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Including product key in ISO file

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I've tried that Nlite & that other program (Windows unattended CD Creator) and placed the product key and created a iso and burned it, when i tried to install windows from this CD the key was not inputted, i was asked for this by the installation.

The only thing i really want to do is have the product key on the CD so i don't have to type it in. If i am to use a winnt.sif file, where do i place that on CD image file so i can reburn to make bootable. I tried placing it in the i386 folder of my source image and that didn't work. I placed that and the batch file that was created using the deploy tools suggest by http://unattended.msfn.org/beginner/localsource.htm

I've seen iso cds with the key on it, when you insert the CD, it doesn't ask for the key and installs.

The problem is this particular winxp cd iso file i have has a pirated key on it.

If there is a way i can go in the iso file of this CD and change the key to my own key, then that would be just as good. Can any of you WinXP guru's help me please?


Edited by da_pirate
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no i dont think so...

first of all if u use a pirate key thta is not recognized by xp u can use any program.........that u quoted....it will not work...so if u want it to work please but a legit copy .....i recommand ebay.

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you are not understanding my problem or i didn't speak it clearly.

I am asking if i can make my own iso from my own XP install CD. on this iso i want to make, i want it to have the Key (legit key I own) on it, so i don't don't have to keep inputting this key everytime i install or upgrade a pc.

I was merely mentioning the fact that i know this can be done because i have seen an iso with this done already but the key they put on it is a pirated key.

SO i want to do something similar with a good key and my own install cd.

Or if you can tell me where to look on this pirated iso, can i change the key they have on it to my key, it's the same type of XP Pro.


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If you have a legit key it's normal it doesn't work on your winxp iso with already a key in it, because regular key doesn't work with pir*ted downloaded cd !


well how can i make iso from my install cd to include my key.

It is a corporate edition. I works fine but i just have to input key for each installation which i don't want to everytime.


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Okay simply add a file named WinNT.sif in you I386 with these inside :



I havn't tested this minimal winnt.sif but normallly it will works with avertissements errors because of incomplete info about other settings but it's okay for installation ...

I have a full unattented mode to do nothing to install windows ... with wrong key to allow to change the key by the one on the sticker of my clients ...

I have checked ref.chm and UnattendMode=ProvideDefault will work too normally ...

Edited by sonic
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realy quick guide:

1: download and install enlite.

2: put your legit cdrom in jour cdrom drive.

3: open nlite, and were it says. 'browse to windows root' - brove to your cdrom-drive (mine for example is G:\).

4: nope because you made the source dir a cdrom, it wil also ask for a destination... (it can be any dorectory. but usaly i recomend, either c:\xpfiles or beter yet if you have a 2nd partition d:\xpfiles)

5: after a while it wil be ready copying files, to the temp asigned drive.. and youl be asked what you want to do: 'at leas pick the, UA-settings flag

6: make put ur valid key, in the field and maybe also fill out all the other fields if you wish...

7: create in the last tab make sure to creat the iso ..... after you created it press. next and leave the wizzard.

8: open up nero or any other cd burning tool and burn the iso you created to a blank cdrom..

9: if your key is valid, an you did evrything right you now have ur key inserted.

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i figured out the NLite solution,

The problem i am having is adding the key to populate during the upgrade installation rather than a clean fresh install , i take it you cannot add the key or answer file (.SIF) to take care of upgrade install.

believe me, i did everything in the guide and used the Nlite program even before posting. I know my key is good because i can install with this key and even passes the validation test by Microsoft on the update page.

It is not that i am getting errors. That is not problem. Problem is during installation, i am still being prompted to enter the product key when doing an upgrade

here was my sif file

























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It's easy, YOU CAN'T AUTOMATISE UPGRADE MODE OF WINDOWS XP !!! It's the main rule of the unattend world ^^


ok thanks for help

i thought i read that somewhere but i was hoping the information i read was incorrect.

best regards

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Winnt.sif is only used if you start the install by booting from the CD. If you are running setup.exe from within Windows 98 you need to use the unattend.txt method.

can u elaborate more on that method (unnattend.txt) or point me to some documentation that talks more of this method please?


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Its simular to using winnt.sif but instead of the installer finding the file on its own you have to tell it where it is using the following command line

winnt32 /unattend:[answer file]

You can use any file name for the answer file. See ref.chm in deploy.cab for diferances between unattend.txt and winnt.sif.

You can automate an upgrade either from winnt.sif or from unattend.txt but there are upgrade specific lines that you must use. I never did an unattended upgrade, in fact I rarely do any upgrades.

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