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1 Ghost Image for Multiple Machies


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Dear friends,

I would like to know if its possible to install a fresh copy of windows xp without drivers, to install all the softwares I want, customize the windows, make a ghost image and restore (use) the same image on different desktops and laptops with different motherboards.

Does anyone know if its possible to do and if yes please explain how to do this.

Your help will be highly appreciated


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I can be possible. For more information search for Hardware Independent Image (HII).

The two biggest issues you will run into are HAL compatibility and Mas storage drivers. The second is fairly easy to handle the functionality is actually built into XP to add MSD drivers to the image via sysprep. The HAL on the other hand is is a whole different matter, technically, you can only switch between compatible HALs and of the 7 XP there are only two compatible pairs. There are workarounds for the HAL compatiblity have had mixed results.

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Hello, first time poster here so please dont flame me.

I have created 1ISO image consisting of 5 different computers. I slipstreamed in SP3 and all 5 computers drivers. The question is, how do i or where do i insert the sysprep file?

I would also like to know how to have sysprep call the computer name from the BIOS.

Any help is much appreciated.

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We had an universal ghost image that worked untill we got Lenovo T500's and M57's. They end up with a black screen and there is nothing to do. Maybe you got an idea on that?

The image was build on a uniprocessor (basic machine). The newest are dual cores and have problems with HAL and mass storage like Iceman told.

Otherwise I would like to make a new ghost image on a T500 but my old winpe 1.2 doesn't recognize the NIC so I can't continue.

Can someone help on this?

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Those machines require a certain HAL in order to boot, it's not a problem when doing an unattended install, but it is when trying to deploy an image.

You have two options, create an image for those machines with the new processor. Or force the machine to boot with the correct HALL using the boot.ini switches. Then replace the inastalled HAL with the correct one.

From http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinte...s/bb963892.aspx


Enable you to override Ntldr's default filename for the kernel image (Ntoskrnl.exe) and/or the HAL (Hal.dll). These options are useful for alternating between a checked kernel environment and a free (retail) kernel environment or even to manually select a different HAL. If you want to boot a checked environment that consists solely of the checked kernel and HAL, which is typically all that is needed to test drivers, follow these steps on a system installed with the free build:

1. Copy the checked versions of the kernel images from the checked build CD to your \Windows\System32 directory, giving the images different names than the default. For example, if you're on a uniprocessor, copy Ntoskrnl.exe to Ntoschk.exe and Ntkrnlpa.exe to Ntoschkpa.exe. If you're on a multiprocessor, copy Ntkrnlmp.exe to Ntoschk.exe and Ntkrpamp.exe to Ntoschkpa.exe. The kernel filename must be an 8.3-style short name.

2. Copy the checked version of the appropriate HAL needed for your system from \I386\Driver.cab on the checked build CD to your \Windows\System32 directory, naming it Halchk.dll. To determine which HAL to copy, open \Windows\Repair\Setup.log and search for Hal.dll; you'll find a line like \WINDOWS\system32\ hal.dll="halacpi.dll","1d8a1". The name immediately to the right of the equals sign is the name of the HAL you should copy. The HAL filename must be an 8.3-style short name.

3. Make a copy of the default line in the system's Boot.ini file.

4. In the string description of the boot selection, add something that indicates that the new selection will be for a checked build environment (for example, "Windows XP Professional Checked").

5. Add the following to the end of the new selection's line: /KERNEL=NTOSCHK.EXE /HAL= HALCHK.DLL

6. Now when the selection menu appears during the boot process you can select the new entry to boot a checked environment or select the entry you were using to boot the free build.

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  • 2 weeks later...

HAL issues are becoming less and less of an issue if you have a fairly modern environment (4-5 years life cycle). Having sysprep switch between ACPI Multi and ACPI Uni processor HALs is fairly simple I have found. If you have non-acpi HAL machines then yes hal issues will be tougher for a single universal image.

We have a 4 year life cycle on our PC/laptops. Currently all 12 models we support are ACPI, most run Multiprocessor HALs. We have 1 Uniprocessor HAL machine (our oldest supported laptop model HP NC6220).

For our image, I create the master image on our oldest desktop PC, which happens to be Multiprocessor. To support the uniprocessor laptop, I added the following line to the Unattended section of my sysprep.ini file. This command will check to see if the PC requires a uniprocessor HAL, if it does it will install. If it doesn't it will leave the Multiprocessor HAL. I have also read reports that this command automatically installs the uniprocessor HAL and windows itself re-updates it to Multi if needed. Either way this is working for MY companies situation.






I found the guides at http://www.vernalex.com and http://remyservices.wordpress.com/ (search for sysprep) to be very helpful with all things sysprep....

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