(Closed by E1-Beard-0) How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

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(Closed by E1-Beard-0) How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by E1-Beard-0 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:25 pm

Hello All, [I hope this is the correct Forum for this question, I believe the hardware issues are solved.]

Just recently my Windows 10 machine stopped working. The machine would post and take me to the login page, but no farther. I had read, somewhere in passing, that it was possible to mount a Win 10 system as an external drive in Linux, and thereby run Win 10. [Why? Because I want to!]

I thought that as I was fairly certain that the SSD from the defunct Win 10 laptop was still working, I would get an external drive enclosure and see if in fact I could mount and then run Win 10, so far I haven’t been able to achieve that goal.

I have tried to search, but haven’t been able to find instructions or information that pertains to this particular issue. I’ve found plenty of articles that talk of running Windows programs from with in Linux, or running Windows from within Linux, but nothing specific to running Windows as an external drive.

Any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

Here is what I know: File manager does see the external drive and gave it the name of OS. I can see the top-level of Windows folders, but the folders are all locked.

Here is a new addition to my grub file:

### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/30_os-prober ###
menuentry 'Windows Boot Manager (on /dev/sdb2)' --class windows --class os $menuentry_id_option 'osprober-efi-EE6C-C5AC' {
insmod part_gpt
insmod fat
set root='hd1,gpt2'
if [ x$feature_platform_search_hint = xy ]; then
search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root --hint-bios=hd1,gpt2 --hint-efi=hd1,gpt2 --hint-baremetal=ahci1,gpt2 EE6C-C5AC
search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set=root EE6C-C5AC
chainloader /efi/Microsoft/Boot/bootmgfw.efi
set timeout_style=menu
if [ "${timeout}" = 0 ]; then
set timeout=10
### END /etc/grub.d/30_os-prober ### <code>

Her is the result of running the inxi -Fxz command: [And yes, I did call my machine Bowser.]

bowser@Bowser:~$ inxi -Fxz
Host: Bowser Kernel: 4.15.0-58-generic x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: gcc
v: 7.4.0 Desktop: Xfce 4.12.3 Distro: Linux Mint 19.1 Tessa
base: Ubuntu 18.04 bionic
Type: Desktop System: Gigabyte product: Z370XP SLI v: N/A serial: <filter>
Mobo: Gigabyte model: Z370XP SLI-CF v: x.x serial: <filter>
UEFI: American Megatrends v: F8 date: 07/05/2018
Device-1: hidpp_battery_0 model: Logitech M570 charge: 90%
status: Discharging
Topology: 6-Core model: Intel Core i5-8600K bits: 64 type: MCP
arch: Kaby Lake rev: A L2 cache: 9216 KiB
flags: lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx bogomips: 43200
Speed: 800 MHz min/max: 800/4300 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 801 2: 800
3: 800 4: 800 5: 800 6: 800
Device-1: Intel vendor: Gigabyte driver: i915 v: kernel bus ID: 00:02.0
Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.19.6 driver: modesetting unloaded: fbdev,vesa
resolution: 1920x1080~60Hz
OpenGL: renderer: Mesa DRI Intel UHD Graphics 630 (Coffeelake 3x8 GT2)
v: 4.5 Mesa 19.0.8 direct render: Yes
Device-1: Intel 200 Series PCH HD Audio vendor: Gigabyte
driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel bus ID: 00:1f.3
Sound Server: ALSA v: k4.15.0-58-generic
Device-1: Intel Ethernet I219-V vendor: Gigabyte driver: e1000e v: 3.2.6-k
port: f040 bus ID: 00:1f.6
IF: eno1 state: up speed: 1000 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter>
IF-ID-1: tun0 state: unknown speed: 10 Mbps duplex: full mac: N/A
Local Storage: total: 817.89 GiB used: 167.82 GiB (20.5%)
ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: SK Hynix model: HFS500G32TND-N1A2A size: 465.76 GiB
ID-2: type: USB model: N/A size: 119.24 GiB
ID-3: /dev/sdc type: USB model: SABRENT SABRENT size: 232.89 GiB
ID-1: / size: 448.50 GiB used: 88.43 GiB (19.7%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/dm-1
ID-2: /boot size: 704.5 MiB used: 151.1 MiB (21.4%) fs: ext4
dev: /dev/sda2
ID-3: swap-1 size: 7.87 GiB used: 0 KiB (0.0%) fs: swap dev: /dev/dm-2
System Temperatures: cpu: 27.8 C mobo: 16.8 C
Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A
Processes: 251 Uptime: 58m Memory: 7.66 GiB used: 1004.8 MiB (12.8%)
Init: systemd runlevel: 5 Compilers: gcc: 7.4.0 Shell: bash v: 4.4.20
inxi: 3.0.27 <code>

In local storage above, I believe /dev/sdb is the external Win 10 drive.
/dev/sdc is another external ssd I’m using for back-ups, Sarbent is the name of the external enclosure manufacturer.

Please feel free to request any further information as you may find you have need of.

Thank you and respectfully yours, Massively ignorant
Last edited by E1-Beard-0 on Wed Aug 28, 2019 7:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by In2Blues » Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:06 am

I'm far from a Linux expert but I did find this article about running Win 10 from an external HD:

https://www.pcworld.com/article/3185777 ... drive.html

I'm not sure of your level of Linux experience or exactly what you want to achieve so I hope I don't insult you.

Theoretically you should be able to dual boot Win and Linux but I'm not sure how it will work on different drives. Of course, that means you can only use one OS at a time.

Linux will be able to read files from your Win system but the reverse may not be true (I did read that Microsoft is doing something with Linux but I don't trust them so it didn't interest me enough to find out exactly what they're doing).

I have Mint 19.1 Cinnamon and run Win 10 in Virtualbox because I need a couple of programs not available in Linux. It works great and I don't have to reboot to get back to Linux.

Hope this helps.
Linux Mint 19.1 Cinnamon 64-bit
Kernel: 4.15.0-52-generic
Intel Core i5-8400 CPU @ 2.80GHz x 6
Intel graphics

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by athi » Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:17 am

Mint Mate 19.1. Main rig is HP 800G2 I5 6500 16GB ram, 120GB boot drive, 2x3TB, 1x4TB data drives. Oldest rig is Mate 18.3 on Dell D620 with 32bits core duo.

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by RIH » Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:47 am

In the past I have run Mint on a SSD & Windows 10 from a hard disk in a dual boot system.
However I think the problem you have is that you have to install Windows first, so I don't believe it is possible to add a Windows hard drive to a Linux system & get it to work as dual boot.

The simple answer might be to just select which drive you boot from at startup by pressing whichever F key on your computer pulls up the boot sequence menu. Not a very elegant method however.. :D

The other simple alternative is (as already suggested) to boot only Mint & use a virtual box guest to run Windows. Your system looks like it has enough resources to do that well..

If you must dual boot then I think it gets a lot more complicated for you..
Aspire-TC-705 Kernel: 4.15.0-64-generic x86_64 bits: 64
compiler: gcc v: 7.3.0 Desktop: Cinnamon 4.2.3
Distro: Linux Mint 19.2

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by deepakdeshp » Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:15 am

+1 for dual boot and Windows virtual machine. If you are planning to power on the ext drive, it won't be suitable as ext drives aren't designed for that.
I have seen that in dual boot if Windows is installed last,boot-repair can correct it. I haven't tested it though. When trying this please backup your data first.
Please see https://askubuntu.com/questions/129058/ ... -dual-boot
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.

I am using Mint 19.2 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by RamBurner » Thu Aug 22, 2019 5:14 am

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by Spearmint2 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 8:17 am

Windows typically will run only on an PATA/SATA bus, and except for "windows on the go" it won't run from a USB bus. I don't know how it would act using an e-SATA connection, however it doesn't look promising.
All things go better with Mint. Mint julep, mint jelly, mint gum, candy mints, pillow mints, peppermint, chocolate mints, spearmint,....

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by E1-Beard-0 » Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:54 pm

Thank you to all of you who have taken the time to respond to my questions. I'd been busy with other matters and have not been back here to check for replies.

Due to the generosity of all the respondents, it appears that I have some research to do. I'll be back with results and or questions as things arise.

Again, allow me to express my thanks for all the efforts put forth.

Respectfully yours E1-Beard-0 [Formerly known as Massively ignorant.]

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Re: How to run Win 10 from an external drive.

Post by E1-Beard-0 » Wed Aug 28, 2019 7:30 pm

Thanks to all who have responded to this Post.

I've decided to concentrate on Oracle VituralBox, and to keep things clear I'm going to start a new thread on that subject.

Thank you and respectfully yours, E1-Beard-0 [The erstwhile Massively ignorant. {Don't think I'm any less ignorant solely due to a user name change.}]

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