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I know this can be done with Linux - curious if it's possible with XP (commenting on Vista or 7 is fine, too).

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3 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

good old BartPE is your friend:

How to run Windows XP from a USB stick

p.s.: preparing a USB flash drive with BartPE (or any Windows installation disk for that matter) has just gotten easier, thanks to this nifty little tool: WinToFlash

(credits to Lee M. over at downloadsquad.com for this nice find)

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Google is always your best friend:

http://www.liliputing.com/2008/04/install-windows-xp-on-mini-note-usb.html

EDIT: Sorry, I have not carefully read this, but it seems you can find many answers from google.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&newwindow=1&q=windows+xp+usb+stick+&aq=f&oq=&aqi=

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Thanks, but that demonstrates how to INSTALL windows onto a system FROM a USB stick...I was asking about running Windows off of a USB stick (Windows is installed on to the stick). It's probably not that likely, since Windows likes to adapt itself to the hardware it's being installed on - it expects to see the same hardware each boot. But I thought I'd ask... –  Fred Hamilton Aug 27 '09 at 15:48
    
Please don't link to pirated software. I've edited out the link. –  The How-To Geek Aug 28 '09 at 3:48
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Yes, it is possible with winxp. I've tested and run winxp on usb for many times and it worked well.

The concept is simple, all you need is a vhd disk image which contains a winxp (full or mini is up to you) installed with winvblock drivers.

You can you oracle virtualbox to create the vhd file.

After all, you use grub4dos to boot the vhd image.

I found a full article here : http://www.linuxbyexamples.net/2012/08/How-to-install-and-run-a-full-winxp-on-usb-disk.html

Hope it will helpfull.

Cheers.

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