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Windows PE 3.0


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#1 allanf

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Posted 11 January 2009 - 12:48 AM

Hi,

I was looking at updating my WinBuilder Project "pe21" based on Windows PE 2.1, when along comes Windows PE 3.0.

For anyone interested, you can download the documentation for WinPE 3.0 from here:
http://www.microsoft...;displaylang=en

The page has links to the latest "Windows AIK for Windows 7 Beta" in German, English and Japanese.

Stand by for a new Project - "pe3"! ... :) ...

Regards

Warning! Installing the new WAIK 2.0 for Windows 7 Beta may play havoc with your Vista-based Winbuilder Projects.

Step 1: Obtain and Install 'Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows 7 Beta)'.

Find the link from Microsoft Downloads for the WAIK and start downloading the ISO file. Save it to a Hard Disk Drive.

The WAIK is available in three languages - German, English and Japanese - and there is a drop-down box on the download page to change the language. Depending on the language, the file is called KB3AIK_DE.iso (1395.5 MB), KB3AIK_EN.iso (1376.1 MB), or KB3AIK_JP.iso (1457.4 MB). I will only use the English Version.

While the download is progressing... (it took me 8 hours!)... It is recommended by MS to uninstall any previous versions of WAIK, so go to Control Panles>Add/Remove Programs, and look for 'Windows Automated Installation Kit'. Click on 'Click here for support information' to show the version. It should be v. 1.1.0 or earlier. Close and click 'Remove' and follow the instructions. A reboot is required.

For future reference, I kept a copy of the older WAIK program folder by going to the 'Program Files' folder and firstly created a copy of the 'Windows AIK' folder (don't delete or rename it directly, or the uninstall might get a bit confused), which I then renamed 'Windows AIK 1.1'.

When the ISO file has been downloaded, it needs to be burnt (not copied) to a DVD. Most PCs come with programs to burn images to optical disks - Roxio, Nero, etc. My favourite is the 100% free ImgBurn by Lightning UK! available from http://www.imgburn.com/, where you would use its 'write' mode to burn the ISO file to a DVD (CDs are too small). Then eject and re-insert the new DVD to start it.

Unfortunately, my Optical Drive works only some of the time, and didn't work when I needed it! Hmmmm... MS has an unsupported program called 'Virtual CD-ROM Control Panel v2.0.1.1' available from here http://support.microsoft.com/kb/916902 Download, Unzip and follow the readme.txt to mount the ISO file. Go to 'My Computer' and double click on the new virtual CD-ROM Drive to start the WAIK DVD.

Whatever method, when the DVD starts, a window should appear like this:



Click 'Windows AIK Setup' to start the installation. Awarning may appear if you do not have the correct .NET Framework or MSXML installed, in which case, close the WAIK installation, and select .NET Framework Setup and/or MSXML 6.0 Setup from the WAIK DVD window.

When everything is installed, the first thing to notice is the new Start Menu item under 'All Programs' called 'Microsoft Windows AIK' with shortcuts to Documentation, 'Windows System Image Manager' and 'Deployment Tools Command Prompt'. The new command prompt sets the environment path to include the various tools in the WAIK Program folder. At the new command prompt, type 'DISM' (without quotes) and the following should appear.



The good news is that the new tool 'DISM' seems to run under XP. I haven't tried it in action, so fingers crossed.


2. Manually Create a basic Windows PE 3.0 Boot CD and test it in a Virtual Machine and in a real environment.

The nicest thing I can say obout my Optical Drive is that it is unreliable ... :) ...
I bought a can of compressed air and huffed and puffed and shook and tapped, and managed to get one last boot out of it. I took the chance to setup for dual booting XP and WinPE (into RAM) from the same partition. More on that a bit later.

So. There is a change of plans... no testing of the boot CDs in a real environment ... ATM anyway.

On closer inspection of the new multi-tool, DISM.exe under XP (maybe other OSes too), there is an 'access denied' error when unmounting with 'dism.exe /unmount-wim'. To the naked eye, there doesn't seem to be problem, but I'm taking no chances especially given the fact that mounting and unmounting images takes a painfully long time with the new tools. Here's a snippet from the new 'Users Guide' - maybe it gives a clue...

When using imagex /apply with a base image, you cannot delete the working directory directly after adding a package. Dism.exe applies ACLs on certain Windows PE source files. This limitation does not exist if you use the imagex command with the /mount option. To work around this limitation, you must manually take ownership of the files...


What's an ACL? :)

Before uninstalling it, I went to the new command prompt and ran the batch 'copype.cmd x86 c:\winpe3_x86', which creates a directory structure and copies various files from the WAIK Program Folder This sets up an environment in the specified folder for mounting, customizing and saving WIMs, and for creating bootable ISO files to burn to disk. On a single machine, it is possible to create separate WinPEs for either the x86 or x64 architectures, so it is necessary to specify the architecture in the copype command.

I made and renamed a copy of the 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\' folder and uninstalled WAIK 2.0 with 'Add/Remove Programs'. Back to the good old tools of WAIK 1.1 for the time being.

The first series of Windows PE 1.x was around long before a Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK) was heard of. When WAIK 1.x came along it presented us with WinPE 2.x, and now the new WAIK 2.x has provided us with WinPE 3.x... It's confusingly out of synch... I'll use the term 'new' when referring to WAIK 2.0 and WinPE 3.0, and 'old' when referring to WAIK 1.1 and WinPE 2.1.

OK. The old WAIK is reinstalled with its files in the default 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\' folder. I also have a copy of the new WAIK files in 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK 2.0\' and some in 'C:\winpe3_x86\'.

I was keen to see what's new in WinPE 3.0, so renamed the old base WIM file at 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools\PETools\x86\winpe.wim' to 'old_winpe.wim', and copied over the new winpe.wim from 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK 2.0\Tools\PETools\x86\'. Fired up Winbuilder 074 with my 'pe21' Project and away I went. 'pe21' booted up like old times except that no shortcuts were created at boot-time... plenty of .vbs errors!

The new base winpe.wim file is considerably smaller than the old file. Has MS been on a mission to reduce bloat? Unfortunately not! There is a collection of 'packages' that can be added to offline .wim images - language packs, system packs and now setup packs, etc. In the old days, the base winpe.wim contained most of the system packs in a 'staged' state. peimg.exe could be used to fully install them or to get rid of them by using the /prep switch. The new winpe.wim contains only a language pack and the 'xml' pack (if my memory serves me correct), which, I suppose, accounts for most of the difference in size.

The shortcuts in 'pe21' most likely failed because there was no 'scripting' package staged in new winpe.wim. So peimg.exe was unable to install it and the .vbs scripts couldn't run at boot-time to create the shortcuts. That was the first brief look.

I love those new Aero Snaps, or whatever they're called, where windows resize and dock to the sides of the screen when the cursor drags them to the edge. Cool. And they're in WinPE 3.0!

Back to the nitty-gritty of manually creating a very basic Windows PE 3.0, albeit, using the old tools.

(1) Mount the new winpe.wim using the old imagex. One .wim can hold multiple images, so it is always necessry to specify the index number of the image.
(2) Add certain RAID drivers to the mounted image using peimg.
(3) 'prep' the image using peimg to remove extraneous packages.
(4) Capture the mounted image as a boot image to a new boot.wim file using imagex. If there is an existing boot.wim in the path of the new, the new image will be added to the existing boot.wim. It's important to delete or rename the old boot.wim files.
(5) Unmount the mounted image without saving (committing) changes to the original winpe.wim.
(6) Create a bootable ISO file using the oscdimg.exe.

Done! The ISO can be burnt (not copied) to a CD which can be booted.

Here's a screenshot of the old WAIK Command Prompt Window showing the steps.


Most of the commands can be copied and pasted from the old 'Users Guide' or from elswhere on the Web. Here's a text file of the same output.


Note that I have two 'build environments' created using the 'copype.cmd' - one from the currently-installed old WAIK, and one from the uninstalled new WAIK. For my build environment, I am using the latter with the new winpe.wim, which is under the 'C:\winpe3_x86' directory. The old is in the default-named 'C:\winpe_x86' directory. Don't forget to navigate to the 'C:\winpe?_x86\ISO\sources\' folder and delete or rename any existing boot.wim before capturing the new boot.wim.

What now? Dual Boot XP and WinPE 3.0 from the Same Partition. Set it up with the new Boot CD. I have cheated a bit. As they say, 'Here's one I prepared earlier.' All I had was a single partition booting XP and a dodgy CD-ROM Drive. When an old CD managed to boot I set up the computer for Dual Booting. Then I threw caution to the wind, booted the new basic WinPE 3.0 from the Hard Drive into RAM, destroyed the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) file and reset the bootsector to NT52 - all in the name of 'demonstration' and for the sake of getting the following screenshot which shows the process of setting up the Dual Boot from within WinPE 3.0 (includes a few 'oops'es as well.)


WinPE 3.0 comes with the two necessary tools, bootsect.exe and bcdedit.exe. bootsect.exe needs to lock the C: Drive. Therefore, it is important that nothing on C: be opened or running in WinPE which itself is booted totally into RAM.

Most of the info came originally from frequently asked questions here:
http://technet.micro...y/cc721886.aspx

How to create an entry to boot a WIM image from a hard disk
To create an entry to boot a Windows Imaging Format (WIM) image, you will need to create an OSloader type entry with RAMDISK options pointing to the boot partition. To do this, use the following procedure. In this procedure, the arcpath multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1) refers to the C: drive on the computer, and Boot.wim is a regular Boot.wim with Winload.exe in the System32 folder inside the WIM image.

To create an entry to boot a WIM image from hard disk
Create the {ramdisktoptions} object in your BCD store by specifying the following. Drive should be the drive that contains the image.

bcdedit /create {ramdiskoptions} /d "Ramdisk options"

bcdedit /set {ramdiskoptions} ramdisksdidevice partition=Drive

bcdedit /set {ramdiskoptions} ramdisksdipath \boot\boot.sdi

Create a new boot application entry by specifying:

bcdedit /create /d "Boot from WIM" /application OSLOADER

This will return an identifier (GUID) for the newly created entry. This new entry will be referred to as {GUID} in the rest of this procedure. Next specify the following:

bcdedit /set {GUID} device ramdisk=[c:]\sources\boot.wim,{ramdiskoptions}

bcdedit /set {GUID} path \windows\system32\winload.exe

bcdedit /set {GUID} osdevice ramdisk=[c:]\sources\boot.wim,{ramdiskoptions}

bcdedit /set {GUID} systemroot \windows

If you are booting into Windows Preinstallation Environment (Windows PE), then you will also need to specify:

bcdedit /set {GUID} winpe yes

bcdedit /set {GUID} detecthal yes

Next specify the following to add your new entry to the display order:

bcdedit /displayorder {GUID} /addlast


However, I think that this assumes a pre-existing BCD file from an installation of Vista or later OS. Nevertheless, it is valid.

The other source of info is here:
http://technet.micro...sktopfiles.aspx
It is more to the point but seems to miss one crucial point - putting Windows PE into the display order of the Boot Manager. Without that, the Boot Manager fails to appear and goes straight to the single entry, NTLDR!

It is easier to use Explorer under XP to position the necessary files. This could be done before booting the WinPE 3.0 CD to carry out the bootsect and bcdedit tasks.

The second source places the boot.wim in 'c:\boot'. I followed the first source and created 'c:\sources' to hold the boot.wim. So copy the newly created boot.wim to whatever path was (or will be) specified with bcdedit. The second file is boot.sdi which should be found in 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK 2.0\Tools\PETools\x86\boot\' or the like. boot.sdi needs to be copied to 'c:\boot'. The third and last file is bootmgr, which can be found in 'C:\Program Files\Windows AIK 2.0\Tools\PETools\x86\' or the like. Copy it to 'c:\'. Then boot the WinPE 3.0 disk and carry out the bootsector and BCD tasks.

... later...

Regards

#2 Nuno Brito

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Posted 11 January 2009 - 01:04 AM

Excellent!

Thank you for the link, it's nice knowing that a version 3 is on it's way. The documentation is very similar and easy to follow just like version 2.

Will be looking forward to help debug the new version!

:)

#3 allanf

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Posted 11 January 2009 - 01:21 AM

Hi Nuno,

I have just begun reading the documentation for creating WinPE 3.0. Gone is the trusty old peimg tool for customizing/optimizing the PE Image - replaced by DISM.exe, which may not run on XP!

It may take some time to sort this out... I'm just downloading the new WAIK now.... I'll let you know.

Regards

#4 ireneuszp

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Posted 11 January 2009 - 04:52 PM

Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows 7 Beta)
http://www.microsoft...;DisplayLang=en

KB3AIK_EN.iso
http://www.microsoft...2fKB3AIK_EN.iso
:)

#5 allanf

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 04:13 AM

Thanks for the links ireneuszp

@all

What I might do is update the first post to demonstrate a step-by-step procedure for creating a boot disk based on Windows PE 3.0. I have been out of action for a while, and I am virtually starting from scratch myself. The Plan is to outline the steps as follows:

1. Obtain and Install 'Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows 7 Beta)'.

2. Manually Create a basic Windows PE 3.0 Boot CD and test it in a Virtual Machine and in a real environment.

3. Download and Install Winbuilder.

4. Write a Winbuilder Project to automate the creation of the basic Boot CD.

5. Setup Winbuilder to build the basic Boot CD.

6. Add more advanced .script to the Winbuilder Project to give options for adding Programs and Shells to the PE.

Well! I have just completed Step 1, so in a few moments I'll update the first post. Still a long way to go. Any advice, help and contributions will be much appreciated.

Regards

#6 allanf

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 05:32 AM

First post updated.

Regards

#7 Nuno Brito

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 09:26 AM

Wow.. 46 members watched this topic today.. :)

Good luck with your testings.

This has got to be a record! :)

#8 steve6375

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 06:42 PM

Are you installing WAIK on XP? I think it says it can only be installed on Vista or 2003?

#9 allanf

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 06:40 AM

steve6375, you are quite right. The documentation indicates that WAIK 2.0 (for building Windows PE 3.0) is not for installation on pre-Vista machines - except for the part in the 'Users Guide' for setting up a technician computer which allows XP. Perhaps that section of the Guide hasen't been updated... Anyway, I was surprised to see that the new tool DISM.exe seems to run on XP while the docs don't say it can. As far as I can tell, DISM.exe does most of the functions of the older tools like peimg, intlcfg, and even imagex - yes! It seems to be the new preferred tool for mounting and unmounting .wim image files, which it does OK on XP. There is also a new imagex, but it seems to be slower and a little bit buggy on my XP machine. (?) And, it is not interchangeable with the older imagex - the older one errors out when using it with the new WAIK installed - I guess because there are a handful of new filters and drivers, with new names, to handle the .wim images. So, I have placed a warning on the first post to say that any Winbuilder Projects based on 'boot.wim's will probably not build properly with the new WAIK installed.

I have had a few distractions having to uinstall and re-install several times between the new WAIK and the previous version just so I can rebuild and adjust my 'pe21' boot disk while trying to play around with the new stuff.

@Nuno, thanks for the note. I don't think I'll be breaking any speed records trying to get this tutorial up. I'll get there eventually.

Regards

#10 amalux

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 08:04 AM

Wow.. 46 members watched this topic today.. :)

Good luck with your testings.

This has got to be a record! :)

Wow!
Attached File  views112.JPG   49.11KB   84 downloads

#11 risolutore

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 09:13 AM

some New Features in the Windows AIK
Manage Images with the Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool (DISM)The Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool (DISM) is used to customize Windows images in a variety of ways. You can:

Add or remove 32-bit and 64-bit device drivers.
Add or remove language packs.
Enable or disable Windows features.
Add and configure updates.
The new DISM tools replace many of the tools in previous releases of the Windows AIK, including Package Manager (Pkgmgr.exe), the International Settings Configuration Tool (Intlcfg.exe), and the Windows PE command-line tool (PEimg.exe).

#12 Nuno Brito

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 09:28 AM

Amalux, thanks for the screenshot - it confirms the boot land world record of members visits on a single day.. :)

@Nuno, thanks for the note. I don't think I'll be breaking any speed records trying to get this tutorial up. I'll get there eventually.

Don't worry, you're doing a very good work and I'm already learning a lot by following what is being talked here.

:)

#13 Sys.Bak

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 08:09 PM

I have had a few distractions having to uinstall and re-install several times between the new WAIK and the previous version just so I can rebuild and adjust my 'pe21' boot disk while trying to play around with the new stuff.


I didn't try this before, but you may be able to install the WAIK using Altiris SVS and creating two layers for the different versions. Then you would be able to switch between them with a single click. And: When you try it, make sure, that your normal winbuilder folder is part of the folder-whitelist.

#14 allanf

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 01:26 AM

I didn't try this before, but you may be able to install the WAIK using Altiris SVS and creating two layers for the different versions. Then you would be able to switch between them with a single click. And: When you try it, make sure, that your normal winbuilder folder is part of the folder-whitelist.



Sys.Bak,

Thanks for the suggestion. I didn't think of it before and it does sound like an easy solution.

However, since you mention it, I now remember using SVS some time ago and having just a suspicion that there may have been a conflict between the layers (filters?) used by imagex and SVS. See http://www.boot-land...?...ost&p=26628 If ever there was a conflict, perhaps it has been resolved in newer versions.

In the meantime, I was so keen to have a look at the new winpe.wim that I saved a copy of it, uninstalled WAIK 2.0 and reverted back to the WAIK 1.1 with its familiar tools. So far as I have tested, the old tools work perfectly fine on the new winpe.wim. With a few minor issues, I can build my old Winbuilder 'pe21' Project using the new WinPE 3.0 base image... :) ...

Eventually, I'll bite the bullet and switch to the new tools, and perhaps then try the new WAIK installed under SVS... or ... I wonder if WAIK can be installed into the Windows 7 WinPE... ??? ...

Regards

#15 allanf

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 02:33 PM

Added to first post some details including the setting up of a test environment - dual boot XP and WinPE (into RAM) from the same partition.

Regards

#16 allanf

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 10:02 AM

First Picture of 'pe3' with BBLean - built with Winbuilder under XP...



... shows Ghost, Spybot S%D, Windirstat, Testdisk, ProcessExplorer, etc, all running OK!

... :) ...

Regards

#17 Nuno Brito

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 11:22 AM

Excellent, from your screenshot I also see that the version of the kernel is still not updated to 7, guess this might change until the final release.

:)

#18 allanf

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 01:01 PM

Nuno,

I didn't get the Windows 7 Beta. Is it the same version?

For others interested in *designing new* Projects from the Windows 7 .wim files, it is not so easy for XP users.

*Edited, because this discussion may not be relevent to VistaPE, which uses different techniques.

Firstly, I noticed some small issues when using the new tools, and didn't persist with them and uninstalled the new WAIK, making sure to keep a copy of the new winpe.wim file. The old PETool, peimg.exe, installed drivers into the new PE image, but when it came to importing the new 'packages' like WMI, HTA, and Scripting into the new image - no go!

After booting up the basic Windows PE 3.0, I was able to employ dism.exe to add the packages to the new winpe.wim image. dism functions a lot better under WinPE 3.0, but is still slower than the old imagex.exe when it comes to mounting and unmounting. I put a stopwatch on them for the same image. dism.exe under XP - around 20 seconds - mainly a blinking cursor; dism.exe under WinPE3 - around 5 s; the old imagex under XP - around 1 s!

Once the packages are added, the new winpe.wim is right to go with Winbuilder calling the old tools under XP.

I tried running Winbuilder under Windows PE 3.0. Problem addressing memory. Can you fix it? ... :) ...

Regards

#19 pecd.net

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 01:14 PM

so if i understand you right: it will be hard to build a winpe from windows 7 waik under xp?

Can i use wimutil to mount the w7 wim files?

#20 allanf

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 01:47 PM

so if i understand you right: it will be hard to build a winpe from windows 7 waik under xp?


I was getting a sporadic 'access denied' error with both dism and the new imagex when unmounting images. No crashes or hangs, but small hints that things were not totally OK. .. some folders not unmounting properly, etc Intersting that dism has a function called 'Cleanup-WIM' for these cases where things don' go right. It may be possible to use dism under XP to add packages, drivers etc to an image.., I didn't try it. I lost patience with the new WAIK under XP.

Can i use wimutil to mount the w7 wim files?


I think that there is no problem using the old imagex to mount and unmount the new .wim images. So wimutil may work...? I'll try it soon.

The problem is in adding required packages. I would be intersted to hear if any of the Windows 7 pre-installation .wim images (in the boot.wim) have packages installed. It would make the process easier if they did.

Regards

#21 allanf

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 02:23 PM

@ctmag, It just occured to me that your questions may have had VistaPE in mind, and I remember now that VistaPE does not install 'packages' - rather, it copies system files from the full OS images in install.wim. So, there may not be anything to worry about using the new .wim files with VistaPE. Here lies the major difference between VistaPE and my 'pe' projects. I'll amend my previous post.

Regards

#22 Sonny

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 08:41 PM

I downloaded the WIAK (KB3AIK_EN.iso pg1)
then installed it and used copype to create a folder containing the PE build
I then used wimutil to mount and add some progs including bsexplorer
Hey I can't get an attachment to work, I was going to leave some screen shots
Okay I got it.

Attached Files

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  • Attached File  2.gif   209.85KB   119 downloads


#23 Nuno Brito

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 09:22 PM

Hi Sonny!

Welcome to our community and thank for the screenshots, we'll surely try the new WAIK soon enough.

:)

#24 allanf

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Posted 20 January 2009 - 07:24 AM

I got bogged down trying to find a fresh new shell for Windows PE 3.0. I have always liked the look of litestep, and then I saw this:
Posted Image



I found a vista .msu (MS Standalone Update) that contains some of the necessary system files to run it , but couldn't get it to install on a mounted image from either the old winpe.wim or the new winpe.wim. Tried peimg and dism (running from WinPE3) on both images. Tried peimg on the 'expanded' .cab files. Tried everything. Oh! Well!

Along the way, I found some interesting stuff about dism's help screen. It varies depending on the type of image your looking at. Maybe that's not new, but it surprised me. For example: 'dism /image:c:\mount_winpe3 /?' will give more options than 'dism /image:c:\mount_winpe2 /?' where mount_winpe2 is an image from the old winpe.

Wonder how 'Cairo' will turn out?

Regards

#25 Sonny

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Posted 20 January 2009 - 03:39 PM

allanf I'm sure you found this but just incase, found this in the WinPE.chm

Add a Customized Script with Winpeshl.iniYou can launch a customized shell application by using a file called Winpeshl.ini. Winpeshl.exe will process the settings in Winpeshl.ini during boot. If you create a customized Winpeshl.ini and require Plug and Play or network support, you must include a call to Wpeinit.exe. Wpeinit.exe specifically installs Plug and Play devices, processes Autounattend.xml settings, and loads network resources.

Create a customized Windows PE image as shown in Walkthrough: Create a Custom Windows PE Image

Create a text file called Winpeshl.ini by using a text editor (such as Notepad) with the following structure. For example,


[LaunchApp]

AppPath = %SYSTEMDRIVE%\myshell.exe

[LaunchApps]

%SYSTEMDRIVE%\mydir\application1.exe, -option1 -option2

application2.exe, -option1 -option2

Set the AppPath entry to the path to your shell application. The path can either be fully qualified or use environment variables, such as %SYSTEMROOT%\System32\Myshell.exe. The AppPath entry does not support command-line options.

Save the file to %SYSTEMROOT%\System32 of your customized Windows PE image.

Recapture your Windows PE image as described in Walkthrough: Create a Custom Windows PE Image.


Works for me removing the command prompt and autostarting the shell of choice




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