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Slipstreaming Xp Home...


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#1 benny269

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Posted 04 August 2008 - 01:19 PM

Hello

I have a Compaq Presario PC with a partitioned hard drive - C:\ as is standard and a recovery partition called D:\. I have just had to undergo a full format and reinstall of XP using this partition since my PC had slowed to a crawl after regular use for over a year. Now that I've reinstalled Windows, I've also installed all the necessary drivers and desired programs and tweaked it so all the settings are to my liking. Before I started using it as normal again, I wanted to create an image/clone of the drive in this state so that in future I could simply revert to this point in my PCs life. Having said that I don't really want to spend any money on additional software to do so and I was looking at Clonezilla (freeware option) but seemed to be getting into a complicated process using CLI. What I would really like to have is a simple 1 CD automated installating so that whenever I need to format and reinstall, I just backup any files and folders and pop in the CD. As far as I know this can be done by slipstreaming Windows in many ways although I would most prefer using nLite as the program has a GUI and can do the tedious work automagically for me. Is this a good piece of software to use? Will I also be able to add custom programs to be additionally installed? If so, I still have 2 major problems:

1. Recovery partition - while I am willing to try and automate this process for the future I don't want to lose my D:\ partition so I was wondering if it was safe for me to use a slipstreamed XP CD in this way.

2. I have no XP CD - however I do have an I386 folder located at C:\Windows\I386 with winnt.exe and winnt32.exe applications in the folder as per Leo-Says instructions. Is this good enough to use in conjunction with nLite or do I still need an XP CD? If so will any borrowed CD work as long as I input my Activation Key?

Help appreciated. Thanks.

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#2 xXAlphaXx

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Posted 04 August 2008 - 01:25 PM

Hmm. You can create a restore point through windows so you can revert to that exact point and wont lose your files.

I don't know about cloning it though.
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#3 hamluis

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Posted 04 August 2008 - 01:49 PM

Personally, I think I'd prefer to make a recovery CD...delete both partitions and start anew.

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/fastFaq...ocname=bph08097

Once I had a recovery CD, I would do a clean install...and/or modify that CD using nLite.

http://www.nliteos.com/guide/before.html

I see nothing in the nLite guides about using i386 folder.

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#4 usasma

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Posted 04 August 2008 - 06:21 PM

In order to save everything as it is now, you'll have to image your hard drive. Nothing else will retain all the tweaks, settings, and programs that you've installed.

You can try the different freeware solutions for this (see this post: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/ind...st&p=899305 )

As you'll see from the above post, I recommend Acronis True Image. It's always done the job for me, and it even has the capability to make a restore partition on your hard drive with the current image (and you can boot to it). If you use this method, though, I'd suggest keeping a copy on an external hard drive (or a couple of DVD's) in case your hard drive ever dies.
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#5 benny269

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Posted 05 August 2008 - 03:44 AM

xXAlphaXx:

Already have restore points. I want to be fully prepared with an image though. Seems to be the best, most reliable method.

hamluis:

I do in fact already have a Recovery CD that I used the PC to create, but as your link states, I can only create 1 and no longer can copies be ordered from HP. Its not absolutely necessary to delete the recovery partition and it takes up a few gigabytes of space that is unused on the system anyway so I don't need to remove it. Having said that, could I use the recovery CD in place of a working XP CD for the purposes of slipstreaming with nLite?

In the first few steps when applying the process using nLite you need to copy the windows source files into a folder on the HDD and since I don't have an XP CD I was wondering if I could use said I386 folder in its place. Would that work the same?

usasma:

You've had Acronis for some time. Do you have to repay for updates and buy new licences every few years or so? Is it definitely better than all freeware solutions? I don't mind investing in something that is worthwhile and will last me a long time but as you can see I'm not a very heavy user and so far I am only tinkering with the idea of imaging, cloning, restoring etc so I am unsure if perhaps it is better to stick to freeware for now. What do you think?

#6 usasma

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Posted 05 August 2008 - 05:55 AM

I still have the original version 7.0 program that I purchased and it works just fine (but not on Vista). I got free updates until they stopped making that version - then I had to upgrade to the next version. I'm currently at version 11.0 for the Home version.

So, should Windows change significantly, then Acronis will be forced to change it's programs - which will then require an upgrade if you want to use it with the new operating system. But if you're sticking with XP or Vista, then the Home v11 should satisfy your needs until you stop using them.

As we're getting into the $'s end of this thing, I must disclose that I'm a beta tester for Acronis, so I get a free copy of the products that I test. I also belong to the Microsoft MVP program, and Acronis has free offers for that program also.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#7 Platypus

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Posted 05 August 2008 - 06:35 AM

If your Compaq utilises a Seagate or Maxtor hard drive you would be entitled to download and utilise the free Seagate DiskWizard which provides Acronis TrueImage 10 imaging software.
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#8 hamluis

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Posted 05 August 2008 - 09:30 AM

Re using i386 folder with nLite...there are no instructions at the site for doing such.

Which doesn't necessarily mean that it would not work...but I believe that such an omission (totally) from all FAQ for using the nLite program...implies that it would not be recommended.

Louis




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