Well, we have taken a left turn and probably we have veered into non-nlite area but I will
loop around and address nLite at the end of the post.
That having been said, the whole reg process takes experimentation.
Is your system currently changed how you want it? Then do a search in your current registry and export the keys, then convert the REG files to INF (I have been doing this for over a decade so I am very, very good at it; I do recognize that it takes some fiddling) and then search for the same strings in the HIVE files. If they exist, change them, if they don't, add them. Make sure the HKU, HKLM, HKCU etc match. In other words, HIVEDEF is full of HKCU keys. It populates that whole branch in one big "explosion" and putting a bunch of HKLM or other keys will work, but results in a fragmented registry (which can of course be solved by a Winternals utility
I have run into this CurrentControlSet versus Set001 several times -- you need to see your current registry to know if it's smart to add it to the HIVEs. (Don't worry too much, adding keys that don't belong rarely causes a problem, it's the deletion that causes problems).
Your absolute best bet of all? Install the OS on a totally clean system like a VM. Then install registry and file snapshot software. Set everything how you want it to be, compare before and after snapshots, and you will know precisely which reg settings need to be added or changed and which files have to go where, which you can adjust in TXTSETUP and LAYOUT. (Note that nLite edits SYSSETUP.DLL so that TXTSETUP and other files can be changed. You DO need to do this, or to take this edited file and put it into your original XP i386 folder so that you have it forever.)
Finally, when removing languages, note that there are something like 3 or 4 lang files that Windows requires to boot (nlite keeps them automatically). The rest can be eliminated. nLite actually leaves a few Japanese and Hangul language files, as well as Croatian (for Nuhi himself of course) even if you select all languages for removal, so to really take everything out, you sometimes have to make changes manually....
Yes, there really are things that nLite leaves that it doesn't have to! Open up SYSSETUP.INF for example and you'll see the files that go into SYSTEM (not32, just system). You can delete them all and leave that directory empty. And if you set permissions on it by manually editing DEFLTWK.INF and denying system, you could conceivably delete SYSTEM. This DEFLTWK file can also be used to prevent the prefetcher from even being created by denying system permissions on that directory.) Like so:
"%SystemRoot%\Prefetch",2,"D:PAR(D;;FAGAGRGWGXWD;;;SY)" ; DENY system
Any hard-to-delete directory can work the same way, for example:
"%SystemDirectory%\1025",2,"D:P(A;CIOI;GA;;;WD)(A;CI;GA;;;WD)" ; allow world so it can be deleted without deny access
I'll stop before this post becomes "Fred's one million undocumented windows tricks that he's kind of pi??sed he's never seen anywhere else because not enough people read MSFN"
ABout that last point: it seriously puzzles me why 'competitor' sites even bother carrying on considering by comparison they are literally in the dark ages, with users scared to death of editing system files, which the MSFN crowd got over years and years ago...
Edited by fdv, 28 February 2010 - 01:27 PM.