If there's one obnoxious thing about media from 5 years ago, it's those darn CDs that came with everything. Especially when it came to Windows, any avid custom PC builder will tell you - it's the worst install process known to man. Luckily, with a little help of Lifehacker, you can build your own Apple-like USB install drive, customized with only the Windows components you deem necessary.
While we highly recommend going to Lifehacker for a fully-fleshed out walkthrough of the USB install drive customization process, the general idea goes a little something like:
1) Insert your original Windows 7 disc and load it onto your hard drive.
2) Use RT7Lite (a popular slipstreaming program) to extract and customize your install package to your liking.
3) Add updates and other goodies.
4) Create your USB drive.
Although it sounds easy, we imagine this process will take roughly 2-4 hours depending on how fast your computer is and how much time you spend Googling every aspect of each Windows component when customizing it.
We'll likely give this a go when a few hot games come out (Battlefield 3, anybody?) and need to reformat for optimum PC performance. Let us know how your experience goes if you give it a whirl!