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Noobie slipstreaming questions. orz

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Hi i'm new to nlite and slipstreaming and i have some noobie questions. I realise some or potentially all of these questions may have been answered elsewhere but I beg your indulgence as I've been reading forums and trying to get this install started for weeks now and the more I read generally the more confused I get. So here are my questions:

Firstly; I read that it's better to install the newest drivers first rather than update them after the install so you don't have fragments of old drivers left over.

I can see two main ways of doing this but don't know what the better option would be.

1.Download the driver packages from here or from these forums and use them in my nlite install.

Pros: *The guide that linked me to the driver packs said these contain all possible drivers and windows will only install the required ones and leave out the rest so this might be an easy option and ensure I install all the drivers I need without missing any out.

Cons: *I can't tell if these are the latest drivers or those best suited for my components.

2. I have compiled from the manufacturers websites all the drivers I can find for my hardware.

Pros: *I know these are specific for my hardware, are the latest versions and the official drivers

Cons: *I had a hard time finding everything and still aren't 100% sure I have all the ones I need. I have my original motherboard installation disc so I figure as long as I install everything that is on that (from the disc or the updates I've collected) I should be ok.

*As most of the updates I found were in exe format I will have to search through them and pull all the inf files out wich is tedious though not to dificult but brings me to another question:

When I extract an exe archive to locate a drivers inf files I notice there are a lot of other files in the driver folder and other folders within the installer package. Are these files important? Should I intergrate the inf files into nlite so the most current drivers are installed during windows installation in place of older ones -how important is this really?- then run the exe after start up to so these other files are also installed? Some of the other files may just be related to the execution of the installer and not necessary for me to install but I'm worried that some may be additional components the device may need to function properly and that I will overlook these if I simply mine all the inf files. Some of the installers I'm sure also contain updated components for the softaware packages related to the hardware and I would like to install these to, especialy for things like my graphics card and audio controls. Is it still worth installing these updated drivers during windows intallation or should I just install ones like my usb2 driver that are unlikely to have other software components linked to them and install things like my graphics card driver/ UI after installation?

Secondly; The chipset inf update package I downloaded contains instructions for modifying the windows install cd to preinstall the updated inf files. Should I follow these instructions and use the modified instalation disc as the source files for nlite, is it easier to just intergrate the inf update through nlite itself or should I again simply execute the exe after installation? While I do want to learn how to do all these things eventually right now I figure if it makes little difference the less I alter things manually the less chance I have of screwing it up.

Third; I'm not sure what unattended mode to use. As I understand it if I leave it on the default "Hide pages" setting I will only be prompted to attent to any options that are not outlined in the answer file created by nlite is that correct? I don't want to put it on the wrong setting as the warnings attached to some of the options seem pretty dire.

Fourth; I'm also unsure about what to do with the OEM Preinstall option. I used an OEM disc that has SP3 included as my XP source disc so I'm thinking i should probably leave this enabled.

Fith; Is the maximum unfinished simultaneous connections option mostly just for faster P2P transferr? Will setting it at a higher value impact on other areas of the system?

Sixth; The SFC option, this sounds like it might be imoportant to enable but is it?

Lastly (for now ><); How do I create addons for nlite? For example to add .net framework, directX, flash etc to the installation.

Thank you for indulging my noobness and for any help you can provide. orz

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1. All devices are installed when there are no question marks left in device manager. If the driver is latest version, thet is more difficult to know. If the driverpacks include the latest drivers for your hardware , depends how new your hardware is.

NLite does copy the files that are needed by the driver installation (I believe the file names are read from the inf file), so no need to copy them manually. nLite does include the driver, so no need to launch setup.exe. Justy point nLite to the inf file.

It is possible that you miss some fancy functions of your hardware if "only" including the bare driver, in which case you might try to include additional software in an addon.

-> see the "Application Addons" forum for your question about making one if needed.

2. leave nLite to integrate inf files or txtsetup.oem files as starting from a modified disk might get you in trouble.

3-4-5-6, if not sure, leave it alone, nLite then keeps Microsoft defaults (or at least from the cd you provide).

Other users may comment further on this.

Lots of options are interresting when you plan to use the same install disk a lot of times on your machine or for experimenting, but it is often easier (less headache and time consuming) to leave things as is and to bring a one time correction once Windows is installed.

Edited by Ponch
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Lastly (for now ><); How do I create addons for nlite? For example to add .net framework, directX, flash etc to the installation.

For .NET Framework http://www.ryanvm.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=8316

For Flash

For DirectX I don't know off the top of my head but you can check the forum where they have the .NET Framework. XP already comes with the latest DX 9.0c so I don't know why you would want this. Perhaps some games you use requires binaries from the redistributable packages they release every few months. Usually the game in question will bring with it the redistributable if this is the case.

You can also check here for add-ons: http://www.msfn.org/board/forum/132-application-add-ons/ and here: http://www.winaddons.com/nlite-addons and finally make your own with this tool: http://www.virtualltek.com/downloads/show/3

You should also consider applying all the updates up to today so that your machine is secure out of the box and you don't have to spend so much time updating it. This is easily done by visiting my site, http://xdot.tk/updates.html, downloading, extracting and running the UDC script. Then place the resultant files in the Hotfix, Add-ons and Update Packs section of nLite.

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Thanks for your quick responses!

Thanks Ponch now how nlite includes the driver makes sense to me.

Your the man X! I've got those files in my install now, I already had your hotfixes pack downloaded & thank you for making it that saved me so much time not only downloading them but figuring out which ones I needed, seriously top app mate.

So I've got all my files together to start slipstreaming and now Nlite has decided it doesn't even want to open. I keep getting this message when I try to open it:

error.jpg

I've looked through the forum and can't find anyone else with this same problem. I have .net 2.0 installed and I've uninstalled, redownloaded and reinstalled nlite to no avail. Nlite was working fine until I used system restore to wind my system back and fix some other issues I was having.

Also I read that to do a fresh install of XP on a reformatted drive I need a full installation disc and not just an upgrade disc or when Windows asks me for a qualifying disc during the install unless I have an old NT or 2000 disc to use it wont install XP.

I've only got the OEM XP disc that came with my PC but since it's only one disc with SP3 I think it's likely it's an upgrade disc. I don't have a NT or 2000 disc either so any ideas on how I can proceed? Can I download a qualifying disc from somewhere?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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I've only got the OEM XP disc that came with my PC but since it's only one disc with SP3 I think it's likely it's an upgrade disc.

What does the label say ?

Windows XP does fit on "only one disc". There might be confusion between the actual "Service Pack 3" update (~316 MBytes) and the updated (to SP3) OS install disk (more than 600 MBytes). If the disk is bootable and contains an i386 folder, it is likely to be OK.

Now for your error, .. no clue. :}

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This error may be related to a corrupted .NET Framework 2.0 installation (I've experienced something similar here). Have you tried reinstalling it?

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Woot! Reinstalling .net 2.0 fixed the problem with nlite not opening, thanks tomas. I had to uninstall .net framework 3.5 down to 2.0 to remove it.

The XP CD I have says Window XP home edition OEM software, is version 5.1.2600.5512, it contains sp3 and is 559.94MB. It is a boot disc and has an I386 folder but is there something I can download just as insurance? I would hate to wipe my drive then not have a working OS to put back on it! Here is what I read regarding full vs upgrade discs from this XP installation guide http://www.theeldergeek.com/xp_home_install_-_graphic.htm

because this is a clean installation from an upgrade version of XP to an unpartitioned and unformatted hard disk, the screen in Figure 05 appears asking you to verify you qualify to use the upgrade product. Of all the XP installs I've done I could count on two hands the number of times they have been done from full version CD's rather than upgrade CD's, so it's pretty likely you'll see this screen. The qualifying products are listed on the screen. Replace the XP CD with the qualifying product CD and press Enter.

(I know the info below is lengthy and sorry if it's mostly superfluous I just want to provide all the info someone may need to answer my question)

I'm a little confused as I don't think my MB supports AHCI/RAID, I'm using a Gigabyte GA-EG31M-S2 with an ICH7 (not ICH7R) southbridge chip and in my BIOS I am only able to set my intergrated SATA controller to PATA or SATA mode I don't have any options for AHCI or RAID. However my MB driver disc includes AHCI/RAID drivers, is this just an example of the software distributed covering multiple products? At the moment my HD is set to IDE (how my system came) even though it's plugged into a SATA port & I set my BIOS to SATA mode.

I'm also not sure which file is the proper SATA driver to install as there are a few in different folders peppered around my motherboard's driver disc. In a folder called "BootDrv" (I'm guessing these are the ones the CD uses to pre-install the drivers) there's a folder "BootDrv > GSATA > 32bit > with the file jraid_f" which is 4.45kb and Nlite says is the XP RAID/AHCI driver for Jmicron JMB36X controller version 1.17.38.05 in textmode.

Also in "BootDrv > iMSM > 32 bit > there are two files one marked iaAHCI" (8.85kb) and one marked "iaStor" (7.92 kb) Nlite says these are Intel ICH7R(my chipset as far as i know is only ICH7)/DH SATA AHCI/ RAID controllers v 8.7.0.1007 both also in text-mode & if I open them it says they're the INF for Intel matrix storage manager driver.

To confuse matters (at least for me) in a folder on the same disc marked "Other" are the files "GSATA > Driver > x32 > xraid_i" (5.96 kb) and "Other > GSATA_IDE >Driver > x32 > xraid_i" (5.96kb) Nlite says these are Jmicron SCSI adapters v 1.17.43.05 in PNP mode. Each of these files also has an alternative version in "Other > GSATA/GSATA_IDE > Floppy32 > xraid_f" (3.89 kb) which Nlite says are XP AHCI/ RAID drivers for Gigabyte GBB36X controller v 1.17.43.05 both in textmode and another one in "Other > SiI" that contains an application called InstallSATARaid. It seems to me that the two files in the "floppy 32" folders are the Gigabyte boot disc equivalents to the Jmicron files in the "BootDrv" folder but why include both a Jmicron & Gigabyte version of the same file on the same Gigabyte MB driver disc? (again to cover multiple products maybe? If so how do I determine which product I have and which driver -Gigabyte or Jmicron- I need?)

To further confuse things on the same disc in the "Chipset > MSM folder is iata_cd" (setup.exe file) as well as a "MSM8" folder whith the same file and a readme file that says this is also to install Intel Matrix Storage Manager.

My main question therefore is what files do I include where? Do I use either the Gigabyte/ Jmicron files (XP SATA text-mode drivers) in the "floppy 32/BootDrv" folders & one or both of the ones in the "iMSM" folder (chipset SATA textmode drivers) to create a boot disc to use with the F5 menue before installing Windows (or use the Gigabyte disc as a boot disc with the F5 menue before installing Windows) then include either the file in "Other > GSATA or GSATA_IDE" folders (Jmicron SCSI adapter in PNP more) in the nlite driver files? I can post the "driver table" file if that would help.

I also have a few questions regarding removing components if you don't mind. (and yes I know this section is largely down to personal preference so you may not be able to answer some questions.) I'd like to remove whatever I don't use to make my PC run a little faster but I want to make sure I'm not removing anything that's going to cause instability/ loss of vital or common functions:

  • Do I need Windows Activation functionality? Since I'm doing a clean install I'm guessing I probably do.
  • Is it best to remove standard windows drivers if I'm installing 3rd party ones such as removing VGA & display drivers and installing my NVIDIA ones or removing the WLAN drivers & installing the ones for my wireless card?
  • Is it worth removing other drivers I don't think I will use and language packs or are they to small to make much of a different to performance so I should just leave them?
  • Is Active Directory Services only used for allowing multiple user profiles on a PC & if I don't use that functionality is it safe/ worth removing?
  • Is the massager service ok to remove, from what I've read it sounds desirable to remove it.
  • Is Volume Shadow Copy and related items only used for cloning a drive and as such wont effect system restore or other back-up activities?

Lastly, In the tweaks section of Nlite If I don't tick/enable things that are normally on by default does that mean they get turned off? For example I thought prefectching by default is enabled in XP, if I don't tick an option will it be disabled or does ticking an option just tweak it to only occur when you want it to (eg. only after opening an app instead of at start up and when opening an app) I'm pretty sure this is a dumb question and that I know the answer but I want to be sure.

Again thank you for taking the time to read through this post and for any assistance you can provide. :rolleyes:

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SATA = AHCI in your case. You should just integrate those drivers with nLite. You needn't use any other "boot disc".

Edited by tomasz86
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Do I need Windows Activation functionality? Since I'm doing a clean install I'm guessing I probably do.

- Yes, you probably do, depends on your source.

Is it best to remove standard windows drivers if I'm installing 3rd party ones such as removing VGA & display drivers and installing my NVIDIA ones or removing the WLAN drivers & installing the ones for my wireless card?

- Depends. I've had good experience with removing display drivers and installing my own, but some wireless drivers depend on the Windows in-built functionality. Is it removed together with the wireless drivers, I'm not sure.

Is it worth removing other drivers I don't think I will use and language packs or are they to small to make much of a different to performance so I should just leave them?

- There will be a very very small gain, mostly in disk space, but if you ever discover you need some functionality, it's very hard, almost impossible to install it manually. You decide if it's worth for you and be absolutely sure you'll never ever need the components you remove.

Is Active Directory Services only used for allowing multiple user profiles on a PC & if I don't use that functionality is it safe/ worth removing?

- It is safe/worth removing if you don't use, but might be linked to the user accounts control panel (sorry I can't check now). If you don't use that too, remove.

Is the massager service ok to remove, from what I've read it sounds desirable to remove it.

- Quite safe to remove. :)

Is Volume Shadow Copy and related items only used for cloning a drive and as such wont effect system restore or other back-up activities?

- Might be connected with system restore, almost certainly is connected with Windows Backup. Some backup programs (that operate within Windows) might need it.

Lastly, In the tweaks section of Nlite If I don't tick/enable things that are normally on by default does that mean they get turned off?

- If you don't change (toggle) them, Nlite won't make any change.

*Edit: Check and use this topic if you haven't already.

GL

Edited by GrofLuigi
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SATA = AHCI in your case. You should just integrate those drivers with nLite. You needn't use any other "boot disc".

You don't think XP will have any problems reading the SATA drive? I've read sometimes XP requires you to press F5 and install the SATA controller before installing the OS.

Which driver files do you recommend I integrate with Nlite? As I mentioned above there are quite a few and some seem to me to be different versions of the same driver (Jmicron & Gigabyte versions for example) and I'd prefer not to have Nlite installing multiple copies of the same driver if I can work out how to avoid it.

I'm nervous I don't have all the drivers I need but figure at least if I have what I need to get Windows installed I'll be able to look in the device manager to see if I missed anything and install it.

Working out the qualifying disc issue and SATA controller are the main things I'm really concerned with before I complete my Nlite disc as if XP asks for the SATA driver and I don't have it ready or for a qualifying disc and I don't have one I'll be stuck with a PC that wont start up won't I? It sucks I can't find out if I really need these until I've wiped my HD and it's to late to go back.

Thanks GrofLuigi that gives me a little more confidence to play around with the tweaks. Can't wait to actually get this disc done & onto the fun stuff!

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What motherboard have you got? (please write the exact model number).

If you integrate SATA drivers through nLite they will be loaded at the same time as if you used a floppy disk and load them manually.

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if XP asks for the SATA driver and I don't have it ready or for a qualifying disc and I don't have one I'll be stuck with a PC that wont start up won't I?

No. You'll just be told that your install process does not see your hard drive and thus cannot do anything to it. No repartitionning, no formatting, no install, no change.

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Ah sweet Nlight keeps getting better and better! I'm using a Gigabyte GA-EG31M-S2 with an ICH7 southbridge chip. I've checked my mother boards page on the Gigabyte website. I still have the original disc that came with it and I've listed all the files that I can find relating to SATA in my novella of a post above but I'm not sure which is the right one/s to include in Nlight. If Nlight installs them pre OS as if I used the F5 menu & installed them myself then I'm guessing I would need the textmode files however there are still a few of those, some of which seem to me -and I may well be wrong- to be different versions of the same file (Gigabyte & Jmicron ones).

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@Ponch I'm planning to write 0 my HD before I reintall Windows so it's pine fresh for the new install.

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I think you should download and add through nLite only this driver from Intel :)

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