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How To Make and Use a Bootable WinPE Drive

Serious Malware Clean-ups and Other Drastic Repairs

In some cases, it is impossible to get Windows to run at all when you try to clean up or manage it. This might occur when a PC catches certain types of viruses, spyware, or malware and an active Windows file system will more or less automatically re-infect itself simply by starting up.

Likewise, some forms of registry damage or deletion may make a system unbootable, even though all of its files are intact and the registry simply needs some fixing up before Windows can get back to some semblance of normalcy. When this kind of thing happens, you’ll probably be working under the direction of somebody who really knows what he or she is doing and will be glad you’ve got this kind of tool at your disposal. So be sure to mention the various emergency boot tools you can use on your affected systems.

  • masterwhitman
    What, no mention of BartPE or UBCD4Win (Ultimate Boot CD for Windows)? These are two projects that are vastly superior to Microsoft's method (both are built on WinPE but have expanded capabilities) and are far easier to use.
    Reply
  • richwag
    Nice guide. Never knew about it. Thanks.
    Reply
  • when I saw this I thought it was going to be a review of Bart's PEBuilder... It's saved my a$$ many times. Far superior to WinPE...

    How about a comparison/companion article? or an article on tools gearheads & techies find indespensible?
    Reply
  • average joe
    Vista's PE is far more advanced than XP's. The BartPE project is based of XP's PE. Barts is amazingly useful and I can't wait till they move to from PE 1.1 to PE 2.0.

    Some "fairly new" systems will not boot from usb so always carry a cd version as a backup.
    Reply
  • "I usually grab Imagex.exe and the Package Manager using the commands shown in the next screen capture."

    Hmmm... I don't see a 'next screen capture' showing the commands used to get imagex and Package Manager.
    Reply
  • LightWeightX
    Good start to the guide until you get to the WinRE. In section 5, step 2, you describe using imagex and the secret is the number 2 argument however you do not give an example of the command. In the WinPE you use a 240 MB partition, then in WinRE you state you need at least 512 MB.
    Reply
  • sdybas
    Show us howto "use imagex to grab the Windows RE image from the Vista-installation media." Thanks.
    Reply
  • jfutima
    Yes please follow up on the last few comments, I am stuck in that spot.
    Thanks.
    Reply
  • Good article, but it makes a few omissions and goofs here and there.
    1. For using imagex to grab the WinRE image, check out this link:
    http://blogs.msdn.com/winre/archive/2006/12/12/creating-winre-using-waik.aspx
    2. "x64" won't work when you're using copype.cmd - it has to be "AMD64". Just replace all instances of x64 with AMD64 in this procedure, and it'll work.
    3. For the image showing how to grab imagex and the package manager, click on the picture above the text to open up the gallery, then click one pic forward.
    Reply
  • jfutima
    thanks suigi!
    Reply