Copying command-line tools from Windows into WinPE, don’t forget the localization files

To keep the footprint of WinPE as small as possible many services or tools usually found within a full Windows installation are not available within WinPE. So if you need a command-line tool from Windows such as icacls.exe you just copy the executable into your WinPE sources and you’re done. But hey, when booting into WinPE and executing icacls.exe, nothing is displayed, the command itself however works. Unfortunately just copying the the executable alone isn’t Read More …

How to Reboot or Shutdown WinPE

Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8 include the shutdown.exe command-line tool that can be used for shutting down or rebooting a system within a script or just from the command prompt. WinPE however is only a minimal operating system primarily designed to act as a preinstallation or recovery environment. To keep the footprint of WinPE as small as possible many services or tools usually found within a full Windows installation are not Read More …

Windows 8 – Script for customizing WinPE 4.0 – Part 1

Today I want to share with you a small script I’ve put together for customizing WinPE 4.0 that will ship with Windows 8. I’ve rewritten the script based on some existing script code we already use today, but wanted by purpose a small independent script that I can hook in between the standard scripts provided within the ADK sources, mainly for familiarizing myself with anything new within WinPE 4.0. When you install the Windows Assessment Read More …

How to add drivers to the Windows Defender Offline Tool

Back in January I wrote a post about how the Windows Defender Offline Beta Tool works and mentioned that the preparation wizard does not have an option to inject drivers. This can be a problem when WinPE does not recognize the disk or when you wish to have network connectivity. I had promised to explain how to add drivers to the Windows Defender Offline Beta tool, but actually forgot about writing a follow up post Read More …

Remote Management of AMT/vPro machine with WinPE and VNC

Intel vPro/AMT enabled systems allow you to remotely reboot a system from a redirected CD-ROM aka as IDE-R.  So if one of your users devices doesn’t boot its OS properly anymore, you can remotely boot that system with a diagnostics CD that you have stored on your local disk drive. As long as that recovery CD has a text based interface such as the SystemRescueCD the system can be remotely managed through the remote VT100 Read More …

Reducing size of WinPE

Today I have been looking into the new “Profiling” options for Windows PE 3.0. Using the profiling options allow you to reduce the content of Windows PE to an absolute minimum without removing any boot critical content. I am not going to re-write a step by step process here, as it is all described within the Windows PE User Guide for Windows 7 but here are the basic things First build your PE boot.wim the Read More …

Prep-ing WINPE does make a difference

When creating WinPE 2.0 boot images, make sure you run the PEImg /prep command against your boot.wim as it does make a significant difference in sze as shown in the table below: Bootable ISO file with WiinPE 2.0 Size in MB boot.wim prepped 146 mb boot.wim not prepped 203 MB Considering this all is loaded into memory, you might want to make sure to reduce the size of the boot.wim to an absolute minimum.