Thursday 31 December 2020

agFM v1.69b Beta and E2B v2.07g available

E2B has a slightly revised version of the new Launcher Windows app.

agFM uses the latest version of grubfm (last one for this year). I have now added the F1-F6, F10 and Ctrl+F menu icons into the default grubfm menu theme too.

Has anyone tried the new Launcher app? Please provide feedback...

Happy New Year to all - and let's hope 2021 is better than 2020!

Download from the Alternate Downloads areas as usual (see side panel for links).

Tuesday 29 December 2020

agFM v1.69a Beta available

 a1ive has improved the menu system and the F1 button can now display hardware information under grub2.

You can also boot to Ventoy and AIOBoot and PXE boot if you have them present on the USB drive.

Unfortunately, if you have added a your own grub2 theme to the agFM partition, you will have to modify it so that it works correctly with the new grubfm\agFM version. Details of how to modify an existing theme are included in the latest version of eBook #4 v1.19Beta which has been updated for agFM v1.69. You can get the updated version for free by using the link that was emailed to you when you first purchased it.

The E2B eBook 4 covers how to add different themes and configure your own startup menu (updated specifically for agFM v1.69 and later only).

I have also updated five different agFM themes which should work with the new agFM v1.69 - see here.

The new agFM v1.69a Beta can be found here.

Note that 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' has not been updated and is still v1.0.29. I do not intend to update this version for a while.

A few of the modified themes are shown below:

seven22 theme (22 menu entries per screen)

Tela theme

You can modify the theme.txt and fm.txt files to adjust the menu as required.

Saturday 19 December 2020

Does Windows 10 20H2 chkdsk now cause BSODs?

 Just a heads up...

Under some (as yet unknown) conditions, running chkdsk c: /f may damage your Windows filesytem and cause BSODs! See here for a report for Windows 10 20H2 update KB4592438.

The 'bug' is unconfirmed by Microsoft.

Wednesday 16 December 2020

Easy2Boot v2.07b Beta available

This version has a new  version of  the  'E2B Launcher.exe' 32-bit Windows application which you can find in the \_ISO\docs\E2B Utilities\Launcher folder.

I have also added a 'Desktop E2B Launcher.cmd' file into the folder. You can copy this file to your Windows Desktop so that you can quickly run E2B Launcher from any E2B USB drive that is connected to your system. Each E2B USB drive must contain the new Launcher folder or else it won't be detected.

2.07c adds an extra link in the 'Tools' tab which copies the 'Desktop E2B Launcher.cmd' file to the Desktop for you.

Tuesday 15 December 2020

Easy2Boot v2.07a Beta available

 This version has a new  Beta version of  an 'E2B Launcher.exe' 32-bit Windows application which you can find in the \_ISO\docs\E2B Utilities\Launcher folder.

Download from the Latest Betas folder here.

Friday 11 December 2020

agFM v1.68 released (Legacy boot of Linux ISOs bugfix)

 Version 1.66 and 1.67 had a bug when booting Legacy Linux and other non-windows ISOs using the .isodef, isomap and .isomem options in agFM. This was due to a1ive changing his code and removing the MAP file from his file structure!  

Use the \e2b\Update agFM batch file to update to the new version.

Tuesday 8 December 2020

agFM grub2 code to protect your E2B drive from being cloned

 I was asked today for a grub2 menu which would protect the E2B USB drive from being cloned onto another drive.

The lines below can be added into your startup_menu.txt file.

It checks the total drive capacity of your E2B USB drive - if it is not as expected, then it displays a graphics file (candle in this case) and then prompts you to enter a password (3 chances). If the user does not know the password, then it loads a 'guest' menu, but it could just as easily  shutdown or reboot the PC.

You can display any graphics file you like (.png, .jpg, .bpm) and you can change the messages, etc. as you wish.

Sunday 6 December 2020

eBook #4 v1.17 now available (and agFM v1.67 released)

I have just updated eBook #4. You can get the update for free by using the link in your original Payhip email that you received when you first purchased the eBook.

I also found an old bug in the .isopersist code in agFM, so I have now updated agFM to v1.67 today. The problem was that the *-rw persistence file would only work if it was in the root of the USB drive. Now it can be in either the root or the same folder as the Linux ISO.

Saturday 5 December 2020

Use Ventoy to boot WinPE ISOs such as c't Emergency Windows 2021 ISO (aka 'ctNotWin', 'ctNotFall' etc.)

Easy2Boot and agFM can boot WinPE-based ISOs easily, however many of these ISOs require access to files on the 'DVD' drive once they have booted to WinPE.

Since these files are inside the ISO file on the USB drive, these extra utilities cannot be found by the miniWindows environment and you may find some Desktop and StartMenu items missing!

E2B and agFM can make this work however by using that fact that most WinPE's are built using WinBuilder which typically contain this extra startup code. When a WinPE made by WinBuilder boots, it looks for a volume containing a .ini file in the root (e.g. \WIN10PESE.ini) which specifies the path of an ISO file. WinPE will then find that ISO file and auto-mount it as a virtual DVD drive so that WinPE can now access the files within the ISO.



E2B and agFM will modify these .ini files before booting the ISO (that is one reason why a write-enabled USB drive is required). The ISO filename should not contain spaces because some versions of WinBuilder cannot cope with spaces in filenames.

However, this only works if the WinPE contains this special WinBuilder startup code which looks for the special WinBuilder .ini file.

E2B and agFM also modify the \AutoUnattend.xml file in the root of the E2B USB drive - this file is automatically run if the ISO is a Windows Install ISO (but it is not usually run by WinPE ISOs).

c't Emergency ISO

Unfortunately, some WinPE ISOs do not contain this special startup code (e.g. c't Emergency Windows 2021). There are a number of ways around this:

Friday 4 December 2020

agFM v1.66 released

Changes from v1.65 are:

  • F3 now also shows winre.wim Boot to Windows Recovery entries if a Recovery folder is present.
  • F10 hotkey will reload agFM without rebooting
  • Search hotkey is changed from Ctrl+Shift+F which did not work in MBR\Legacy mode to Ctrl+F
  • New Ctrl-F search function searches current level and one folder down only. User can search for any extension or use a hotkey. e.g. Ctrl+F P will list all .imgPTN* files in current directory and level below current directory.
  • F5 now uses grubfm built-in code (/boot/grubfm/ no longer used).
  • Bugfix for dd command where -c exceeds 63555.
  • Ability to use Ctrl+F as menu hotkey (but not all Ctrl+ letters can be used!).
  • The menuentry command now supports --help_msg option which can display help text in a themed menu (but is buggy, so I recommend you don't use it in your menus!).
  • The and files now use map -f to map as the first device when in efi mode.
  • Add_Ventoy.cmd changed to work with latest e2b for Ventoy download.
  • Update_to_latest_Ventoy_version.cmd file will now automatically add 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' to the USB drive. The current E2B version of 'Ventoy for E2B' will be downloaded from the E2B server.
  • Latest grubfm build (2020-12-01).
  • /e2b/loadfm file added. 
  • /ventoy/Sample Ventoy config files folder added (contains sample files which user can add to ptn1). Copy to \ventoy folder on ptn1 will allow you to boot agFM or E2B from the Ventoy menu
  • SAMPLE_slack theme fm.txt updated for Ctrl+F text display on menu.
  • SAMPLE_slack theme fm.txt now supports timeout countdown so it can be used for startup menu with F1-F6 icons and timeout counter
  • Improved SAMPLE_startup_menu.txt - now can have more than 10 entries and define a different icon and hotkey for each menu entry.
Now when a user runs Make_E2B.exe, they will be asked if they want to add agFM and Ventoy to partition 2. Both will be fetched from the E2B server. Currently Ventoy is the special 'Ventoy for Easy2Boot' v1.0.29 which is not blocked to run on an E2B USB drive.

Thursday 3 December 2020

agFM v1.66Beta12 available (and how to MBR-boot the grubfm.iso from grub2)

agFM Beta12

agFM Beta10 adds a new F10 hotkey function (new hidden feature).

If you press F10 in a grubfm menu, then it will completely reload grub2.

You may find this useful if you run an ISO or some other payload file and grubfm loses the gfxmenu system and just displays a black-and-white text menu. If you then press F10 then the whole agFM boot file will be reloaded thus saving you having to reboot. Since some servers can take 5 minutes to reboot, you might find this useful.

The actual code is compiled within agFM (in, but if you are interested, you can add a menuentry to your own menu system as shown below:

Tuesday 1 December 2020

Latest agFM v1.66 Beta7 available (release candidate)

 Please test latest version 1.66 Beta7 as I hope to make it the new release version in a day or so.

See OneDrive - Latest Betas folder for the download.

Please don't just wait for it to be released before trying it. It is easy to test it by simply extracting the files to the 2nd partition. If you want to go back to the old v1.65 then simply click on \e2b\Update agFM\Download and update agFM_v2.cmd.

Changes from v1.65 are: