The methods used on this page are the original methods devloped. Using Vista's DISKPART program or using Grub4DOS to create a bootable drive offer simpler solutions.
Further testing of the procedure has found that Acronis Media Builder does not always write the MBR to the Flashdrive during its creation. This results in a Flashdrive that will not boot and any image created from it and restored to a USB hard drive will also not boot.
To try and rectify this problem, I have created several "empty" images that can be restored directly to either a USB Flashdrive or a USB hard drive. The images contain the MBR, the boot sector and an empty ACRONIS partition.
Right-click on the link and select "Save target as..." to download the version you want. If you're not sure which one to use, try them starting with #1. Some computers may boot better with one partition format than the other. It depends on how the BIOS is setup. There is more information on this in the Appendix of the Guide. Older computers that have a BIOS setting to boot the USB-ZIP format may work better with those images than with the USB-HDD images.
To create a bootable USB Hard Drive you still need to have the Flashdrive processed by Media Builder. This is because you need to copy the Acronis files from the Flashdrive to the ACRONIS partition on the USB Hard Drive.
From this point you can continue with the Guide at Step 4 or you can do the following:
The image file can be restored to either a USB flashdrive or a USB hard drive. The image files should restore correctly with True Image 9 (build 3,677 or later) or True Image 10 (any build).
The image should be restored as an Entire Disk Image (check the Disk # checkbox; both the "MBR and Track 0" and the "ACRONIS" partition should be selected) if not resizing the ACRONIS partition (this is the recommended procedure). If resizing, then select the ACRONIS partition first, resize to what you want, proceed through the wizard, select to restore another partition, select the MBR and proceed to restore the image. Just to be clear: Both the MBR and the ACRONIS partition need to be restored for the image to work properly.
If restored to a hard drive (without a resize) the partition size will be 125MB and the remainder of the drive will be unallocated space.
If restored to a flashdrive the image will fill the entire flashdrive. This seems to be a "quirk" with how Windows allows flashdrives to be formatted (Windows only allows one partition on a flashdrive). If this is a problem, you may be able to resize the partition during the restore process. However, you will not be able to create another partition in the remaining unallocated space using Windows.
After the restore, copy the files from the flashdrive (the one created with Acronis Media Builder in Step 3 of the Guide) to the ACRONIS partition on the USB hard drive.
Finally, if restored to a USB hard drive, use Windows Disk Management (or another partitioning program) to create an NTFS partition in the remaining unallocated space (Step 6 in the Guide).