Running Disk Utility off External Hard drive

To run "repair disk" in disk utility on my internal hard drive I'm supposed to insert my Install DVD, restart my mac and run disk utility - however running this program off the disk is much slower than running it off my 800firewire external hard drive. I've tried a few different ways of going about this:
1) Partitioning my hard drive in two (both HFS+) with more than enough room for the DVD, I've tried both making a Disk Image of the Install DVD and dragging it into the source field in the "restore" tab and dragged my Install partition into the destination field, after that was complete, I restarted my computer while holding the "alt" key I wasn't even offered the option to boot to my external hard drive
2) I've also tried after partitioning the external drive, in the restore tab just dragging the Install DVD (not the disk image) from the left of the disk utility window into the "source field" and again the partition into the destination field, and when restarting both with the "alt" key and by going to system preferences -> start up disk and choosing my external drive to boot from, I was still unable to boot off my drive.
Please let me know if anyone has any suggestions! This would be such a big help for me since I'm constantly helping people with diagnostic issues with their macs and this would save me so much time. Thanks in advance

I'm not sure why you can't make a bootable copy of the installer DVD using Disk Utility but as Niel suggests, it is much better to install the OS on a partition on the external drive using the DVD & then use that instead of a 'clone' of the DVD as a boot source to run utilities. There are several reasons for this:
1. You can update the installed version of the OS on the external to take advantage of any improvements, including to Disk Utility, that may be released in the future.
2. The version of Snow Leopard that runs from the DVD is a special one that among other things is optimized for read-only media. For instance, it doesn't write log files to the startup disk since it doesn't expect that to be possible.
3. You can include other utilities on the external & easily customize it to your liking. For instance, configure it for automatic login to an admin user account, drop Disk Utility into that account's login items & it will automatically launch at the end of the boot process. You can do the same with shell scripts or Applescript applications for just about as much automation as your scripting skills & imagination can dream up.
However, one thing to keep in mind: since a HD is not read-only but a DVD is, you can never be as certain that your external is as reliable as the DVD, since it is possible for something to change or corrupt files on the HD but short of physical damage the DVD is immutable.

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