The hidden Universal Windows 7 Install

ei_cfgremoved For those of you who stayed as far away from Vista as you could there was one thing about it that was one step up from Windows XP – the install DVD. Where with XP you had to have the install disk for your specific version Vista did away with that by having a Universal Install DVD.

What this meant was that all the different versions of Vista were shipped on one DVD and when you started the install it would ask which version you wanted to install. It was at this point after selecting it that you would enter in your serial number and carry on.

Well for all intents and purposes it would seem that Microsoft has had done away the Universal Install as nothing has been really said about the idea and when you start a Windows 7 install it doesn’t ask which version you want to install. Instead it just installs the version that is stated on the case.

However this isn’t the case. In fact the Windows 7 does come with all the different flavors of the operating system on it. What is also on the DVD is a small file: ei.cfg. It is this file that tells the DVD what version to install on boot up.

So what do you do if you want to have a real Universal Install DVD for Windows 7? Well you go and grab yourself a copy of ei.cfg Removal Utility.

You then run this file against the ISO of the Windows 7 you downloaded and it will remove the ei.cfg file and repack the ISO making it a Universal Install DVD and when you boot it up it will ask you which version you want to install and you supply the appropriate serial number for that version.

Now to make it clear this does not mean that you can install say Ultimate with a Home Pro serial number. This is just a way to create a Universal Install DVD for Windows 7.

hat tip and graphic via Addictive Tips