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I want to install Windows 8 Release preview on an external drive.

When I selected a partition from my external HD, it displayed

Windows cannot be installed to this disk. Setup does not support configuration 
of or installation to disks connected through a USB or IEEE 1394 port.

So I made these following steps.

1. My External HDD is 1TB. I made an another partition and gave a letter S:
2. NTFS quick format
3. marked as active in Computer management. by the way the HDD is already basic.

As I've read many articles on internet, I should do something like this in cmd.

bootsect.exe/nt60 s:

I could select S: volume. but the problem is

S:\>CD boot
The system cannot find the path specified.

Can anyone help me?

share|improve this question
How did you connect the external disk? It should work fine for disks on eSATA or via Thunderbolt. But as mentionsed not via USB or firewire (which is also confirmed in your own text "Setup does not support configuration of or installation to disks connected through a USB or IEEE 1394 port") – Hennes Jun 2 '12 at 21:47

Windows To Go is a new feature of Windows 8 that allows enterprises to provision a full corporate environment that will boot from a USB drive. Once the instance of Windows 8 is booted it functions and is controlled by standard enterprise management tools such as SCCM and Active Directory group policies. Work at home and disaster recovery are the primary use cases as Windows To Go can transform any PC into a corporate PC with your application stack, all on a USB drive. Windows To Go is also perfect for trying out Windows 8 on your primary machine without destroying your current OS.

To begin you will need the following:

  • 32 GB or larger USB Drive (It can be a USB Hard Drive)

  • A Windows 8 PC to build the USB drive on.

  • Windows 8 DVD ISO.

  • A copy of Imagex.exe from the Windows 7 Automated Installation Kit installed on Windows 7 or XP. ImageX can be found in C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools\amd64 or C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools\x86.

Creating the Windows 8 To Go USB Device:

  • Windows To Go requires a specific partition setup in order to function. We will use diskpart to create the new partition setup. Launch an administrative level command prompt in windows 8.

  • Make sure that your USB Drive is plugged in and then type in


hit Enter

  • Then list the available disks by running this command and hit enter

list disk

you should see your usb device

  • Select your USB drive by typing

select disk #

hit enter. # represents your usb drive

  • Clean the partitions on the disk by typing


hit enter.

  • Now create the partition by running the following command:

create partition primary

hit enter

  • Select and format the new boot partition by running the following command:

format fs=ntfs quick

hit enter

  • Set the partition active by typing


hit Enter.

  • Exit Diskpart by typing Exit.

enter image description here


  • Now double click the Windows 8 ISO you downloaded to mount it in Windows 8.

  • Browse to the ISO files in Windows Explorer and copy \sources\install.wim to the same folder as you copied Imagex.exe.

  • Identify the drive letter assigned to your USB drive by Windows Explorer and run the following command from the folder that contains Imagex.exe and install.wim:

imagex.exe /apply install.wim 1 d:\

  • Replace d with the drive letter of your USB drive.) hit enter

  • Once the image has applied you need to setup the boot record on the USB Drive. At the administrative level command prompt run:

bcdboot.exe d:\windows /s d: /f ALL

(Replace d with the drive letter of your USB drive.) hit enter

After the command has completed running you are ready to use your new Windows To Go USB device.

***NOTE: Only thing I am not sure about is if this can be done in Windows 7, article specifically shows using W8 to do this procedure, may have something to do with the bcdboot command, not sure.



share|improve this answer
what does /f All for? because as I typed this line it showed only /s and few other available functions. So then I tried bcdboot.exe s:\windows /s s: It displayed a successful message. eventhough I still having the same USB installation error message. by the way, I tried all this in Windows 7. – Casper Jun 3 '12 at 12:04
I think you have to do this on a Windows 8 PC. as mentioned in the article. – Moab Jun 3 '12 at 17:17
Or booting from a Live Windows8 USB or you can burn the Windows8 install disk to a usb with Yumi, Rufus or that kind of tools. – skan Mar 12 '13 at 13:07

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