To get started let’s review the tools that are needed
1. Stock Windows 8 32-bit or 64-bit ISO image.
- WinRAR or other utility that can extract the contents of an ISO image to a directory.
Install the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit for Windows 8. Free download from Microsoft. More details available here. Upon install you only need the Deployment Tools option checked.
Once all the prerequisites are completed, follow these steps:
- Use WinRAR or another tool to extract the contents of your ISO file to a folder. For this article I suggest using C:Win8ISO. I will assume that is where the files are for the remainder of this article. Using WinRAR, you can extract the files in the ISO by just right clicking on the ISO file and selecting Extract Files.
Next we need to add a special EI.CFG file to the C:Win8ISOSources directory. You can download a pre-modified file here or simply create a file called EI.CFG with the contents of:
Once you have the file make sure you copy it to C:Win8ISOSources.
- Now it is time to regenerate the ISO file but first we need to create a new folder called Win8Temp at the root of C: to hold the new ISO file.
Open the Start Screen and search for “Deployment and Imaging Tools” and run the special command prompt environment.
Run the following command:
oscdimg.exe -l CustomWin8 -m -u2 -b C:Win8ISObootetfsboot.com C:Win8ISO C:Win8Tempwin8.iso
- Burn or mount the ISO file in a virtual machine and you will be able to install Windows 8 without a product key and also select the standard or pro edition.