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How to install windows 8 on VHD file and boot from it

Today I have installed windows 8 beside windows 7 on my laptop in a VHD file..
Here is a STEP by STEP Guide to what I have done.

Intro:

There are several ways to install multi OSs,
the easiest way is to simply install the 2nd OS from inside the 1st one on another partition BUT there is a chance for any of them to mess with the other one’s files ..
another way is to install the 2nd one inside virtual machine using virtual PC/VM ware or any other VM Software BUT this won’t give us full hardware performance on the guest machine …
SO
In order to get full hardware access and performance … and don’t let any OS mess with the other.. We will install the OS on VHD file and boot from it.


Prerequisite:

  1. Download “Windows 8″ iso file
    Download it from this link http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/apps/br229516 OR here is a link for Windows 8 Developer Preview with developer tools English, 64-bit (x64)
  2.  Download Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool from this link (this is a tool by MS to make bootable Flashdisk or DVD out of ISO files, Released for users who purchase windows online from windows store)
  3. Get a 8.5 Double layer DVD or 16 GB Flash disk


Steps:

  1. Creating Bootable Flashdisk / DVD
    • start installing Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool
    • in the installation process you will pass throught four steps
      • First: Selecting ISO File (select the ISO file u just downloaded in the prerequisists)
      • Second: Choose DVD or USB Device , the media you want to put the installation files on.
      • Third: Select the Flash memory partition OR the DVD Drive.
      • Fourth: Wait for Formatting / installation on your media (~10 minutes)
  2. Making a VHD – Virtual Hard Disk – File
    • Open up CMD -commmand prompet- with Admin Preveligde
    • Run MS diskPart tool by writing “diskpart” and hit enter
    • create a VHD File on the windows by the following command
      DISKPART> create vdisk file=d:\Windows8Dev.vhd type=expandable maximum=50000
      Note:  your can change “d:\Windows8Dev.vhd” to your preferred directory and 50000 to a diffrenet size (but not less than 30000 -30GB-)
    • select the VHD you just created
      DISKPART> select vdisk file=d:\Windows8Dev.vhd
    •  Now attach that VHD to windows
      DISKPART> attach vdisk
    • Create a primary partition on it
      DISKPART> create partition primary 
  3. Booting from Flash memory / DVD and Proceed to the installtion process of windows 8
    • Restart your computer and change your boot order to the flashdisk/dvd
    • once you computer starts installing windows 8, Press SHIFT + F10, you will get a CMD window
    • Write the 2 commands commands of selecting and attaching the vhd
      DISKPART> select vdisk file=d:\Windows8Dev.vhd
      DISKPART>attach vdisk
    • Once you reach the Partition selection window “Where do you want to install windows ?”
      You will find another Disk with 1 partition in the partitions list (with the size you have made in the first step)
    • Choose that partition, and proceed the normal installation process of windows.
  4. Finally..
    • After installation process, you will find a boot menu consists of 2 items “Windows Developer Preview” and “Windows 7”
    • inside windows 8 there is an extra partition C, this is the emulated partition of VHD
    • inside windows 7: your normal partitions without any extras, the file at d:\Windows8Dev.vhd will be about ~10 GB at first installation.