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trainee

RASOR - Textmode Driver Utility

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It appears that the RASOR utility does some of what I need, but before creating a new topic, I thought I'd air what i'm trying to accomplish, and get some feedback on how to best accomplish it, then decide whether a new topic is needed or not.

I am responsible for developing a process to automate the creation of PC images in a heterogeneous corporate environment (no less than 50 different hardware configurations in our environment, including different brands of laptops, desktops, and workstations). Mass storage drivers (MSD's) are a major problem, both during the image building process and afterwards. They are a problem during the image build process because w/o the correct MSD, the HDD is not accessible, thus preventing the build process from continuing. They are also a problem after the images are built as well, because if the MSD issue were resolved, we'd probably be able to reduce the number of base images that we need to make and maintain. And since we are a global company whose sites don't follow standards to the letter anyway (not to mention acquisitions, divestitures, etc), we have a LOT of hardware variability at our sites, so whatever solution I end up engineering needs to deal with those "unknowables" as completely as possible. Currently, we have a separate image for every standard PC type in our environment (built according to a specific inhouse procedure). I don't think that's necessary. but since I am fairly new to the image building process, I could use some ideas on how to proceed. especially since I also need to provide guidance to our site admins so they can perform this new process independantly with minimal guidance.

Needless to say, this is a daunting task for a newbie, especially when i've also been given no budget to outsource this, and the ownness is all mine. But, based on the invaluable info here at MSDN, I also think it's doable.

From what i've read, I think I should be able to get XP to load on any PC type, as long as the correct MSD's exist on the distro point and are referenced in the unattend.txt. I also think I can reduce the number of images in production by adding the -factory option to sysprep, enabling me to create a generic image which will work on all desktops and laptops, and correctly detect the boot device hardware (SATA, SCSI, IDE, etc). From there, I can simply .bat out the remaining configurations for application and specific configs, i'm not too worried about that. But I do want to make sure that I get the baseline config right, and develop it in a way that makes it as generic as possible, so it will work on widest variety of PCs possible. I realize I am leaving out a lot of details here, but I am doing that intentionally so I don't skew the discussion of a solution.

I'd also like to do all of this using Microsoft's Business Desktop Development Accelerator as the vehicle, if possible. For those of you who haven't seen the most recent version, it's definitely worth a look, as it mirrors alot of the work being done here at MSFN ..... and it is also FREE.

(http://www.microsoft.com/technet/desktopdeployment/bddoverview.mspx)

Thanks in advance for reading, sorry for the length .......

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How difficult is it to make it so this program will run on a machine with only .net 2.0? I dont run 1.1sp1 because it screws up the ATI CCC.

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<RANT>I apologize for being out of touch for so long. On top of moving across the country, starting a new job, etc. My new employer wasn't sure if they wanted me to work on this project. I am not going to say who my new employer is but like most companies they officially own anything I make unless they tell me otherwise (read: they can sue me if I don't ask before distributing something publicly). Previously I just told my boss I was doing something and he was like "sure", but things aren't quite so casual at this new place.</RANT>

The good news: RASOR Alpha 4 is out along with a better interface and stubs for additional functionality. At this time I also added an Adaptec Ultra160 defintion. Rasor will continue to be distributed under the Academic Free License v.2.1. Basic driver conflict checking has been added in this release.

The bad news: I choose NOT to support anyone trying to use RASOR in a non-personal mode. Its not that I don't want to help but I don't want my employer to find out about it and get peeved no matter how remote the chance. Also there has been a bit of code-bloat that I have yet to address. RASOR is now up to 380k and it doesn't show you a download progress bar so that sucks for ppl not on DSL or cable.

HELP! I promised when RASOR first came out to allow others the chance to make definition files. I plan to have a how-to up by 01/26/2005. Shortly after Alpha 5 will allow for multiple package sources.

New Interface: I'm hoping the new interface is pretty self explanatory but heres the quickstart...

1) Select your root directory

2) Make sure that the winnt.sif file is correct

3) Click 'Retrieve Package(s)'

4) Go to the 'Select' tab

5) Select the packages you want to add to your xpcd

6) Go to the 'Repackage' tab

7) Click 'Repackage'

8) Watch the little window until it says 'Drivers Repackaged' or fix the errors it lists

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RASOR Package Guide Part 1

Creating a package for RASOR is really just about reorganizing files and chopping up a txtsetup.oem file so that RASOR can read it and combine it with other driver files. RASOR uses XML descriptions which can look daunting just because they are so verbose but after some practice you should be able to create them in no time. Most of this guide will be using an example driver (Adaptec Ultra320 HostRaid Driver) but the steps will be applicable to any MassStorage driver. So without further ado...

The 2.5 Parts of a RASOR Package

Each rasor package will consist of:

  • An XML description file specifically listing file locations, txtsetup settings, etc.
  • A self extracting .Zip archive with all of the driver files
  • A wrapper XML file that will list ALL of the package files you have made and their descriptions. You will will add to this file as you create new packages. (this is the .5 part)

Step #1: Obtaining & Organizing Driver Files

Get your driver files and extract them if neccesary. Delete extraneous files. What makes a file extraneous? Readme's get deleted as well as obvious directories (aka. if you have a win98 subdirectory and a winxp subdirectory you can delete the entire win98 subdirectory). At this point you should be cautious and only delete files you are sure are not important. Also files in pertinent subdirectories should be moved to the upper directory and the subdirectories deleted. For this guide we will be using the Adaptec Ultra320 HostRaid controller drivers for an example. In that driver package there is a subdirectory called 'win32' containing 5 files. All of these files should be moved up to the main directory and the win32 directory should be deleted.

Step #2: Convert the TXTSETUP.OEM into the Driver.xml

Open the txtsetup.oem file in notepad (or your favorite non-formatting editor: xemacs anyone?). The txtsetup.oem file in the example driver package is very long and can be viewed in its unaltered state here. Almost the enitre file is comments! You can read them if you want they provide some information about the structure of the txtsetup.oem files. Now DELETE all of the comment lines from the file (they start with '#'). Afterward you would have something that looks like this:

[Disks]
d1   = "Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003", \hraidsk1, \Win32

[Defaults]
scsi = ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K

[scsi]
ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K = "Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"

[Files.scsi.ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K]
driver  = d1,a320raid.sys, a320raid
inf     = d1,a320raid.inf
inf     = d1,adhraid.inf
catalog = d1,a320raid.cat
catalog = d1,adhraid.cat

[Config.a320raid]
value = "", Group, REG_SZ,    "SCSI Miniport"
value = "", Start, REG_DWORD, 0
value = "", Tag,   REG_DWORD, 1
value = "", Type,  REG_DWORD, 1

There are 5 distinct sections to this file. There will always be a Disks, Defaults, scsi, and somesort of Files section. Sometimes there will be additional Files sections and most will have 1 or more Config sections. Each of these sections will be dealt with individually. The file is now much more readible and far easier to work with.

Starting an XML file from scratch can be a pain, and usually I choose to edit one I have already made, *but* for good measure we will start one from scratch. I find that Microsoft Frontpage is a very good choice for this but there is no reason why you can't just use notepad. So all XML files start with some encoding information at the top, so to start add this line to your file:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>

All driver packages have ID's and that ID should be used as the name of this file. To prevent collisions everyone should use backend filename annotation: username + underscore + a relevant ID. You can use any normal filename characters for the ID that you want as long as its unique. I choose to use #'s for my IDs and for this example I named my XML file trainee_0010.xml The XML file will have 3 major sections:

  • winnt: Describes information to be added to the winnt.sif file
  • xpcd: lists files to be copied to specific locations on the XPCD
  • txtsetup: describes items to be added to the txtsetup.oem file that RASOR will generate

Everything in an XML file is surrounded by tags and our root tag is package. The second line in your XML file will start the package block and list the title and id attributes. Confused? Your file should now look like this (with relevant title and id information):

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<package title="Adaptec U320 HostRaid" id="0010">

Now we want to start a winnt section by adding the tag <winnt>. Whitespace (spaces, tabs, etc.) have very little significance in XML so you should make the layout of the xml file as readible as possible. You won't break anything if you follow these examples. We need to create a [MassStorageDrivers] line for the winnt.sif. It is imperative that this line matches the contents of the [scsi] section of the txtsetup.oem file. Specifically we want the part in quotes after the equals sign. After adding a opening <storage> tag to the xml file copy this line, with quotes to the file. Then we want to add = "OEM" to the end and put a closing tag like this </storage>. The whole thing should look like this now:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<package title="Adaptec U320 HostRaid" id="trainee_0010">
<winnt>
<storage>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003" = "OEM"</storage>

Next we want to add the files that will be listed in the winnt.sif [OemBootFiles] Section. Any file referenced in the [Files...] section of the txtsetup.oem file should be listed here. In this example that would be 5 files: a320raid.sys, a320raid.inf, adhraid.inf, a320raid.cat, adhraid.cat. These will be enclosed in <oemboot> tags. After these are added the closing </winnt> tag is added before the next section. Now you would have something that looks like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<package title="Adaptec U320 HostRaid" id="trainee_0010">
<winnt>
<storage>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003" = "OEM"</storage>
 <oemboot>a320raid.sys</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.cat</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.cat</oemboot>
</winnt>

The next section is the xpcd section. There are only 2 types of tags used in this section <textmode> and <oemdir>. Most drivers (including this example) only need to use <textmode> tags. Sometimes drivers (ex. nvRaid) need files to be copied to another directory and will utilize the <oemdir> tags (explained at end). Each file that will be copied to the XPCD (excluding the txtsetup.oem) will need to be referenced here between <textmode> tags. Since all the files were moved up from any subdirectories in step #1, no paths are needed only the individual file names. For this drivers (as with most) the list of files in the <xpcd> section is identical to the list of files in the <winnt> section. After all of the files have been added the section is closed with </xpcd> and should look like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<package title="Adaptec U320 HostRaid" id="trainee_0010">
<winnt>
<storage>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003" = "OEM"</storage>
 <oemboot>a320raid.sys</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.cat</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.cat</oemboot>
</winnt>
<xpcd>
 <textmode>a320raid.sys</textmode>
 <textmode>a320raid.inf</textmode>
 <textmode>adhraid.inf</textmode>
 <textmode>a320raid.cat</textmode>
 <textmode>adhraid.cat</textmode>
</xpcd>

The last and final section is the <txtsetup> section. It contains information that will be incorporated into a new txtsetup.oem. If you are only using 1 driver this will generate a file identical (for all intents and purposes) to the original txtsetup.oem provided by your manufacturer. However RASOR will also merge multiple txtsetup.oem files from this information. This formatting helps facilitate that. Just like the txtsetup.oem there are 5 sub-sections here. From the [Disks] section (or the modified txtsetup.oem file above) take the part in quotes and put it between <disk> tags. From the [Defaults] section take the part following the equal sign (excluding any whitespace) and put it between <default> tags. Moving down, the entire section below [scsi] should be put in <scsi> tags.

Note: in general txtsetup.oem files are not case sensitive, and often [scsi], [scsi], [sCSI], etc. will be used interchangeably. They all mean the same thing.

Now the file should look like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<package title="Adaptec U320 HostRaid" id="0010">
<winnt>
 <storage>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003" = "OEM"</storage>
 <oemboot>a320raid.sys</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.cat</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.cat</oemboot>
</winnt>
<xpcd>
 <textmode>a320raid.sys</textmode>
 <textmode>a320raid.inf</textmode>
 <textmode>adhraid.inf</textmode>
 <textmode>a320raid.cat</textmode>
 <textmode>adhraid.cat</textmode>
</xpcd>
<txtsetup>
 <disk>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"</disk>
 <default>ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K</default>
 <scsi>ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K = "Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"</scsi>

From the [Files...] section we want to identify the types of files and put them in appropriate blocks. This tag has an attribute called 'header'. We want to set that attribute equal to the header of the [Files...] section including the brackets. In this case that would be header="[Files.scsi.ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K]". For the driver files we want to put them in <driver> tags, the inf's in <inf> tags and the cat's in <catalog> tags. I have no freaking idea why I made it <catalog> instead of <cat> I may make the program recognize either, but for right now you have to type <catalog> out...sorry. Close the files section with the </files> tag. Almost done: it should look like this (in the interest of space only the <txtsetup> section is shown below:

<txtsetup>
 <disk>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"</disk>
 <default>ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K</default>
 <scsi>ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K = "Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"</scsi>
 <files header="[Files.scsi.ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K]">
   <driver>a320raid.sys, a320raid</driver>
   <inf>a320raid.inf</inf>
   <inf>adhraid.inf</inf>
   <catalog>a320raid.cat</catalog>
   <catalog>adhraid.cat</catalog>
 </files>

Lastly we need to break up the [Config...] block into a <config> section with a header equal to the entire [Config...] title including braces (like we did for the files section. Now we will take each individual line and put it between <line> tags. Make sure not to edit any of the lines; just copy them one at a time. At then end close the </config>, </txtsetup>, and finially the </package> tags. The final file should look like this (complete file shown below):

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<package title="Adaptec U320 HostRaid" id="0010">
<winnt>
 <storage>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003" = "OEM"</storage>
 <oemboot>a320raid.sys</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.inf</oemboot>
 <oemboot>a320raid.cat</oemboot>
 <oemboot>adhraid.cat</oemboot>
</winnt>
<xpcd>
 <textmode>a320raid.sys</textmode>
 <textmode>a320raid.inf</textmode>
 <textmode>adhraid.inf</textmode>
 <textmode>a320raid.cat</textmode>
 <textmode>adhraid.cat</textmode>
</xpcd>
<txtsetup>
 <disk>"Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"</disk>
 <default>ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K</default>
 <scsi>ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K = "Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003"</scsi>
 <files header="[Files.scsi.ADAPTEC_U320RAID_W2K]">
   <driver>a320raid.sys</driver>
   <inf>a320raid.inf</inf>
   <inf>adhraid.inf</inf>
   <catalog>a320raid.cat</catalog>
   <catalog>adhraid.cat</catalog>
 </files>
 <config header="[Config.a320raid]">
   <line>value = "", Group, REG_SZ,    "SCSI Miniport"</line>
   <line>value = "", Start, REG_DWORD, 0</line>
   <line>value = "", Tag,   REG_DWORD, 1</line>
   <line>value = "", Type,  REG_DWORD, 1</line>
 </config>
</txtsetup>
</package>

Sometimes you will have ampersands (you know these guys '&'), in your config sections. Unfortunetly these are special characters in xml and all &'s must be replaced with & For example bob&martha would need to be converted into bob&martha Get it? You can usually do a find replace to accomplish this.

Step #3: Create a 'disk' file

I don't actually know if this is necessary but I always include it for good measure. Create a plain-text file called 'disk' without any extension. In notepad you want to add the part in quotes from the [Disks] section, but without the quotes. Thats it. Save the file. It will be included in the driver archive made in the next step. The contents of the file should look like this in our on-going example:

Adaptec HostRAID U320 Driver Ver 3.00 For Windows 2000/XP/2003

On to part 2!...

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RASOR Package Guide Part 2

Becuase the guide was getting freakin huge...this is part 2! This part will show you how to make the driver file archive and the XML package wrapper.

Step #4: Self-Extracting Driver Archive

I recommend using winRar for this, but you can use any self extracting archive maker you want, as long as it can be made to run silently and extract to specific paths. Using winrar you want to add all of the files listed in your <xpcd> section (see step #2) *AND* the 'disk' file you made in step #3 to the archive. I usually create .zip's instead of .rar's because .zip performs better on smaller files. The archive should be named with the driver ID (in part 1 this was 'trainee_0010'). Then you want to select 'create SFX archive' (self-extracting). On the 'advanced' tab you want to select 'SFX options'. Select 'create in current folder' and set the path to extract to as "Drivers\" + the ID or in this example "Drivers\trainee_0010". Still in the 'Advanced SFX options' dialog select the 'modes' tab. Under 'silent mode' select 'Hide all'. Under the 'overwrite mode' section select 'overwrite all files'. Hit ok and, then compress it.

Again this is only 1 way to make the archive, you can make any archive you want that will self extract to the current directory, in the subdirectory "Drivers\ID_name", overwrite all files, and do so with no user intervention. Most drivers have many different files and the online storage directories would become very cluttered if they were zipped. Also small files can have a lot of bandwidth overhead.

You should now have 2 files like my example:

1.) trainee_0010.xml

2.) trainee_0010.exe

Step #5: Create Package Wrapper XML

This file you will only need to create once and you will continue to add to it as you create new packages. It is an XML file and follows the same XML style as in the package description file from step #2. The XML header is followed by <drivers> tag. Next a <source> tag indicates the directory (remote or local) where the driver files are located. You can also put source tags for each individual driver to override this general source directory. Then each company (or organizational name of your choosing) will have a <provider> tag with a name="..." attribute. For this example we have a provider of name="Adaptec". Next come the packages in each provider. The <package> tag includes title, id, and status attributes. The title is whatever you want to call your package (this is what people see the package as in RASOR). The id is the package id as specified before. Currently there are 3 different status types (and none of them actually do anything yet). *BUT* you should set a status in case I actually implement the **** thing. The status types are:

  • new: this is intended as a developer debugging mode where only someone running in dev mode will see this package
  • debug: indicates a package that has been created but not yet verified as working
  • release: a package that has been verified as working

All of the above should yield a file that looks like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<drivers>
<source>http://www.thunderwalker.com/rasor/drivers/</source>
<provider name="Adaptec">
 <package title="Ultra320 HostRaid" id="trainee_0010" status="debug">

Now you want to add a <description> to your package. This is what shows up if you show the details of the package. Try to make this information specific as possible so you don't leave people guessing. Driver version #'s and applicable cards models are nice to include here. This can span multiple lines, but tabs and other leading and trailing whitespace will be removed. Close with the </description> tag.

Next a <whql> tag is used with a value of 'yes' or 'no' to indicate if the package has been Microsoft certified. A non-whql package *will* (soon I promise) generate a warning message to shutoff driver signing.

Finally a <conflict> tag should indicate any packages that this package is known to conflict with. RASOR will NOT allow packages flagged as conflicting to be added together. You can pre-emptively specify a conflicting package even if you haven't made it yet. No errors will occur if you specify a conflict with a package that doesn't exist. For this example lets say we have another package 'trainee_0014' that has the Adaptec Ultra320 Non-HostRaid drivers which should never be combined with this package. We would specify this in the <conflict> tags.

BIG NOTE: Currently only 1 conflict is accepted. I haven't decided exactly how to implement multiple conflicts yet, but my expectation is that you will just continue adding <conflict> tags with package names.

Finally we close the </package>, </provider>, and <drivers> tags and our file should look like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<drivers>
<source>http://www.thunderwalker.com/rasor/drivers/</source>
<provider name="Adaptec">
 <package title="Ultra320 HostRaid" id="trainee_0010" status="debug">
   <description>Adaptec Ultra320 with Hostraid Enabled on: 29320-R, 29320A-R, 29320ALP-R, 29320LP-R, 39320-R, 39320A-R, 39320D, 39320D-R
   Version 3.00.036, 10/12/2004
   WHQL driver package
   *EXPERIMENTAL-UNVERIFIED*<description>
   <whql>yes<whql>
   <conflict>trainee_0014</conflict>
 </package>
</provider>
</drivers>

This file can have any name you want (.xml), it will be added to the Package Source(s) list in RASOR. We will call this one 'my_rasor_config.xml'.

You should now have 3 files:

1.) trainee_0010.xml

2.) trainee_0010.exe

3.) my_rasor_config.xml

WOW you're done!

I'm working on the next RASOR update to actually make it so you can load your own packages both locally and remotely, but I wanted to get this up so people would atleast know what is involved in making a package for RASOR. It actually is pretty fast once you've done it a couple of times. The packages are somewhat complex to facilitate the mixing of txtsetup.oem files into a single txtsetup.oem and to remove as much of the burden/screw-up-ability from the user as possible. This was they don't even have to pull apart the drivers from the manufacturer.

I hope that with this and the upcoming additions to RASOR that people will be interested in it again. Sorry I left you guys hanging for so long :( . I'm back now.

Additional Information

In step #2 it was mentioned that some drivers need additional tags in the <xpcd> section of the package xml. Sometimes drivers (like nvraid) refer to .cpl,.dll,.exe,.vxd files (possibly others) that although they are in the txtsetup.oem file (or maybe not) are part of the driver package. Rcordorica figured out that by copying these files to '$OEM$\$$\OemDir\' the driver would function correctly. If you have files like this, include them in the Self-Extracting Driver Archive and list them each in <oemdir> tags in the <xpcd> section.

In step #5 we listed a general <source> location for drivers. This MUST be provided even if you list specific source location for each driver package. If you want to put a specific location you can do so by using <source> tags for that specific package. Example for a local file: <source>C:\rasor\drivers\adaptec\</source>

If you are using local driver files these files should already be unpackaged. RASOR will not expand local driver packages.

Acknowledgements

Special thanks to Yzöwl for helping debug this document

:o <--but I still talk alot!

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RASOR Package Guide Part 1

xpcd section

There are only 2 types of tags used in this section <textmode> and <oemdir>.  Most drivers (including this example) only need to use <textmode> tags.  Sometimes drivers (ex. nvRaid) need files to be copied to another directory and will utilize the <oemdir> tags (explained at end).

I cannot find this section, I don't know if I'll need it or not, but I have a cpl (control panel extension) in my drivers, so I would guess this wouldn't be in the <textmode> section.

From the [Files...] section

For the driver files we want to put them in <driver> tags,

   <driver>a320raid.sys, a320raid</driver>
 </files>

What's the bit after the comma for?

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@Yzöwl: Nice Proof-reading!

Sorry that I forgot to include the <oemdir> expanation at the bottom of the guide. Also the you are correct: the comma and following text are in error. I have corrected them in the guide. Thanks again. If you create packages for others to use and don't have a place to host them, you can send them to me and I will incorporate them into the www.thunderwalker.com package source. (With full credit to you of course!).

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@ trainee

I've noticed that the xml created and used for the SiI 3x12 SATA RAID using the full RASOR utility also added the bit after the comma, is that a problem then?

<Edit>

Also I was wondering if someone could tell me if I can delete the OemDir from %SystemRoot% as part of my cleanup.cmd, or whether it will still be needed.

</Edit>

Edited by Yzöwl

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Okay a new RASOR is out! It supports local packages (on your hard drive) or any location of your choosing. RASOR will auto-update when you run it. BE VERY VERY CAREFUL if you get a package from a source other than thunderwalker.com. Since RASOR effectively executes a self-extracting archive an unscrupulous person could put a virus or something into a package file! You should be able to download the file first and check it out.

The guide for creating the wrapper-file has changed slightly to accomodate local package sources. local driver packages are NOT compressed!!!!! local packages can skip step #4 in the guide!!!!

Using non-default packages. First of all there is very little "oh-crap" code so if you created your package incorrectly most likely RASOR will kick the bucket. The good news is that .NET programs die pretty kindly and won't leave a bunch of crap on your system. The bad news should be obvious.

After RASOR starts you should select and remove the default www.thunderwalker.com wrapper location. RASOR *should* be able to incorporate drivers from multiple sources, but I recommend using only 1 source at this time. Selecting 'ADD' you will get a box where you can type in the location of your wrapper file. Yes you have to type the whole thing in by hand becuase I haven't implemented a browse button yet. Then click 'ADD' again to add it to your package source list. you should be able to click 'Retrieve...' and have it populate the available packages list from your wrapper file.

RASOR has become significantly more complex than I originally intended it to be. Its nowhere near perfect but it should allow people to create and test their own packages now.

If you create a package and think it would help other people please post it to this thread or email me at trainee@thunderwalker.com. If it looks good (and you give me permission) I will add it to the default www.thunderwalker.com source so that other people will have access to it. (note: I will only incorporate standard drivers, no *hacked* or alpha drivers please).

Known Bugs/Missing Features (partial list):

  • local caching
  • local configuration saving
  • local package expansion
  • available packages horizontal scroll bar problem
  • bottom status text: multiline + reset
  • rasor updating status bar
  • rasor downloading status bar
  • a whole lot of "ohh-crap" code

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Not working for AMCC/3ware 7000/8000 series???

Maybe I am doing something wrong?

I have a 3ware 7500-4 card which uses these drivers.

I use nLite to rip the XP cd to my hard drive, rasor to integrate/repackage the drivers and nLite once more to make the new iso image before i burn the cd.

When i boot with the cd i ignore the F6 prompt to install drivers and let windows setup do its thing. Eventually it stops with the message that it can't detect a hard drive in my system and forces a reboot.

Why can't it detect my hard drive. Can anyone please help me?

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@krebobble: the 3ware 7000/8000 drivers are NOT the same as the 3ware 7500 drivers you are referring to. Currently RASOR does NOT have a package for the drivers you are looking for. I will try to get it in, but now that RASOR supports custom packages if someone else could create this package that would be great.

I WAS INCORRECT: THIS DOES APPEAR TO BE THE SAME DRIVER

@krebobble: RASOR is only part of an unattended install. I have sent you an email about it. RASOR will not work if you aren't running your install unattended. Please see the guide at unattended.msfn.org

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@krebobble: the 3ware 7000/8000 drivers are NOT the same as the 3ware 7500 drivers you are referring to.  Currently RASOR does NOT have a package for the drivers you are looking for.  I will try to get it in, but now that RASOR supports custom packages if someone else could create this package that would be great.

I WAS INCORRECT:  THIS DOES APPEAR TO BE THE SAME DRIVER

@krebobble:  RASOR is only part of an unattended install.  I have sent you an email about it.  RASOR will not work if you aren't running your install unattended.  Please see the guide at unattended.msfn.org

@Trainee: Thank you. I think that was the lightbulb moment!!! I had better take a longer look at the unatteneded guide. Back to school for me :-P

Amidst looking at the rasor xml for the 3ware driver i noted that it is using version 7.1.1. The latest is now version is now 7.7.1. It doesn't look like any of the config need change if you wanted to update it.

Best regards,

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