For a home lab project, I'm going to install Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2012 on a USB-stick.

The process is described in this guide (for Hyper-V Server 2008 R2, but also works for 2012):

Deploying Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 on USB Flash Drive

Here's my challenge (from the article):

The removable-media bit (RMB) in the STORAGE_DEVICE_DESCRIPTOR storage structure corresponding to the device must be set to zero (0) to indicate that it is non-removable media.

None of the USB-sticks I have meets this requirement. Following the instructions to the letter results in a non-bootable installation.

On the other hand, on a USB-stick I borrowed, that appears as a fixed disk (A-Data N005 Pro) , works as intended, but it is rather expensive (I need a few of them).

It's sort of the opposite problem of this: USB stick appearing as hard disk drive, not removable storage device

I've seen the possiblity of flipping the Removable Media Bit, using "Lexar USB Format" or "BootIt" mentioned on the internet, but those working depends on the chip used for the controller. It's not a universal solution and worked on none of my USB-sticks.

Installing a filter driver is another solution I've seen mentioned, but the complexity of injecting that into the image file and the slim chance of it working on Hyper-V Server 2012, is not something I want to deal with.

Appearing as fixed drives (non-removable) is not a selling point for USB-sticks and I can't find any advertised as such.

a) How can I know in advance if a USB-stick is of the fixed-type? Anything to look for or is just trial and error?
b) Are you aware of any specific makes/models (16 GB) that use a fixed-type controller?


  • Your second question's asking for shopping recommendations which would be off topic. – Karan Mar 1 '13 at 19:06
  • I disagree. I could have not mentioned that I intend to buy one at all and just ask for which USB sticks are know to appear as fixed disks, instead of removable. I'm not asking anyone to recommend USB-sticks. – abstrask Mar 2 '13 at 15:11
  • 1
    I don't understand the point of the second question, other than you need tips on makes/models. And that's shopping advice, because you already know that there are makes/models that achieve what you're looking for. And asking for "which USB sticks are known to appear as fixed disks" is still shopping advice. – TFM Mar 2 '13 at 16:17
  • superuser.com/questions/391176/… . Other than that, you should google for brands and models. – Ярослав Рахматуллин Mar 11 '13 at 12:33

I'm late. Your projects probably over, but...

Do a quick search of memory stick vendors and contact there tech. dept. Simply ask them if there sticks, or stick in question, will appear as a fixed drive, or a non-fixed/removable drive on your system. Mention your system, and maybe take note of your BIOS options(regarding this stuff, if any - a possibility)

I agree that this feature should be addressed better...but often...vendors will do what they must to sell there product...ONLY. Pardon my personal venting.

  • I guess this is as close I can get to an answer - send every major USB-stick manufacturer, and ask which of their products appear as fixed drives. Was hoping for a better solution ;-) – abstrask Apr 22 '13 at 13:03

I just had the same problem. So I ordered alot of the best tested usb flash drives. There was only one that met my demands of showing as fixed disk, and not as a removable one. This is the superfast writing/reading SANDISK Extreme 64 usb stick. Now running Windows 8.

Installation of the operating system (NOT Win Setup) was very easy. Partitioned it with Easeus in one active partition. Put the Ghost image of my Windows 8 on it and Ready it was.

Until now I used notebook drives in usb3 Case for that purpose. They show as fixed disks. I have Plop bootmanager for choosing the wanted usb partition to boot from. If I met any problem in booting of the USB stick or notebook usb, then i used BootIce to fix the issue.

(Imation IronKey also is shown as hd, but has got a unremovable security partition) I think the MS certified usb drives should also do the job, but I don't want Win2Go.

  • How does this answer the question though? – Kevin Panko Feb 12 '14 at 15:56

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