One can install Windows 8 on an external hard disk or USB and get rid of carrying along laptop luggage. Once you have done that all you have to do is plug in your external disk on any laptop and enjoy your favorite OS.
What you will need
1. Windows 8 ISO/DVD
2. 7z (compression/extraction utility)
4. USB disk (size 16GB or above)
Extract “install.wim” to a temporory location
First of all, using 7z or any other tool that can extract data from ISO, you have to extract “install.wim” to a temporary location. I prefer to extract it to desktop, for ease of navigation, when required.
Right click Windows 8 ISO and go to “source/install.wim”. Extract it to desktop.
Prepare your USB disk
Before this connect your USB disk. Now this part prepares your disk to be formatted to a format suitable to install Windows. To do this, open up command prompt as administrator. (On Win 7/Vista, from start menu search “cmd” and in the result right click “cmd” and select “Run as administrator”. On Win XP, from program menu navigate to cmd and right click and select “Run as administrator”.)
1. Open “diskpart” Microsoft’s Disk Utility program.
This will start up diskpart utility in command prompt.
2. Now you have to select your USB disk among, other disk connected to the system.
Select the disk appropriately. The no. in the following will change or be the same, depending on disks connected to your system.
select disk 2
3. Now if you want to clean the whole disk before installing, follow this step or skip to the next. This step will remove all the partitions on your disk.
Now all the partitions are gone. Its time to create a partition. To create one single partition, run:
create partition primary
But on huge external disk having a single huge partition is not wise. So to create a smaller partition, use following command:
create partition primary [size=n]
where size is in MB.
To create a 100GB partition, run:
create partition primary size=100000
4. Now select the partition you want to install Windows to. To get the list of partitions, (if you have created more than one)
Now to select the partition, run:
select partition 1
5. Next you have to format the partition using:
format fs=ntfs quick
Then assign a drive letter using:
After that mark the disk as active:
Now that you are done with disk utility program, exit from it.
Install Windows 8 to disk
Now that your disk is ready, you have to start with installing Windows 8 to the disk. To do this we will use GimageX (GImageX is a graphical user interface for the ImageX tool from the Windows Automated Installation Kit.)
Open GimageX, and go to ‘Apply’ tab. In the Source, select the “install.wim” file.
In the Destination, select your USB disk drive which you had prepared in the previous step.
Click the “Apply” button, which will begin the installation to the disk. Depending on your USB disk speed, the installation will take 30-40min.
Make the disk bootable
To do this, open up command prompt as administrator. (On Win 7/Vista, from start menu search “cmd” and in the result right click “cmd” and select “Run as administrator”. On Win XP, from program menu navigate to cmd and right click and select “Run as administrator”.)
bcdboot X:windows /s X:
where, you have to replace X with the drive letter currently assigned to your USB disk partition(the one where you installed Windows 8 using GimageX).
Now reboot the machine and go to the boot menu using F11/F12 or the key that works in your system. This will bring up the list of bootable sources. Choose your USB disk from it. Windows 8 will start to boot and will get the system ready after installing appropriate driver for your system.
If you have successfully installed Windows after following the above you might want to bookmark this page or share it among your friends using share buttons below.