troubleshooting Question

Trouble with Windows 7 Enterprise 64 bit automated installation

Avatar of AaronH1
AaronH1Flag for Australia asked on
SoftwareWindows OSWindows 7
10 Comments1 Solution1113 ViewsLast Modified:
Hey guys. I'm new to deployment so please bear with me.
I've had a relative amount of success creating a customized Windows 7 boot disk (usb stick)
using the method outlined here http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee523217(WS.10).aspx.
It would be nice to be able to get rid of some unnecessary Windows components etc. but for
the meantime I'm happy that the disk installs Windows succesfully along with a couple of drivers and programs.

Automation is where my problems really come in. I need Windows to install itself with absolutely no prompting/user input.
I want the built-in Administer account activated, with a blank password (i.e. no password at all).

This page had the most comprehensive description of how to create an answer file using the Windows System Image Manager that I was able to find, but it was still somewhat difficult to follow: http://blog.brianleejackson.com/sysprep-a-windows-7-machine-%E2%80%93-start-to-finish-v2.
It may be that I just don't understand the method, but it feels like it's incomplete in that in step 14 he captures his image, but then doesn't seem to do anything with it.
Is it safe to assume that I'll want to copy this new install.wim over the one in the bootable usb I've already created?

Anyway, now I have my unattend.xml in the sysprep folder inside my install.wim, but I'm having a couple of issues.

First, after selecting to boot from usb, I sometimes get a black screen with a message that has something to do with Boot Loader settings. I can't give you the exact message because for some reason it didn't happen this last time I tried.

Secondly, Setup is still prompting me for locale, EULA acceptance etc. (everything a regular Setup would prompt for as far as I can tell). I don't know whether it's because my answer file is crap, or because it isn't being executed at all.

Attached is a copy of my answer file, any help would be much appreciated.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<unattend xmlns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:unattend">
    <settings pass="generalize">
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Security-SPP" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <SkipRearm>1</SkipRearm>
        </component>
    </settings>
    <settings pass="specialize">
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Deployment" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <RunSynchronous>
                <RunSynchronousCommand wcm:action="add">
                    <Path>net user administrator /active:yes</Path>
                    <Order>1</Order>
                </RunSynchronousCommand>
            </RunSynchronous>
        </component>
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Security-SPP-UX" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <SkipAutoActivation>true</SkipAutoActivation>
        </component>
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Shell-Setup" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <ComputerName>*</ComputerName>
            <CopyProfile>false</CopyProfile>
            <ShowWindowsLive>false</ShowWindowsLive>
            <TimeZone>AUS Eastern Standard Time</TimeZone>
        </component>
    </settings>
    <settings pass="oobeSystem">
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-International-Core" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <InputLocale>en-us</InputLocale>
            <SystemLocale>en-us</SystemLocale>
            <UILanguage>en-us</UILanguage>
            <UserLocale>en-us</UserLocale>
        </component>
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Shell-Setup" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <OOBE>
                <HideEULAPage>true</HideEULAPage>
                <NetworkLocation>Work</NetworkLocation>
                <ProtectYourPC>1</ProtectYourPC>
            </OOBE>
            <AutoLogon>
                <Password>
                    <Value>KgBQAGEAcwBzAHcAbwByAGQA</Value>
                    <PlainText>false</PlainText>
                </Password>
                <Username>Administrator</Username>
                <Enabled>true</Enabled>
                <LogonCount>5</LogonCount>
            </AutoLogon>
            <UserAccounts>
                <AdministratorPassword>
                    <Value>KgBBAGQAbQBpAG4AaQBzAHQAcgBhAHQAbwByAFAAYQBzAHMAdwBvAHIAZAA=</Value>
                    <PlainText>false</PlainText>
                </AdministratorPassword>
            </UserAccounts>
            <RegisteredOrganization>MY ORGANIZATION</RegisteredOrganization>
            <RegisteredOwner>MY ORGANIZATION</RegisteredOwner>
        </component>
    </settings>
    <cpi:offlineImage cpi:source="wim:e:/sources/install.wim#Windows 7 Enterprise" xmlns:cpi="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:cpi" />
</unattend>
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