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Windows 11 Installer

yumanoid
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I decided to test-flight the Windows 11 Beta.

I got my filthy hands on the ISO. So far so good.

Now, I'm used to just dumping the ISO content onto a GPT/FAT32 partition and UEFI boot off of it. But this ISO is not making it easy. The install.wim file is over 4GB in size and as such cannot be copied to a FAT32 volume.

I google-fu'd a solution, which was to use DISM to split the wim into multiple files. Fair enough, I have do my share of DISMing back in the day (turns out these DISM operations have a pretty neat PowerShell analogs these days, and one feels more like a pro using those, right?: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/powershell/module/dism/split-windowsimage?view=windowsserver2019-ps).

This installer (with the split wim files sneaked into the relevant folder (sources) instead of the install.wim) boots fine, but the installation falls on its face prematurely with an error some 2% into the 'copying files' part. Now, this might be due to the split wim image, I don't really know, maybe there were more steps to follow after the splitting that I overlooked 😜.

 

Now, I'm a resourceful boi so this didn't stop me, though the following step might feel like a bit of an overcomplicated reach-around:

I have

- created a virtual machine in Hyper-V (has to be Gen 2 if we want it to UEFI boot, which we do)

- loaded the original Win11 ISO into the VM's emulated optical drive

- attached one of my physical drives to the VM (my other, non-system M.2 NVMe disk) - this is done by first making it offline in Disk Management, then adding it to the VM

- booted the VM from the ISO

- started the Windows 11 Beta installation to the attached disk - wait for the first (or the second is fine, too) reboot phase and shut down the VM

- booted up my PC from the SSD that was in the middle of the install process - It picked up from there

 

Anyway. This is how I managed to handle my 'installer media' problem. This may be helpful to someone with a similar problem, or you can share if you have a different solution (as long as it's not burning the ISO to an actual DVD - it's 2021 ffs!). Hmm, maybe I could have just 'imaged' the ISO onto an external USB flash drive? But in my experience those tools don't always work as they should.

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12 minutes ago, yumanoid said:

I decided to test-flight the Windows 11 Beta.

 

This was your first mistake😄

CPU: i7 9700K@5ghz all core (silence + summer)

cache x47, AVX offset 0

Motherboard: Asus Maximus XI Hero

RAM: Patriot Viper Steel 2x8gb@3733mhz @jedec cl15

PSU: EVGA SuperNova 750 G3

Mon:  LG 27GL850-B, 144Hz Nano IPS - G-Sync compatible/Freesync

GPU: EVGA 1080ti SC Black Edition w/ G12 bracket

Sound: Odac + Fiio E09K

Case: Fractal Design R6 TG Blackout

Storage: MP510 960gb and 860 Evo 500gb

Cooling: CPU: Kraken X62 - GPU: Kraken X42(RIP) -> X53 (From RMA)

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6 minutes ago, DoctorNick said:

This was your first mistake😄

Nah, i'm a tinkerer. I rarely mess with betas, but I always upgrade to the newest Bill 'prematurely'. Only played with this Bill 11 briefly so far, but I like the new look & feel.

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59 minutes ago, yumanoid said:

Hmm, maybe I could have just 'imaged' the ISO onto an external USB flash drive? 

Yep that's the standard method, e.g. using Rufus. 

 

Alternatively you can use Ventoy that is able to boot multiple ISOs dumped on a flash drive and supports >4GB files through using ExFAT for the partition containing the ISOs.

As said we're in 2021 and there are tools for that, no need for convoluted methods.

F@H
Desktop: i7-5960X 4.4GHz, Noctua NH-D14, ASUS Rampage V, 32GB, RTX3080, 2TB SX8200Pro, 2x16TB Ironwolf RAID0, Corsair HX1200, Thermaltake Overseer RX1, Samsung 4K curved 49" TV, 23" secondary, Mountain Everest Max

Mobile SFF rig: i9-9900K, Noctua NH-L9i, Asrock Z390 Phantom ITX-AC, 32GB, GTX1070, 2x1TB SX8200Pro RAID0, 2x5TB 2.5" HDD RAID0, Athena 500W Flex (Noctua fan), Custom 4.7l 3D printed case

 

Dell XPS 2 in 1 2019, 32GB, 1TB, 4K

 

GPD Win 2

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2 hours ago, yumanoid said:

Nah, i'm a tinkerer. I rarely mess with betas, but I always upgrade to the newest Bill 'prematurely'. Only played with this Bill 11 briefly so far, but I like the new look & feel.

Not sure why you are dumping it to fat32. If you are installing in hyper v just mount the iso. If you are trying to install it on physical hardware either look at setting up a ventoy drive to drop the iso in or use Rufus to create a bootable usb.

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6 hours ago, wONKEyeYEs said:

Build.

nope. bill as for bill gates.

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5 hours ago, m9x3mos said:

Not sure why you are dumping it to fat32. If you are installing in hyper v just mount the iso. If you are trying to install it on physical hardware either look at setting up a ventoy drive to drop the iso in or use Rufus to create a bootable usb.

the endgame idea was to put it on the metal, not on a VM. ever since UEFI boots came about, i'm used to just copying the ISO contents to a FAT32 volume and installing from that. seriously the last time i used some 'clone ISO to a disk' method was back when it was all MBR booting. sometimes i used Hasleo's WinToUSB, but that was mainly to put a bootable Bill (not an installer) on USB media.

i guess another reason why i never stuck to any 'clone ISO to disk' methods was that my external drives constantly change purpose. if i actually cared for one to be set up with some multi-ISO boot and stay that way for(almost)ever, then these methods would make sense. having said that, i'm going to look into this ventoy thing, never head of that.

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6 minutes ago, yumanoid said:

the endgame idea was to put it on the metal, not on a VM. ever since UEFI boots came about, i'm used to just copying the ISO contents to a FAT32 volume and installing from that. seriously the last time i used some 'clone ISO to a disk' method was back when it was all MBR booting. sometimes i used Hasleo's WinToUSB, but that was mainly to put a bootable Bill (not an installer) on USB media.

i guess another reason why i never stuck to any 'clone ISO to disk' methods was that my external drives constantly change purpose. if i actually cared for one to be set up with some multi-ISO boot and stay that way for(almost)ever, then these methods would make sense. having said that, i'm going to look into this ventoy thing, never head of that.

Ventoy is great and pretty easy to setup. Been using it for a while and just being able to drop in isos makes things easier and faster. 

Can have my live isos, recovery ones, and installers all in the same stick. 64gb one anyway. 

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1 minute ago, m9x3mos said:

Ventoy is great and pretty easy to setup. Been using it for a while and just being able to drop in isos makes things easier and faster. 

Can have my live isos, recovery ones, and installers all in the same stick. 64gb one anyway. 

i've had this 64GB Patriot Supersonic Magnum for ages, it's always been my go-to for this purpose, as it was reasonably fast for that era. but... i may or may not have fucked with its firmware many years ago, and - i don't know if it's since then or since forever - this thing is not easy to multi-partition. with my usb-enclosure M.2 ssds i can mess around and partition them anyway i want, as with any on-board drive, but not this patriot stick. if i create an 8gb partition, it won't let me allocate the rest of the space for whatever other partition. yet WinToUsb can do its dirty tricks to create all the 3 (or so) partitions that a typical windows system disk has 🤷‍♂️.

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