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Persistent install of Windows 7 (or XP) on a USB stick

is this possible? So I move to another computer and during the boot process I boot the OS from my USB stick. I did not found any tutorial on Google.

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

you can do it, but it is not supported and is very complex to setup.
Look for booting windows 2008 r2 from usb!
I did this: Native VHD boot Windows 7 or Server 2008 R2 from an external USB drive.

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This question is similar to Can I install Windows OS (Windows 7) on a removable USB hard drive?

With Windows 7 SP1, there is an easier way to install Windows 7 to a USB Hard Disk or USB Flash Drive.

This was discovered by cdob at Reboot http://reboot.pro/topic/14186-usb-hdd-boot-and-windows-7-sp1/?p=127587

It boils down to two registry keys, which i think are present in Windows 8 to enable Windows To Go feature. I guess this feature was present in Windows 7, but was never activated.

reg.exe add HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control /f /v BootDriverFlags /t REG_DWORD /d 0x6 reg.exe add HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\PnP /f /v PollBootPartitionTimeout /t REG_DWORD /d 15000

You can install Windows 7 to a USB Hard Disk or Flash Drive using a Tool called WinNTSetup which I have mentioned here Is there an equivalent to Windows To Go for personal use? This tool uses the above registry settings to enable Windows To Go in Windows 7

This tool is easy to use and you quickly install Windows 7 your USB Hard Disk. This tool also allows to create VHD (Virtual Hard Disk) on your USB Drive and install Windows 7 to the VHD on the USB Drive.

This installation will be persistent.

More information in the below links.

http://agnipulse.com/2012/11/windows-to-go-all-versions-windows-7-8/

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/149612-winntsetup-v306/

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