Free ERD Commander Download for Windows XP – (30 day Trial Version): Follow the instructions below to remove the 30 day time-limit using a utility supplied with the trial version.
This gives you a full, free working version of ERD Commander for Windows XP with no time-limit!
- See also Using ERD Commander for Windows XP boot your computer with the ERD Commander Boot Disk
- See also ERD Commander for Vista and Windows 7 – instructional videos at the bottom of the page
- See also Download ERD Commander for Vista and Windows 7 through Microsoft TechNet Subscription
- See also Create an ERD Commander Bootable USB Flash Drive
- See also Free Download Windows 7 – Create a Windows 7 Installation DVD or USB Flash Drive
- See also Free Download Hirens Boot CD ISO – Create a Bootable USB Flash Drive
The Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT ) contains a trial version of ERD Commander (also known as ERD 50 – and very similar to Winternals ERD Commander 2003) which “Provides utilities and wizards that will help you to perform system diagnosis and repair procedures, such as recovering data, disabling problematic drivers, and removing hotfixes”
ERD Commander was orginally available as Winternals ERD Commander 2005 – part of the Winternals Admin Pack. But since Winternals was bought by Microsoft in 2006, ERD Commander is no longer an over-the-counter product available to the general public.
ERD Commander is a very powerful tool. It comes in the form of an ERD Commander ISO file which is burned to a CD which is a diagnostic and recovery boot disk for Windows XP. This is one of the most useful PC diagnostic tools I have ever used.
The ERD Commander boot disc can be used to perform the following tasks through the ERD Commander Boot Media Wizard:
- ERD Registry editor: edit or restore Windows registry
- Run System Restore – to restore the system to a bootable state
- Diagnose and fix problems preventing the system from booting
- ERD Commander administrator password reset with Locksmith (reset or change the password without knowing the administrator’s password) – great if you’re locked out
- Crash Analyzer: analyze crash dumps
- File Restore: Restore deleted files
- ERD Commander fix MBR – Disk Commander: Repair volumes, master boot record, partitions
- Disk Wipe: Erase data from hard disk
- Computer Management: System Information, Autoruns (configure autostarting applications), Event Viewer, Disk Management (format, manage partitions, etc.), Services and Drivers (enable, disable, etc.)
- Explorer: Browse the hard drive,
- Move data from the hard drive onto a USB memory key (plug in the key before booting the system with ERD)
- Solution Wizard : Choose the proper repair tool
- TCP/IP Config: Display and set TCP/IP configuration
- Hotfix Uninstall: uninstall hotfixes
- SFC Scan: System file repair
- Search: Search disk for files
- Standalone System Sweeper: Scan your system for malware, rootkits, and potentially unwanted software
- Download ERD Commander User Guide
Microsoft DaRT (MSDaRT50Eval.msi) is a 30 day evaluation version of ERD Commander, but it also contains a utility which can be used to extend the evaluation period to whatever is desired. The original Microsoft download link which appears in a number of articles about ERD Commander now no longer functions.
However MSDaRT50Eval.msi can be downloaded from:
(German site – click on “Zum Download” and then “Download-Server Chip Online”)
It is a three stage process to get to the download:
First screen: Click on >>>Zum Download
Second screen: Click on >>>Download-Server Chip Online
Third screen: There is a three second countdown, then the download starts automatically
In Internet Explorer 9 and Google Chrome the download shows at the bottom of the screen
30 day evaluation ERD Commander ISO file
The Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT ) downloads as a file – MSDaRT50Eval.msi which contains a 30 day trial version of ERD Commander 2007.
When this MSDaRT50Eval.msi is installed it creates an ERD Commander ISO image – erd50.iso – which is located at C:Program FilesMicrosoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolseterd50.iso
You can use erd50.iso to burn an ERD Commander Windows recovery disk
This Windows recovery cd will work for 30 days, after which the following dialog box will appear when an attempt is made to boot a PC from the CD saying “the usage period for this boot image has expired.”
Burning another Wndows boot disk CD will make no difference, as the time limitation is encoded into the erd50.iso file. During the installation process a time limit of 30 days from the date of installation is encoded into the erd50.iso file, so even if you try to create another windows recovery cd from the erd50.iso, the encoded time limit will still commence from the date of original installation. I am not sure if uninstalling MSDaRT50Eval.msi and subsequently reinstalling it will create a new erd50.iso with a 30 day limit that runs from the subsequent installation date, but I suspect that it will still run from the date of first installation.
One way around this would be to note the date on which MSDaRT50Eval.msi was first created, and then if you wished to use it after it had expired, you could set back the date in the bios of the PC you are working on. (This would prevent the use of System Restore – which is date-sensitive)
However, Microsoft included in the installation package a file – Binary.updexp which can be used to extend the 30 day time limit.
“UpdateExp can be used to update the expiration time of a ERD50.iso file. In order to have an iso file with an expiration, you must create the iso by launching erdc with the special /e numDays switch.”
How to extend the evaluation period by 99 years (!)
We can use the above instructions to extend the 30 day evaluation period to however long we choose. For this we need the installation file which contains the erd50.iso file, Universal Extractor software to extract Binary.updexp.exe with which we extend the time limit, and some ISO recording software, to burn the modified erd50.iso to a blank CD.
Here is the recipe:
- Download and install Universal Extractorhttp://legroom.net/software/uniextract#download (Freeware) Alternative Download Source
- Download and save MSDaRT50Eval.msi from here to your PC
- You will need Two Files = erd50.iso and Binary.updexp
- The ERD Commander ISO file is erd50.iso
- For extending the expiry date, you need Binary.updexp.exe
- Extract these files with Universal Extractor = Right click on MSDaRT50Eval.msi –> UniExtract to Subdir
- Select MSI Administrative Installer and press OK.
- This will create a subdirectory called MSDaRT50Eval
- Repeat, selecting MsiX extraction and press OK
- erd50.iso and Binary.updexp can now be found in the subdirectory MSDaRT50Eval
Right Click on MSDaRT50Eval.msi (above) and use the first two Extract Methods (below)
- If you cannot find Binary.updexp you can download it from http://dl.dropbox.com/u/677812/Binary.updexp.exe
- You can also obtain the ERD Commander ISO file by installing MSDaRT50Eval.msi on a Windows XP machine:
- double click on MSDaRT50Eval.msi to install it as normal
- Go to C:Program FilesMicrosoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset and locate the erd50.iso file
- Move erd50.iso and Binary.updexp into the Root Directory – C:
- Bring up a Command Window – go to Start –> Run , type cmd and hit return
- If using Vista or Windows 7 to do this, you must run the Command Windows as an Administrator to get the changes to stick: type CMD into the search box above the start button, right click on cmd and “Run as administrator” as shown below:
- In the command window type in cd to change to the root directory
- Type UpdateExp.exe C:erd50.iso 36135 and hit Return (see screenshot below)
- If this fails try Binary.Updexp.exe C:erd50.iso 36135
- You should see this:
C:>UpdateExp.exe C:erd50.iso 36135
File loaded, searching for expiration in winpeshl.ini
Current time in file is ….
New time will be 36135 day(s) from now.
- This procedure has modified the erd50.iso file, so that its original 30 day evaluation period is extended to 36135 days = 99 years
- Having done this, you need to burn the erd50.iso file to a CD
- Refer to this article on how to burn ISO images to a disc or use http://isorecorder.alexfeinman.com/isorecorder.htm or http://www.imgburn.com/
- You now have a Live CD with which you can boot into non-booting systems
- Note: this should only be used on Windows XP 32 bit systems. I have successfully used it on Vista 32 bit to reset passwords – but it wipes off all the System Restore points. If you can live with that you can still use it to do other things, like move precious files off your hard drive onto a USB memory key….