FAQ: Booting XP from a USB or Compact Flash Card
****Note - this is a FAQ in progress and may contain errors. All CF users, please feel free to correct and add as necessary!****
Are you interested in booting your computer from a solid state device such as a Compact Flash (CF) card? While there are MANY posts on this topic in the
Operating System Optimization forum, here is a link directly to the definitive post on the topic with step by step instructions from our very own Sfiorito:
A couple of quick FAQ's:
Does using a CF card make XP boot faster?
Your mileage may vary. http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...=cf+boot+speed
What is the advantage to booting from CF
Mostly, that your system is not tied to a mechanical disk drive. Disk drives can fail from vibration, heat, cold, shock. CF cards use less power as well.
Are there downsides to CF cards?
CF cards only support a limited number of writes (don't worry, it's "lots"), so you want to ensure that your XP install will write as little as possible to the card.
How does it work?
First, read the message link!
CF cards have a finite number of "writes" that can be made to them. This is the reason that XPe (embedded) is used to write the files to the card. First, MinLogon can optionally be used to help reduce boot times. Thenn a product called nLite is used to strip XP down to a bare minimum to fit on the card and EWF (Enhanced Write Filter) is used to reduce writes to the card. A procedure called HORM (Hibernate Once, Resume Many) is also used to reduce writes to the card.