Create a universal Windows 7 install disc #
Setting aside the absurdity of offering a confusing array of editions, Microsoft made technicians' jobs slightly easier by including all editions of Vista (Home Premium, Ultimate, etc) on a single 32 or 64 bit disc (though both versions can apparently be combined with a bit of effort). This allowed techs to carry one or two discs at most and still be able to install whatever edition was required. Windows 7 changes all that; while the various and sundry editions are all tantalizingly included on the disc, a tiny configuration file (ei.cfg) forces a specific edition to be installed. Thankfully, Kai Liu has created win7utils to circumvent this irritation:
(via Mike Mills who found it on Lifehacker which credited Technibble which attributed the link to a forum member named AtYourService - whew!)
- "The Windows 7 ISO Image Edition Switcher is a set of small binary patches (and a tool to apply these patches) that will convert an official Windows 7 ISO disc image into an official Windows 7 ISO disc image of another edition. The resulting ISO images are bit-for-bit identical with those posted on MSDN or TechNet, and their SHA-1 hashes should match the official hashes posted by Microsoft."
- "The ei.cfg Removal Utility is a simple tool that will remove the ei.cfg from any Windows 7 ISO disc image, thereby converting the image into a 'universal disc' that will prompt the user to select an edition during setup. This tool works by toggling the deletion bit in the UDF file table, eliminating the need for unpacking and rebuilding the ISO, which means that this is extremely fast (the process of patching the ISO to remove ei.cfg takes only a fraction of a second), and the process is easily reversible (running the utility on a disc image patched by this utility will restore the disc image to its original state)."
/windows | Jan 03, 2010
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