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Add a VHD to Windows 7 boot menu

May 24, 2011

With the arrival of Windows 7, October 2009, I stopped using VMWare or Virtual Box. Don’t get me wrong, they are fantastic tools to play with virtual machines, but as a SharePoint developer, I need at least 4GB of memory and a Core 2 Duo CPU and Windows 7 allows you to boot from a VHD.

Booting from VHDs means booting the machine as if running from primary hard disk so your operating system will leverage all the hardware available in your system like Graphics, Wireless, USB etc. which is not possible in most of the virtual environment.

You can add a VHD to boot menu using Command Prompt:

  1. Copy default entry to create a new entry with a new GUID.
    bcdedit /copy {default} /d “SharePoint Foundation 2010”
  2. Set the new entry to the vhd and set as bootable.
    bcdedit /set {guid} device vhd=[locate]\vhd\sharepointfoundation2010.vhd
    bcdedit /set {guid} osdevice vhd=[locate]\vhd\sharepointfoundation2010.vhd

or if you are lazy as I am, you can always use EasyBCD from NeoSmart Technologies.

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