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Portable Windows XP

neohacker - April 19, 2008 - 9:54am
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Please create a bootable portable windows xp!!! Smiling =)) Smiling

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Thats not gonna happen as it isnt Open Source and illegal cause Microsoft wont let you do it.

"What about Love?" - "Overrated. Biochemically no different than eating large quantities of chocolate." - Al Pacino in The Devils Advocate

Dear new user

Dear new user neohacker.

Unfortunately It isn't possible to create a portable Windows XP nor MSOffice 2007. These constrains are due to licensing issues. This site does not make pirated software, so nobody (in this site) will do it (and who does is in big troubles Eye-wink ).
Please consider OpenSource alternative as OpenOffice to replace MSOffice and Linux (Comming Soon) to replace Windows XP.

I also must request you to read the Forum Guidelines, the Un-official Request Apps Guidelines, and the Un-official FAQ. I must also request you to search the forums before posting as this as already been asked several times.

Hope to have helped

#tuna { color: silver; smell: delicious; }


Thats WAY nicer put that my comment! Smiling

"What about Love?" - "Overrated. Biochemically no different than eating large quantities of chocolate." - Al Pacino in The Devils Advocate

Thanks too

I'm just making sure that everybody understands why and give further directions to follow. Smiling

#tuna { color: silver; smell: delicious; }

well windows has its place

well windows has its place (cough cough games and cough user friendliness (for most part) Eye-wink ) (but overall Microsoft is heading in the wrong direction I personally believe at least Eye-wink

It is possible to make XP boot from a USB or CD drive so don't say "isn't" possible although its apparently not legal... to (Just read the Eula)

Slackware 12 for system
MCP (For XP and Server 2003)
Network + Certified
aim is "nycjv321" (minus quotes)


What I meant is that it isn't possible to do it in here. Sorry for the error.

EDIT: And I say in the next sentence that that is due to licensing problems. So I'm right (sort of) at all. It's not possible because of the license it uses.

#tuna { color: silver; smell: delicious; }

Portable Windows or a

Portable Windows or a Portable OS may be ridiculous in that current BIOS etc., cannot even mount an image in DOS mode and have it accesible in order to install a system, so how does a "portable" version of an operating system help anyone, except when booting from CD or of course USB but slipstreaming is possible using a program such as NLite from memory?

You could always use BartPE.

You could always use BartPE. ( Eye-wink


Slackware 12 for system
MCP (For XP and Server 2003)
Network + Certified
aim is "nycjv321" (minus quotes)

portable windows?

So far I work time to time with some builds of BartPE, but even this is useful for some things, I can not see how this could be made a normal windows. Technicaly, windows XP is an operating system, needs talk to bios, to hardware, so it can not be made portable same as bart PE can not be made protable since for each installation one needes separate set of drivers to be included. The BootCD with my BartPE might work on my office PC, will not work at home or on my friends computer. Unless I know in advance what hardware it should run on and include all drives needed for the range of computers I am going to use the thing on.
PE means protected environgment, and so it is by no means full windows with all its functions.
Yes it can run from CD or USB, but it is not more of use then for some troubleshooting etc, since ven on a fast PC, for normal work it is pain.

Somebody might say, there is portbale linux... Yes, but even here some versions of let say knoppix (as most known one) will work on some hardaware, some versions wount because of the range of drivers and kernel modules included in that particular distro.

So to make a portable OS is not easy. Some people emulate some defoult hardware as in the virtual machines is the case, but also here big limitations are given in functionality.
I have tried to make some of my slax versions portable, running in a virtual under windows, all from stick, but the success is poor, real OS simply fails to work in such slow evirongment as loading virtualization from stick and emulate all real world in real time.

Otto Sykora
Basel, Switzerland


May I suggest some links for you to investigate:
QEMU/Windows XP as guest OS

You can visit

You can visit With medium knowledge about computers you can create an bootable usb harddrive with windows xp. Note: it boots only if the BIOS supports booting from USB.

Sadly there is no direct support from microsoft to use it from portable devices. But it`s possible with some instructions you can find on google.


If you call Microsoft to make it portable

Need Portable Things

Pen Drive Linux

If you're looking for a reliable operating system that can be made portable, or that is already portable, check out

They will tell you exactly what you need to do in order to achieve that feat. Yes, I realize Linux is different but I am almost certain that if you try it, you will like it. Best of all, it's free.

Failure is not an option. It comes bundled with Windows.

It is not impossible...

The only thing about portable Windows is that it is not a full fledged windows environ. No sound and such as it is running the NT kernel with the /minint switch so it runs basically in safemode for lack of a better explanation. It will run just not as completely as a real install. This is achieved through the use of BartPE and of which is 100% completely legal to do.

Before people say it is not... XP can be run as long as you have a license for it. One copy per running instance. If you have only the BartPE running that is your one instance. If you run in a VM session of some sort then you need to have 2 licenses one for the host and one for the emulated one.

You have the right to remain silent. Anything you do or say will be exaggerated or mis-quoted and used against you.

Like Kim Possible(Disney)

Like Kim Possible?

Need Portable Things

yes this is true

as I experienced some time ago, when I transfered my local XP into the wmware virtual machine. It stopped work immediately.

So every installation , run in quemu or vmware or what ever is new copy of xp, needing full licenicing. Clearly the quemu copy will then be to some extend portable since the quemu will come with it, however a quemu accelerator driver needs to be installed anyway for that, so that make it again not portable.

And yes the PE versions are far away from anythnig like real windows, so while those are in fact transportable, but not portable, they are just fine for troubleshooting etc. They are not portable, since they will need all drivers for the particular machine to be included in the build before it can be used.
So basicaly a PE system is not portable after all.

Otto Sykora
Basel, Switzerland

This is the portable apps

This is the portable apps forum but on the boot land forums we've been discussing portable windows for a very long time and it's probably a good thing to clear out some myths.

Full Windows XP/2003/VISTA are all portable given the appropriate conditions and I mean full in the sense that you can add hundreds of drivers and programs without restrictions on file size or hardware compatibility.


Vista is without doubt much more suited for portable installs and running from USB media. XP is a bit more complicated as it might require write filters that were only made available for XP embedded.

bartPE is very outdated and there has been so much progress since 2003 that make the current XP/VISTA PE environment boot disk far more advanced than before. Most people just seem to know bartPE since it was the first of it's kind and aren't aware of all the other developments on this area.

I'll include a collection of links for those interested in trying out.

ETBoot - (Full Windows XP on USB/CD/DVD)
UXP - (Huge sized XP with all possible driverpacks, windows updates and customization platform)

For Vista it's much easier. Create a virtual machine and assign the emulated hard disk to your "real" USB pendisk (or drive) and install Vista as usual from inside the Virtual Machine.

I also recommend forgetting about VMWARE and start using VIRTUAL BOX (open source and very fast)

Speaking of Virtual Box,

Speaking of Virtual Box, since it is already open-source, why hasn't someone made it portable? I have used it successfully with a number of small Linux distros(Puppy Linux, Damn Small Linux, Slackware, and others) on machines as slow as 1.6GHz processor, running Windows 2000 and XP, with no significant loss of speed. If somebody has already made it portable, and are looking for an OS to pair it with, I recommend wNOP(wobbly Nearly Office Pup). It's really meant to be a Compiz Fusion Live CD, but it is based on Puppy Linux 3.01 and includes all of the utilities for configuring hardware, as well as installing additional programs and libraries from the net.

As for the person who started this thread(PORTABLE WINDOWS XP?! ARE YOU CRAZY!?) is obviously a newbie and I recommend reading up a few Linux distros and other open-source projects before posting anything else in particular section of the forum.

comparison of features
Windows: empty pockets, slow computer, crippling malware, user level frustration, inability to meet deadlines, security holes
Linux: full pockets, super fast computer, endless software, endless customization, endless potential

not sure about

>For Vista it's much easier. Create a virtual machine and assign the emulated hard disk to your "real" USB pendisk (or drive) and install Vista as usual from inside the Virtual Machine.<

I have no vista so far, so not sure what this is it about exactly. Is there under vista a preinstalled driver for some virtual machine? If this is the case, well ok.

Probably the question is what is meant by portable. If some virtual machine has to be run on its counterpart then this can not be called portable, since I have not the driver for it on my PC probably. My XP boot CD works so far on a range of Dell, refuses to work properly on other makes. To make it work on dell was lot of dell specific drivers to be added prior to burning it. Since it now refuses to work reasonably on HP sets, I do not call it portable. I could add all the HP and Fujisu and Toshiba and Lenovo and... , the DVD will be full and it might be somehow more portable then.

The Bootable DVD, sure this can be done, the procedure will be finaly close to the bartPE, but probably many drivers added, so the thing behaves half way portable then. I mean, the knoppix is for somehow portabel, even it does support currently only abt half of the computers around me. The very new once do not work on it and the old once too.

Otto Sykora
Basel, Switzerland

Google it !

It is entirely possible to create a full or n/v-Lite'd, working, winXP,w2k3, or any other m$ O$ for that matter,
that boots of your UFD or an external USB/eSATA HDD if you have a VLK-version (or maybe a student-version)of the OS.

There are several forums and guides on the internet dedicated to booting from various USB-devices.
Search and you shall find Smiling

The procedures required to get it working may be "illegal"
in the US, but they are not in my country.
I am legally allowed to make any modification required for me to be able to utilize the software .

You might all want to check out what it is m$ are up to with the sandisk/u3 project btw ..
see f.ex,1895,2128799,00.asp
See where it's going ?
With the u3 controllers DRM-functions they could make a "WinUFD-dongle" quite easy .