As much as I love the old school Disk Operating System (DOS) environment, the benefits of working with DOS, even for firmware updating, is fading away. Who has a floppy drive any more? Well I do, I purchased one with my Dell laptop and even though it is the slide in type (pull out the CD/DVD drive), it has a USB connector on the side of it. However, when it came time to create a bootable floppy, I couldn’t find any disks laying around. So, create a bootable DOS CD – still has limitations if you try to emulate a floppy.
Regardless, the 1.44MB limitation is irritating at minimum. Working with 1.44MB floppies today is almost as bad as working with old DOS programs in Windows 95 that can’t figure out how to use extended memory (above 640KB). It seems that many firmware updates are larger than a floppy, and if you try to fit it along with the bootable files, MSDOS.SYS et cetera, you’ll be quite unsuccessful. So, screw DOS boot disks – let’s make a Windows LiveCD!
To ensure that everyone knows, Bart Lagerweij is the master mind, I am merely shareing my experiences with his exceptional work.
Go ahead and review Bart’s PE page. Download and install the latest PEBuilder application from that link. You should also review the licensing notice.
In this example we are going to create a Windows XP PE LiveCD. To get started you will need a Windows XP Professional non-OEM CD, which Bart’s pebuilder application will use to create the bootable LiveCD, and a blank CD for the final product.
Note: unless you have two CD drives, I would recommend copying the contents of your Windows XP cd to your hard drive.
Open Bart’s PE Builder and set the source to the location where the Windows XP files reside. Under media output, choose “Burn to CD/DVD”. Click on the Builder menu and choose “Build ISO/CD (F5)”.
Assuming you receive no errors during the build and burn process, you should now have a bootable Windows XP LiveCD.