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tantryl

Sysprep Reseal causes reboot loop

11 posts in this topic

I run a tiny baby sized one/two man PC support and sales place on the west coast of Australia and need a little bit of help with sysprep.

Basically sometimes when I reseal a PC with sysprep it does its job and shuts the PC down. When the client starts it up (although I've taken to testing this myself for obvious reasons) it gets just past the black Windows XP loading screen and restarts the computer. This cycles over and over, and it won't boot into Safe Mode citing "Setup has not completed".

Any ideas on what might cause this?

I really don't know nearly as much about sysprep as I should, as I only make 1-2 computers a fortnight for customers and usually know their names etc. etc. and when sysprep goes south I just do it manually (with an unattended slant, but manually nonetheless).

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I found myself curious about this and I went to the Microsoft knowledgebase and typed in sysprep and came up with several interesting hits. Unfortunately there were too many to just start randomly guessing and posting them here for you. You could go to the knowledgebase to read them to see if anything triggers something for you.

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I can find plenty on how things should be done, but nothing on what do do when things go wrong.

I was hoping someone else had experienced this problem...

You know, because I'm sadistic.

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A few more details might be needed here, firstly I'm guessing you build a few systems here and there for clients, yes? If so do you build them all exaclty the same i.e. same motherboards, cpus, RAM, etc.. or do you do custom orders?

The thing with sysprep is that if you don't deploy the image on exaclty the same build of machine as you made the image on, it will spit the dummy somthing shoking. It's almost the same as take a hard disk with XP from on older pc and putting it into a new one, sometime it will work but say for example you had a via chipset in the old pc and a super cool awesome nVidia chipset in the new one Xp will die a horribly painful death full of blue screens and reboot loops :wacko:

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I've been using sysprep/ghost for years. The biggest issue I've seen with sysprep and XP is dealing with the HAL. If you sysprep a box and drop an image into a box that uses the same HAL, 99% of the time, you'll be OK. If the HAL type is diffferent, you're screwed. One thing I did was to drop the HAL to "Standard PC" before sysprepping. This solved 90% of the problems and I was always able to reset the system to the proper HAL after I imaged (if necessary). Sometimes you can disable ACPI in the BIOS and get past your loop problems long enough to get things working.

I don't know all of your specifics, but I hope that will help you a bit.

Cheers! If that helps, drink a VB in my honor. :)

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These are on literally identical boxes, right down to the RAM, Optical drives and HDD.

They all use the Biostar iDeq 200N, AXP 2800+, 512MB Kingston ValueRAM PC2700, Lite-on DVD/CDRW Combo, WD800BB, Panasonic FDD.

But most importantly, they all use the motherboard that comes standard with the 200N.

*EDIT* I'll give the ACPI/Power thing a shot and report back next time I build one of these suckers.

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If thats the case then sysprep should have no problems, if your getting this problem on multiple machine then it's a fair bet that there is s software problem. If your installing specialised software that has funky licence activation check that it doesn't need to read the CPU serial.

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Software list is:

WXP SP2 Home

Acrobat Reader 6.0

Quicktime 6.4

Real Player Enterprise Edition

TweakUI XP

WinRAR 3.3

avast! 4 Antivirus

Ad-Aware SE

Spybot S&D 1.3

Spywareblaster 3.2

If anyone can notice them as obvious problems, please say so. Meanwhile off I go to check if they use the CPU serial.

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Perhaps it's a driver issue. In a case like this, I would disable everything that is onboard and try and boot. If it boots, start enabling devices one at a time. I did see this issue once with out of date drivers and the AC97 onboard audio.

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Ywah I've seen bad drivers cause reboot's but windows normaly disables the fauty driver on the second reboot.

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I have seen this problem on occasion. Here's somehting you might want to try when you get the "Looping" Screen of Death.

1) Boot the PC with a Windows 98 Boot disk

2) Go to the comamand prompt and type fdisk /mbr then hit "ENTER"

3) Boot the XP CD to the recovery console and type in bootcfg

this has worked for me in the past. Let me know if it works for you. Dave

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