This lesson presents methods that will help you automate Windows XP Professional installations. When you must install Windows XP Professional on computers with varying configurations, scripting provides automation with increased flexibility. You will learn how the Windows Setup Manager makes it easy to create the UNATTEND.TXT files that are necessary for scripted installations.
The computers in most networks are not identical, but they still have many similarities. It is possible to use installation scripts to specify the variations in the hardware configurations of the computers that are to receive installations.
The Windows Setup Manager allows you to quickly create a script for a customized installation of Windows XP Professional without concern for cryptic text file syntax. The Windows Setup Manager enables you to create scripts to perform customized installations on workstations and servers that meet the specific hardware and network requirements of your organization (see Figure 19.1).
Figure 19.1 The Welcome To The Windows Setup Manager Wizard page
You can create or modify an answer file, typically named UNATTEND.TXT, by using the Windows Setup Manager. You can also create UNATTEND.TXT files with a simple text editor, such as Notepad, but using the Windows Setup Manager reduces errors in syntax. The Windows Setup Manager is copied to your hard drive by extracting the files in DEPLOY.CAB located on your Windows XP Professional CD-ROM in the \Support\Tools folder. To extract the files, double-click the .cab file to display the files, select the files you want to extract, right-click the files, and then select Extract on the menu that appears.
For detailed steps on how to install the Windows Setup Manager, see the next practice, "Installing the Windows XP Deployment Tools," in this chapter.
Windows Setup Manager does the following:
A Uniqueness Database File (UDB) provides the ability to specify per-computer parameters. The UDB modifies an answer file by overriding values in the answer file. When you run Setup with WINNT32.EXE you use the /udf:id[,UDB_file] switch. The UDB overrides values in the answer file, and the identifier (id) determines which values in the .udb file are used.
If you are upgrading systems to Windows XP Professional, you can add any application upgrades or update packs to the distribution folder and enter the appropriate commands in the Additional Commands page of the Windows Setup Manager Wizard so that these upgrades or update packs are applied to the application as part of the upgrade.
When you start the Windows Setup Manager, it displays the Welcome To The Windows Setup Manager Wizard page. When you click Next, you are presented with two options:
If you select Create A New Answer File, you then need to choose the type of answer file you want to create. Windows Setup Manager can create the following types of answer files:
RIS is discussed later in this chapter in Lesson 3, "Performing Remote Installations."
The remainder of the Windows Setup Manager Wizard allows you to specify the level of user interaction with the Setup program and to enter all the information required to complete the setup.
The SYSDIFF.EXE program is often used in conjunction with Windows Setup Manager to install Windows using difference files.
In this practice, you extract the Windows XP Professional Deployment Tools from the Windows XP Professional CD-ROM you used for program installation, and then you use the Windows System Manager to create an unattended setup script.
In this exercise, you extract the Windows Deployment Tools from the CD-ROM you used to install Windows XP Professional and copy them to your hard drive.
The C:\Deploy folder is used to contain the files extracted from DEPLOY.CAB on the Windows XP Professional CD-ROM.
If D is not the correct drive letter for your CD-ROM drive, replace the D with the letter representing your CD-ROM drive.
Windows XP Professional displays the contents of DEPLOY.CAB.
To select all the files in DEPLOY.CAB, hold down the Ctrl key, and then click each of the files listed.
Windows XP Professional displays the Select A Destination dialog box.
The files in C:\Deploy include the following:
In this exercise, you use the Windows Setup Manager to create an unattended setup script. At the same time, the Windows Setup Manager Wizard creates a distribution folder and a .udb file.
By default, Windows XP Professional does not show common file extensions, so there are two Setupmgr files in the Deploy folder. You need to double-click the Microsoft Setup Manager Wizard.
Windows XP Professional starts the Windows Setup Manager Wizard.
The New Or Existing Answer File page appears.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Product To Install page, which provides the following three options:
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Platform page.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the User Interaction Level page, which has the following five options:
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Distribution Folder page. The Setup Manager Wizard can create a distribution folder on your computer or network containing the required source files. You can add files to this distribution folder to further customize your installation.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the License Agreement page.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Customize The Software page.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Display Settings page.
The Windows Setup Manager displays the Time Zone page.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Providing The Product Key page.
The product key identifies your copy of Windows XP Professional, so you need a separate license for each copy that you install.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Computer Names page. Notice that you have three choices:
Notice that the names PRO2, PRO3, and PRO4 appear in the Computers To Be Installed text box.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Administrator Password page, which appears with the following two options:
You selected the User Interaction level of Fully Automated, so the Prompt The User For An Administrative Password option is unavailable.
Notice that you have the option to encrypt the Administrator's password in the answer file. You also have the option to have the Administrator log on automatically and you can set the number of times you want the Administrator to log on automatically when the computer is restarted.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Networking Components page with the following two options:
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Workgroup Or Domain page.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Telephony page.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Regional Settings page. The default selection is Use The Default Regional Settings For The Windows Version You Are Installing.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Languages page, which allows you to add support for additional languages.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Browser And Shell Settings page with the following three options:
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Installation Folder page with the following three options:
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Install Printers page, which allows you to specify a network printer to be installed the first time a user logs on after Setup.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Run Once page. This page allows you to configure Windows to run one or more commands the first time a user logs on.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Additional Commands page. This page allows you to specify additional commands to be run at the end of the unattended setup.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays a dialog box indicating that the Windows Setup Manager has successfully created an answer file. It also prompts you for a location and a name for the script. The default is C:\Deploy\UNATTEND.TXT
If multiple computer names were specified, the wizard also creates a UDB file.
The Windows Setup Manager Wizard displays the Setup Manager Complete page, indicating that three new files were created in C:\Deploy: UNATTEND.TXT, UNATTEND.UDB, and UNATTEND.BAT.
The following questions will help you determine whether you have learned enough to move on to the next lesson. If you have difficulty answering these questions, review the material in this lesson before beginning the next lesson. The answers are in Appendix A, "Questions and Answers."