Which versions of Windows 10 can be installed on a VHD

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  1. ricardobohner's Avatar
    Posts : 398
    Windows 10
       #1

    Which versions of Windows 10 can be installed on a VHD


    Which versions of Windows 10 allow to be installed on a Virtual Hard Drive (VHD). I know on Windows 7 it used to be Ultimate and Enterprise but I don't know on Windows 10...
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  2. AddRAM's Avatar
    Posts : 4,426
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       #2

    I would think you could install Home or Pro no problem.

    Have you tried ?
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  3. Kari's Avatar
    Posts : 17,607
    Windows 10 Pro
       #3

    ricardobohner said:
    Which versions of Windows 10 allow to be installed on a Virtual Hard Drive (VHD). I know on Windows 7 it used to be Ultimate and Enterprise but I don't know on Windows 10...
    If you mean native boot VHD, it must be PRO, Education, or Enterprise edition. Home and Single Language editions can not be booted in native boot.

    Kari
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  4. cereberus's Avatar
    Posts : 12,608
    Windows10
       #4

    Kari said:
    If you mean native boot VHD, it must be PRO, Education, or Enterprise edition. Home and Single Language editions can not be booted in native boot.

    Kari
    Hi @Kari,

    I do not know why you think this as you can most certainly boot W10 Home natively in a VHD file.

    I have done this many times, but just did a test from scratch to cross check.

    Picture 1 shows VHD I created

    Picture 2 shows adding a boot entry

    Picture 3 shows it is W10 home when booted into it.

    I also tested W10 SL and that works as well.

    Best regards

    M.


    Which versions of Windows 10 can be installed on a VHD-image.png

    Which versions of Windows 10 can be installed on a VHD-image.png

    Which versions of Windows 10 can be installed on a VHD-image.png
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  5. ricardobohner's Avatar
    Posts : 398
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #5

    Thanks everybody for the info. @cereberus can you explain how exactly you got that Windows Home \ Single Language on the VHD. Cause in my test (I actually didn't try with Windows 10 yet I tried Windows 8.1 Pro by booting with a USB containing the installation files and on the part where you choose where to install Windows I pressed Shift + F10 to open a command prompt and created and attached a VHD by using diskpart.

    Then when I tried to install Windows on the VHD that showed as non allocated space I got an error message stating that Windows can't be installed there.

    So I tried the same thing except with Windows 7 Ultimate and this time it worked. Very interested to know how you installed Windows 10 home there did you copy the files from an existing installation and make it bootable with the bcdboot g:\windows /p /d or did you install it from scratch?
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  6. Kari's Avatar
    Posts : 17,607
    Windows 10 Pro
       #6

    cereberus said:
    Hi @Kari,

    I do not know why you think this as you can most certainly boot W10 Home natively in a VHD file.
    I must apologize. It must then be on my end, but I have never managed to get Home edition to boot from VHD. Must test more, when I have time.

    Kari
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  7. cereberus's Avatar
    Posts : 12,608
    Windows10
       #7

    Kari said:
    I must apologize. It must then be on my end, but I have never managed to get Home edition to boot from VHD. Must test more, when I have time.

    Kari
    It may depend how you do it. If I just take standard iso and install W10 in HyperV and then use vhd addingva boot entry, it will not boot as my laptop needs (as minimum) optane drivers to boot on host. So I have to inject optane drivers into iso before installing on HyperV.

    I am sure you know this, but when you inject drivers into a standard iso, they are only injected for the SKU that you select. So you may need to inject more than once. It took me a while before I realised this and could not boot home when I could boot pro (as pro waa the sku I selected when injecting drivers).

    Of course, this may not be your issue but just in case.
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  8. cereberus's Avatar
    Posts : 12,608
    Windows10
       #8

    ricardobohner said:
    Thanks everybody for the info. @cereberus can you explain how exactly you got that Windows Home \ Single Language on the VHD. Cause in my test (I actually didn't try with Windows 10 yet I tried Windows 8.1 Pro by booting with a USB containing the installation files and on the part where you choose where to install Windows I pressed Shift + F10 to open a command prompt and created and attached a VHD by using diskpart.

    Then when I tried to install Windows on the VHD that showed as non allocated space I got an error message stating that Windows can't be installed there.

    So I tried the same thing except with Windows 7 Ultimate and this time it worked. Very interested to know how you installed Windows 10 home there did you copy the files from an existing installation and make it bootable with the bcdboot g:\windows /p /d or did you install it from scratch?
    I have done it either way.

    I sometimes just create a vhdx file (on a different drive from C drive) and clone the host drive to the VHD using Macrium Reflect. Then I just create boot entry.

    I generally clean install to a vhd using Hyper-V but you can boot from a windows installation usb drive, press shift+f10 at first screen yo get to command prompt, create or add vhd using diskpart, close down commend prompt and carry on installtion. However using Hyper-V is easier and you are sure all correct partitions are on vhd to allow booting in Hyper-V. I only use gen 2.
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  9. ricardobohner's Avatar
    Posts : 398
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #9

    Oh, good to know.

    I'm not very familiar with hyper-V in terms of virtual machines I use Vmware Workstation. Also not familiar with SKU and driver injection but I will try to install a Windows 10 Home on a VHD and posting the results.

    Would a virtual machine installed with hyper-V be based on real hardware rather than simulated hardware?

    UPDATE: Surprisingly I was able to install Windows 10 Single Language on a VHD. On earlier versions this was only possible in Ultimate \ Enterprise versions. Good to know that you can install Windows 10 home on a VHD...
    Last edited by ricardobohner; 05 Oct 2021 at 09:32.
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  10. jimbo45's Avatar
    Posts : 11,007
    Windows / Linux : Arch Linux
       #10

    ricardobohner said:
    Which versions of Windows 10 allow to be installed on a Virtual Hard Drive (VHD). I know on Windows 7 it used to be Ultimate and Enterprise but I don't know on Windows 10...
    I can't think of ANY version of Windows -- even as far back as Windows 95 that can't be installed on a vhd. Of course your CPU and other hardware must be capable of supporting the VM in question -- but it's even possible (providing your CPU is 64 bit capable) to install a 64 Bit OS on a 32 bit running physical OS -- Many times I got a W7 x-64 VM running on an XP installed machine. !!

    (OK limits of course - both GUEST and HOST combined are limited to 4GB RAM however much physical RAM is in the system).

    I assume that people are using some VM software rather than directly trying to boot a VHD via ViBoot etc.-- if that's not true and people want to boot directly from a VHD such as via a mechanism like ViBoot then just ignore this post.

    Cheers
    jimbo
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