This scenario explains how to create an integrated installation of Windows XP and the corresponding service pack in a shared distribution folder on a network. This integration is called “Slipstreaming”.
The integrated process installs the service pack during Windows XP Setup, so when the setup process is done, you’ll have the OS + SP in one operation.
Important: Do not update Windows XP integrated with a service pack in a shared distribution folder if there are users who are still using a previously installed integrated version in the same shared folder.
For other versions of this article please visit the following links:
Before we begin anything, you will need to have a few things:
Download Windows XP SP2 (266mb)
Lamer Note: This guide is based on the English versions of Windows XP, and of their corresponding Service Packs. If you are using a different localized build of Windows, you will need to find the right version of SP for your build.
To create an integrated installation of Windows XP and the service pack:
xcopy E:\i386 D:\XP\i386 /e
Another Lamer note: You can also drag and drop the folder’s content.
Lamer Note: This is only an example. Substitute the path with the settings.
Another note: It will be easier for you if you chose a folder name that has no spaces in it. If you do use spaces, make sure you enclose it in quotation marks, i.e. “folder name” from now on through the entire guide.
Lamer Note: Notice there IS a space between the “-s” and the “Update.exe”. Also, notice there is NO space between the “-s:” and the path of the installation files folder.
Note: You do NOT need to specify the i386 folder in the path. The slipstreaming process will automatically look for it in the folder root.
You can now deploy Windows XP to your users’ computers from the shared distribution folder in either attended or unattended Setup mode. Alternatively, you can burn a CD containing the files from the distribution folder. During the standard installation process, Windows XP Setup (Winnt.exe or Winnt32.exe) installs the updated operating system with the service pack already applied.
Important: When you run the Update.exe program as described earlier for an integrated installation, a Svcpack.log file is created automatically in systemroot on the computer that is running the Update.exe program. If you plan to update more than one version of Windows XP on this computer, rename the Svcpack.log file after you update each version. This ensures that you do not overwrite the current log file when you update additional versions of Windows 2000.
After installing SP2 (or any other Windows 2000 or XP SP) on your computer you do NOT have to re-apply it if you choose to remove and reinstall a system component.
But whenever you want to install or reinstall a new system component or you will be prompted for both the original Windows XP i386 folder and the current Service Pack i386 folder, because the operating system “knows” it should be looking for the required files in both locations. Sometimes this can be a pain because you don’t always remember to keep both folders accessible on your local computer of network LAN.
That’s why you’d want to update the original i386 files with the latest SP files, thus providing a unified installation point for all future references.
The process of updating the i386 original folder with the latest SP files is similar to slipstreaming the latest SP into your installation files. You should follow the guidelines outlined in steps 5 through 7 in the slipstreaming guide.
You now have an installation point for all future needs.
After you’ve slipstreamed your i386 folder with the current SP you’ll probably want to burn the files to CD and use them. This process will indeed let you use the CD as an installation point but it will not be a bootable CD, thus you will not be able to use this CD to boot into the setup phase.
There are a few good articles that describe the process of creating a bootable CD (See list of articles at the bottom of this page).
But the easiest method of them all (in my opinion) is using an already bootable CD to create the new bootable CD with the slipstreamed SP4 files.
To do so you’ll need a good CD-burning software that will also be able to read and write ISO files. One of my favorites is WinISO (currently v5.3) but you can use any other software is you want.
WinISO is a CD-ROM image file utility that can convert BIN to ISO, extract/edit/create ISO files directly, make bootable CDs and as a BIN/ISO converter/extractor/editor. It can process almost all CD-ROM image file(s) including ISO and BIN. With WinISO, you can add/delete/rename/extract file(s) within image files. You can convert image files to the standard ISO format and you have the ability to create ISO image file(s) from a CD-ROM.
I’ll explain the needed steps using WinISO screenshots and commands.
Follow the steps described in the slipstreaming guide section at the top of the page. It does not matter what SP you’re using. This process will work for Windows 2000/XP/2003.
Now you‘ll need a CD-Burning software that reads ISO files. If you‘re using Windows XP you can use the new Powertoys or the ISO burner PowerToy to enable ISO file-burning as a native XP command. If you‘re using another OS you should try Golden Hawk CDRWin, Easy CD Creator, Ahead Nero or any other program that will do that.
The best tool that I know of to help you create a bootable Windows CD is Bart‘s BootCD. It‘s well worth the effort and it‘s free:
Bart‘s way to create bootable CD-Roms (for Windows/Dos)
Other ways in which you can make a bootable CD-ROM (e-mail me if you have other, better resources):
Perform a search in Google for other articles. As I said, there are quite a few around.
Don‘t forget you‘ll need to repeat these steps for each Windows XP version you want to burn.