How to Make a Bootable Vista Disk

You can create a Windows Vista boot disk to access your hard drive and run diagnostic tools to troubleshoot and repair your computer on occasions when your computer will not boot to Windows Vista, or Vista is corrupted or malfunctioning.

Disk in the drive
credit: Disk in the drive image by Sergey Galushko from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

The simplest way to create a Vista boot disk is to use software designed to build preinstalled environments. A preinstalled environment is essentially a light-weight variant of an operating system. It is ideal for troubleshooting.

Step

Download and extract Winbuilder to your local disk ("C:"). Do not extract the contents to a user folder, such as "My Documents."

Step

Run Winbuilder, then click the "Download" tab. Check the "VistaPE v.11" box. Uncheck the "Optional," "VistaPE v.12" and "LiveXP" boxes.

Step

Click the "Servers" tab, then click the chain link icon to add a new server. Type "vistape.net/archive" into the dialogue box, then press "Enter" or click "OK."

Step

Return to the "Main" tab, then click "Download." Restart WinBuilder if the program does not restart automatically.

Step

Click the "Scripts" tab, then click the plus sign next to "VistaPE MultiBoot v.11." Click the "Main Configuration" option. Do not uncheck the box. If your monitor is able to display resolutions higher than 800 by 600, click the "Screen Resolution" drop-down box and click the "1024x768" option.

Step

Click "Extended Configuration." Again, do not uncheck the box. Check the "Mount folder with programs as drive Y:" box.

Step

Click the plus sign next to "Finalize." Check the "7-Create ISO" box.

Step

Insert your Windows Vista DVD into your DVD drive. Then, click the "Paths" tab. Click the "Work directories" tab, then click the "VistaPE MultiBoot v.11" protect, if it is not already selected.

Step

Click the folder icon next the blank "Source directory" box. Select your Windows DVD from the list of drives, then click "OK."

Step

Click the "Play" button to create an ISO copy of your Windows Vista PE build. If a dialog box appears asking you whether you want to install the wimfltr.sys driver, click "OK."

Step

Once WinBuilder has finished creating your Windows Vista build, click the "Log" tab. If any items appear in the "Warnings" section, review the log to find out how to fix the error, if necessary.

Step

Download and install ImgBurn to your computer. ImgBurn is free software that can burn your Windows Vista PE ISO to a blank CD or DVD.

Step

Run ImgBurn. Insert a blank CD or DVD into an empty drive. Click the "Destination" drop-down, then click the CD or DVD drive containing the removable media.

Step

Click "File," then click "Browse." Find your "ISO" folder, located in the "WinBuilder" folder. Double-click the ISO file to open it.

Step

Click the "Burn ISO" button. ImgBurn will convert your CD or DVD into a bootable Windows Vista disk. Click "OK" once the program has finished burning the contents to the removable media.