Wednesday, 11 May 2022

Easy2Boot v2.13 is now released

The Webnode hosted site easy2boot.com is now out of service from today onwards and so easy2boot.xyz is the only site that you should use from now on. 

The E2B .cmd scripts in v2.13 have now been updated so that only the .xyz site is accessed for the latest files when making or updating an E2B USB drive.

The changes in E2B v2.13 are outlined below

2.13 2022-05-11 

  • Fix issue of AtlasOS Install ISO not working with XML files. 
  • Show NOT CONTIGUOUS under menu in Windows Vista-Win11 menu.
  • Add ability to type in any extension when alternative extension suggested - e.g. type .isomem instead of Y/N/I/A. 
  • Fix so does not use WIMBOOT if ISO is non-standard (e.g. AIO ISO). 
  • Add Win11 XML file to bypass TPM/RAM/Secure boot checks. 
  • Add .txt file in win10/11 folders on how to create a new local account. 
  • Support latest versions of Zorin with persistence using .isopersist and a casper-rw persistence -rw file
  • Make_E2B.exe small change if no USB drive detected. 
  • Downloads now only fetch files from easy2boot.xyz website (not easy2boot.com). 

agFM is now updated to v1.79 but it is essentially the same as v1.78 except that old .com download URLs in some .cmd scripts have been removed to make downloads faster.

If you have problems updating agFM then run "\_ISO\docs\Make_E2B_USB_Drive\Download and update agFM_v2.cmd" from the USB drive after updating it to E2B v2.13.

Saturday, 30 April 2022

E2B v2.13c Beta now available

v2.13c Beta is here

 Changes from 2.12

  • Fix issue of AtlasOS Install ISO not working with XML files. 
  • Show NOT CONTIGUOUS for info under menu in Windows Vista-Win11 menus.
  • Add ability to type in any extension when alternative extension suggested – e.g. type .isomem instead of Y/N/I/A.
  • Fix to automatically not use WIMBOOT if ISO is non-standard (e.g. AIO ISO).
  • Add new Win11 XML file to bypass TPM/RAM/Secure boot checks
  • Add .txt file in win10/11 folders on how to create a new local account
  • Fix Support latest versions of Zorin with persistence using .isopersist and a casper-rw persistence -rw file
This version also allows you to simply enter the file extension that you want to try (such as .isomem or .isopersist) without having choose from a list after pressing I.


To update, just unzip the download, run the Make_E2B.exe file and click the Update E2B button. You can delete the extracted files from your Windows drive afterwards.

Wednesday, 20 April 2022

Fix for Microsoft Office hyperlink error messages - e.g. 'Your browser is up to date'

Have you started seeing this annoying issue whenever clicking on a link in a Microsoft Office document (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.)?



This can occur with various versions of Office and seems to have just recently hit my Windows 10 system just this week (Office 2007).

Monday, 18 April 2022

eBook updated - How to make $1000 a month from the Internet v1.07


The eBook 'How to make $1000 a month from the Internet' has now been updated to fix quite a few typos that I found plus some other small revisions, etc. - it is now at 
v1.07.

If you have already purchased an older version just use the link in the email that was sent to you to get the new version for free.

There are more eBooks here.

The latest versions of the other eBooks are unchanged from last month and are:
  • E2B #1: How to make a multiboot USB drive using Easy2Boot v2.21
  • E2B #2: How to install Microsoft Windows using Easy2Boot v1.9
  • E2B #3: How to make a UEFI multi-boot Easy2Boot USB drive v1.02
  • E2B #4: UEFI-multiboot using the a1ive grub2 File Manager v1.23
  • Getting started with Ventoy v1.08  (for Ventoy 1.0.71)
  • Getting started with grub4dos v1.01

Friday, 8 April 2022

How to boot to a hundred different payloads from just one ISO!

The netboot.xyz project has come a long way in a few years and many more payloads are now supported.



You can Legacy or UEFI-boot to the netboot.xyz.iso on your E2B USB drive and then it will download from the internet and  run a wide variety of payloads (Linux, Utilities, etc.).

This is most suitable for people who have fast internet via Ethernet (e.g. company offices, etc.).

32-bit and 64-bit payloads are supported, including Fatdog, Manjaro, Kali, Ubuntu, Parrot, Peppermint, Pop OS, Tails, Tiny Core Linux (for quick boot to Linux), Voyager, Zorin, Boot Repair, Clonezilla, DBAN, gparted, Kasperksy, RescueTux, Super grub disk, Rescuezilla, Ultimate Boot CD and many more including Linux installers.

See FAQ for full list.

Just add the ISO to your E2B USB drive.

See here for a previous netboot article.


Friday, 1 April 2022

Costs are going up - here are some tricks I use to save and make money and some tips

Times are hard! In the UK the cost of electricity and gas has almost doubled, vehicle fuel is up by 50% and the Retail Price Index is up 6% and still rising. Savings interest rates are stupidly low but mortgage/borrowing rates are rising.

Theo the cat

Energy costs

As I work from home and live on my own (if you don't count my cat Theo who has his own fur coat) then to save on my heating bills, I turn the central heating thermostat down to 18°C and I only heat a few rooms. I also wear two 'arctic-rated' Damart thermal vests under my shirt and jumper together with thick corduroy trousers - this saves on fossil fuel expenditure and helps save a bit of the planet.

Sunday, 13 March 2022

Easy2Boot v2.12 released + new eBook revisions

E2B v2.12 is now released and contains a few small bugfixes.

I have also updated most of the eBooks.

The latest Ventoy versions can boot payload files on any disk\partition. The Ventoy eBook now contains an added chapter for setting up a Linux ISO file + persistence on another partition (e.g. USB Partition 3 or a system hard disk).

FREE updated revisions are available for all previous eBook buyers using the link in the email receipt that was sent to you when you first purchased the eBook(s) or you can buy the eBook PDFs here (or Ventoy Kindle).

The latest versions are:
  • E2B #1: How to make a multiboot USB drive using Easy2Boot v2.21
  • E2B #2: How to install Microsoft Windows using Easy2Boot v1.9
  • E2B #3: How to make a UEFI multi-boot Easy2Boot USB drive v1.02
  • E2B #4: UEFI-multiboot using the a1ive grub2 File Manager v1.23
  • Getting started with Ventoy v1.08  (for Ventoy 1.0.71) - Amazon Kindle edition here #Ad
  • Getting started with grub4dos v1.01
  • How to make $1000 a month from the Internet v1.06

Thursday, 10 March 2022

How to edit PNG Alpha transparency levels (e.g. for a grub2 theme)

Recently I needed to edit some PNG files which were used in a grub2 theme (tutorial).

Many grub2 themes use a semi-transparent 'styled box' as a grey background on which the grub2 menu text entries are displayed.

In this example, menu_s.png, menu_sw.png and menu_se.png have been changed and so the bottom of the box is a slightly different colour and is opaque. You can see the clouds in the background wallpaper underneath the centre section.


Some themes draw a line across the bottom of the menu by making the top line of pixels in these three .png files a different colour - e.g. white...



Wednesday, 9 March 2022

Are you looking for a good website or blog host?

If you have read my eBook 'How to make $1000 a month from the Internet' you will see that I recommend that you set up your own website and/or blog and that you do not use the free hosts .

I also strongly recommend that you always use a WordPress (Linux-based) host server and that you do not go for any host which attempts to suck you in with free offers or very cheap deals. The reason is that after a year , when you come to renew your subscription, you will realise that their full annual rate is much more expensive than the others. Also, you will realise that in order to get certain features working on your site, you will need to purchase a more costly 'premium plan' and that you are now 'locked in' (having spent hundreds of hours on the design and content of your website).

Also, with a free host site, you are not in control. They can easily turn round one day and say 'we are sorry to announce that from next month we are closing this service' and you are stuffed!

Thursday, 24 February 2022

Invest now!

Whether you have purchased my ebook 'How to make $1000 a month from the Internet' and made some money from a side hustle for very little initial cost or you have some savings sitting in a bank account which is earning a paltry 0.7% interest at best (or 0.01% as some banks like Barclays and NatWest are offering - wow - thanks guys!) - why not invest it in stocks and shares?

Even if your savings are earning 2% a year, you are losing money when you take inflation and the rising cost of living into account!

Due to the Ukraine crisis, now is a perfect time to invest in the stock market as prices are low.

Introduction to ETFs

ETF screener to help you pick the right ones for you out of the 1000+ available.

I recommend a USA or Global ETF. For instance the SWDA ETF currently at 5925p (top global companies only) charges 0.2% annually and has almost tripled in value in 10 years (+75% in last 5 years). Quite a difference from the bank rate, isn't it?


As with all shares, the trick is to buy low.

Have you been 'jobfished' by Madbird&Co? You could be working for free!

The people on reputable job market sites like fiverr will agree to do a specific task for a specific price. Payment is made up front to fiverr by the customer so that you will always receive the agreed amount from fiverr on satisfactory completion of the work.


A recent BBC Radio 4 and BBC 3 TV program detailed a scammer who took advantage of the Covid lockdown to entice people to work for him from their own homes for up to 6 months for free (just empty promises). Although his company was registered at UK Companies house (something which anyone can do for less than £20), the company Madbird&Co. appears to comprise of just one man and a bedroom!

Wednesday, 2 February 2022

'Getting started with Ventoy v1.07' revised edition with extra info on booting ISOs from Partition 3

I have added an extra section to the chapter on booting from payloads that are situated on Partition 3 of a Ventoy USB drive. The examples included are for a Linux-based StorageCraft ISO and a Ubuntu 64-bit ISO and it uses the F6 Extended grub2 menu facility of Ventoy.

As usual, all my eBook updates are free - just use the link that was sent to you in the original Payhip purchase confirmation email.

Amazon Ventoy Kindle version.

Getting started with Ventoy (v1.07 - 2022-02-02)

Contents:
Chapter 1 - Introduction .. 5
Chapter 2 - Glossary of terms ... 6
Chapter 3 - Make a Ventoy multiboot USB drive .... 8
GPT or MBR? ... 8
Ventoy partitions .. 8
Is your USB drive larger than 128GiB? ...... 9
4K sector disks (Advanced Format Storage) ... 9
Typical Ventoy Legacy\MBR partition arrangement .. 11
Secure Boot ... 12
Using the Ventoy installer. 14
Beware of fake flash drives!...... 14
Recommended USB drives .. 14
Exercise 1: Make a Ventoy drive under Windows ...... 15
Troubleshooting Ventoy installation and updates ..... 15
Exercise 2: Make a Ventoy drive under Linux ...... 17
Re-format Partition 1. 19
Updating Ventoy ... 20
Chapter 4 - Using the Ventoy USB drive ... 21
Exercise 3: MBR-boot to the Ventoy menu... 22
Exercise 4: Add an Ubuntu ISO.. 24
Exercise 5: Add more Linux ISOs. 28
Chapter 5 - Using the Ventoy menu .. 29
Ventoy menu keys ..... 30
Ventoy Menu Function keys ... 31
Special Ventoy keys ... 31
Debug mode .... 33
Exercise 6: Grub2 mode ...... 34
Troubleshooting summary...... 36
Chapter 6 - Add more payload files... 37
Exercise 7: Add a Windows 10 Install ISO ..... 37
Exercise 8: Add the Parted Magic ISO..... 39
Exercise 9: Add PassMark's MemTest86 memory test ..... 40
Chapter 7 - Hide some files/folders from Ventoy ... 43
Chapter 8 - The Ventoy user configuration file (ventoy.json)... 45
Ventoy.json syntax rules: .... 46
JSON Syntax checker..... 48
VentoyPlugson. 48
Multimode. 54
Chapter 9 - Ubuntu with persistence ... 55
Exercise 10: Ubuntu 64-bit ISO with persistence ... 55
Exercise 11: Kali 64-bit ISO with persistence ... 63
Chapter 10 - Windows Installs using an XML file .. 65
Exercise 12: Install Windows 10 Professional onto any computer. 67
Exercise 13: Platform specific XML file ... 70
Chapter 11 - Install Windows 11 to systems with no TPM ... 72
Exercise 14: Install Windows 11 on old hardware...... 73
Chapter 12 - Add WinPE ISOs...... 77
Strelec WinPE ...... 77
Exercise 15: Add the Strelec WinPE ISO.. 78
Hirens Boot CD WinPE ...... 79
Exercise 16: Add HBCD_PE ISO.. 79
Other useful WinPE ISOs... 80
Chapter 13 - Add AntiVirus ISOs.. 81
Chapter 14 - Add Chrome OS ISOs (CloudReady and FydeOS) ... 82
CloudReady (UEFI64 only). 82
FydeOS ... 82
Chapter 15 - Add Windows .wim files (wimboot plugin).... 83
Exercise 17: Add support for booting .wim files... 83
Chapter 16 - Add Windows .VHD files (Win VHD plugin) .. 84
Exercise 18: Add support for .VHD files .. 84
Chapter 17 - Boot from other drives/partitions/files (grubfm) ... 85
Exercise 19: Add grubfm and boot ISOs from any drive or partition.... 85
Boot from Partition 3 using Ventoy...... 88
Exercise 20: Add StorageCraft Recovery Environment Cross Platform to Partition 3 ..... 88
Chapter 18 - Add rEFInd to UEFI-boot from any disk/partition ... 91
Exercise 21: Add rEFInd.img...... 91
Chapter 19 - Change the default Ventoy menu theme ...... 94
Exercise 22: Add a 'Seven-of-nine' theme..... 97
Exercise 23: Random themes .. 100
Exercise 24: How to make your own Ventoy theme ...... 101
Chapter 20 - Specify the exact menu entries (Image List plugin)... 102
Exercise 25: Exclude legacy-only ISO files in the UEFI menu. 102
Whitelist menu .... 105
Chapter 21 - Replace the menu filenames with text (Alias plugin)...... 106
Chapter 22 - How to display grub2 menu icons (Class plugin). 107
Chapter 23 - Display payload tips to the user (MenuTip plugin) ... 109
Chapter 24 - Add your own grub2 menus (Extension plugin). 112
Exercise 26: Make a simple ventoy_grub Extended menu ... 119
Chapter 25 - Auto-select Memdisk mode for some payloads (Auto-memdisk) ...... 121
Chapter 26 - Add passwords (Password plugin).. 122
Chapter 27 - Other Ventoy features. 124
Chapter 28 - How to recompile the Ventoy source code ... 125
Chapter 29 - Add Easy2Boot (Legacy) to Ventoy ... 126
Chapter 30 - Important BIOS bugs and features that you really need to know about! ... 129
Chapter 31 - Bootable devices (USB 3 devices are best!). 131
IODD Mini...... 132
Chapter 32 - So how does UEFI-booting actually work then? ... 133
UEFI booting...... 135
EFI Shell. 136
Chapter 33 - Secure Boot.... 137
About UEFI Security (PK, KEK, DB and DBX) .... 138
Platform Key (PK). 138
Key Exchange Key (KEK) .... 138
Whitelist Database (DB) .... 138
Blacklist Database (DBX) ... 139
Machine Owner Key (MOK)..... 139
How Secure Boot works.. 139
Secure Boot and Mok Manager... 140
How to disable Secure Boot .. 141
Chapter 34 - Grub2 configuration file syntax...... 143
Words .. 143
Reserved words. 143
Quoting ... 143
Variable expansion .. 143
Locale strings. 144
Comments... 144
Simple commands ... 144
Compound commands.... 144
Built-in Commands .. 145
Chapter 35 - grub2 troubleshooting. 146
Linux ISO boot issues ...... 147
Theme errors - 'alloc magic is broken'...... 147
Corrupt screen/bad screen resolution...... 147
Chapter 36 - Useful links..... 149

Sunday, 30 January 2022

Quickly add Medicat 21.12 to Easy2Boot using a batch file

The current Medicat download is designed to make a Ventoy USB drive and you can just extract the contents of the large MediCat.USB.v21.12.7z onto your E2B USB drive and use 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' to boot the files or agFM menu system.


However, if you want to use the payloads with the E2B menu system then you will need to extract each of the .iso and .wim files from the .7z package and individually copy them to the E2B menu folders (or use a .cmd script - see below).

Sunday, 9 January 2022

eBook 'Getting started with Ventoy v1.06' is now available

 The 'Getting started with Ventoy' eBook has now been updated to version 1.06.

Since the new VentoyPlugson.exe configuration application will not recognise a standard Easy2Boot USB drive, if you want to use the new browser-based application to make or change your ventoy.json configuration file, you can only use it on an E2B USB drive if you first 'convert' the E2B USB drive to an 'official' Ventoy USB drive.

The VentoyPlugson web app is for configuring Ventoy.

The eBook now contains a new section on how to use the VentoyPlugson.exe application on an Easy2Boot USB drive.

All my eBook updates are free - just use the email link that was sent to you by Payhip when you made the original purchase.

Thursday, 30 December 2021

Add rEFInd to Ventoy to allow you to UEFI64-boot from any file/partition/disk

I have added instructions here on how to add the rEFInd image file to agFM and/or Ventoy so that you can UEFI64-boot from any EFI file on any partition in the system (not just the Ventoy main USB partition).


Note that using the 'Install rEFInd' icon (dark blue square with down-arrow), you can install rEFInd onto any disk in the system.

Tuesday, 28 December 2021

agFM v1.76 released

This version just has a small bugfix to the batch file:
 \e2b\Update agFM\Make_Latest_ventoy_Partition_Image.cmd which makes the Ventoy images described see here. The old cmd file was downloading Ventoy 1.0.62 instead of 1.0.63.

To update agFM run \e2b\Update aFM\Download and update agFM_v2.cmd from partition 2 of your USB drive.

1.76 2021-12-28 – fix \e2b\Update agFM\Make_Latest_ventoy_Partition_Image.cmd so always downloads latest version.

Monday, 20 December 2021

E2B v2.11 released

 v2.11 is now released. It is the same as v2.11d Beta.

v2.11 2021-12-19

  • Bugfix – file extension overrides xxxxxx_.isodef.iso not working in 2.10
  • Add sample ReloadVentoy.mnu menu for when adding E2B to a Ventoy USB drive (and _ISO\docs\Sample mnu files\Ventoy\ventoy_grub.cfg file sample file for \ventoy folder)
  • Update Launcher.exe, latest RMPartUSB.exe
  • Update language strings
  • Update .cmd files to use windows find.exe in all places in case user has changed Windows default path

Saturday, 11 December 2021

Add E2B to your Ventoy USB drive

If you have switched over to using Ventoy as your main USB multiboot tool but you still need your trusty  E2B USB drive for some Legacy boot tasks such as to boot to DOS images, Legacy booting some Linux ISOs which Ventoy doesn't support, install Win98/Win2K/XP, auto-install Windows legacy with drivers+apps (SDI_CHOCO), run PassPass, etc. then why not add E2B to your Ventoy USB drive as well?

It is very easy to do and I have added a new page with instructions here.


Note that .imgPTN files are not supported when using a Ventoy USB drive.

Saturday, 4 December 2021

Why not start a 'side-hustle' during the holidays?

Instead of watching your favourite box-set again during the holidays, why not use the time to set up a 'side-hustle' or two instead? With the Omicron virus around, you won't be going out much anyway...


Get this T-shirt here. Try the coupon code FINISHLINE and you may get 25% off this week!

So with a little bit of effort why not earn extra income from the internet. In many cases, this can be set up as a 'passive income' source - i.e. once you set it up, it will continue to earn you money for many years and you don't have to do anything else except count the money every month!

For instance, I set up a RedBubble 'shop' in just one day yesterday (and I have ZERO skills when it comes to graphics design as you can probably tell!). RedBubble will sell your designs for you. Your designs are printed onto a wide range of their products on demand and it costs nothing to start.

E2B sticker for your laptop/PC from as little as £1

E2B Classic Mug from £8-ish with coupon code.

Can you work out the message on my plain black T-shirt below (for maths geeks only - and it is for sale -  tip: try the coupon code FINISHLINE before Dec 8th and you may get 25% off!;-)?

Thursday, 2 December 2021

eBook 'Getting started with Ventoy' v1.05 now available

My PDF-based eBook 'Getting started with Ventoy' v1.05 has now been updated for the latest version of Ventoy.

Ventoy v1.0.62 now includes the new VentoyPlugson web-based app so you can easily make and tweak your ventoy.json file.

You can get the updated eBook for free using the link that was previously in your confirmation email from Payhip when you first bought the book.

If you haven't already purchased the eBook then please visit my store here (multibuy discount will be applied at checkout if you buy more than one).

Ventoy v1.0.62

1. VentoyPlugson —— A GUI plugin configurator. Notes
2. Add default_file option in theme plugin. Notes
3. Add F5 Tools --> Theme Select menu to switch between themes. Notes
4. Automatically fix volume abnormal status when do non-destructive install in Windows.
5. Optimization for FreeBSD boot process.
6. Optimization for Ventoy2Disk.sh
7. languages.json update


Saturday, 27 November 2021

agFM v1.75 released (bugfix for Windows ISOs not booting in Legacy mode)

I accidentally introduced a Legacy Windows ISO problem in agFM v1.73 and v1.74.

In an attempt to fix a grub2 bug involving the loopback command which caused a problem on some PCs, I changed the windows iso code to load some required uncompressed files instead of compressed .xz files. Unfortunately, although this worked for UEFI mode, it seems it does not work for Legacy mode (for some strange reason - must be a grub2 bug?).

I have therefore changed back the grub2 code to load the compressed .xz files if grubfm is booted in Legacy mode. 

i.e this code

loopback wimboot (${user})/boot/grubfm/wimbootxz;

loopback install (${user})/boot/grubfm/installxz;

works in UEFI mode but for some strange reason not in MBR\Legacy mode!

Thursday, 18 November 2021

eBook 'Getting started with Ventoy' v1.04 now available

 I have made some small updates to my eBook 'Getting started with Ventoy'.

You can get the new version by using the original link in the confirmation email that was sent to you when you first purchased it.

If you haven't got it yet, it is available here (with 10% discount on total if you buy more than one).

Friday, 12 November 2021

E2B v2.11c Beta is now available (but needs some English strings translated)

The latest Beta of E2B is now available: v2.11c.

Some of the .mnu files for UEFI/agFM/Ventoy support in \_ISO\MAINMENU folder were 'hard-coded' to English. In the new Beta 2.11c I have now put the menu titles into each of the language files (however they are still in English):

Sunday, 7 November 2021

E2B UEFI File Manager agFM v1.74c Beta.zip with new Ventoy partition image support available

It was previously possible to make partition images of Ventoy and then replace Partition 2 of the E2B USB drive with the Ventoy partition image, however in Ventoy v1.0.57 onwards, extra checks have been added into Ventoy and it now checks for Ventoy grub2 boot code in the MBR of the drive. This means that new versions will no longer work as partition images. :-(

However, I have modified the script and .cfg files so that it now also replaces the grub4dos boot code with the Ventoy grub2 boot code. The result is that we can now make Ventoy partition images again and boot to them and Ventoy still thinks the drive is an 'official' Ventoy USB stick.

Note that this exercise is only for someone who knows where their towel is and don't try it if you have not made a backup of your E2B drive just in case something goes wrong!

Instructions

Friday, 5 November 2021

New Beta version of E2B with bugfix and latest E2B+grub4efi Beta

 I found a bug in the latest release version of E2B v2.10 - file extension overrides no longer work.

e.g. a filename of Ubuntu_.isodef.iso should automatically use the .isodef extension, or  win10pe_.isope01.iso should use the extension of .isope01 but in the latest version it doesn't work.

The new Beta version of E2B with a bugfix for this is v2.11a.

The Beta download folder is here.

Note that the latest grub4dos releases are not used by E2B. Some new bugs and incompatibilities have been introduced and also the old grub4dos utilities such as wenv and fat and hotkey no longer work with the new grub4dos versions and you have to replace them with new compatible versions. So although the latest grub4dos versions have a few new features (e.g. allowing menu titles and menu help text to be in multiple colours), I still use a February 2020 version of grub4dos in E2B.


E2B for UEFI

I have also updated the E2B+grub4efi experimental version which uses the latest version of 'grub4dos for UEFI'. It is now version v2.10i. For instructions on how to use this grub4efi version see the previous blog article here.

Note that grub4efi (grub4dos for uefi) is still buggy. It crashes if you try to use the map command on iso files too often and it does not support wimboot so I have to use grub2\agFM to boot to WinPE and wim files! Because of this, I don't see grub4efi as being very useful so this Beta is for experimental use only and is just for the curious.

Sunday, 31 October 2021

'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' v1.0.57 available

You can find the latest 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' v1.0.57 here.

P.S. v1.0.57 is now live and will be downloaded when you make a new drive or update your drive.

After downloading it, drag-and-drop the file onto the \e2b\Update agFM\Add_Ventoy.cmd file on the 2nd partition.

It seems to work OK but please let me know if you find any problems.

P.S. Seems to be a problem with h and m (help and checksum) menus in the first release! If you have already downloaded the 1.0.57 version, please download the new 1.0.57b version which has a fix (ventoy-1.0.57b-windows.zip).

Please do NOT report any issues to the Ventoy github or ventoy.net forum unless you can also reproduce the problem on an 'official' Ventoy drive - an E2B drive is not totally 100% compatible with an official Ventoy drive!

Friday, 29 October 2021

Ventoy rev.1.02 eBook is now available (for Ventoy 1.0.57)

I have revised the 'Getting started with Ventoy' user guide/manual for the small changes in the menu system in the latest version of Ventoy. Just use the link in the confirmation email that you were sent to download the latest version for free!

If you haven't got it yet, then you can get the PDF file from my eBook Store.



P.S. You can now get 10% off the total basket when you buy more than one eBook ;-)

See https://www.ventoy.net/en/doc_news.html for more details of latest Ventoy version changes.


Sunday, 24 October 2021

Add Easy2Boot to your Ventoy USB drive

It seems that LongPanda has now put extra checks into Ventoy so that it now checks the MBR for grub2 boot code. This means that being able to make and add 'Official Ventoy' images as described here has now been updated! You can also use 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' which is included in E2B.

Add E2B to Ventoy

Ventoy is improving all the time and it is now pretty good at booting most payloads, however it does not support Legacy installs of  Windows 95/98/Me/XP/2000 and it's DOS and legacy ISO support is a bit weak. You may also find that E2B may work with some Linux payloads where Ventoy fails (but make sure the ISO files are contiguous as required by E2B!).

The good news is that you can easily add legacy E2B (not agFM) to an existing Ventoy USB drive as follows:

Friday, 22 October 2021

New Ventoy eBook is now available - 'Getting started with Ventoy'

I have been slaving away over a hot keyboard for weeks now writing an introductory eBook (PDF) on Ventoy and it is now finally finished!



You can get this new manual/user guide now for only $5 from Payhip here (10% discount if you buy more than one eBook).

Even though it is written specifically for Ventoy users, it also applies to 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' which is a slightly modified version included with Easy2Boot.

As with all my eBooks, all future revisions are free - just keep the original confirmation email and download any later revisions if they appear (you can subscribe too).

This new eBook is up to date and can be used with the latest Ventoy v1.0.56 which was released today.

Please let me have any feedback (good or bad!).

P.S. The developer LongPanda provides Ventoy for free and also constantly maintains it. You can make a donation to support LongPanda and Ventoy here.


eBook: Getting started with Ventoy

If you would like to learn more about Ventoy and how to use the ventoy.json configuration file, learn what are the best options to use when creating your Ventoy drive, learn how to boot ISO and other payload files from Partition 3 of the Ventoy drive, run Linux files with persistence, automate the installation of Windows, install Windows 11 to a non-TPM system, create your own themes, etc. then it's all here!

Getting started with Ventoy (v1.00 - 2021-10-22)
Contents:
Chapter 1 - Introduction ...  5

Friday, 15 October 2021

Easy2Boot v2.10 is now fully released

 I have updated the easy2boot.xyz, easy2boot.com and FossHub sites with the new v2.10 of E2B.

I received no feedback (good or bad!) from the pre-release, so I hope its OK.

Here are the changes:

Wednesday, 6 October 2021

Which is the best Clonezilla-based backup ISO?

 If you have a large E2B USB drive (up to 2TB), then you can easily boot from a backup ISO file and save the backup onto the same E2B USB drive (or any other connected drive or network drive).

The E2B USB drive can be made using the 'Gear wheel' button on Make_E2B.exe so that the MBR partitions are as follows:

Ptn1: 127GiB NTFS
Ptn2: 1GiB FAT32
Ptn3: NTFS (remaining space)
Ptn4: (must be unused for E2B use)

We keep Pnt1+Ptn2 size below 128GiB because some Legacy BIOSes are buggy and will not access sectors beyond 128GiB on USB drives. If you are not concerned about these Legacy BIOSes (which can even be found on quite recent BIOSes) then you do not need to limit the Ptn1 size.

The following ISOs can boot on Legacy and UEFI64 systems using E2B\agFM\Ventoy.

Tuesday, 5 October 2021

Add Windows 11 to E2B and E2B v2.10 pre-release

You can download a Windows 11 ISO from the official Microsoft page here (3rd option). You need to select Windows 11, then the Country (note: 'English'=American whereas 'English International' = UK and all other English-speaking countries).

System specifications for Win11 are here.

The Microsoft checker app is here.

There is also way to install Win11 on a non-TPM system (or one that does not support Secure Boot or does not have enough RAM) - see the WIN11_TPM_FIX_README.txt file in the \_ISO\WINDOWS\WIN11 folder for details and the screenshot below...


Note that Win11 may refuse to add any updates if your system is sub-spec.

You can also tweak Ventoy to install to a non-TPM/non-Secure-Boot system in a similar way (see here).

If you are using E2B v.2.10 then it will already have an \_ISO\WINDOWS\WIN11 folder for the Win11 ISO.

E2B v2.10 Pre-release is here and has the following changes:

Sunday, 5 September 2021

Add Strelec WinPE 21-07-2021 to E2B

 You can download the recent Sergei Strelec ISO from here.

Copy the ISO file to your E2B drive \_ISO\WINPE folder. I renamed the file to

WinPE10_8_Sergei_Strelec_x86_x64_2021.07.21_English_.isowin.iso

so that it will run from E2B and agFM. If using Ventoy and Legacy-mode, press Ctrl+W before selecting the .iso file to use the wimboot method of booting.

If you have problems booting to Strelec with E2B, please update to the latest E2B Beta v2.10g (extract .zip file and run UPDATE_E2B_DRIVE.CMD).

Boot directly from Sergei Strelec WinPE

Monday, 30 August 2021

Add CloudReady (ChromeOS) to Easy2Boot\Ventoy

 Ventoy v1.0.51 includes experimental support for CloudReady (Neverware\Google) and FydeOS (both are versions of ChromeOS).

Since 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' v1.0.51 is now released, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I can boot to CloudReady from Ventoy from my E2B USB drive + IdeaPad 300 notebook!


CloudReady instructions

1. Update your E2B USB drive to the latest Ventoy version by double-clicking on the "\e2b\Update agFM\Update_to_latest_Ventoy_version.cmd" file on Partition 2 of your E2B USB drive.

2. Download a version of CloudReady. I use the free Home version 64-bit Image file from here.

3. Unzip the .ZIP file that you just downloaded and copy the  6GB file to your Easy2Boot USB drive. Since this will only work under Ventoy, I made a \_ISO\VENTOY folder on my E2B USB drive.

4. Rename the .bin file extension to .img.

CloudReady only supports UEFI, so you need to UEFI64-boot to agFM and then run Ventoy.

Now you should be able to sign into your Google account. If you have two-factor authentication enabled, you will need to confirm via your mobile phone (enable Bluetooth and Location detection on your phone).

Once logged in successfully, any future boot to the CloudReady img file will just require your Google account email and password.

Note: You will need to test using a real system as Virtual Box did not seem to work for me. I successfully tested on an IdeaPad 300.


FydeOS

I used 'mirror 2' to download the 2GB .img.xz file and then unzipped it to make a 7.3GB .img file.

I had problems using the trackpad on the IdeaPad300 with this distro and it appears to be a version aimed at China, so I did not test it by logging in.



Saturday, 28 August 2021

Ventoy for Easy2Boot v1.0.51 now available

 The latest version of Ventoy (v1.0.51) is now available for download.

See here for changes.

1. Download the Easy2Boot version of  Ventoy-1.0.51-windows.zip file from here.

2. Drag-and-drop the .zip file onto the \e2b\Update agFM\Add_Ventoy.cmd file which you will find on the second FAT32 partition of your E2B USB drive.

3. Follow the simple prompts (basically type Y and ENTER).

The server is now updated with version 1.0.51 as of 2021-08-30. You can now easily update Ventoy by running:

 \e2b\Update agFM\Update_to_latest_Ventoy_version.cmd.


Sunday, 22 August 2021

The Transcend JetFlash 920 USB drive is fast - but is it legal?

I bought and received a Transcend JetFlash 920 (#Amazon ad link) today which was advertised as USB 3.2 Gen 1 and with a capacity of 128GB - but is it legal?

This is half the depth and length of the SanDisk Extreme!

Friday, 20 August 2021

Get the official Microsoft Win11 Preview ISOs

 https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windowsinsiderpreviewiso

It seems to need at least 30GB of disk space.



It seems to allow an easy offline account option too.



Not sure why a fresh install from a new Win11 ISO needs to download a newer version?


Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Latest E2B+agFM Betas now support grub4efi

You can now have the same E2B menu system in both MBR\Legacy mode and UEFI mode! 

grub4efi by chenall\yaya2007/a1ive is the UEFI version of grub4dos.

Most of the commands in grub4efi are the same as used by grub4dos.

The latest Beta of E2B now contains grub4efi.

How to update your E2B USB drive

Wednesday, 11 August 2021

Check your system for Win11 compatibility

 A new app which is downloadable from github or the Microsoft Store is provided by 'ReadySunValley'.

It must be run in Admin mode...


It does not seem to be an official Microsoft app however.

Friday, 6 August 2021

Windows password bypass utility 'PassPass' in E2B now updated to work with recent Windows 10 versions

 E2B v2.10eBeta has an updated version of PassPass which should now work with recent Windows 10 versions (2020/21).

Using PassPass you can bypass the password entry required for any Windows Local Account.

It does not work on Microsoft online (email) accounts however.

More details on PassPass here.

See the sidebar 'Useful pages' for a link to download the E2B Beta versions from the Alternate Download websites.

P.S. E2B v2.10f has revised patches which also works on Win11 Beta x64.

Tuesday, 20 July 2021

Ventoy for Easy2Boot 'seven-of-nine' themes

 

A simple Ventoy theme with the 'Seven of Nine' background is available here.

These themes can be used on 'official' Ventoy drives too not just for E2B.

It also contains the Windows 11 TPM patch registry xml files for Pro and Home.

It includes a \ventoy\ventoy.json file, so be careful not to overwrite your own ventoy.json file (if you already have one).


Saturday, 17 July 2021

Ventoy for Easy2Boot v1.0.47 download available

 Ventoy 1.0.47 was released today on the ventoy.net website.

I will release the new E2B 1.0.47 version fully after a few weeks, but if you don't want to wait...

1. Download the 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot" v1.0.47 .zip file from here.

2. Drag-and-drop the ventoy-1.0.47-windows.zip file onto the \e2b\Update agFM\Add Ventoy.cmd file located on the 2nd partition of the E2B USB drive - follow the instructions.

Ventoy 1.0.47 release

  1. Optimizations for booting openwrt
  2. Support some floppy images in Memdisk mode
  3. Remove the 2TB limit for the reserved space in Ventoy2Disk.exe
  4. Fixed a bug when booting big boot.wim file.
  5. Compatibility improvement for WinPE which contains PECMD.EXE
  6. Fix Parabola rEFInd booting (#989)
  7. Add check for the built-in browser in WebDeepin.sh
  8. Speedup md5sum/sha1sum/sha256sum/sha512sum command
  9. languages.ini update
  10. New image support
    HBCD_PE_x64.iso v1.0.2 (Legacy + UEFI)
    MocaccinoOS-MATE-0.20210714.iso (Legacy + UEFI)

See https://www.ventoy.net/en/doc_news.html for detail.

P.S. Don't forget to subscribe to always get the latest versions and news!

Thursday, 15 July 2021

How to configure Ventoy to skip the Windows 11 TPM and Secure Boot check

 I have written a How To article here.

We can use an XML file to run the registry bypass hack automatically.


P.S. Six different Ventoy themes can be downloaded from here. The ventoy.json script will choose one at random.

Wednesday, 14 July 2021

agFM v1.73 released


Thomas came across a problem with agFM recently when booting to Windows ISOs. He was not able to boot to the Windows ISOs on a specific model of notebook:

The same stick and method was used on tons of notebooks of the previous model Lifebook U7410. 
It just fails with the new Model Lifebook U7411.

(Fastboot disabled, Secureboot disabled)
Booting the ISO with .isodef works, but I need to use .isowin for using unattended.xml. When starting the ISO using .isowin (even directly without unattended.xml), it stops loading with the following message:
\"Loading (memdisk)/boot/grubfm/null.cpio
# GRUB Environment Block
installiso=\\\\_ISO\\WINDOWS\\WIN10\\Win_10_2004.2_64BIT_Ger_EDU.ISO
##############
##############
error: xz file corrupted or unsupported block options.
Add: (wimboot)/bootmgfw.efi -> bootmgfw.efi
Add: (envblk)/null.cfg -> null.cfg\"

In the past, I have had a few people report the same .xz error but I have never been able to reproduce it...

Sunday, 11 July 2021

agFM v1.72 and 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' v1.0.46 are now fully released

These latest released versions will be installed if you make a new E2B drive, or you can update an existing E2B USB drive:

Instructions - update to agFM  v1.72

Instructions - update to Ventoy for Easy2Boot v1.0.46

Latest E2B is v2.10b (for Win11) - download .zip file and extract files to a new folder and run Make_E2B.exe and then use the Update_E2B button or just extract the files straight onto your E2B USB drive's Partition 1.

Thursday, 8 July 2021

How can you check using a Windows batch file what AntiVirus s/w is active?

Windows Defender is the standard Windows Antivirus software that comes with Windows 10 and it does a pretty good job.

However, many people like to install 3rd-party AV and anti-malware software too.

In fact, some people may be running 3rd-party AV software without even knowing it!

For instance, many types of Acronis backup products may also install Acronis Cloud Protect without you even being aware of it.

One way to detect AV software and Services is to trawl through the Windows task list and try to recognise the names of the software products but I wanted to write a small .cmd Windows batch file to show the user what AV software was installed and if it was enabled or not so that I could add the code  into the E2B Make script to warn the user that they have AV s/w installed and it may be blocking write access to their USB drive's boot sector.

Here is what I ended up with...

Tuesday, 6 July 2021

Install Windows 11 using E2B and agFM onto any system

 E2B and agFM can automatically run the registry hack to skip the Windows 11 TPM\RAM\SecureBoot checks.

1. First update to agFM v1.72 or later version (just over-write files on Partition 2 with the latest download) and also update to latest E2B v2.10 Beta which has the WIN11 folder support (run Make_E2B.exe as Admin and click on the Update E2B button). Download areas for latest Betas

2. Copy your Win11 ISO to the \_ISO\WINDOWS\WIN11 folder.

Download Win 11 ISO from here. Select 'Latest Dev Channel' - Cumulative Update for Windows 11 (10.0.22000.51) (untick 'Integrate updates' option for faster build and download). The fewer Editions you tick the quicker the build - I ticked Home\Core + Pro. The download and build of the ISO may take a few hours or more!

Note: If you only tick one Edition, the Install.wim that is made is non-standard and does not contain an XML file. I suggest you include at least two Editions.

3. Create a .cmd text file which has exactly the same name as the Win11 ISO file and place the following three lines of code in the .cmd file:

reg add "HKLM\SYSTEM\Setup\LabConfig" /v "BypassTPMCheck" /t REG_DWORD /d 1
reg add "HKLM\SYSTEM\Setup\LabConfig" /v "BypassRAMCheck" /t REG_DWORD /d 1
reg add "HKLM\SYSTEM\Setup\LabConfig" /v "BypassSecureBootCheck" /t REG_DWORD /d 1

Tip: If you suspect this cmd file is not being run, add an extra line at the bottom which will wait for you to press ENTER:

pause

4. Copy the \_ISO\WINDOWS\WIN10\Windows 10 Pro (no prompt to repair).xml file to \_ISO\WINDOWS\WIN11 folder (your ISO must include Win11 Pro Edition - if not use a different XML file - e.g. Win10 Home, etc.)

You should now have the following files:

Monday, 5 July 2021

Easy2Boot v2.10a Beta available with Win11 support

The new E2B Beta is here.

It adds a \_ISO\WINDOWS\WIN11 folder.

I have also speeded up the loading of the Main Menu if you have lots of files in the \_ISO\WINDOWS\xxxx folders. The Main menu no longer shows you how many payload files are present as they are no longer counted.

I installed a version of Win11 using VBox and E2B legacy and agFM UEFI64 successfully.

To update, just extract the files onto your USB drive.

Bypass the Win11 Compatibility check

To avoid the Win11 'compatibility check' you can install Win11 using WinNTSetup.

If you install to a Virtual Machine, the 'compatibility check' is skipped.

Or you can run these commands as soon as Setup is loaded to skip the checks:

Saturday, 3 July 2021

'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' v1.0.46 is now available for download

 I have now made an update for 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' so it is now v1.0.46.

This is not the Ventoy image files but the modified version which is directly added to Partition 2 and can be booted to without switching in an image.

I had a problem with it where it would not boot Ubuntu ISOs and many other Linux ISOs unless Partition 2 was exactly 32MB in size - this is now fixed.

You can find the .zip file in the Latest Beta folders.

Instructions

1. Download the ventoy-1.0.46-windows.zip file

2. Drag-and-Drop the file onto the \e2b\Update agFM\Add_Ventoy.cmd  windows batch file using Explorer - answer Y to copy the files across.

You should now have the latest version of Ventoy for Easy2Boot

Please report any issues.

I will update the E2B server release version to this version in  a few days if no issues are reported.


Tuesday, 29 June 2021

agFM v1.72d Beta now available

 For those of you following my last few blog posts, agFM v1.72d includes the latest version of the Ventoy disk image scheme.

I have tidied it up a bit and renamed some files so that they appear first in the Ventoy menu system.

Also a new .mnu file is added to the \_ISO\MAINMENU folder to allow you to restore the original E2B partitions from a Legacy boot. This is quicker than booting to E2B - then Ventoy - then grubfm_multiarch.iso - then selecting 'Restore agFM Partition 2'. It also does not need to reboot.

So as not to clutter up the MAINMENU, I have not added three menu entries to switch in the Ventoy disk image files from E2B - you can just run agFM from the E2B menu and then switch in one of the Ventoy disk image files from the agFM Legacy menu.

To try it just extract the agFM download files onto Partition 2 (make sure you have the original agFM partition on Partition 2 first - not the Ventoy 32MB partition 2!).