How-To Geek

What You Said: What’s In Your Flash Drive Toolkit


Earlier this week we asked you to share the contents of your flash drive toolkit. You shared your software lists and tricks; now we’re back to highlight the trends in reader toolkits.

LaCie USB Key available here.

Flash drives are such handy devices when you’re trouble shooting computers. You can run operating systems off them, stash portable apps on them, transfer data between machines, backup old data before system instability wipes it, and more. The simple flash drive has opened up a world of trouble shooting tips and tricks that simply weren’t imaginable to geeks of generations past. Read on to see what your fellow readers have stashed in their flash drive toolkits.

Portable Applications and Installers


The most popular use for portable toolkits was simply stashing useful applications that could be accessed from within the host OS.

Laser/USB Swiss Army Knife available for purchase here.

Almost every read carried a portable web browser, usually Firefox or Chrome. Beyond that there was a spread of portable applications and installation files. Most of you kept two sets of apps: one set to be run from the drive and one set to install and run on the host OS (allowing you to leave behind a copy of the helpful application after you finished fixing the computer you were repairing).

Among the portable applications: SUPERAntiSpyware Portable Scanner, Trend Micro’s HijackThis, CCleaner, Revo Uninstaller, Recuva, and SIW. Some portable applications have no official portable version, such Malwarebyte’s Anti-Malware, and in that case readers just carried the installation file and updated the application once installed on the host machine.

The listings between flash drives varied quite a bit based on the size of the flash drive the reader had available and the level of trouble they routinely had to deal with. Check out the full list of comments for the full run down.

Operating Systems


Nearly a third of you (29%) carry a full out portable operating system with you. The most popular portable operating system by far was Ubuntu, but readers also carried other versions of Linux (such as Mint and Puppy) as well as other operating systems (such as Windows PE).

The Usual Suspects wallpaper available here.

Around 10% of you also kept installation files for Windows 7, XP, and Linux on your drives for those times you needed to do a full wipe.

Many of you, and there is a large overlap with the previous groups that have regular operating systems and installation files, also keep an array of specialized tools. Reader si1lence is a good example of this kind of Swiss-Army-Knife approach to stashing specialized Live OSes:

I have a custom boot USB flashdrive. I use Xboot, on it is AVG, Blackbuntu, BackTrack, Clonezilla, Dariks Boot & Nuke, DiskCopy, ERD, F-Secure, Ghost, GnackTrack, GParted, HDClone, Knoppix, MemTest 86+ SpinRite, SystemrescueCD, UBCD 4 Win, Ubuntu, Hirens and XBMC Live CD. I know a little over kill.

Sounds about right to us, after all it’s not like you have to carry 22 flash drives to accommodate all that—you’ll have a flash drive in your pocket whether it’s loaded with goodies or not.

Clever Tricks


Along with listing the types of operating systems and software you had stashed on your flash drive, many of you offered additional tips.

Learn how to build your own LEGO USB stick here.

George shared his simple way to ensure he can download and ferry data between PCs when there is no network:

I have several USB flash drives. The 2 i use most:

16GB flash with Linux Mint 10 with a 4GB persistence file. The drive has 2 partitions and the second partition is used to store files for transfer to another PC if there is no network available.

The second drive is a Multiboot I made from Pendrivelinux. It has Ubuntu 10.10 for x32 and x64, several ISO files with Symantec Ghost (network card specific) Partition Wizard 5, and AVG.

Trent echoed this idea and expanded on why it’s important when doing recovery work:

Bootable with multibootiso and loaded with ubuntu, memtest, clonezilla, kaspersky recovery disk, and partition magic. Also when booted in Windows, Portable Apps, Malwarebytes, HiJackThis, CCleaner, Recuva, Regmon, and Filemon.

Also I have it formatted with two partitions because on some PC’s when you run Ubuntu from the Thumb drive, it won’t let you save to the same thumb drive but it will let you save to the second partition on that thumb drive for data recovery.

A large secondary partition on a suitably sized flash drive is a great idea. If you need to boot into the portable OS to get files to repair the machine’s native operating system you’ve got a handy place to stash them.

Have some extra tools or tips to add? Let’s hear about it in the comments. Have a question you want to put before the How-To Geek audience? Shoot us an email at with “Ask the Readers” in the subject line and we’ll see what we can do.

Jason Fitzpatrick is a warranty-voiding DIYer who spends his days cracking opening cases and wrestling with code so you don't have to. If it can be modded, optimized, repurposed, or torn apart for fun he's interested (and probably already at the workbench taking it apart). You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 04/15/11

Comments (39)

  1. Keith


  2. The Shockwave

    What planet are you people from? Who the hell carries an operating system on their drive? I guess a 3rd of the readers dedicated IT people.

  3. Trent Bentley

    @Shockwave: a bootable OS on a thumb drive is a great tool for recovery. Anytime you have an issue in Windows, bypassing Windows with the thumb drive makes it much easier to clean or recover data.

  4. HellScream

    @The Shockwave, you’ll need it if you want to fix a PC, its quite handy…

  5. crab

    @The Shockwave: I don’t carry a portable Linux stick with me every day because I don’t work in IT (I’m just the computer guy for my friends and family) and I have a real Linux partition on my laptop. But I keep one in my desk drawer because it’s hella useful sometimes.

    Other than that, I have a whole mess of portable apps I don’t use much but 7zip, Writemonkey, ccleaner, Filezilla FTP, GIMP, Recuva and PuTTY are probably what I use most. I usually carry the full installers for anti malware tools so I can install them to whatever computer I’m fixing and they can keep them. Used to have portable Thunderbird until my mail host got a better webmail interface.

    Portable Truecrypt + an encrypted volume on a stick is really great for carrying files around, but I don’t have it on the repair tools stick.

  6. Hatryst

    Hiren’s CD is illegal, isn’t it?

  7. Cobaltqube

    @Hatryst Yes it is illegal so if you have it on your computer, you must turn over every thing you own to the authorities ;-) No seriously it isn’t. I have a bootable cd of it in my bag and also on a small thumb drive.. Very handy util to have if you encounter issues.. Alot of the above are..

    Also @Shockwave this list isn’t what you carry in your pocket 24/7 you would have to wear cargo pants everywhere you go :-) This list is for what a techie keeps in his or her PC Emergency bag.. I have a old doctors bag I got at a garage sale that I keep it all in.. Also no one mentioned a head lamp for when you are on your knees behind the desk.. and a small 75 bit screwdriver set I got for 5$ from Meritline (<3 those guys and their cheap yet very useful crap)

    I also carry an old 320gb pocket drive (usb drive with no need for an AC adapter) to backup files to then several thumb drives with most of what is listed above..

    Also a copy of the latest Kon-Boot in case there is a password issue and I created a script for one thumb to automatically give me a menu of options upon boot for things like run Av, bypass win pass, check disk with spinrite6, etc.. very handy if you want my 2 cents.. it has saved my ass and my friends many many times.. Also gotten me alot of free beer after said fixing

    (which is really the true goal.. FREE BEER) Nuff said for now..


  8. jalopo

    1. win 7 64 bit ultimate + all 32 bit versions.
    2. docs and outlook pst files for quick secutity
    3. tools programs isos.

  9. helene.mackellar

    I’m a noob and I am addicted to how to Geek, I have been too scared to try any of the stuff because I would probably screw it up, but setting up a flash drive recovery kit is a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Citsme

    I just went through a couple of days of the blue screen of death in Windows XP – it isn’t quite over yet. As soon as I can, I am making a flash drive recovery kit. I can’t think of a better way to work on problems like this.

  11. EarthRat

    There is always one moron that has no clue and this time it is Shockwave! If you dont know why you would want to have a portable OS on a flash drive. They you really are not smart enough to even be her reading this!

  12. Noel

    Just learning to use flash drives, and realize I have no real organizational scheme for contents. I’d appreciate any ideas on basic organization of their contents, storage of flash drives, etc. Simple stuff, probably beneath most “Geek-ers”, but I really enjoy trying to catch up with perhaps the slowest of you folks!

    The Geek provides a ton of great stuff!! Thanks to all who contribute to reducing my ignorance!

  13. PTR

    I know just enough about PCs to get myself in trouble, so I second Noel’s comment – can anybody point us to an “all things flash drive” kind of site that might walk us noobs through setting up such a recover drive?

  14. Richnrockville

    My 16 gig stick has a write protect switch on it so that I don’t pickup anyones trojans or virus’s.
    Works for me,,


  15. TMZ

    I want Richnrockville 16gb optionable write protect switch UFD :D

    Now I just have to ask why this took so long to build :o

    – Peace :)

  16. JAR

    @EARTHRAT: You a little hard on Shockwave aren’t you! I can see where he thinks an operating system on a flash drive is useless. If you think about it, if something is wrong with your desktop operating system, be it Windows or whatever, how will another operating system on a flash drive help you, especially if there is a virus problem. It just figures that the thumb drive operating system would also get infected. And Earthrat, how else is one going to learn new things about computing if one doesn’t constantly read, read and read some more. If we all read only things we understood, we would never increase our knowledge. Saying he should not be reading these post because he is not smart enough is only showing YOUR ignorance. Maybe you should refrain from commenting on How-To Geeks if you can’t be a little more tolerant of someone’s lack of knowledge.

  17. DMS

    You can Google “how to make a Ubuntu usb flash drive” and/or “how to make a bootable usb flash drive” (without the quotes) and find lots of good info to get you started. I spotted a How-To Geek article on the subject in the first few entries for the bootable search results, and several others also looked good.

    Apologies for being too lazy to read through them and specifically recommend one or more, but so long as what you’re reading is from a knowledgable source and you can understand what’s being said it would be hard to go wrong. I’d probably start with the How-To Geek article.

  18. mick

    I have tools on an SD card which I keep in the locked (no write) position with the little slider switch on the side. My assumption is some of this nasty stuff can crawl over to these cards/sticks and infect them. Is this true?

    I also fix neighborhood folks’ computers for barter and get some yard work done and am getting a stained glass window (I pay 4 materials), and so on. Sort of cool to exchange this way.


  19. Steven Shaffer

    I as said in my original post mulitbootiso’s is now called “YUMI” for those who might be trying to find it. You can find it over at It’s an awesome tool that allows you to install multiple bootable iso’s on one usb thumbdrive including a copy of your Windows install disk for times when you’re working on a machine with a broken cd rom or no cd rom in the case of a netbook.

  20. Gil

    EarthRat = smart???
    That’s why he spelled two words incorrectly.
    EarthRat credibility = ZERO

    Thank you JAR for saying what I wanted to say about the situation at hand.

  21. C4SysGreyBeard

    Great article! Wonderful and useful tools any good Geek should have.
    (But the best of us already knew that)
    The thing we remember, is that “It’s not what’s in the toolbox that counts; it ‘s knowing how to use your tool, that is most important.
    But just knowing how to use a tool, and in what order, when you need use multiple tools to alleviate problems, you also need to know when NOT to open up your toolbox. Even if you have it available and could use it.
    There is a tremendous amount of great computer tools (programs) out there. And, a lot of them will do most of the work for you; all you, the intrepid computer technician, need to do is plug in a few variables and … Voila! Problem solved; you’re a genius; everybody’s hero. You are a boon to society; a true gift to mankind, and the world’s savior. Right!?! A legend in your own mind.(?)
    Here’s a comparison: There are a lot of auto mechanics around, self-proclaimed, passed all the certification tests because of all the articles they read and classes they attended. They can fix anything… If you tell them what’s wrong. First!
    They hook up a diagnostic box of some sort, and read the test results, a code, specific to that automobile mnufacturer. They look up the code in a book that the manufacturer supplies to their ‘Certified’ Dealers and Parts Supply Warehouses. The warehouse will then give (sell) them the part that has been identified as most often the source of the problem. (!Disclaimer! Note I said “Most often” here. End Warning!) The problem part is usually contained in an assembly, or sub-assembly, of some sort. That way, the customer is forced to spend more money; done purposely by the marketing departments, in an effort to sell more parts, most of them needlessly. The mechanic then removes the identified assembly and replaces it.
    My Problem: The motor for my automatic window-winder-upper-thingy burned out (?), it wouldn’t raise the window beyond a certain point by itself. If I held, with one finger, the window’s ‘Upper-Downer’ switch in the ‘Up’ position while simultaneously pulling the window glass, gently, but firmly, in an upward direction, with both hands (one on each side of the glass), I could raise the window completely. This worked fine for about 2-3 minutes, until I opened and then susequently closed the car’s doorin an effort to disembark. Then the window dropped to the maximum upward level where manual assistance had been required for the window to be completely closed.
    Marketing’s ‘Worst Nightmare’ and My Hoped-For Solution: I have the defective part replaced, whatever it is, at a small, locally-owned automobile repair shop, by a mechanic that takes pride in their work, and has a reputation for doing quality work at a fair (to both of us) price. backs their work with their .
    Marketings 2nd Best Solution: Replace the inner door panel; the window glass panel assembly; and the glass panel assembly’s window regulator/motor assembly which consisted of a motor, a tension regulator, and its associated electronics (a circuit board). Of course, all of this work should be done at a certified auto body shop.
    Marketing’s Best (for them) Solution: Replace the door with a new door,and have it painted to match the existing car’s colour, at a certified auto body shop.
    What I did: Here it seems that Marketing had a partial win. While the motor and the window regulator (which contained the electronics) had their own individual prices, they were only available for distribution as a combined unit, from the manufacturer, and any of its associated parts warehouses, and at any of the numerous general public’s commercial retail parts dealers (i.e. AutoZone, Pep Boy’s, NAPA, etc.). And so, I was forced to purchase unnecessary parts. But now my window goes up and down. Woo-hoo.
    Are these guy real mechanics? Should you really, and truely) trust them with your car? Can you? Even though they may have all the latest and greatest of automotive diagnostic equipment. They really aren’t true auto mechanics. Would you really want to have to?
    Do you really want to have to trust someone like the with your computer? Not worry at all, trusting them with your computer?… The object that contains all of your life’s necessitiess … your “Life-in-a-box”. If (When) they replace too many boards, the firmware in your computer will object, if you are one of the lucky(?) 95% of the world’s population, that own a computer, and that use a major software company’s operating system. Unless that company has changed the way it’s operating system interacts with a computer’s hardware and firmware.
    What happened? Where are the reall geeks?… The ones that know how to get down into the computer, and into the hardware. Without those IDE-level toys? See, my car example was relevant… Even though long and boring. There is a world of difference between technicians and geeks.

  22. JAR

    @C4SysGreyBeard: Sorry, I just was not up to all that reading on your long winded post. And I thought I was full of wind.

  23. DMS


    Actually, I didn’t read your post through either, the first time I saw it. Just looked like more verbiage than I wanted to take in at that moment.

    But I came back and did read it later, and I completely agree with you. At the risk of exposing myself as a dinosaur, I’ll go ahead and say that I’ve never owned a car that didn’t have a carbureator in it, and mainly because I’m a pretty good mechanic and already know how to diagnose, fix and rebuild carb systems. I could probably learn to mess with the computerized models and fairly easily, but I really like the clean esthetics of carbed systems.

    We really lost something valuable in the transition from carbs to EFI. It used to be that almost everyone had at least a basic understanding of how their cars worked, and lots of people could do their own routine maintenance and minor auto repairs. Now even the licensed “mechanics” are intimidated and confused by them. The auto industry would do society a huge favor if they trimmed the bloat out of modern cars, so ordinary people could understand them again, but maybe they think there’s no profit in that.

    And your parallel with diagnosing and fixing computer problems is also a good one. Economy in the use of one’s toolbox is always a good thing. Of course, you do need to understand what you’re doing to be truly economical.

  24. Graybe

    Hirens boot disk, my own scripted disk, portable Ubuntu, many NIRSoft utilities, a portable AV and portable malware finder destroyer. Lots of common sense I hope and an old XP PC to try things out on. I recommend Faronics Deep Freeze to users who wish to pay out the dosh and a seperate partition, or hardrive for all their data needs. The amount of times i have been thanked gives one a warm glow ;-)
    Joking aside, review what others are saying / using decide what you want / need to do and look for a portable version… Simple ;-)

  25. Chris LTQ

    WOW!! its so easy to spot the people that have no clue about this subject and are blantant troll’s. For starters, if you say ‘An O/S on a UFD is useless’, then you obviously know nothing about the matter and shouldn’t really be posting flames about those that do. Let me give an example…

    Ubuntu on a USB flash drive will enable you to boot to it if your host O/S isnt working and allow you to run things like AV, HDD diagnostics, or you can even access the host O/S and replace corrupted filed if you know what your doing, just like the editors have explained in this very article.

    Seriously though, if your gonna flame someone, at least back it up with proof’s as to why they are wrong. The idea is to help each other learn, not see who can have the biggest flame.

    @C4SysGreyBeard; while i read your article, i couldn’t help think that you cant really compare a 6.3 v12 twin turbo mercedes engine which has hundreds of components and moving parts which could all go wrong in their own way,… to a PC with say 6 – 10 components in. The reason the mechanic asks first is because why would he disassemble the engine block if you were hearing a knocking in your rear differential? With every job, the client needs to tell you why s/he suspects there is something wrong before you act.

    but at the end of the day, each person does things how ‘THEY’ think is best to proceed, and with the exception of maybe suggesting they try something different, or intorduce someone to a new tool (which is called teaching and learning….funny thing), no one really has the perfect solution to any situation. You just deal with each one as best you can each time they happen.

    Nuff said. (Dont wanna get too long winded)

  26. Pete

    Dear all,
    I’m wanting to be How to Geek. It seems most of you know how to do it, but I don’t! I want to have a bootable USB Ubuntu. (I can do that bit), what i can’t do is create an area to store files on the same USB. I’d also like to be able to access the windows drives. (basically for those times you can’t be bothered to wait for windows to boot up). ideally I’d like to create the ultimate USB drive. can you guys or How to geek help pls?

  27. Steven Shaffer

    Google “YUMI formerly multiboot iso’s”
    It has everything you’re looking for and more.

  28. Jon

    I’m with Pete, would love to know how to build a USB toolkit to carry with either Ubuntu or even a Win OS.

  29. DJ Rose

    Have Win XP plus nearly a Gig of empty HD space on external drive. Want to install Ubuntu Linux as 2 OS. Need to find something to reallocate a portion of empty space to new Ubuntu partition. Plus method to switch between the OS’s. Elementary level understanding. Need 2 know how much space is suitable for 2nd OS to function properly. Want to surf the net with Ubuntu. May require more questions afterward.

  30. DMS


    Since lots of good info & advice has been given on how to build a Ubuntu (or other flavor of Linux) USB, I’m not going to repeat any of it.

    But you raise the other question of how to get the same thing with a Windows OS. To my knowledge, it’s not possible, but I’ll eagerly await someone else telling me that it is.

    Vista & Win7 are both too large and unwieldy to even try it, and so far as I know the only thing close to WinXP that you can install on a USB is Bart’s PE. I’ve done that, and it sorta works, but honestly not very well. I have made bootable MS DOS USBs, and for simple access to a sick system and running executables from the command line it works ok. Since you can make an MS DOS USB, in principle you can probably build a Win9x USB. But really, who today really wants Win9x? I might do it for my Mandarin Win98 someday, just to have a bootable Chinese OS without installing it on a hard drive, but for a toolbox, I think Linux/Ubuntu is the way to go.

  31. JNHN

    The information the Geeks provided has expanded my mind to new boundaries and in the future when my mind is up to I will provide more constructive comments about the use of flash drives.

  32. DidUReboot

    I cant get over how many geeks use an OS on their flash drive. Using a virtual machine on a flash stick offers great portability – but ultimately it will degrade your flash media due to the regular and rapid writing and re-writing of data. Flash media is designed for temporary storage of data. For this reason, you shouldn’t use a stick VM for any important purposes unless you regularly clone the data on it.

    Long term use of a portable virtual machine is best achieved with a portable hard disk drive.

  33. David


    You seem to lose sight of the fact that these are for PC diagnostics and not for “long term use.” I have a few USB drives used for this kind of thing periodically that are at least four or five years old and still work fine. The limited life of flash memory has also gotten much better over the past few years–else there would not be so many SSDs around making such an impact on the industry.

    There is no real substitute for a good set of recovery tools for folks who must do this periodically–which, truth be told, is most Windows users…although there too things have gotten better. As little as four years ago, the best advice I could get from true Windows gurus was to completely reformat and reinstall about every six months or so. Now, it’s not so bad–I wind up doing it about once a year these days simply to keep things as clean and high-performance as possible even if I haven’t had a machine compromise. Of course, about 95% of my work these days is in Linux anyway.

  34. Dissdent Penguin

    @DJ Rose

    Look for Easeus mini partition tool. It´s free and very easy to use. It can change also partition types, which can´t be done with GParted (Linx partition manager) as far as I know. You probably won´t be able to install ubuntu since 1 gig is not even close to enough (2 gigs minimum, around 7 or 8 for compact installation, around 15 if you want to be able to run it and update it comfortably, although you won´t be able to keep old kernel versions when it updates), so your best option would be getting a live cd to boot form your drive’s second partition. Take a look at xubuntu, which is a very compact version of Ubuntu and not very resource demanding.

    I have no idea how to do it if you want to keep your existing windows partition (It sounds like you do), but you could try:

    1. Backup your existing partition to another drive with easus mini tool before making any changes.
    2. Use minitool to reduce your existing partition an create a second partition (format it with fat32)
    3. Download xubuntu livecd
    4. (In windows) Extract the contents of live cd to new partition and look for an app named “makeboot.exe” in the files you just copied. Double-click on it FORM USB (DON’T RUN IT FROM YOUR HARD DRIVE BECAUSE IT WILL OVERWRITE YOUR BOOT SECTOR!!!!)
    5. Boot from your USB drive. It will go straight into linux
    6. Open a terminal and type: sudo apt-get install os-prober
    7. type: sudo update-grub

    if you can´t make it work, simply use easeus mini partiton tool to restore your backup partition image.

    I’m not by any means even close to a Linux guru, so there must be a simpler or better way to do it.

    Good luck!

  35. Fibonacci

    I love some of the ideas this question has raised but I have one thumb drive that serves a very different purpose. Several years ago I lost everything I owned in a flood. Ever since then I have kept a special folder handy with copies of important documents and it occurred to me that it would be easy to scan those onto an encrypted thumb drive as a kind of “bug out” folder in case I had to leave the house quickly (you never know when zombies may attack.!) Most of the files are encrypted, though some files are not, like a health surrogacy form and a living-will; both essential if you don’t want to finish your life as a vegetable. Everyone in the family knows where these files can be found, both on the thumb drive as well as an on-line storage facility.

  36. Brett Cupitt

    OK, I have not read every post right to the bottom (but most of the way) and have an idea that nobody has suggested. It lets you carry a lot more than a single memory stick-worth of data, and allows you to custom-organise your tools.
    OK, carry a blank stick – 8 or 16Gb would be good. Empty space often has many potential uses half way through some complex recovery. The idea of an old drive (and presumably cables) made by Colbaltqube had merit I thought.
    Rather, my idea is to carry multiple OS’s, and every support program you might think you may use in some distant universe. The idea is to carry a thumb drive case that has an SD slot instead of memory. They aren’t that uncommon; I have two. That means that you can use several SD cards to load up with different things, in logical groups. A Windows card; Ubuntu card, Antivirus card, etc…
    The aim of this exercise is not to save money, so yes, it is dearer than having a single flash drive. But some data loss is so great it cannot even be quantified. Label your SD cards with small labels printed in 7pt type (if you want it to look sexy), or label them 1 – =OR= have an index of what is in what card. The beauty is that you can carry different versions of some things. And sometimes this matters as much as oxygen!
    Cheap? No. Versatile? Yes Space? Effectively unlimited Convenience? Unparalled here
    And yes, both the SD card carrier and the SD cards have a write protect switch which I have set to ON and is turned off only if necessary – I want to know about any write-backs.
    Another thought. I have experienced some large capacity cards not talking to USB V1.0 or V1.1 ports. You might think of a file-list whereby a set of critical small tools be included on a small SD card should you ever be unlucky enough to hit this wall.
    And lastly, carry a spare powered 4 port USB hub in case it is physcically inconvenient to reach the sole port you can use (for whatever reason). Plug in the hub where convenient and re-connect whatever was there. This may save you some inconvenience.
    And finally (again) carry a set of basic tools, incl tamper-proof torx bits, amongst others AND some USB cables including gender benders. You never know when they will help save you. This column is about toolkits in the s/w sense, but so few material tools can make a huge difference. The whole lot can fit inside a nice pencil case, meter case, or custom case from electronics suppliers.

  37. tom

    i have all sorts on my stick, i have spotify for music at school (the dont let you download anything), swf player and a load off swfs, operating systems there just helpful when bad things happen, proxys, and important documents

    im the computer guy between all my friends so i help them with anything and i dont work in i.t at all its just handy to have

  38. shayne

    I’m surprised noone has mentioned SARDU yet. I use that multi ISO bootloader religiously.

  39. Kyle

    It looks like a lot of people have all the install files for windows, but I’m lost where can I get these? Does it matter if you have a install files that doen’t match with the key or vice versa (like retail, oem Dell or HP)?

    Example: Friend had his valid windows vista key (HP oem) but no disc. We wanted to do a fresh install but without having to pay HP $30 for it. I did check around with friends and family and i couldn’t locate a disc to borrow.

    HTG – any help here?

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