How to boot Windows Server from an external SATA on a laptop running Windows 7 RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have an HP dv7 laptop, 64 bit, with an eSATA port, running Windows 7.  I also have a copy of Windows Server 2008 R2 on dvd and a Key, but this question could just as well appy to several versions of Windows Server.  Obviously, the laptop cannot take another hard disk, but the external eSATA should suffice.

    I want to plug-in a new eSATA hard disk, load Windows Server there, and have the option to boot either Windows 7 for my regular work or Windows Server for testing.  I'd like to verify my proposed method against some standard, or find a reference to a good method.  The problem is: needle in a haystack:  the web has millions of suggestions for bootable XP/Vista on a USB thumb drive, but I find none specifically for a bootable eSATA on Windows 7, which I expect to be simpler.

    To create a bootable Windows Server on the eSATA hard drive, I plan two steps. 

    (1) Change Windows 7 (or the BIOS) boot order to CD/DVD, external disk, and C:\.  I think there is a special Windows 7 utility for this function. 

    (2) Plug in the eSATA hard drive, put the Windows Server dvd in the tray, and reboot.  The dvd should boot first to the dvd, and ask to install Windows Server, which I will install on the eSATA hard drive.  Then remove the dvd from the tray. 

    Thereafter, if the eSATA drive is connected, the system boots to Windows Server; otherwise, it boots to Windows 7.

    Anybody do something similar, or know a reference specifically for Windows Server on an external eSATA drive.

    Tuesday, January 12, 2010 9:38 PM


  • Hi,


    We don’t support to boot Windows Server from an external hard disk.


    However, you may perform the following suggestions:


    1. Dual boot.


    Partition another partition, install Windows Server 2008 R2 on it, then you will have a dual boot for either Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008.


    2. Native Boot.


    Install Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2 in a VHD file, make a native boot.


    Understanding Virtual Hard Disks with Native Boot


    3. Use Virtual Machine


    Install Windows Server 2008 on the laptop, create a VM for Windows 7.



    Best Regards,

    Vincent Hu


    Thursday, January 14, 2010 7:55 AM