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, will no longer work for the latest version!

So if you need the latest version of Ventoy on your E2B USB drive, you will have to wait for me to compile a new version (v1.0.57 is now available).

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 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:

1. Download one of the E2B ZIP files (either the vanilla, or else get the one with DPMS if you intend to install Windows XP).

2. Extract all the E2B files to the root of your Ventoy Partition 1. You should end up with a dozen of so extra new files and a new \_ISO folder in the root.

You can delete the 500MB \_ISO\contig.iso file if you like.

3. Make a new file at \_ISO\MAINMENU\ReloadVentoy.mnu with this contents:

iftitle [vol (hd0,1) > (md)0x300+1 > nul ;; cat --locate=VTOYEFI (md)0x300+1] Load Ventoy (Legacy)
chainloader (hd0)+1
boot


4. Make a new file at \ventoy\ventoy_grub.cfg with this contents:

if [ -f ${vtoy_iso_part}/grldr -a -f ${vtoy_iso_part}/_ISO/e2b/grub/e2b.cfg -a "${grub_platform}_${grub_cpu}" = "pc_i386" ]; then
menuentry 'Easy2Boot (MBR)' --class=custom {
ntldr ${vtoy_iso_part}/grldr
clear
}
fi

menuentry '<-- Return to Ventoy menu [Esc]' --class=vtoyret VTOY_RET {
    echo 'Return ...'
}

If you already have this file, then just add the first menu (6 lines) to your existing ventoy_grub.cfg file.

You can download these two files here.

5. Now boot to Ventoy and then press F6 to boot to Easy2Boot.

Payload files must be added to the \_ISO\XXXX menu folders as with an normal Easy2Boot USB drive and made contiguous.

In the Easy2Boot menu, there should be a new menu entry to 'Load Ventoy (Legacy)'.

I recommend you use NTFS for the main Ventoy partition - so after making a new Ventoy disk, just reformat the exFAT Partition 1 to NTFS, however the E2B menu also works if it is left as exFAT. 
By having an NTFS Partitions 1, when you boot to the E2B FreeDos disk image, the DOS NTFS driver will allow you to access files on Partition 1 from within FreeDOS.

Note that not all E2B features will be available.  Partition Images (.imgPTN files) are not supported and you cannot load agFM because agFM it is not installed in Partition 2 and it is too small to fit anything in (and it must not be resized or Ventoy will not work).

2 comments:

  1. This method is not support E2B in Uefi mode (grub4dos-uefi) isn't it ??

    ReplyDelete