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Yzöwl

replace OEM factory wim in WinRE

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Are there any guides or info explaining a process to replace the wim provided by the OEM in the hidden WinRE partition with a clean, up to date and unbloated one.

 

The system has been installed from a clean Vista x86 OEM disk and has the correct most recent drivers etc. However after having installed nearly 200 optional and recommended updates, I'd like to image it and hopefully replace the SP1 based image provided by Toshiba which contains pointless and old programs with out of date drivers etc.

 

I bet it's not as simple as a straight copy and replace…is it?

 

Additionally, as the image is intended for that unit only, should I still be using sysprep with generalize prior to capturing the image or not?

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The matter is "touched" (though not exactly answering your questions) here:

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/128727-cant-access-repair-my-pc-option-via-f8-startup/

starting from around here:

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/128727-cant-access-repair-my-pc-option-via-f8-startup/?p=950736

Particularly, one of the given links:

http://www.svrops.com/svrops/articles/winvistare.htm

should be of use.

jaclaz

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It really depends on what the recovery software is. If it uses Setup.exe (From Windows) to do the recovery, then you do need to sysprep the image.

You may want to copy the original install.wim out of the recovery partition and take a look at it. For example, is it a single image in the index or are there multiple?

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Here is the content of the existing WinRE partition:

pyqHgbd.png

 

The boot.wim appears to have only one mountable index.

Its content looks like a standard system drive folder structure, the main difference being the \sources folder.

Here are its contents:

Directory of \MountedWim\sources 11/14/2006  02:36 AM    <DIR>          en-US11/14/2006  03:05 AM    <DIR>          recovery               0 File(s)              0 bytes  Directory of \MountedWim\sources\en-US                0 File(s)              0 bytes  Directory of \MountedWim\sources\recovery 11/14/2006  02:36 AM    <DIR>          en-US11/14/2006  03:05 AM    <DIR>          tools11/02/2006  03:31 AM            13,824 PssWiz.exe11/02/2006  03:31 AM           428,032 RecEnv.exe11/02/2006  03:31 AM           503,296 StartRep.exe               3 File(s)        945,152 bytes  Directory of \MountedWim\sources\recovery\en-US 11/02/2006  03:31 AM            16,384 PssWiz.exe.mui11/02/2006  03:31 AM            18,432 RecEnv.exe.mui11/02/2006  03:31 AM            36,864 StartRep.exe.mui               3 File(s)         71,680 bytes  Directory of \MountedWim\sources\recovery\tools 11/09/2006  05:25 AM           421,888 TWinRERecoveryReminder.exe11/10/2006  12:16 AM               301 WinREConfig.xml               2 File(s)        422,189 bytes      Total Files Listed:               8 File(s)      1,439,021 bytes               4 Dir(s)

So my question I suppose is, can I copy the sources folder from the existing boot.wim into the root of the newly installed system drive, image the system drive to a new boot.wim and replace the one in my WinRE partition.

And just to verify, would it be wise to generalize with sysprep or not? my instinct is to do so, (I've only created a single generic named user, from which I've performed all updates etc.).

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Well... the WinRE partition doesn't have the backup image in it. The boot.wim is just the PE that runs the recovery software to restore the recovery image. It was my understanding that you wanted to replace the recovery image with an updated one... You need to find where that image is. NOTE. it may not be a WIM... I would expect to find a setup.exe in your winre.wim, but there doesn't appear to be one. They may be using a custom software package to do the recovery.

What is in the WinREConfig.xml?

Regarding sysprep... Typically the generalize is used to make the image workable to different hardware. It may not be required if this image is only to be used on the same system it was captured from.

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Trip, the xml file simply lists the TWinRERecoveryReminder.exe file as RecoveryTools, which despite it's strange name, (and absolutely no mention of it anywhere in Google), has a description which states `Restoring the complete Windows operating system`.

 

From going through the WinRE folder structure, Program Files, ProgramData, sources, Users, Windows; I cannot find anything which stands out as special. Apart from the Windows folder and the sources I've already shown you, the other three folders are effectively just folders within folders with only an odd file. My guess is that the executable copies the structure, except for the sources folder, to the target drive and then …somehow propagates them!

 

Mind you, I never bothered to try the recovery process before I installed my clean system so for all I know the recovery application asks for an optical disk or doesn't work at all!

 

I may even resort to creating a backup image of the newly installed partition, then try to factory reset the unit and find out if it actually works.

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Ah well, I was hoping maybe the XML used a switch on that EXE... An image will should either me 1 large file (over 2GB) or it may use multiple spanned-files in 2GB parts.

WinRE's boot.wim is just a WinPE. So all those folders you see are from that. I highly doubt the TWinRERecoveryReminder.exe creates folders in the way you mention, although it is quite possible that it prompts to insert a disc.

Do you have any other partitions on this system?

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