Windows XP Live CD's

Posted on 2006-06-02
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
Ok about a week ago our office started exploring the world of Knoppix and pondered the different IT uses for it (os repair, virus removal etc.).  Our excitement trailed off after we learned the pitfalls between Linux and NTFS.  So today one of us wondered if an XP live cd existed, which to an extent they do.  We found a few different "XP" live cds, most revolving around the Pre-Installation enviroment.

My question:  Which one of these versions are best?  Do these live xp cd's prove handy in tech jobs (virus removal, adware removal etc.)?  Are there any tips or problems we need to be aware of (besides EULA non-compliance).
**Please only answer the question if you have personally used the said CD's.**
Question by:hunterdnance
    LVL 95

    Accepted Solution

    Not sure which ones you evaluated... I'm only aware of two - one that is not generally available from Microsoft and one called BartPE - which I find TREMENDOUSLY useful.

    I incorporate the utilities and drivers from the Ultimate Boot CD for Windows to enhance my PE disk and include several utilities I have in a folder on it (including the old Windows NT4 and earlier file manager which I prefer over the included explorer replacement).

    BartPE - available from:

    Then be sure to get BOTH the driver add on and the software add on from: (Overview) (direct downloads page link)
    LVL 6

    Expert Comment

    I use Qtparted on Knoppix for resizing ntfs partitions as a legal alternative to Partition Magic.

    I agree with leew, BartPE is a great utility.

    Winternals ERD Commander 2005 (part of the Administrator's Pak) is based on WinPE, and provides advanced features such as partition recovery, file recovery, and System Restore. It costs a bit, but is definitely worth it if you ever have a need for it.

    Author Comment

    Points are yours champ, but if you would...Can you tell us a few examples of times you have used the Live Cd, as in why did you have to or choose to use it?

    LVL 95

    Expert Comment

    by:Lee W, MVP
    I have used BartPE several times to:

    *access dead systems and copy of data.
    *rename the existing WINDOWS, PROGRAM FILES, DOCUMENTS AND SETTINGS folders so that I could reinstall a system fresh without formatting the drive
    *Scan for viruses, remove spyware
    *Edit the registry of a spyware infected machine using the tools provided by the supplemental Ultimate Boot CD for Windows
    *Recover partitions on my own PC using a tool I bought, Partition Table Doctor, and included in a seperate folder on the CD.
    *Replace bad drivers by using the File Manager.

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