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os shrinking ntlite

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#1 antonino61

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Posted 23 April 2020 - 07:31 AM

My dear co-members,

 

I am almost thru with tailoring my system software to my system hardware, or at least I think so. Lately I have played with NTLite, after watching a lot of videoclips on it. To be precise, the video material was on using NTLite on a pre-setup basis in order to shrink the iso to be installed. I confess never having been successful at that, but I have done a lot on a post-install basis, i.e., by subtracting all the superfluous items I could (e.g., no need to keep adaptec software if I have no adaptec hardware, and so on and so forth) from an already installed system. I remember asking wonko, wimb, alacrán and all the pundits here for advice and they said to go little by little, lest I should take too much out. Well, that is what I did. As far as the component compartment is concerned, I have managed to halve the inf-drivers-driverstore trio, which I consider good result. It takes a lot of patience and a little going back to the previous move in case anything goes wrong in the process, but it can be done. the most valuable thing would be to "capture" an ideal deduction scenario thru some *.xml or other backup means in order to save time for later application of the endeavor to next setups, without going back thru all the fuss again. I am just trying to avoid all the fuss for the fluff. Needless to say, suggestions are more than welcome.



#2 antonino61

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Posted 24 April 2020 - 07:57 AM

Well, I almost shrunk another win10 vhd in the same fashion as I had done before. I confess not having been able to do it all on a pre-install basis in the first place. The post-install basis works like a charm, provided a few caveats are observed - although the system does retain most of the drivers and services which are active on the current install, some peripherals will go undetected as no-take-out items, so u have to make sure the data related to them is ticked, lest u should do it all back again. 



#3 antonino61

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Posted 25 April 2020 - 04:13 PM

So, at the end of the day, I think it has been worthwhile shrinking the win10 system on a post-install basis:

 

either

1) plain vhd size 3.5gb to be comfortable with freespace

or

2) wimboot vhd consisting of a 2.25gb install.wim + a 450mb vhd (for wimb) (further shrunk to a 146mb .lz4, for alacrán)

 

Of course, I am talking of an operation of no hindrance whatsoever to a normal everyday computer experience; nothing has been done without in order to obtain better shrinking results, even though some of you would tell me I could shrink the lz4 to a smaller figure.

 

I confirm not having been able to do it all on a pre-install basis, probably owing to the specificity of each build or version. The post-install procedure enables you to tailor the shrinking on a per-machine and/or on a per-build basis - some steps in the development are successful if taken on one build but not on another, which allows other steps to achieve the same shrinking result or even a different one. so everything must be tried ex post facto.

 

Still talking about build or version differences, I have found starting from an already lite version much more comfortable than from a full version, at least considering the plethoric winsxs folder (ca5gb to say the least), which has apparently been reduced to only about 90mg in some lite versions. the way this reduction has been carried out is still unknown to me. many programs out there promise to shrink and clean this huge folder, but to the best of my knowledge and observation, winsxs stays huge in most win10 versions.



#4 antonino61

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Posted 04 May 2020 - 01:32 AM

Well, further resizing here:

 

vhd.vhd (lzx, 3gb, no-wimboot):                                                                                       boot time 12secs (same as before, but just to compare with the following)

vhd1.vhd+install.wim (500mb+2,082gb respectively) (wimboot, of course):                  boot time 12secs

vhd2.vhd                    (7gb) (vhd.vhd above uncompressed, no-wimboot, of course):  boot time 12secs

 

content is the same across the versions. Are u sure saving space does not matter? AFAICS, it is the only difference there is (at least here) apart from a few decimals between the tests which i could not bother taking into account in the constant 12secs.

So many think shinking and saving space is to be practiced only when u have to. I vividly oppose this claim on the grounds that it can be considered a favorite solution even if u have plenty of space on drive, in that with cpus today u have to look at disk size to notice the difference in system behavior and pc experience. 

 

Btw: for Alacrán, here is the size of vhd1.vhd.lz4: 199mb. did not time it, though. 



#5 antonino61

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Posted 03 June 2020 - 04:36 PM

I would post a small version (just around 90megs) of the notoriously plethoric winsxs folder (usually over 5gb), if only the zipped file passed the boundary established for posting files. the zip is around 20megs and I do not know how to post it.



#6 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 03 June 2020 - 06:22 PM

A couple random questions:
Are you sure-sure you can legally share the notoriously reduced winsxs folder contents? :unsure:

Or - by pure chance - among the files there are copyrighted, non re-distributable files? :dubbio:

 

:duff:

Wonko 


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#7 antonino61

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Posted 03 June 2020 - 07:19 PM

good point, wonko, I have been thinking about that but have not found it out. so it would be a lot wiser to post a link to the build whose wim can be appied so as to get the folder from and paste it instead of any other 19041 build. can that be arranged?



#8 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 04 June 2020 - 08:25 AM

good point, wonko, I have been thinking about that but have not found it out. so it would be a lot wiser to post a link to the build whose wim can be appied so as to get the folder from and paste it instead of any other 19041 build. can that be arranged?

 

The general idea is to start from a pristine OS (.iso downloaded from MS servers), and then share the procedure used to transform it in the final *whatever*.

 

It is like cooking, you share the recipe and the instructions to prepare the dish, not the actual raw food/ingredients, and definitely not the already prepared/cooked dish.

 

:duff:

Wonko



#9 antonino61

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Posted 04 June 2020 - 09:00 AM

the pristine os is 19041.264, but the reduced winsxs folder can be obtained from an already prepared version of 19041.172, unless u know how to reduce the 264 one from 5 or 6 gigs to 100 megs somehow. I have seen only one version which has "achieved" this reduction. the main thing here is to change a notoriously plethoric useless folder into an unplethoric useless folder whose only apparent purpose is to enable the booting to reach the desktop ok. If u have no winsxs folder the system will not complete the booting, which is the only reason why we keep it. this is what I mean when I say it is meaninful in its meaninglessness - if we gotta have it, better have it small than big.



#10 alacran

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Posted 04 June 2020 - 04:11 PM

 

Warning

Deleting files from the WinSxS folder or deleting the entire WinSxS folder may severely damage your system so that your PC might not boot and make it impossible to update.

 

Got from official info about Clean Up the WinSxS Folder: https://docs.microso...e-winsxs-folder.

 

Summary:

 

There is a task to regularly clean up components automatically when the system is not in use. This task is set to run automatically when triggered by the operating system. When run automatically, the task will wait at least 30 days after an updated component has been installed before uninstalling the previous versions of the component.

 

You may also run it manually from command line:

schtasks.exe /Run /TN "\Microsoft\Windows\Servicing\StartComponentCleanup"

alacran


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#11 antonino61

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Posted 04 June 2020 - 04:54 PM

so alacrán i come to u ppl saying what I got here and u tell me the literature says otherwise? what can I say, follow the literature? system unbootable? 4gb.vhd copied to 4gbcopy.vhd. my mod made on the earlier and if it fails i will resort to the latter? unbootable for one minute? its twin will be bootable the next minute. this only because it is unbootable in theory. do it in practice, it only costs u one minute of ur time. much less than the time u take by typing theoretical warnings. me i have tried regular bootability, then irregular unbootability (what u claim, the absense or alteration of the winsxs folder that u have alluded to) and finally this modded and tested bootability. and it has worked without waiting for days or months for the system to clean what it claims to. r u sure it is not worth giving it a try? i even posted a snapshot of my full modded winsxs folder. how could I have that picture if the system had not booted? here u go with the pic again. I have carried this winsxs over to 3 19041 builds. I can assure u that practice makes u right if it is not 19041. me I would give it a try provided of course u keep a copy of the vhd just in case, but as far as this experiment is concerned, it has never happened to fail to boot. what can I tell u, it must be magic, but i do not really think so.

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#12 antonino61

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Posted 04 June 2020 - 11:01 PM

Got from official info about Clean Up the WinSxS Folder: https://docs.microso...e-winsxs-folder.

 

There is a task to regularly clean up components automatically when the system is not in use. This task is set to run automatically when triggered by the operating system. When run automatically, the task will wait at least 30 days after an updated component has been installed before uninstalling the previous versions of the component.

 

You may also run it manually from command line:

schtasks.exe /Run /TN "\Microsoft\Windows\Servicing\StartComponentCleanup"

it claims to do much more than it actually does. 



#13 antonino61

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 10:57 AM

I can confirm that the replacement of the ordinary winsxs folder with the above-mentioned "small" one (see screenshot a few posts earlier) also works on 19041.329.



#14 antonino61

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Posted 24 June 2020 - 10:54 PM

further shrinking is possible if u search for *.blf and delete all possible (do not force delete) instances but (to be on the safe side) those dated today. in a bit I will let u know if it is safe to delete those dated today too. the space gain here has been about half a gig.



#15 antonino61

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Posted 24 June 2020 - 11:14 PM

yes, u can safely delete all instances of *.blf files on ur vhd, even those dated today, along with *.log, *.log1, *.log2, etc. to do so, in order to avoid open-file-deletion restrictions, do it from another vhd by mounting the target vhd as non-active (as I:\, for instance, not as c:\).



#16 antonino61

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 11:29 AM

I have just discovered that \windows\system32\catroot2, where a lot of bulky logfiles are generated, can be safely moved elsewhere (ramdisk, for instance) and junctioned back to \windows\system32.



#17 antonino61

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Posted 26 June 2020 - 02:57 PM

the same as above goes for \windows\system32\sru, another folder where a lot of log files can be found.



#18 cdob

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 05:36 AM

Delete the catalogs folder: \winsxs\catalogs



#19 antonino61

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 11:13 AM

done! thank u, cdob!

here is my new winsxs

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#20 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 03:29 PM

here is my new winsxs

NO, it isn't.

Spoiler

 

maybe more useful than a PICTURE (btw with only partial names readable) of your Winsxs directory, would be a LIST of its contents.

You know something like:

DIR /B /S C:\Windows\Winsxs>C:\winsxsdir.txt

 

:duff:

Wonko


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#21 antonino61

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 03:58 PM

here u go

but i would leave the pic (which is the same as the above readable png a few posts ago except for the catalog folder which is no more) in any case for alacrán who implies something which actually is de facto can't be de iure or de epistemia.

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#22 antonino61

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 04:00 PM

to me it woulda bin easier to try it out by oneself - it woulda taken 15 minutes to install (winntsetup, for instance), check it out and chuck it out just in case one did not want it anymore. but of course the goodthinkers (benpensanti) or the establishment have other ideas.



#23 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 05:11 PM

I think you are barking up the wrong tree. :w00t:

 

Come on, you can un-ruffle your feathers. :)

 

Alacran posted what is Microsoft official advice, like most advice anyone is free to follow it or not (and also judge him/herself if it is valid advice or not), it is nothing much different from this:

Spoiler

 

 

Have you EVER seen one of these in Italy before the last - say - ten years?

 

Yet we have had paved public places, with floor regularly cleaned with a mop and water, for at least - still say - the last 2200 years, with a number of people that suffered consequences for not being duly warned about the risk of slipping that are so trifling in number that related accidents were historically never recorded. 

 

BTW, it comes from the same culture that brought to a large part of humanity:

https://en.wikipedia...han_they_appear

 

:duff:

Wonko



#24 antonino61

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Posted 27 June 2020 - 10:39 PM

gee, all this epistemic production for a fact, well a couple of facts. fact number 1: my floor is dry, and it has never been wet SO FAR. When I say so far, I mean science, whose ays are valid only so far (unless PROVEN otherwise), and whose no's are valid AT ONCE. Fact number 2: My system has never broken SO FAR, even with this unorthodox winsxs folder <-- a) alacrán sees the winsxs literature; a1) I see the winsxs literature as well, surely after Alacrán, not before; B) I come across Oprekin's windows and discover the smallness of winsxs just by chance; c) take advantage of the folder, even export it to other builds (which does not work) and to other versions of the same build (19041), and it works; d) let it round overhere; e) get alacrán's warnings (the literature, points a and a1) which was prior to my undertaking (point c and d and forever and a day UNTIL anything more viable comes around); e) cdob, without patronizing or pontificating, said what has SO FAR proved to be the right thing to do, delete catalog, which I harmlessly did, and now u tell me I should do something with my feathers. ok, whatever is to be done, but, let me know, how do my feathers come into the winsxs folder? the only thing useful I can see with ur unprecedented eagerness to see the content of my winsxs folder is to replicate the deletion, from any build, of any ordinary winsxs subfolders but those on my list (see the textfile) and see if it is viable, and repeatable on any build, even other than 19041. me I would try it just on 19041 though, u never know unless u know better. I very humbly do not know why it does work on 19041 and does not on other builds, but I do not think it is not worth trying to find it out. I can only say I know that it works, because it has SO FAR; that is to say, If one individual has managed to do it on his build, why not see if it is possible in general, a good thing to try and replicate, to use your lingo. as I said in earlier posts, I did try it on other builds and made alacrán right (=did not work). the rest of the way of going about u have shown so far, I honestly do not understand, and restate my old saying "Angels rush in where fools fear to tread". What I mean is, why dont we focus on the did-work instead of on the did-not-work? 90megs to 5/6 gigs (even if the experts say it is less than that (just 1 gig)) is still one hell of a great space gain for the vhd concerned, come on. all cleaners that alacrán and not only him advocate in the previous posts promise a lot more than they achieve, even after a couple of weeks, and even if they did succeed in what they promise, I spent months with my small winsxs to make it not worth anybody's while waiting for the orthodox cleaning of the folder.



#25 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 28 June 2020 - 08:13 AM

Talking of feathers:

https://www.goodread...s-not-the-thing

 

:duff:

Wonko




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