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nlite not processing layout.inf


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so am i just not seeing the option to do so, or does nlite not process layout.inf?

when running windows setup in windows pe using winnt32.exe it gives errors about not being able to find files because the layout.inf file still has references to files that were removed by nlite. txtsetup.sif has all references to removed file deleted from it, but layout.inf still has 'em.





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right, i noticed dosnet is cleaned, the problem arises when using winnt32.exe to run setup in windows pe using the following:

c:\i386\winnt32.exe /unattend:c:\i386\winnt.sif /syspart:c: /tempdrive:c:

where c: is a drive to which i have copied the i386 dir of a specific windows distro.

i'm no expert on windows installation process, but it's my understanding that text mode setup uses txtsetup.sif and that windows mode setup uses layout.inf. i could be wrong but the fact remains that when running setup from the aforementioned command it causes file not found errors when copying.

anyway, i hope that clarified the problem a bit.


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the exact files were too many to remember, seemed like hundreds. the first one was 3dgarro.cur. it looked like every file that nlite removed caused an error.

yes, after skipping them it did work, hoever, i'm using this in an unattended situiation, and would like not to have to hit skip that many times.

thanks again.


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i thought signed files were binary files not text, or at least unreadable by humans. anyway, layout.inf is neither and certainly doesn't fit any of the criteria i know of a digitally signed file (being able to edit it without errors, beingable to read it without a special program.)

anyway, after looking a bit closer it turns out that it is the dosnet.inf file that seems to have files leftover in it. i manually deleted a few of the entries that contained references to files that were deleted and never say an error message complaining about their absence.

sorry for the confusion.


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layout.inf is digitally signed. By some method. Perhaps not the conventional CAT file type, but perhaps a simple MD5 check or something. Either that or syssetup.dll was signed, or both. In either case, I think one of the hacks in nLite gets around that.

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Yeah, you can change layout.inf after nlite...haven't done it for some time ( loosing all driver digital signature then ) , but it should work. However, it won't solve your missing file issues, they are just in dosnet and txtmode, also in some other component infs.

plastik, ;)

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@alanoll, nuhi, others:

Open LAYOUT.INF in 2k / xp.

Search for "layout"

In 2k:

layout.inf = 2,,244801,,,,_x,20,0,0

In XP:

layout.inf = 100,,408600,,,,_x,20,0,0,,1,20

In either case, that "_x" tells the installation to check the filesize. If there is a mismatch, the install will bomb. If the "_x" is missing, setup will not check. So in other words, layout.inf is checking itself. Either correcting the filesize or removing the "_x" will solve the problem. In fact, just totally removing the "_x" from every line that has it in the entire file is, I found in my own IE removal files for win2k, avoids any nasty surprises.

Other notes: first number is what "disk" the installation is told to look on. Since it's all on CD, you can change that 2 or 100 in both cases to a 1. Slipstreaming makes this change (and it's one easy way to see what files got modified.)

At the beginning of the file, you'll see that:

100 = %spcdname%,%spcdtagfilei%,,\i386,1


1 = %cdname%,%cdtagfilei%,,\i386

But they're really both the same CD, so you can change many 100's to 1's, or you can change the 100 line to:

100 = %cdname%,%cdtagfilei%,,\i386

This way, you can start on a process to eliminate having to have that win51ip.SP2 file in the root of the CD (you have to do a few other things as well in other files too).

A 100 also tells the install to look, in some cases (such as drivers that have been fixed by a service pack) to look into SP2.CAB versus DRIVER.CAB. With Nuhi's driver consolidation, I'm sure that this inefficent method by Microsoft will be eliminated at some point.

The 20 is obvious, it's the destination directory.

The next zero, I'm not sure.

The next zero after that (the last one in the 2k line, the second after the 20 in the XP line) means that the filename ends normally; if that number is a three, it means that the file name ends in an underscore. Underscore files do NOT have to be compressed, although it does save space on the CD. I have a 2k CD I made that installs VERY VERY quickly, because (as a test) I expanded and then renamed many large files back to ending in an underscore. Windows just thinks the file(s) are zero percent compressed.

The ,,1,20 in the XP line I am not sure about, but there is really no reason to keep it--we need to avoid having this file check itself, so the best thing to do is to change it to:

(xp example) layout.inf = 100,,408600,,,,,20,0,0

This way, we can edit this file as we like and setup won't bomb. THEN (we're not done!!!) we remove several garbage entries like:

"mediactr.cab = 3,,99770897,,,,_x,,3,3"

(notice the _x, that has to be removed, but in our case, we want the whole line out anyway.) either commenting the line with a semicolon first, or deleting it entirely, will prevent XP's setup from copying the file on the CD to the hard drive. That file is HUGE, and if we delete it and other files like it, setup will FLY. No sense in copying files if we're not going to use them anyway.



My tutorial on removing IE and a WHOLE LOT of other things from Win2k

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Almost forgot, you have to eliminate the "_x" in every line of TXTSETUP.INF also to eliminate checking for modifications. Also, the note about source disks (1, 2, 100) applies here also). Files like mediactr.cab must be commented out in both files to avoid errors. -- FDV

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