5. This is a Lenovo. I will try on another machine. Thing is, every other XP setup I have tried on this machine works fine, only difference is MCE 2005 is SP2 while all the others I’ve tried were SP3.
    I have used the custom ntdetect.com using the advanced option.
    The version of MCE is 2005, untouched ISO’s from MSDN.
    I have tried DPMS.
    Controller is 8086 1C03. I can see the driver exists in DP_MS

    Not sure what the problem is.
    I haven’t had a chance to try adding chipset drivers. I would think the issue is USB controller and not mass storage, since I’m not using a sata cd or any cd, and still get the BSOD when the HDD is removed.

    • Can you put both TXTSETUP.SIF in the small ISO file and i386 folder in a zip archive, along with the relevant WinSetupFromUSB.log file when this source was build, backups are date-time stamped in backups folder. Upload the archive in http://www.datafilehost.com for example.

      When you start without an internal disk it will nearly always BSOD 0x7B since USB disks typically appear very late. The same would happen when there is no mass storage driver for the same reason- kernel won’t see any disks in due time. The prevent this there are 2 drivers which add some delay, long enough so the USB disks show up- WaitBT and Wait4UFD. The former one is integrated when the advanced option “Prepare Windows 2000/XP/2003 to be installed on USB” is used, allowing running completely without internal disks with no risks of getting 0x7B.

      BTW- have you tried switching SATA controller mode to IDE/Legacy in BIOS, if possible?

      • Interesting. I tried in another machine vanilla build mce 2005. Choose DPMS option and it worked fine. I tried again in my lenovo and it BSOD 0x7B, same as before. I switch controller to IDE mode and it works fine.

        Perhaps 8086 1C03 driver is not successful in MCE?
        I have posted the log and txtmode config here:

        BTW the dell is running in AHCI mode and required DPMS option and it worked.

      • I’m not planning on using for this lenovo, this is a very minor entry for me anyway. Look if you are curious, but I think it is working good enough for me. Thank you

        • Couldn’t notice anything interesting in the log files. Most likely it’s indeed the AHCI driver failing in some scenarios.

  6. any one can tell me that i m using this software for win xp and win 7 both boot and install on hp or any other system and laptops but when ever i try to bott in a Dell system win 7 works but win xp gives blue screen error of remove newly installed software or hardware can any one tell me the solution at my email at [email protected]

  7. HOLA guys….
    the program allows me to have only 1 linux version (it says i can add more by just appending it in the box for the ISO file/s, but when i do that, it only adds the first one and disregards the rest), and i wanna have 2 different linux versions. how can i do that?

    thanks, love, and Rainbow Gathering for everyoneeeeeeeeeeeeee.

    • Add the first one, press GO, when finished add second one, press GO, when finished add third one, press GO and so on.
      For each run/pass (between pressing GO and Job Done message) you can add one source of each supported type, e.g. one source for each option on the screen.
      In other wordsm for example- first run:
      1) XP source as directory
      2) Vista ISO
      3) UBCD4Win source as directory
      4) Ubuntu ISO
      Press GO and wait to finish.
      Second run:
      1) Windows 2003 directory
      2) Windows 7 ISO
      3) Not supported, only one source of this type can be added
      4) Debian ISO
      Press GO and wait to finish.
      Third run:
      1) Windows 2000
      2) Windows 8 ISO
      3) Not supported
      4) Linux Mint ISO
      Press GO…
      You can do that as long as you have enough space on the USB disk.
      Got it now?

  8. i m having lots off problems like
    1.i want to creat xp,win7 and 8.1 multi boot able usb but xp and 7 is creating but not 8.1 in one usb.
    2.some time error is could’t find boot.wm
    plz help me i m waiting plz send me solution in my mail address scorpionkashif [at] gmail [dot] com

    • Put in a zip archive WinSetupFromUSB.log and all previous log files (data-time stamped cab archives) found in backups directory, upload it to datafilehost.com and reply with the download link.

  9. If DPMS.ISO is not working for you …

    For NT5 MassStorage and other drivers, visit forum.driverpacks.net and obtain the [Nightlies] within each NT5 subforum. Integrate into your source with DPs_BASE, not nLite.
    Use WinSetupFromUSB’s “Advanced Options” and disable DPMS.ISO.

    A special thank you to the creators of WinSetupFromUSB.

    • DPMS option is user selectable in the boot menu, if it’s not selected at grub4dos menu DPMS is not loaded, in other words, leave it as it is just in case unless ~50 MB disk space is concern, in advanced options, and just don’t select it upon boot.

      As for editing DPMS.ISO and including nightly DP MS- you are more than welcome, just let me know : )
      Mind you, Steve put great effort in fixing the original dmps.bat script, in all recent WinSetupFromUSB versions the edited DPMS2.bat is used, meaning no more errors with iastorX etc. and updating DPMS.ISO is just matter of replacing the D folder and updating DriverPack.ini with the new one.

  10. … sadly that does preclude the usage of FiraDisk though…

    If somebody could join the forum and post a new Topic requesting it’s addition, i may even create a new DPMS.ISO. :/

    • FiraDisk is integrated in the source, but disabled by default. It’s enabled only when DPMS or Custom F6 floppy + FIRADISK boot options are used.

      Vers. 1.1 changelog:

      -Firadisk driver is now added to each XP 32 bits source, but disabled by default. A new option in DPMS and custom F6 floppy menus activates it. This should help loading SATA/AHCI/RAID drivers from virtual floppy on problematic machines

  11. I am trying to do a USB stick with
    Windows 7 32 & 64bit ISO
    Windows 8.1 32 bit ISO
    Windows 8.1 64 bit ISO

    but I always end up with only 1 of the Windows 8.1 on the GRUB4DOS screen all I get is
    0 Windows NT6 (Vista/7 and above) setup
    1 second part/continue NT6 setup (boot first internal disk)

    0 takes me to Windows 8.1 setup
    1 takes me to an error 13: invalid or unsupported executable format press and key to continue

    I open up the program, select it to format USB stick as NTFS and select Win 7 Iso click GO, wait til its done then select Win 8.1 ISO and click GO again, says its done succesfully

    What am I doing wrong?

    I have succesfully done a Windows 7 and Hirens CD


    • 0 should take you to another menu with all NT6 sources listed, but for some reason this is not happening.
      Can you put in a zip archive and upload to datafilehost.com WinSetupFromUSB.log file and all cab files in “backup” directory?

    • I have had some success.
      I did Win 8.1 first then Win 7 and now I can access both of them, just need to try it with the 8.1 64bit as well now :)

  12. Win 8.1 32 & 64bit seem OK now but Win7 twice came up with an error somehting like “waiting for USB disk to initalize please wait”, and the error kept repeating, but I have just tried it again and the error appeared once then continued on with the setup, I think that is more an issue with the memory stick than your program though.
    It all seems good now

  13. Hello everyone … I want to know if i can do that :
    for example i have in my usb Windows 8, and i want it to upgrade to 8.1 , how can i delete old ISO and put new iso in my usb boot ?
    p.s sorry for my low english…

  14. RE: Point 9 UEFI and FAT32

    Is it possible to format the USB stick with exFAT and then have the benefit of files over 4GB and be able to boot from a UEFI system?


    • Not as per EFI specifications, only FAT16/32. You’d better try the mentioned NTFS EFI driver, or if you could find ExFAT one.
      If your ISO is just a little over 4GB then you can delete BOOT.WIM in it to save 140-180MB, once it’s transferred on the USB disk.

    • To answer my own question, no it is not possible to boot from exFAT from UEFI, only FAT32, I wonder what genius decided against NTFS?!?!?!?

  15. Hi,
    I find your tool very helpful and quite a time saver! I would like to donate some money to this project to thank you and encourage continued development. Do you have a paypal donate button anywhere? I cannot find it.

    • I am glad you appreciate the program, you could find the donate button when you launch the program, at the bottom left side.

  16. After I’ve installed windows 7 and installing some programs into the freshly installed windows, I restarted the machine. After the BIOS screen I keep seeing a “GRUB4DOS” even after I’ve finished installing windows 7 using the program. I am now stuck in a loop where it makes me choose between four choices:

    find /menu.lst, /boot/grub/menu.lst, ./grum/menu.lst

    i’ve tried the last two choices, but I am still stuck. what do i do?

    Thanks in advance.

    • I think what you are seeing is incorrectly installed or damaged Windows activator, which happens to be using grub4dos as well. Sorry, can’t advice any further.

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