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Unattended Secret: Reducing Size Of Source


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I just stumbled on this thread and decided to reduce the size of my XP Pro SP2 DVD. I followed the clear and concise instructions and everything worked great.

My SP2 I386 folder went from 527Mb to 373Mb. Now I can work on my unattended CD since there is so much more room for much needed apps.

Thanks to Gosh for the thread and his site and for those that helped Gosh.

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Just thought I'd let everyone know...

If you use Gosh's method of reducing source and then try to integrate the latest hotfixes/service packs with the /integrate option, it will generate an error.

You need to use your original CD when integrating hotfixes.

*That was probably said somewhere else but I probably missed it*

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  • 1 month later...

Well, I just wanted to know where is the real source reduction?

I took my Microsoft Windows XP Professional with Service Pack 2 Volume Licencing CD and I compared the size:

1- The Original CD-ROM is 574Mo

2- Remove some folders reduce the original CD-ROM to 376Mo*

3- The GOSH method reduce the CD-ROM to 363Mo

* Removed Folders at root: DOCS - DOTNETFX - SUPPORT - VALUEADD

* Removed Folders in I386: LANG - WIN9XMIG - WIN9XUPG - WINNTUPG

So using the SUPER SECRET GOSH method, I loose an incredible 13Mo :w00t:

The only claim left is the speed increase... wich I will test on 2 identical computer later this week. Maybe I'll be able to reduce my installation time of a couple seconds...

And if you are still wondering, YES, the use of sarcasm is one of my best quality

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is used to verify if the files are the properly copied.

Plus for certain critical files like

winlogon.exe, uxtheme.dll, shell32.dll, there is futher internal file

crc verification check to make sure they are not tampered with.

When you use in your winnt.sif file,



the bluescreen text copy mode does not check for *ANY* kind

of file verification.

Hence you can use patched uxtheme.dll or customize icons in

shell32.dll etc. and file copy mode will NOT stop giving you error that

this is not a valid file or file was not copied properly, try again .....

If you have used modified versions of files, (eg. shell32.dll)

the setup completes normally BUT if you do a sfc - scannow

OR check file signatures with sigverif.exe those modified files

show up as bad files.

I hope this helps to all the users on the forum.

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  • 1 month later...
Guest scoobz18

I have been trying to make a boot folder using winnt32.exe /noreboot and it keeps canceling due to an error. I add the key and select no download and right after it cancels. Is there any other way? I am using windows xp with sp2 slipstreamed.

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  • 3 weeks later...
I can't /integrate: any hotfixes in my XP SP2 using your "Reducing Size Of Source" technique.

If I do the same on a "regular" XP SP2 it works.

In fact, the resulting files after using this process is not an official install CD anymore. Its equivalent to what the setup creates on your HDD!

You can integrate SPs only onto an official install CD (or identical HDD copy of it).

Is there a workaround for this and is there other limitation I should know?
No workaround! :(

What you do need to know, though, is that you should always keep the "reducing source" as the last step in your uA install preparing - do everything else, then approach this. There should be nothing else that you need to do after that step. (gosh himself said it, some pages before)

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thanks for your answer. Anyway, I've decided it would be easier to maintain if I keep the regular content of the CD and just delete the unnecessary folders... beside the difference between the two is only 17Mo. :P

I am still using Gosh method to get the necessary boot files to for my CD so I can provide many options with different WINNT.SIF or even perform a "regular" installation... :thumbup

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  • 1 month later...

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