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About bigdogchris

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  1. After the March 13' Enterprise hotfix rollup came out (90 hotfixes), I decided to update my Windows 7 x64 SP1 media. My first attempt was just to use the Windows offline downloader, take all post SP1 security and optional updates, then integrate them into a disk using Win 7 toolkit. This method failed miserably, as the OS would not install. I ended up installing the OS with SP1, writing down what updates where required, then download them from Windows Update Catalog site. I integrated them and reinstalled, then found a few more updates which I downloaded and integrated. I've wound up integrating approximately 109 security/optional updates into Win7 SP1 without that script popup for non-integratable/add-on updates, so it's as close to Microsoft official as possible. When I install the OS I only have a few things to download, which are things that do not cleanly integrate without the add-on script or that I don't want to integrate. Anyways, point of this post is to tell you that I don't think there is a list of specific must have updates. There are some, but you'll probably have to install the OS and look what's available and download them separately to integrate. But now that I know about the three not to integrate, I may try redownloading non-SP available updates with WSUS offline, deleting those three, and trying to integrate what's left. *update* I just made a combination disc. I used WSUS Offline to grab post-SP1 updates, and I also used Windows Update Downloader to get security and non-security updates. Again using Win 7 toolkit, I imported the WSUS offline updates first, then imported the WUD updates (many of which I figured would be identical). For some reason I got a few dozen updates saying that they are upgrades for existing KB's, which I have never seen before on Win 7 toolkit do. I left it to integrate over night (205 updates!). I will try the disc tomorrow.
  2. *Edit* I got it to work, finally. I have no idea why because I used the same disc and same COA key from last time time I tried and it wouldn't work. When I'm working on PC's for clients and need to reinstall the OS, I create my own OEM activated DVD's by using sources\$OEM$ / PID on Vista and SOURCES / Unattend on 7. It works great. A few years ago, before I knew how to create pre-activated OEM disc, I would try to install the OS and use the PID on the COA. On XP HP/Dell/Etc. OEM keys this used to work, however, on Vista and 7 I could never get it to work. I would skip entering the key at install, then in Windows hit "Change key" and type in the COA key. I have always gotten an error about "Invalid Key" or "Product cannot be activated this way" or something like that. Now, elsewhere people are INSISTING that they are able to take HP/Dell/etc., OEM COA keys, type them in, press activate and have them activate the OS without calling Microsoft. I ask them if they are using OEM (system builder) key or actual HP/Dell OEM key, they claim HP/Dell/etc. I recently tried this again and still receive the same errors. What am I doing wrong on Vista/7 that does not allow me to do this that others are claiming to do? I know my method is superior, but I don't like having loose ends like this.
  3. I do PC repair and often times I do not have access to the original restore disc. I typically just create pre-activated media when I do OS installations. But of course, like I said, that leaves FXX restore functionality broken. It seems mbldr can do something like create alternate boot records to boot to. Also, Submix8c is right, SoftThinks is the software I see handles recovery for HP. I'm just hoping to find a way to do this for free to my customers.
  4. Manufacturers like HP, Dell, etc., use an F key press to activate the recovery partitions. In the event that you replace the hard drive you lose the functionality. So my question is a two-parter: 1) Does anyone know the actual functionality of the F button presses, ie., how it works? 2) Is it possible to program a new partition as the fail over partition so that the buttons works again? I would like to do this without using 3rd party tools. I hope this is the right spot to ask