Ever heard of Windows PE? Windows PE (short for Preinstallation Environment) is a stand alone, minimal Windows operating system you can boot off a USB. By itself, it can be quite limited as to what you can do with it, especially as a basic user. AOMEI PE Builder allows you to add some extra functionality to Windows PE, so that you can perform additional recovery and maintenance tasks.
AOMEI PE Builder comes built-in with a user-friendly interface based on Windows. The interface works exactly as it does in Windows, with a Start button leading to available programs, drag-and-drop and double-click functions, and active windows and desktop, as below:
AOMEI PE Builder also comes with two handy AOMEI utilities: AOMEI Backupper Standard and AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. These two programs handle system backup and disk partition management respectively, and are both very handy to have available in a situation where Windows is not bootable. Also included in AOMEI PE Builder is the Windows Recovery Environment, which offers some Windows repair tools normally only available through Windows Startup Repair:
On top of these built-in tools, there are several optional utilities you can add to the bootable USB as needed. These are well-known and trusted (and free) utilities which make the AOMEI PE environment much more user-friendly than the default Windows PE. They cover a variety of functions from PDF readers to picture management, and include: Notepad2, 7Zip, SumatraPDF, Everything, Q-Dir, Imagine, Recuva, PE Network, System, Bootice, CPU-Z, and OSFMount.
Setting up a bootable USB for use with AOMEI PE Builder is simple and user-friendly. There is a straightforward graphical interface (no text based command lines here) which guides you through each step of the process. When you run AOMEI PE Builder, you will see the following window:
Clicking on the blue links provides a link to the AOMEI website with an explanation and description of the utility. Once you hit next, you are provided with a list of optional tools and utilities you can add to the Windows PE environment:
You can select which tools you want to be able to access upon booting into Windows PE, as well as add files or drivers. Once you hit “Next” on this screen, you are presented with options for creating a bootable USB, a bootable CD, or an image file (.iso) you can mount later if you wish. Once you make your choice and hit “Next”, AOMEI PE Builder handles the rest.
AOMEI PE Builder makes using Windows PE a simple, stress-free process. By offering a variety of recovery and maintenance tools to be available as a bootable USB or CD, AOMEI PE Builder makes it easy for end-users to customise and deploy Windows PE. If you’re not confident with using text-based command lines, I would recommend AOMEI PE Builder as an alternative in a situation where you cannot boot into Windows.