Thursday, 7 February 2013

WinToFlash or WinToSlug?

A recent post on complained that a USB flash drive that was prepared for XP installs using WinToFlash, worked well on one system, but would not boot on another and gave an 'NTLDR is missing' error.
I decided to try WinToFlash with an XP install ISO for myself. The first thing I found was that when using the default settings, when I used a USB flash drive created by WinToFlash, the first text mode XP install copy files phase took over 70 minutes!
It turns out this is due to FAT32 being used by WinToFlash for the USB drive format. If this is changed to FAT16LBA, then the 2GB volume created on my 8GB USB drive, when booted will install the same XP files in just 7 minutes.
I also found that if I reformatted the same USB drive as 8GB NTFS and used grub4dos to launch setup, the same install phase takes just over 4 minutes.
To learn how to make the NTFS WinToFlash drive, read Tutorial 102.
By using NTFS, it also removes the 'NTDLR not found' issue - although I have also given details of how this can be avoided even if you 'stick' (pardon the pun!) to FAT.