How to Make a Bootable Vista Disk

By Ruri Ranbe

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.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.

Things You'll Need

  • Blank CD or DVD
  • Windows Vista Install CD
  • Working computer or laptop

Step 1

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

Step 2

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

Step 3

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

Step 4

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

Step 5

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 6

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

Step 7

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

Step 8

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 9

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

Step 10

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 11

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 12

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 13

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 14

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

Step 15

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.

Tips & Warnings

  • If an error occurs during build creation, informing you that the file "bcdedit.exe" could not be found, click "Start," then "Search." Type "bcdedit.exe" into the search window, then press enter. After search locates the file, copy it to the location displayed in the error message.
  • You must be the legal owner of a licensed copy of Windows Vista to copy the CD.