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Thread: Moving Windows to external USB disk

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    21

    Question Moving Windows to external USB disk

    Hi,

    I have laptop with Windows 8.1 preinstalled. I want to keep the Windows for things like BIOS updates, as fallback booting option, or whatever, but not waste space on the internal hard disk for it. Can I clone the image to an external USB disk and expect it to be bootable? Are there ways to make it work?

    I can boot Ubuntu from USB, that is no problem.

    Next step, if everything is working, would be to try to move Windows to a VM. Is this usually within the license? Apple allows the same thing if the VM is running on Apple hardware, as i could find online. I made this work for Windows XP, but things have changed

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    UK
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    37
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: Moving Windows to external USB disk

    You mean you have a dodgy copy of windows and want to boot it from USB/Vbox/VMware?

    Anyway, yes it can be done but I'm not going to post potential licence infrigements in this forum so google is your friend. Tom's Hardware has lots of posts around this.

    Paragon also sells a S/W tool that does it - they must have ignored or circumvented licensing ??

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Chicago Suburbs
    Beans
    Hidden!
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: Moving Windows to external USB disk

    Windows will not run from an external device.
    I think though, you can upgrade Windows 8 to a Enterprise license and then that will let you create an external bootable version.

    Best just to use Windows Disk management to shrink Windows, reboot so it runs chkdsk, and leave it. Do leave about 30% free inside the NTFS partition as otherwise it gets very slow.
    For info on UEFI boot install & repair:
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to close thread when/if answered completely.







  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    UK
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    37
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: Moving Windows to external USB disk

    Yes it will

    I'm running it as I type !!!!!!

    You just need to know where to go and what to do... All a bit underground stuff hence not posting here or wishing to get involved any further .!..

    Nuff said

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Beans
    21

    Re: Moving Windows to external USB disk

    Hi,

    thanks for all the information. I made sure the Bios is updated, backed up Windows twice (the Windows way and the Linux way), and removed it for now.

    So the solution seems to be "search in Windows-related forums"

    I found some statements about licensing there too, but i think this is easy to get wrong and must be taken with a grain of salt...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    UK
    Beans
    37
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: Moving Windows to external USB disk

    there's nothing to physically prevent windows booting from USB. You just need to scour the forums across the net and put the pieces together. It will come down to your own individual morales as to whether you wish to honour license agreement, or not. There is nothing I need windows for, all runs on Wine and if it doesnt there is a better linux app anyway.

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