Install Windows 10 Tech Preview in a Bootable VHD

In the following examples, I will show you how to install Windows 10 Technical Preview in a Virtual Hard Disk (VHD, VHDX) on a unformatted hard disk and how to install Windows 10 Technical Preview in a VHD with Windows 8.1 as a dual boot.

Method 1 – Installing Windows 10 TP in a Bootable VHD Using a Unformatted Hard Drive

I am assuming there is only 1 Hard Drive in your system for this example. If you have more than one hard drive then drive numbers may be different than my example. In this example, I am using an Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI).

  1. Boot your computer using your Bootable Media (DVD or USB media).
  2. At the Install screen, press SHIFT+F10 to access the Command Window.

    Windows 10 Install

  3. Type diskpart.

    Windows 10 Diskpart

     

  4. Type list disk.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - List Disk

     

  5. Select the disk you want to use, type select disk 0 where 0 is the disk number.

    CAUTION

    Selecting the wrong disk will cause data to be lost.

     

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Select Disk

  6. Type clean.

    CAUTION

    This will remove all partitions on the selected disk causing data lost.

     

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Clean

  7. Type convert gpt.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Convert GPT

  8. Type create partition primary offset=420479
    or
    create partition primary size=60000 offset=420479.

    NOTE

    Where 60000 represents 60GB. You can enter your preferred partition size here to hold the VHD file.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Create Partition

  9. Type format fs=NTFS quick.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Format

     

  10. Type assign letter=W.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Assign

     

  11. Type exit.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Exit

     

  12. Type mkdir w:\vdisk.

    Windows 10. - Create Directory

     

  13. Type diskpart.

    Windows 10 Diskpart

     

  14. Type create vdisk file=”w:\vdisk\windows10.vhdx” maximum=80000 type=expandable.

    NOTE

    Where 80000 represents 80GB. You can enter your preferred partition size here to hold Windows as long as it does not exceed the partition size you created earlier.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Create Virtual Disk

  15. Type attach vdisk.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Attach Viryual Disk

     

  16. Type exit.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Exit

     

  17. Close the Command Window.
  18. Click Install Now.
  19. Select Custom: Install Windows only.

    Windows 10 - Setup - Clean Install

     

  20. Select Drive 1.

    NOTE

    Drive 1 is the Virtual Hard Disk.

    Windows 10 - Setup- Select Drive

  21. Click Next to install Windows and confirm the new partitions.

    Windows 10 - Setup - Confirm

     

  22. Windows is now installing the operating system.

    Windows 10- Setup - Installing

Method 2 – Installing Windows 10 TP in a Bootable VHD with Windows 8.1 (Dual Boot)

I am assuming there is only 1 Hard Drive in your system for this example. If you have more than one hard drive then drive numbers may be different than my example. In this example, I am using an Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) based computer.

  1. While running Windows 8.1, right click the Windows Logo to select Computer Management.

    Windows 8.1 - Open Computer Management

  2. Select Disk Management with the Computer Management snap-in.
     

    Windows 8.1 - Select Disk Management

     

  3. In the Actions Menu, click More Actions to select Create VHD.
     

    Windows 8.1 - Disk Management - Create VHD

     

  4. Enter the location for the newly created VHD, the size of the virtual hard disk, the type of the VHD, and dynamically expanding.

    Windows 8.1 - Disk Management - Create VHD

     

  5. Exit Computer Management.
  6. Insert your Windows 10 Bootable Media (DVD or USB media) and do not run the Setup.
  7. Open the Settings Charm, refer to "Opening the Settings Charm – Windows 8.1", to select Change PC Settings.

    Windows 8.1 - Setting Charms - PC Settings

  8. Select Update and Recovery in PC Settings.

    Windows 8.1 - PC Settings - Update and Recovery

     

  9. Select Recovery in the Update and Recovery section.

    Windows 8.1 - PC Settings - Recovery

     

  10. Select Restart Now under the Advanced startup in the Recovery section.

    Windows 8.1 - PC Settings - Advance Startup

     

  11. Select Use a device in the Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE).

    Windows 8.1 - Windows RE - Use Device

     

  12. Select your Windows 10 Bootable Media to boot from the media.
  13. At the Install screen, press SHIFT+F10 to access the Command Window.

    Windows 10 Install

  14. Type diskpart.

    Windows 10 Diskpart

     

  15. Type list volume to find the drive letter where Windows 8.1 is installed since I created the VHD in the Windows 8.1 partition.

    NOTE

    In my example,  the Windows 8.1 partition is Volume 1 which is Drive C.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - List Volume

  16. Type select vdisk file="c:\vdisks\windows10.vhdx".

    NOTE

    Your file path may be different depending on the your VHD location and name.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Select vDisk

  17. Type attach vdisk.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Attach Virtual Disk

     

  18. Type exit.

    Windows 10 - Diskpart - Exit

     

  19. Close the Command Window.
  20. Click Install Now.
  21. Select Custom: Install Windows only.

    Windows 10 - Setup - Clean Install

     

  22. Select Drive 1.

    NOTE

    Drive 1 is the Virtual Hard Disk.

    Windows 10 - Setup - Select Drive

  23. Windows is now installing the operating system.

    Windows 10 - Setup - Installing

Platforms Tested

  • Microsoft Windows 8.1
  • Microsoft Windows 10
Related Articles

Version 1.1
Edited: Oct 7, 2014

Determine if Windows 8.1 is 64-bit (x64) or 32-bit (x86)

Most, if not all, computers sold at Big Box stores have Windows 8.1 64-bit preinstalled. But to make sure you are running Windows 8.1 64-bit or 32-bit then follow these steps.

Determining if Windows 8.1 is 64-bit or 32-bit

  1. Open the Settings Charm. Refer to “Opening the Settings Charms – Windows 8.1”.
  2. Tap or Click Change PC Settings.

    Select PC Settings - Windows 8.1

  3. Select PC and Device.

    Select PC And Devices - Windows 8.1

  4. Select PC Info.

    Select PC Info - Windows 8.1

  5. Look at System Type. This will tell you if you are running Windows 8.1 64-bit or Windows 8.1 32-bit.

    PC Info - Windows 8.1 

Related Articles

Opening the Settings Charm – Windows 8.1

The Settings Charm in Windows 8.1 contains Control PanelPersonalization settings, PC Information, Help, Internet access, Volume controls, Brightness, Notifications, Power Options,  Keyboard, and PC Settings.

Settings Charms - Windows 8.1

To Open the Settings Charm

Keyboard Users

  1. Move the mouse to the lower right corner of the screen to open the Charms.

    Keyboard Tip

    Pressing Winkey+C on your keyboard will open the Charms.

  2. Click on Settings.

    Select Settings Charm - Windows 8.1

Touch Users

  1. Swipe from the right side of the screen to open the Charms.
  2. Tap Settings.

    Select Settings Charm - Windows 8.1 

Opening Windows 7 Task Scheduler

Windows 7 Task Scheduler is a very powerful tool that lets users create repetitive tasks. Standard Users can create tasks that affects their user account and files. Creating and/or modifying system tasks will require administrative privileges.

Some simple tasks an user can create and perform are:

  • disk cleanup tasks
  • simple popup reminders
  • opening programs at specific times

Open an Elevated Task Scheduler

  1. Click on the Start Orb button to open the Start Menu. Refer to Image below.

    Opening the Start Menu in Windows 7

  2. Type the following in the Search programs and files box. Refer to Image below.

    Task Scheduler

  3. Right-click Task Scheduler in the Start Menu results to select Run as administrator to open Windows 7 Task Scheduler with elevation. Refer to Image below.

  4. Provide credentials if prompted.

Open Task Scheduler without Elevation

  1. Click on the Start Orb button to open the Start Menu. Refer to Image below.

    Opening the Start Menu in Windows 7

  2. Type the following in the Search programs and files box. Refer to Image below.

    Task Schedule

  3. Click Task Scheduler in the Start Menu results to open Windows 7 Task Scheduler without elevation. Refer to Image below.

Platforms Tested

  • Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate Edition
Related Articles

Version 1.3
Edited: April 11, 2014

Enabling Windows 7 Task Scheduler History

Windows 7 Task Scheduler history is disabled by default out-of-the-box and you may want to enable the history feature.

Enabling History for Task Scheduler

  1. Open an elevated Task Scheduler, refer to “Opening Windows 7 Task Scheduler” blog post.
  2. In the Actions pane, click Enable All Tasks History.

    Enabling Windows 7 Task Scheduler History

Platforms Tested

  • Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate Edition
Related Articles

Version 1.3
Edited: April 12, 2014

Checking for Windows 7 Updates using Windows Updates

To check for Windows Updates manually in Windows 7 please follow the steps:

  1. Click on the Start button to open the Start Menu. Refer to Image below.

    Opening the Start Menu in Windows 7

  2. Click on All Programs in the Start Menu to expand the All Programs list. Refer to Image below.

  3. Locate and click Windows Update within the Start Menu. Refer to Image below.

  4. The Windows Update window will open and should look similar to the image below.

  5. Click on Check for updates in the Windows Update window. Refer to Image below.

  6. When Windows Update has finished scanning your system then you will have the opportunity to select the updates you want to install for Windows 7 and other Microsoft products.

Version 1.3
Edited: April 11, 2014

How to perform a Windows XP Repair Install if Internet Explorer 7 or 8 Installed

In this blog post I will describe how to perform a Repair Install for Windows XP if Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is installed.

Uninstall Internet Explorer before performing a Repair Install

One should try to uninstall Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 before attempting a repair installation of Windows XP. There are two methods you can use, one is using the Add / Remove Programs applet and the other is using the Recovery Console if you cannot uninstall Internet Explorer by using the Add / Remove Programs applet.

Method One – Add / Remove Programs

  1. Click Start then Run.
  2. Type appwiz.cpl in the Run dialog box.
  3. Press ENTER on your keyboard.

    NOTE

    The Add / Remove Programs applet should open.

  4. If Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is listed then click the Remove button.

Method Two – Recovery Console

  1. Start the computer in the Recovery Console, refer to “How to Start the Windows XP Recovery Console” blog post for instructions.
    • Windows Internet Explorer 8
      1. Type CD ie8\spuninst.
      2. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
      3. Type batch spuninst.txt.
      4. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
    • Windows Internet Explorer 7
      1. Type CD ie7\spuninst.
      2. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
      3. Type batch spuninst.txt.
      4. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
  2. Type EXIT on your keyboard to restart the computer.

Uninstalling Internet Explorer if a Repair Install of Windows XP has been Performed

If you have performed a Repair Install for Windows XP and Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is installed then Internet Explorer may not function or function correctly. You will need to uninstall Internet Explorer using one of the described scenarios.

Check What Service Pack is Installed after a Repair Install

  1. Click Start then Run.
  2. Type winver in the Run dialog box.
  3. Press ENTER on your keyboard.

    NOTE

    In the About Box, the Service Pack level for Windows XP will be listed. If there is no Service Pack listed then Windows XP has no Service Pack installed.

If Service Pack 2 or Service Pack 3 is Installed

  1. Click Start then Run.
  2. Type appwiz.cpl in the Run dialog box.
  3. Press ENTER on your keyboard.

    NOTE

    The Add / Remove Programs applet should open.

  4. If Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is listed then click the Remove button.

    If Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is not listed in the Add / Remove Programs applet then follow the appropriate directions.

    1. Start the computer in the Recovery Console, refer to “How to Start the Windows XP Recovery Console” blog post for instructions.
      • Windows Internet Explorer 8
        1. Type CD ie8\spuninst.
        2. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
        3. Type batch spuninst.txt.
        4. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
      • Windows Internet Explorer 7
        1. Type CD ie7\spuninst.
        2. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
        3. Type batch spuninst.txt.
        4. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
    2. Type EXIT on your keyboard to restart the computer.

If Service Pack 2 or Service Pack 3 is not Installed

  1. Click Start then Run.
  2. Type appwiz.cpl on your keyboard.
  3. Press ENTER on your keyboard

    NOTE

    The Add / Remove Programs applet should open.

  4. If Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is listed then click the Remove button.

    If Windows Internet Explorer 7 or Windows Internet Explorer 8 is not listed in the Add / Remove Programs applet then follow the appropriate directions.

    1. Start the computer in the Recovery Console, refer to “How to Start the Windows XP Recovery Console” blog post for instructions.
      • Windows Internet Explorer 8
        1. Type CD \Windows\ie8\spuninst.
        2. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
        3. Type batch spuninst.txt.
        4. Press ENTER on your keyboard
      • Windows Internet Explorer 7
        1. Type CD \Windows\ie7\spuninst.
        2. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
        3. Type batch spuninst.txt.
        4. Press ENTER on your keyboard.
    2. Type EXIT on your keyboard to restart the computer.

Platforms Tested

  • Microsoft Windows XP Editions

Related Articles

Version 1.1
Edited: May 17, 2012