How to Boot, Win7 on Braswell N3050 - HP Stream 11 G2

Before this fades from memory, here is how to install and boot Windows 7 x64 bit on an HP Steam 11 G2 netbook in a fairly uncompromising manner.

First a little background.

I like the Intel Atom series of netbooks, they are fast targeted and really light on battery power, they tend to last all day and were made with some really up to date tech until Windows 10. The latter generations included Windows 8 or Windows 10 "exclusive" models with eMMC memory for boot media.

The problem is eMMC is it is low tech and non-standard as in its usually bonded directly in a random fashion on a netbook or phone such that where and how to access it is unpredictable and depends mostly on a vendor manufacturer to provide a custom device driver for the item.

Windows 8 did come with eMMC drivers, and netbooks did come with a Bios or UEFI boot manager which could pick up the threads and load the OS into memory.. but it was "very slow" and prone to wear and nothing like NAND or Flash memory, or an SSD. Typically eMMC is used for storing photographs and has no controller and its just awful in general. It is better off ignored. And when eMMC burns out it can't be replaced.

Later versions of the netbooks included a "standard" USB 3.0 port or all USB 3.0 ports.. which is a lot faster than USB 2.0  Then "Windows To Go" was introduced for Windows 8.. but not Windows 7. And Windows 7 does not have bootable USB 3.0 device drivers.

The "trick" however is to create a "Windows To Go" like USB 3.0 install of Windows 7 on a USB 3.0 or USB 2.0 class flash drive and boot from that.

"Windows To Go" is not like a bootable LiveCD or ISO and doesn't entirely run from a ramdisk in memory, so effectively it is a full resource operating system running from a fast.. not quite SSD flash drive. And since USB 3.1 flash drives are available, even with their own SSD controllers external to the netbook, they can be even faster than the eMMC built into the laptop. The external accessiblity of the flash drive also makes it replaceable / repairable should something happen to the boot media.. and at 128 GB or 256 GB or beyond the hdd of the netbook becomes near infinite.

Samsung, SanDisk, Kingston and Crucial offer some nice "Low Profile" USB flash drives in 128 or 256 GB capacities which barely rise out of the Left side of the laptop and provide a suitable boot target.

In my case I used a microSD card in a chip sleeve to mount it in the USB 3.0 port. The HP Stream 11 does have a microSD slot, but the Bios is unable to boot from it directly.. also though the UEFI boot manager "might" if used in non Legacy mode. That however is research for anonther day. Besides, leaving the SD slot exposed means even more media diversity. There are two USB 3.0 ports, one microSD port and one HDMI port.. sacrificing one USB 3.0 port for a "standard" boot drive keeps many options open.

AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard Demo / Freeware includes a "Windows To Go" creator feature for Windows 7, 8 and 10 independent of the tools available in Windows 8 or Windows 10. It requires a bootable USB target which must already have been formatted with exFAT or ntfs in order to be detected. It can't see the USB drive if its not formatted.. it will wipe and reformat the drive while prepping for the W2G install, but the prerequisite is a quickformat must already have been performed just so the target can be detected.

Once it is detected and selected an ISO or WIM image must be selected as the "source" of the install files. Its important to note that while ISO is "convenient" many ISO images contain more than one Install.wim file source and AOMEI will only use the first one found. Thus for a generic Windows 7 ISO it will install "Windows 7 Home Basic" which may not be the version / edition that was actually desired. Extracting the specific (Install.wim) file for the version of Windows desired using 7Zip or Dism will allow choosing the specific windows version / edition to create W2G media.

Next executing the create function will mount and (very) slowly create the W2G installation, note it is not creating a "boot image" but instead actually going through all the steps of formatting the media and mounting the install .wim file and extracting the files to build a 'Panther SysPrep' preboot installer / WinPE image on the W2G usb boot media.. it can take an hour or longer. The Progress bar will creep along and reach 00:00 minutes left and then Pause for a good while as it completes the SysPrep image and dismounts the install .wim image all of which take a good deal of time (after) all the files have been copied and the Progress meter reaches 00:00 -- it will produce a seperate Pop-Up window that says "Finished" when done and then "Revert" to ( go again.. do not do this.. you are done..)

Once this is done the boot media is complete, but (will not work) on HP Stream 11 G2 Braswell, (until) additional drivers are installed into the "Offline" windows install on the USB flash drive.

The reason is the Braswell generation  has (only USB 3.0 ports) there are no USB 2.0 ports and Windows 7 cannot load an [On Demand USB 3.0 driver] during install or after install in order to retrieve its other Windows operating system files.

Braswell however was made by Intel and they made a NUC Kit NUC5PPYH which used the chipset, and included a USB 3.0 device driver.. as well as Intel Graphics Driver, both will be needed.. but the USB 3.0 is the most important for completing a successful boot.



Before installing the drivers to the USB flash drive in an "Offline" fashion.

They must be extracted and just the drivers isolated and placed in a directory which can be recursively scanned and then applied to the Offline SysPrep install on the flash drive.

Do this by openning the, with 7Zip and copying:

USB 3.0 driver


folders to



Plug the USB microSD card into a slot and make sure it shows up as E:\


"Remove" the x86 version directories from \HCSwitch and \Win7 (recursion will scan folders and try to install all drivers)





"Seek out" and change (from 3 or OnDemand) the StartType to (0) to make them "boot drivers" that must be loaded by the windows bootloader into active memory before turning over control to the kernel

DisplayName   = %iusb3hub.SvcDesc%
ServiceType   = 1
StartType     = 0

DisplayName   = %iusb3xhc.SvcDesc%
ServiceType   = 1
StartType     = 0

Then add the drivers to the "Offline" SysPrep Installation (since the folders on the USB drive are not in a WIM file you do not have to mount the WIM file first, simply target the E:\ drive).

The switching from an "On Demand" driver to a "Boot" driver startup type will throw an Error if you don't "forceunsigned" add them, because Normal boot drivers are "boot signed"

If you "/forceunsigned" install the drivers, then they will go ahead an install.

If you "/Recurse" install, the Dism command will search all the folders and subfolders for ".inf" installation instruction files (in-struction f-iles = in-f  = .inf  "files")

C:\>dism /Image:E:\ /Add-Driver /Driver:C:\wim\usb3 /forceunsigned  /Recurse

Installing the Graphics driver is slightly different.

Begin by extracting only the


folder to


The Windows system about to install the drivers will detect this as a "foreign" driver and automatically [Block] it from install, attempting to Dism install will result in failure.

The failure will be indicated in the E:\Windows\inf\setupapi.offline.log file

!!!  flq:                CopyFile: FAILED!
!!!  flq:                Error 5: Access is denied.
!!!  flq:                Error installing file (0x00000005)
!!!  flq:                Error 5: Access is denied.
!    flq:                     SourceFile   - 'C:\wim\Graphics\iglhxa64.vp'
     flq:                     TempFile     - 'E:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\igdlh64.inf_amd64_neutral_bfb4178e08406e39\SET893B.tmp'
!    flq:                     TargetFile   - 'E:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\igdlh64.inf_amd64_neutral_bfb4178e08406e39\iglhxa64.vp'

<<<  [Exit status: FAILURE(0x00000005)]

In order to fix this, all the driver files must be [unblocked] which you can do one at a time, right-click Unblock.. but instead you can also use a [Sysinterals] "Streams64.exe" tool do so for the entire directory at one time.


Streams v1.6

Extract Streams64.exe and place it someplace in the path like C:\Windows

This provides a guide:

How to bulk unblock files in Windows 7 or Server 2008

And finally apply the driver

C:\>dism /Image:E:\ /Add-Driver /Driver:C:\wim\Graphics /forceunsigned /Recurse

Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
Version: 6.1.7600.16385

Image Version: 6.1.7600.16385

Searching for driver packages to install...
Found 1 driver package(s) to install.
Installing 1 of 1 - C:\wim\Graphics\igdlh64.inf: The driver package was successfully installed.
The operation completed successfully.


First Install

Booting from the USB flash drive may require "catching" the Bios [Press 'ESC' and then  Press F9]  in order to select to boot from the USB drive rather than the eMMC -- I'm still working on a smoother way to do this.. but for now.. catch and redirect to the USB drive.

W2G on First introduction to a new system "Profiles" the hardware, and essentially performs a complete SysPrep to detect and configure the Operating System.

If the USB 3.0 drivers are Boot drivers the boot loader will load them into memory before turning control over to the boot kernel and the file system on the USB drive will remain available to the kernel and the install will proceed as a normal setup (for the First Time) on subsequent boots this will be skipped and it will just boot from the USB flash drive quickly as if it were a native HDD.

A single reboot will be necessary during which the Graphics driver and the User profiles will be setup and you will be logged into the desktop. Depending on the original [ Install.wim] file used to create the W2G USB drive 'Activation' may require differnt keys and procedures in order to activate the operating system.

WiFi Networking and Audio

the Graphics driver also included directories with Audio drivers to drive the speakers, you could have copied those and installed them at the same time as the Graphics driver or install them post setup

the WiFi networking for the HP Stream 11 G2 requires

AC-7265 driver set

additional device drivers for the NUC can be found here