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Best Portable apps suite for an USB flash drive?

StormwatcherStormwatcher BleghBlughRegistered User regular
I remember reading about several options of portable app suites, dunno if it was here. I wanted to make a cool "swiss-army-knife-for-geeks" for myself, and I wanna try several of the many portable app combos floating about.

Any good suggestions? Experiences?

Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
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    ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I haven't installed PortableApps in a while, since I cleared my thumbdrive to install Win7, but I usually keep Firefox, Foxit, ClamAV, and the OpenOffice apps on there. I had a few others and I can't recall what they are off the top of my head right now at work, but those were the essentials so I could go to any PC and work on any document I needed to.

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    General_WinGeneral_Win Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I recently made an amazing boot key!

    How-To Create a WinPE USB Key Using Win7 AIK

    Prerequisites

    Download, burn and install the Windows 7 Automated Installation Kit: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=696dd665-9f76-4177-a811-39c26d3b3b34&displaylang=en
    These tools will of need to be run in Windows 7.

    Setting up a Windows PE build environment
    Click Start, point to All Programs, point to Windows AIK, right-click Deployment Tools Command Prompt, and then select Run as administrator. This command prompt sets environment variables to point to all the necessary tools.

    For all these commands to work, you’ll need to be using the Deployment Tools Command Prompt.

    In the command prompt navigate to c:\
    Then type in the following:
    copype.cmd x86 c:\winpe_x86
    Running the script creates the following directory structure and copies all of the necessary files.
    c:\Winpe_x86
    c:\Winpe_x86\ISO
    c:\Winpe_x86\Mount
    It Copies the base image (Winpe.wim) into the \Winpe_x86\ISO\sources folder, and rename the file to Boot.wim.

    Creating the USB Key

    At a command prompt, use Diskpart to format the USB key as FAT32 or NTFS spanning the entire key, and set the partition as active. For example:
    diskpart
    select disk 1
    clean
    create partition primary
    select partition 1
    active
    format quick fs=ntfs
    assign
    exit

    The example above assumes Disk 1 is the USB key. The command list disk displays all the attached disks.
    Then proceed to copy the contents over to the USB key.
    xcopy C:\winpe_x86\iso\*.* /e F:\
    where C is the letter of your technician computer hard disk, and F is the letter of your USB key.
    At this point, the key is bootable.

    Adding Files and Programs to the PE

    First you need to mount the winpe.wim file.
    Dism /mount-wim /wimfile:c:\winpe_x86\winpe.wim /index:1 /mountdir:c:\winpe_x86\mount
    This mounts the file found at c:\winpe_x86\winpe.wim to c:\winpe_x86\mount.

    At c:\winpe_x86\mount you can navigate the folder and mess around as you see fit.

    Above is the expanded winpe.wim image. I created the Tools and Downloads folder.
    Here you can add anything you want to these folders and they will be accessible once you boot into the WinPE environment.
    A few examples of programs you can add are found here http://portableapps.com/apps and here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_portable_software.

    Once you added the files you want you have to unmount the image from the mount folder.
    dism /unmount-wim /mountdir:c:\winpe_x86\mount /commit

    You’ll need to copy the winpe.wim file located in the winpe_x86 folder to winpe_x86\iso\sources. You’ll have to delete the boot.wim and rename winpe.wim to boot.wim.
    Then copy the files over to your USB key.
    xcopy C:\winpe_x86\iso\*.* /e F:\

    Tips
    If you have problems mounting or unmounting the image try the following command:
    Dism /cleanup-wim

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    General_WinGeneral_Win Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    The best part of using WinPE boot OS is that the new one is based off Windows 7 and it has TONS of default drivers for detecting all the annoying drivers for things like: network cards and SATA stuff.

    Plus you can add drivers to it live, although I haven't looked into how to do that.

    Plus you can plug in a usb hard drive after it boots and it auto detects.

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