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Needing some clarification on creating an unattended XPCD


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I'm wondering if I could get some help on figuring all this unattended stuff out. I have downloaded and read through the unattended cd PDF that is available on this site. I have downloaded and gathered all the software I would like to add to my install disc, and I have done as much further research as I could before I finally became utterly confused.

I understand that in order to get software to install you need to have some understanding of programming, but what I don't understand is, do you need to use all the tools described in the pdf, or just which ever one suits your purposes? The reason I ask is that there is the batch.cmd file, the .inf file, and then there is runonceexe, and wpi, xplode, and some others ways I can't recall at the moment.

Would it be possible if anyone here could simplify the explanation of this proccess for me? I have an XP Pro disc with sp2 streamlined into it, and it is about 170MB in size. I would like to add some software to it, plus a few tweaks, and some theme modifications, but where do I start? How do I make sense of the instructions in the booklet I downloaded? Which program should I use to add the software to the disc? Is there such a thing as needing one type of setup for certain software, and another for other types?

In order for you to get an idea of what I want to do with my personal install, let me list the programs I want to add to the disc:

Nod32 Antivirus

Sygate Personal Firewall

GTK+ 2.10.13 runtime environment

The Gimp 2.0

Winamp Pro 5.35

Nero 6 ultra edition

Power Iso

Tuneup Utilities 2007

Litestep

Litestep update

Nonstep theme for Litestep

Opera 9.23

A software compilation called 165 standalone programs

K-lite codec pack

Bashrats driverpacks

I know that I need to get some switches for this software to get them to run silent, but how do I get them to register for full versions? and how do I get the install to recognize things like themes and wallpaper? Also, is there a way to organize all the startmenu items the way you like them right in the install procedure?

I probably have many more questions, but right now I just want to get pointed in the right direction to start adding applications to my install disc. If anybody can explain to me one surefire way to get this to work, I would greatly appreciate it. I'm not really asking for a simpler way, just a clearer explanation on how to procede. I have used nlite to create an unattended install, and I have the disc extracted to harddisc and ready to be modified. So what's the next step?

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My advice would be to just pick one app to start with and silently install that. Have a search through the forum on how to install that particular app then post a question if you run into problems.

You have quite a list of apps, and if you just try and jump in and install them all straight away you're going to need Prozac!

Question: How do you eat an elephant?

Answer: One piece at a time...

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Thank you for the reply, Gray. But that didn't really answer my question. I already plan on taking it one piece at a time. But I really needed to know where to start. Like which utility do I use to do this? Or which of the numerous files spoken about in the PDF should I use? And where would I look for the switches for gimp and litestep?

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  • 1 month later...
Thank you for the reply, Gray. But that didn't really answer my question. I already plan on taking it one piece at a time. But I really needed to know where to start. Like which utility do I use to do this? Or which of the numerous files spoken about in the PDF should I use? And where would I look for the switches for gimp and litestep?

There is no "One Size Fits All" solution that you seek. It's a matter of just doing the research and pulling together all of the different methods and pieces of code that best fit in with what you want to do and how you want to do it. There are numerous guides on the net that contain enough detailed information to get you started.... it just takes time to go through it all and build/test your process.

The old saying "There's more than one way to skin a cat" applies here.

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Start off with RunOnceEx. There isn't much difference between BatchScripting and RunOnceEx cept that the latter looks neater. Once you get the hang of it (and all the switches for silent install too) then you can try WPI, WIHU or XPlode which are a bit more intricate.

For silent install, there's a topic entirely devoted to it. If that too isn't enough try searching the net.

I hope that helps.

Out of curiosity...what all did you remove to make it 170MB?

Edited by islander_810
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Hey, thanx for the reply islander. I have actually been working on this project very hard over the past few months, and as a matter of fact, I am working on it right now. Almost finished though. I expect to have the finishing touches done by Christmas day. I found all the silent switches for all my software, and even got LiteStep to install perfectly. I tried using the runonce first off, and it did look quite nice, but found batch scripting is easier for me to comprehend at the moment. I use it to install some initial software, then I use WPI with a link on the desktop to install the rest of my goodies. Works great this way, and gives me an option of what all I want installed at each fresh install.

Speaking of LiteStep, I did much searching on MSFN and the net to find a silent switch, but to no avail. I even asked the creators specificlly, there is none. But I found a way to do it, and once I get the disc to the point where I can call it finished, I plan on posting a new thread here to explain to ppl how I got it to work.

Once again, thanx islander, and thanx to everyone here who helped me to learn the unattended install!

:thumbup

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