Okay. Even if this process and idea is old but it is still tough to find a nice guide about it. So, I wrote it. For test purpose this will only contain Windows XP SP2 and Windows 7 SP1.
Create Multiboot Disk with Operating System and Tools
ISO images of the operating system or tools you want to keep on disk. For this example they are Windows XP SP2 and Windows 7. This can be easily created with Nero or any ISO tool from original Installation disk. Remember, that you must own a disk legally to make it’s one backup non-distributable copy.
Second thing you will need is an ISO tool. The customization and features I needed with the ease were present in Magic ISO Maker. Free version will do the job.
Third thing, obviously a blank CD or DVD depending on what you are going to add.
To avoid confusion, remember that the process is actually two part. One is creating a Main Image file consisting of needed OS or tools. In second the same image file is loaded with files from source and then burnt.
Fire up the Magic ISO software and you will be at home screen.
Select ‘Tools‘ from menu and then option ‘Make Multi-Boot Image‘
A new dialog will open where you can add the images.
Select ‘Add‘ which will result in opening of a ‘Add Boot Item‘ wizard. With this menu, you can also add extra Options to your DVD such as ‘Boot from Hard disk’, ‘Reboot’ etc. First let’s add the OS images. Select fist option and hit next.
On next dialog, you will get a sort of browse options. Select the one which is for you. In most cases, you will be holding an image file ‘*.iso‘ on your hard disk. So, select the third option and add your first image. I have added Windows XP image.
Next screen will appear when you will be able to add the description and Hot Key for this option. You can add any description just remember that you make it something related to Hot Key so you can select right thing from Bootloader at start-up.
Press finish to return to the Add Boot Item List box. You will see your first added image.
You will need to repeat the same process to add second image. Click ‘Add‘ proceed ahead and add the second image of Windows 7.
When you are done with all required images, save this image with ‘Save‘ option. Give it a name as you want,
Close the current screen and come back to home screen. Everything will be blank. Don’t panic.
Now, comes a little tricky part. You need to extract all Operating System ISO files which you have added to above main image file. You can use 7-zip extracter as it extracts everything without error. Then create a folder on desktop and copy all extracted files to this one folder.
CAUTION for XP: Only copy shown Selected files from XP image,
Come back to Home screen of Magic ISO Maker and don’t get irritated. We will need to open the created main image file.
Select ‘Bootable CD/DVD Image‘ from File menu and select second option ‘From multi-bootable image file‘.
After pressing OK, you will see that the home screen reappeared with three files in it,
Remember, the folder you created with all files from operating system images? You will now add all those files to this open image. Right click in open area below above files and select ‘Add files‘
Navigate to the directory and all those files so the final structure should look like below (if you have added only XP and Win 7).
If you notice; Blue ones are main 3 files, Red ones are XP and remaining are from Win 7 Image.
Now, select ‘Save As‘ from File menu and give it a name and save this image. Remember, to use a drive with ample of free space as the image size will depend on the added files which is here close to 3 GB.
This will take some time depending on the file size.
When all done, you will get an ISO file at the end. Now from home screen, select ‘Burn CD/DVD with ISO‘ from Tools menu. Make sure you have a required Blank CD/DVD in your drive. I have used a 4.7 GB DVD here.
Navigate to the last created ISO image file and start the burning process.
When done, put it in the system you want to test and you will see the boot menu when booted from CD/DVD.
Tired… but done!
Later on when I created other one I also added BartPE, Bootrepair Disk ISO and Fedora 17 Live. Everything just worked fine. You can also try on to make a full rescue disk.
Let me know comments or queries.