Overview of an answer file unattended file script
1 / 29

Overview of an Answer File - unattended file / script - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

  • Updated On :

Overview of an Answer File - unattended file / script. A customized script that allows you to run an unattended installation of Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Useful when setting up multiple computers Answers questions that Setup prompts you for during installation

Related searches for Overview of an Answer File - unattended file / script

I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
Download Presentation

PowerPoint Slideshow about 'Overview of an Answer File - unattended file / script' - ella

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript
Overview of an answer file unattended file script l.jpg
Overview of an Answer File - unattended file / script

  • A customized script that allows you to run an unattended installation of Microsoft Windows 2000 Server

  • Useful when setting up multiple computers

  • Answers questions that Setup prompts you for during installation

  • Sample on the Windows 2000 Server installation CD‑ROM

  • Different names for different programs:

    • Winnt / Winnt32 <filename>.txt

    • Bootable CD-ROM Winnt.sif

    • SYSPREP utility Sysprep.inf

  • Same format used for each type of answer file

  • Contains multiple optional sections that you can modify

  • Tells Setup how to interact with the distribution folders and files

Answer file format l.jpg
Answer File Format

;This section provides information about the user and the computer.

[UserData] <------- Section Name

FullName = Student01 <--- Key and Value

OrgName = "Contoso Corporation“ <--- Quotes needed for spaces

ComputerName = Srvdc01

Using setup manager l.jpg
Using Setup Manager

  • Available on the Windows 2000 Server installation CD‑ROM in the Support\Tools\Deploy.cab file

    • .cab file a special MS archive --- can expand with Windows Explorer

  • Used to perform a number of tasks

  • Adds consistency to the process of creating or updating the answer file

  • Cannot be used to specify all answer file settings or optional components, create Txtsetup.oem files, or create subfolders in the distribution folder

Commonly used setup manager specifications l.jpg
Commonly used Setup Manager specifications

  • Upgrade Option

    • Win2000 Server

    • Win2000 Pro

  • Target Computer

    • User Name

    • Organization

    • Computer Name

  • Product ID – License Number

  • Work Group or Domain

  • Time Zone

  • Network Configuration Info

Creating the answer file manually l.jpg
Creating the Answer File Manually

  • Use a text editor such as Microsoft Notepad.

  • Define additional section headers.

  • Customize the default answer file or write a new one.

Distribution folders l.jpg
Distribution Folders

  • Contains all required WIN2000 install files

  • Multiple folders

    • Different set ups

      • Use folders naming convention to easily identify

    • Load balanacing

    • Winnt32 supports up to eight folders

Structuring the distribution folders l.jpg
Structuring the Distribution Folders

  • $OEM$

    • Cmdlines.txt run during GUI

    • Sub folders copied to target

  • $OEM$\textmode

    • Updated mass storage drivers

    • Txtsetup.oem directs loading

    • All files must be listed in [OEMBootFiles]

  • $OEM$\$$ copied to %windir%

  • $OEM$\$1 copied to %systemdrive%

  • $OEM$\$1\drivers

  • $OEM$\$1\Sysprep include sysprep.inf

  • $OEM$\drive_letter

    • $$rename.txt

Performing an unattended installation l.jpg
Performing an Unattended Installation

  • Bootable CD‑ROM

  • Winnt.exe

    • See page 62 for command line parameters

  • Winnt32.exe

    • See page 64 for command line parameters

Bootable cd rom l.jpg
Bootable CD‑ROM

  • The computer must support the El Torito Bootable CD‑ROM (no emulation mode) format to boot from the CD‑ROM drive.

  • The answer file must be named Winnt.sif and be placed on a floppy disk to be inserted into the floppy drive as soon as the computer boots from the CD‑ROM.

  • The answer file must contain a [Data] section with the required keys specified.

Initiating an unattended installation l.jpg
Initiating an Unattended Installation

Comparing installation upgrading methods l.jpg
Comparing Installation/Upgrading Methods

  • Syspart

    • Clean install dissimilar hardware

  • Sysprep

    • Clean install, nearly similar hardware, requires 3rd party imaging software

  • SMS

    • Upgrade or clean install across the network (LAN/WAN)

  • Bootable CD‑ROM

    • Clean install

  • RIS

    • Professional only

    • PXE boot rom on NIC or BIOS boots a server

    • RIS bootable disk

  • Clean install on existing partition preserves files ????

Syspart l.jpg

  • Included as a parameter of Winnt32.exe

  • Used on a reference computer to complete the first phase of installation

  • Can be used if the reference computer and the computers on which you will complete the installation do not have similar hardware

  • Requires two physical disks

  • Can be used if you require a similar installation on hardware types in which the HALs or mass storage controllers differ

  • Remove disk from reference computer and install in target

Running syspart l.jpg
Running Syspart

winnt32 /unattend:unattend.txt /s:<install_source>


/tempdrive:<install_target> /noreboot

  • Syspart and tempdrive must point to same partion

  • Must be a primary partition

  • Will automatically be marked as ACTIVE

Overview of sysprep l.jpg
Overview of Sysprep

  • Facilitates creating a disk image of your Windows 2000 Server installation

  • Prepares the hard disk on the master computer

  • Identical HALs, Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) support, and mass storage devices

  • Allows you to configure a master image containing the necessary components for a member server

  • Can be used in conjunction with Syspart to create a master for each type of hardware configuration

The sysprep process l.jpg
The Sysprep Process

  • Sysprep duplication

  • Sysprep files

  • Mini-Setup wizard

Sysprep duplication l.jpg
Sysprep Duplication

  • Installing Windows 2000

    • Disconnect from domain when building

    • Admin password leave blank

  • Configuring your computer

    • Logon with Admin privileges

  • Validating the image

    • Client audit

    • Remove residual files and logs after audit

  • Preparing the image for duplication

    • Run SYSPREP optional .inf file

  • Duplicating the installation

    • Ready to PNP detect

    • Create SID

    • Run Mini Setup Wizard

Sysprep files l.jpg
Sysprep Files

  • Sysprep.exe

    • Run manually

    • [GUIRunOnce]

  • Sysprep.inf

    • Answer file used during cloning

  • Setupcl.exe

    • Process sysprep.inf

    • Determine pages Mini Setup will display

  • All should be located in %systemdrive%\Sysprep

  • Can not duplicate AD components

Mini setup wizard l.jpg
Mini-Setup Wizard

  • The wizard starts the first time a computer boots from a disk that has been duplicated by using the Sysprep tool.

  • Mini-setup screens may include

    • EULA

    • Regional Settings

    • User name and Organization

    • Computer name and Admin Password

    • Network Settings

    • Time Zone

    • Finish/Restart

  • The wizard gathers information needed to customize the target computer.

  • You can bypass the screens in the wizard by specifying certain parameters within the Sysprep.inf file.

Running sysprep manually l.jpg
Running Sysprep Manually

  • Preparing the Sysprep folder

    • Must be created in root of %systemdrive%

  • Running the Sysprep utility

  • Running Sysprep without the -reboot switch

    • Ready to run 3rd party imaging software

  • Running Sysprep with the -reboot switch

    • Mini Setup wizard starts

    • Must rerun Sysprep w/o -reboot

Running sysprep automatically l.jpg
Running Sysprep Automatically

  • You can use the [GuiRunOnce] section of the answer file to create an installation that completes Setup, automatically logs on to the computer, runs Sysprep in quiet mode, and then shuts down the computer.

  • If multiple reboots are required during the unattended install [GUIRunOnce] for sysprep must be last

Using sysprep to extend disk partitions l.jpg
Using Sysprep to Extend Disk Partitions

  • Allows for configuring on system whose hard disk may be smaller than target

  • Configure the partition on the master computer hard disk to the minimum size required.

  • Modify the answer file used to create the master image by including the FileSystem=ConvertNTFS option in the [Unattended] section.

  • Install Windows 2000 Server to the master computer and create an image of the drive.

  • Delete pagefile.sys, setupapi.log, and hyberfil.sys from the image

  • Place the image on a target computer that has the same-size partition as the master computer.

  • After you reboot the target computer, the Mini-Setup wizard will begin and the partition will be extended.

Microsoft systems management server sms l.jpg
Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS)

  • SMS allows you to maintain control over the upgrade process.

  • Before you use SMS to perform an upgrade, assess your existing network infrastructure, including bandwidth, hardware, and geographical constraints.

  • Use SMS to perform managed upgrades of Windows 2000 Server to multiple systems.

  • Use SMS only for installation to computers that contain a previously installed operating system and that are running the SMS client agent.

Bootable cd rom24 l.jpg
Bootable CD‑ROM

  • Setting the BIOS order

  • Using a bootable CD‑ROM

  • Installing from a bootable CD‑ROM

Using the cmdlines txt file l.jpg
Using the Cmdlines.txt File

  • Contains commands that are executed from the $OEM$ subfolder of the distribution share during GUI phase

  • Used in certain circumstances

    • Installing components from \$OEM$

    • Application does not configure itself for multiple users

    • Logon as a service and replicate changes to all users

  • Uses specific syntax

    • [Commands] “<command>” “<command>” etc…

Using the answer file l.jpg
Using the Answer File

  • The [GuiRunOnce] section of the answer file contains a list of commands that are executed the first time a user logs on to the computer after Setup runs.

  • If an application forces a reboot, the reboot needs to be suppressed.

  • Use alternatives if you cannot suppress a reboot.

    • MSI package

    • SMS installer or VERITAS WinINSTALL LE

    • Registry placeholders filename.reg

  • If an application requires a Windows Explorer shell in order to be installed, you cannot use the [GuiRunOnce] section.

  • Applications that use the same type of installation mechanism might not run properly if a /wait command is not used.

Using application installation programs l.jpg
Using Application Installation Programs

  • The preferred method for preinstalling an application is to use the installation routine supplied with the application.

  • The application must be able to be installed in quiet mode.

  • Setup parameters vary among applications.

Using a batch file l.jpg
Using a Batch File

  • Allows you to control how individual applications are installed

  • Can be run from the [GuiRunOnce] section of the answer file

  • Ensures that your applications install sequentially and that each application is fully installed before the next application begins its installation routine

Batch file syntax l.jpg
Batch File Syntax

start /wait <path>\setup_file> <parameters>

start /wait <path>\setup_file> <parameters>


  • Should be copied to distribution folder

    • May use the sysprep folder the automatically deleted

  • Add batch file to [GUIRunOnce]

  • .lnk ???? Copied to target computer startup???