[syslinux] isolinux + windows installation CD

Andrey Vul andrey.vul at gmail.com
Thu May 25 20:12:19 PDT 2006

Hash: SHA1

I do believe IsoBuster works in wine

Nazo wrote:
> On 5/25/06, Andrey Vul <andrey.vul at gmail.com> wrote:
> Use IsoBuster. Extracts bootsectors (floppy, hd, eltorito) without
> registration.
> Nazo wrote:
>> On 5/25/06, Luke Burton <luke at burton.echidna.id.au> wrote:
>>> Hi all,
>>> I am at the end of my wits, after a day and a half of mucking around
>>> with this :)
>>> My intention was to take a multi-boot DVD - of the style you get with
>>> an MSDN subscription - and burn an individual installer to disc.
>>> How to do this? My theory was to take the files for the installation
>>> CD, add isolinux, add a bootsector, and away I go. Unfortunately it
>>> doesn't seem this easy.
>>> So I took a step back and said: let's take a standard Win XP ISO image
>>> that we know works. Let's re-image that to use isolinux to bootstrap
>>> the standard boot sector. So it's just sandwiching isolinux between
>>> the BIOS and the regular El Torito boot sector from the CD.
>>> Unfortunately I can't even do that.
>>> My process is as follows:
>>> 1. copy the contents of the ISO to a temporary folder.
>>> 2. make the isolinux folder.
>>> 3. copy the isolinux-debug.bin file in.
>>> 4a. use the geteltorito (google finds it) perl script to strip the
>>> boot image from the original ISO. Place that in the isolinux folder as
>>> eltorito.bin.
>>> 4b. take the magical w2ksect.bin file, also found on google, and put
>>> that in the isolinux folder.
>>> 5. create an isolinux.cfg file that looks something like:
>>> label winxp
>>>         kernel eltorito.bin
>>> label winkernel
>>>         kernel w2ksect.bin
>>> 6. make the iso using this command:
>>> mkisofs -o ../isotest.iso -b isolinux/isolinux.bin -J -r -N -c
>>> isolinux/boot.cat -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table  .
>>> 7. boot the CD and try both winxp and winkernel - and get nowhere.
>>> I tried many variations on this theme, including using memdisk and the
>>> bin files as the initial RAM disk.
>>> The exact symptom I get is isolinux loading, a prompt where I type my
>>> boot option, then a single "." symbol, then isolinux tries to run
>>> again and complains about a bad checksum - I assume the bin file
>>> booted part way and left the memory in a bad state.
>>> My assumption was that the boot sector I load would do something
>>> sensible like go looking for setupldr.bin or ntldr or something.
>>> Instead it just hangs there.
>>> Also, why can't I make my own boot sector using "dd"? Is it in a
>>> different place in each ISO image? Or is the El Torito boot sector
>>> from a Win XP ISO not really something I should be using to do this?
>>> Help! I'm drowning!
>>> Regards,
>>> Luke.
>>> --
>>> Luke Burton.
>>> Yes, questions. Morphology, longevity, incept dates.
>>> www.hagus.net
>>> _______________________________________________
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>>> http://www.zytor.com/mailman/listinfo/syslinux
>>> Please do not send private replies to mailing list traffic.
>> Ok, bootable Windows installation discs are a pain.  Once I finally
>> got it right, I have been afraid to change ANYTHING on my "Ultimate
>> Boot DVD" which includes a XP SP2 installation.  First, you must have
>> the i386 folder in the root of the disc unless you plan to do some
>> hacking.  Second, I think you have to have the bootsector from the
>> correct windows installation.  Strangely, I haven't had any luck
>> ripping my own from my disc, but, I have had plenty of luck getting
>> them online.
>> First of all, I'm not sure if the filesystem matters, but, it may.
>> Back when I was running the installer from a DOS bootdisk (you can
>> just run winnt.exe from DOS to start the installation, but, that
>> obviously requires a FATxx filesystem and a bootdisk with a CD-ROM
>> driver) I found that it was REALLY picky about the CD filesystem.  In
>> particular, it uses Microsoft's system of using a tilde character to
>> tell the OS that a filename is the short version of a long one, but,
>> the ISO filesystem seems to not like that tilde character.  As such,
>> you have to break a few standards to get it working in DOS.  Now, I
>> don't know if this applies to the bootable installer or not, but, I've
>> been afraid to change it since I got it working in DOS.  Anyway, here
>> is my mkisofs command line I use to generate the ISO:
>> mkisofs -o ultboot.iso -b isolinux/isolinux-debug.bin -c
>> isolinux/boot.cat -no-emul-boot -boot-load-size 4 -boot-info-table
>> -pad -relaxed-filenames -iso-level 1 -N -disable-deep-relocation
>> -exclude exclude -exclude EXCLUDE -exclude ultboot.iso -J -preparer
>> Nazo -sort ./sort.lst ./
>> Also, here are the lines I use to start the windows installer via the
>> isolinux.cfg file:
>> LABEL winxp
>>     MENU LABEL ^Windows XP Pro Installation/Recovery (SP2)
>>     KERNEL /xpboot.bin
>>     APPEND -
>> I'm not sure if I can give you more details as I got all this working
>> more than a year ago and have since forgotten some of the absolute
>> pains I've had to go through to get it rully working, but, if you need
>> more let me know and I can try to remember more.
>> _______________________________________________
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>> Please do not send private replies to mailing list traffic.
> --
> #andreyvul 2006
> andrey.vul at gmail.com
> That's the curious thing.  I DID use ISOBuster.  In fact, I have the
> registered version of ISOBuster because I've found it so useful over
> the years.  I never really figured out what I did wrong.  At any rate,
> I had to use one I got off the internet instead of the one on my disc
> when I wanted to create a slipstreamed installation disc.  I just
> reused the old stuff I came up with for that when I later on made the
> "Ultimate Boot DVD" with isolinux, so, in fact, all the stuff I did I
> did probably more like two years ago.

- --
#andreyvul 2006
andrey.vul at gmail.com
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