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Help with reboot and format.

Posted on 2006-11-19
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Hi all i was working on a automatic format solution. Like Dell,Gatway You can insert the CD it would auto reformat the machine. That said I am looking for a solution where from my Delphi application i can choose an option to reboot and auto format. It can run a batch file or ,asm, or scripting . This is probably a hard thing.
Thanks
Grant
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Question by:Grant Fullen
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bernani earned 1500 total points
ID: 17977473

Hi,

This is probably a hard thing.....  Yes, it is.

The major problem you have is the preparation of the boot install Cd.

It needs to contains all the stuff required to install properly as well the OS and it's service pack(s) as well the drivers for each of the devices for that machine and then create the image to burn on the CD.

You can try to see how to prepare such a disk with existing solutions and the steps required:

http://www.computerhope.com/boot.htm
http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder/
http://www.nu2.nu/bootcd/wxp/
http://www.tech-recipes.com/rx/528/create_bootable_windows_xp_cd_rom
http://nightowl.radified.com/bootcd/started.html
http://www.ubcd4win.com/index.htm
http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/resources.html
and last
http://www.bootdisk.com/




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Expert Comment

by:MerijnB
ID: 17977824
don't forget http://www.nliteos.com/ :)
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Author Comment

by:Grant Fullen
ID: 17978970
Thanks for the post. I am aware of the Bart's PE cd, and Useing Microsofts SysPre tools to do Unatnened installs. I had some delphi code a while back that i called a batch file it would ON REBoot would formaty the C: drive. SO once exacuted when the computer  rebooted it would thebn reformat the drive . I am looking for something like this to do from delphi.
Thanks
Grant
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Expert Comment

by:bernani
ID: 17979800
Hi,

I don't know where you had this code, but I believe (and be nearly sure) that nobody here at Experts-Exchange will give or show you the necessary code to format a drive at startup (except maybe the one related to a floppy disk A). Not me, for sure, as this is related to a OS security issue.

I hope you can understand my opinion.
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Author Comment

by:Grant Fullen
ID: 17983749
Hey Bernani . I understand. But has anyone else worked on a cd to reboot and auto reformat like, Dell,Gatway,HP. Compaq. I would like to put one together. I have some friends that are not that great at formating there own computer. I have some other Registry tweeks and stuff in a delphi app and I would like to make  a unattended CD to reformat and put the os on. But I want to strat the from my delphi app.
Thanks for all comments and reading my post.
Grant
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Author Comment

by:Grant Fullen
ID: 17983986
Hey I was wondering does anyone know of a alternative to using Microsoft's SysPrep Tool . Something to help make an unattended install.
Thanks
Grant
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Expert Comment

by:bernani
ID: 17984229
Hey Grant,

I understand what you mean: a bootable restore disk from the whole computer's OS and applications.

If you know how to prepare and burn a bootable CD (it will start automatically at system boot), I don't see where is your problem to write your application.

If I understand well, your Delphi application create a bootable CD , launch the HD formatting procedure, initialise the system and reinstall the whole bunch of system files + applications without the least intervention of the user.

In this case, you need to write yourself all the steps of the installation, to call the various required soft and install them calling their setup or .inf file , do the necessary checkings ... and so on.

See the installation files of many applications in your system folder (.inf file).

And if you want do a restore CD for a particular machine, you absolutely need all the infos related to all the drivers installed for that particular machine (easy to determine with a little utility - Drivers backup) and be sure that no important data are 'forgotten' before deletion. For example, ask your users to show you the exact location of the outlook dbx.files (to avoid to export and reimport the whole ...)

You say : I have some other Registry tweeks and stuff in a delphi app and I would like to make  a unattended CD to reformat and put the os on. I don't believe it's sufficient to create an application that will begin to sweep the whole OS ...

It's my own opinion.



 
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Author Comment

by:Grant Fullen
ID: 17984256
Hey Bernani. Thanks for the info. I have about 10 to 15 system tweaks for windows. Some are registry and others are not. I want to make a nice app to tweak you OS and all so be able to reformat as stated above. And I have some other things besides just tweaks I have worked on . I now want to bring it all together.
Thanks  for posting and reading my post.
Grant
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Expert Comment

by:bernani
ID: 18092254
Hi,

If you're still working on your project, here are some useful links:

http://www.dancemammal.com/cdburn1.htm (with sources)

and also

CD Burning Library v.1.2 http://www.torry.net/pages.php?id=249 (with sources)

and also:

http://www.911cd.net/forums//index.php?showforum=2

and a doc dscribing how to create a bootable CD (it's or Win2000)

http://www.willowhayes.co.uk/windows2000/custom.doc

and regarding formatting

http://www.magsys.co.uk/delphi/magdskfmt.asp

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