Unattended Windows XP Project

This wiki page should be the primary source for information on creating an unattend Windows XP install CD or DVD. Please share links, images, and other resources below, to start tis process. Once you list any information, please make sure you put your name with it, and tell a little bit of how you used it and/or found it.


Start by looking at this site right here http://unattended.msfn.org/unattended.xp/ -Chris

Here is a site for nLite - Freeware to help out. http://www.nliteos.com/nlite.html -John

John, that's a great resource. I've tried it, and it worked pretty well, however, I am still looking for a good program to burn the .ISO image to the actual disc. Anyone have any idea for this? -Chris

Chris, although it's typically used for "other" purposes DVD Decrypter burns .ISO files to CD and DVD very efficiently. It utilizes the NERO engine, allowing you to leave the burn session open at the end of the write to keep appending files onto the CD/DVD. -Britton

[Wikipedia's list of ISO burning software - Ben

MSFN's Unattended Windows Guide; this is a guide with step by step instructions on how to slipstream Service Packs, hotfixes, and runs you through how to integrate drivers and application installs into your windows disc. - Ben

Driverpacks.net is the source for driver pack that integrate into your Windows installation.

ZoneAlarm - Free software firewall - William Way

Open source system for fully automating the installation of Windows 2000 Professional and Server, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003
http://unattended.sourceforge.net/ -Ron

Imgburn is a free image/iso burning program click here - William Sua

Firefox web browser alternative to IE lots of extensions that change/add to the browser. Plus themes. -Ally

http://tinyurl.com/99wbw - Having the latest version of DirectX 9 (9.0c) is very important for maximum performance in Windows, and there are many applications that require it, although some of those apps come included with it. - Chris Brinson
Just a note, DirectX 9C is not the latest version, DirectX 10 is. However, a lot of older computers will not support DX10. There is a list of compatible chipsets out there-Britton (Remember- DirectX 10 is not compatible with Windows XP, only Windows Vista 32bit and 64bit.)

AVG AntiVirus is a free and very well maintained AV software. - Britton

Windows Service Pack 3 (SP3) Windows® XP Service Pack 3 (SP3) includes all previously released updates for the operating system. - Suzanne

Just as a visual aid, I've consolidated the above links and added some other applications that may be desirable for a slipstreamed install. Italics denote freeware. Feel free to add-on to the table.

AV Programs Firewalls Service Packs/OSes Recovery Software Web Browsers Media Players Unattended Instructions Spyware/Adware
AVG AntiVirus (Michael) ZoneAlarm (Michael) Windows XP SP3 (Michael) Norton Ghost 14 (Michael) Mozilla Firefox (Ally) Winamp 5.53 (Michael) MSFN's Walkthrough (Chris) Ad-Aware (Britton)
Symantec Products (Michael) Tiny Personal Firewall 6.5 (Suzanne) Windows Vista SP1 (Michael) Acronis True Image (Michael) Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 (Michael) iTunes (Michael) Notable Application Switches (Michael) Spybot Search & Destroy (Britton)
Windows Defender (Suzanne) Mandriva Linux (Michael) Opera (Michael) Real Player (Britton)
Microsoft Virtual PC 2007 (Britton) Maxthon (Suzanne)

(added column and extended table - Britton)

DivX is a good media viewer. You can watch, share and convert video files. Easy to understand and works great with downloaded video.

Picasa is a good photo organizer. Picasa makes it easy to flag photos for uploading to web based photo programs such as flickr. -Suzanne

Xbox 360 controller driver for the PC. This will enable a user to play computer games with the console controller, being a console gamer myself, this is a godsend.-Jay

Unknown Device Identifier is a great free tool to find unknown drivers within your system. A good idea to add those drivers into your slipstreamed XP disk for time sake. - Britton
Regarding this, depending on how you will be using your unattended XP disc, it may not be a great idea to add drivers to it. For example, if you are going to be using this to use for clients of the future, they very likely will not have the same hardware configuration as your machine, thus nullifying the point. If you are going to be using this at home for your machine, it could be a great idea. Just food for thought - Britton

OpenOffice is a great, free alternative to Microsoft rather bloated and overly priced office suite. OpenOffice can also edit Microsoft Office documents. - Britton

Thunderbird, is a great free email client from Mozilla, the Firefox folks. - Britton

Adobe Reader 8.1.2, is the only PDF viewer that can open and interact with all PDF documents and it's free. Use Adobe Reader to view, search, digitally sign, verify, print, and collaborate on Adobe PDF files. - Suzanne

Great work so far. A program I really like using is Trillian. It is an all purpose Internet Messaging program. The Basic version is free includes plenty of features to make it worthwhile. The Pro is $25 and adds some additional features, but nothing overly spectacular or required. It is possible to get the Pro version free, but you have to jump through some hoops to do so.

Alternately, Pidgin IM is a completely open source Internet Messaging program. I have used it, but it did not feel as polished as Trillian.

Finally, I think we should discuss narrowing our list down to what we really want. In some cases it is OK to have multiple programs for the same task, like Internet Browsers. In other cases, you have to limit yourself to just one, like Anti-Virus programs. My first thought here is that we should favor freeware and open source programs. I don't know if anyone actually intends to use the install we build, but it would be nice if there were not a bunch of licensing fees involved with doing so.
I agree. Of course, it will depend on for whom this is being built for. For a home network, freeware is the way to go. If this is for a company, then we will probably use the software available. (For example, AVG free is not supposed to be used for corporations) -John

[http://www.example.com describe link[http://www.example.com - Not sure what this text is for, but it was scrunched on mine, so I pushed it down a bit. -James

Microsoft Virtual PC Virtual PC works great for testing. -Bonnie

[http://www.mingw.org/ ] Contains a subset of the GNU C++ compiler that runs under windows. -Jack Miller

ShowCalc 3.01 (last freeware version). http://www.321download.com/LastFreeware/page7.html#ShowCalc
32-bit calculator that, in addition to basic arithmetic, memory and scientific functions (hex, trig, and log modules), includes an extremely useful, scrolling 'tape Window' that allows you to easily view your work. You can then print this adding machine-like tape, or copy the data onto your clipboard for use in other applications. -Ron Coleman

Gimp A great photo editing software program that is free and full featured - similar to Photoshop. - Bonnie

Comando Firewall A well reviewed product that has Vista compatibility.

http://www.ccleaner.com/ Ccleaner is a great freeware clean-up program. -John

Using Batch (.bat) files is a great way to install your programs all in one with as little disruption from endless installation screens. Here's a great starters tutorial on how to use batch.
and Microsoft's Index of Batch commands (for those who as forgetful as myself)
Microsoft's Batch Index

http://www.ubuntu.com/GetUbuntu/download Here you can download "Hardy Heron" aka Ubuntu 8.04 LTS "Long Term Support" which is 3 years for the desktop version and 5 years for the server version. This open source OS was released in April of this year, and is arguably the most popular Linux variant. Includes Open Office, GIMP, Pidgin IM, Firefox, Evolution, and lots more. You can dual boot with Windows. I'll bring an ISO to class. -William Way

http://www.roboform.com/ I suppose this is the only program that I would want on a new install that I didn't already see listed. Everyone else covered the other areas I could think of. ~Faren

Alternative to nlite, windows Unattended CD creator beta versionhere's the link

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