removing unwanted components, e.g. MSN Explorer, etc?

Windows XP Professional Update Pack discussion.
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Ma Pe
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removing unwanted components, e.g. MSN Explorer, etc?

Post by Ma Pe » Thu Feb 02, 2012 7:12 pm

I am asking for a critical evaluation, please, of my :idea: idea -- maybe I'm crazy :x -- to remove these: WMP and DRM, Windows or MSN Messenger, MSN Explorer, Games, and maybe also IE, replacing it with FF which can be installed last from a file instead of integrating it.

I have an original XP Prefessional CD, en-us, with SP1, also a SP3 download (.exe file).

I searched with keywords "remove WMP" etc and could not find an example. Here are my questions:

1) Is there anything in the above list which should not or never be removed because it is too integrated?
2) Those components that could be removed: can this be done with RVM or another program, e.g., nLite -- If nLite is used, would that cause problems later in RVM Integrator for the critical security update packs?
3) I assume that it is better to do this on the XP+SP1 instead of XP+SP1+SP3?
4) What problems will there be or what changes (in general terms) do I have to make when integrating the add-on packs of security updates after SP3?
5) After all this is done, I want to integrate a driver library so that I can install on many different (probably not all) computers without having to get the drivers through Internet (or maybe only one instead of many).

Guys and gals, I would appreciate greatly your input. If you think I'm nuts, or if it is too ambitious, say so. I'm retired and don't want to kill myself over a too difficult job! LOL. Also this is not the type of work I have done before. I wrote control systems, Forth and Assemblers. To me this feels like the jungle at the Amazon or the swamps of Florida. One gets easily bitten or stung. Any guidance is appreciated.

Thanks for your help, and I wish you in the northern world a nice winter while I'm "enjoying" a summer with antarctic air, rain and hail (plus the ashes from the volcano). My apologies to you Australians for the ashes which went around the world twice :shock: I hope you used face masks.
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

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bphlpt
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Post by bphlpt » Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:19 pm

Well, you started with computers before I did, 1973. Did you also start with punch cards with a mainframe as I did? Simpler times.

Good luck with your idea. You are wise to do as much research as possible and collect all the tools and materials necessary BEFORE beginning your task. You will also be wise to make copies of things as you complete each step so that you don't necessarily have to go back to the very beginning WHEN you screw up. It is almost certain you will at least once, we all did. LOL

1) Start with your most untouched source - your XP Pro w/ SP1. Integrate SP3 using your preferred method, using RVMi or Google for alternative methods. Save a copy of your result. This is also the new source for your next step, and can be the starting point for any future "start from scratch" reattempts. So the answer to (3) above is that XP+SP1+SP3 is the starting point for all other steps.

2) Now is when you integrate addon packs and other apps. By addon packs I mean either the one from user_hidden http://www.ryanvm.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=7184 or the one from Onepiece http://www.ryanvm.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6438 depending on your preferences. Use RVMi to do this. You can do the addon pack in one step and the other apps you want in another step, or you can do it all in one step, it shouldn't make any difference. Regardless, save a copy of your results from each step, "just in case". When a new addon pack comes out and you want to make a new install disc in the next month or two, you MUST start over with the XP+SP1+SP3 disc. Trying to just add the new addon pack on top of your result disc from the previous month is asking for trouble and is almost guaranteed to fail. Is this what you meant by your question (4)? If you decide you really want to use nLite to add your addon packs and apps instead of RVMi you are more than welcome to do so. But as Kel reminds people, this is not the nLite help forum, so if you have problems you will have to go elsewhere for advise.

3) Now that you have added everything you want (drivers will be mentioned later), now you can use nLite for any removals you wish to do. Unlike RVMi, you should only run nLite ONCE. Save the result. Again, for help with nLite you will have to ask elsewhere. Also remember, if after you have installed your system after removing something you discover that you need to add something back, in almost all cases you will NOT be able to simply install it. but you will have to start all over from the beginning, or at least from the result you saved from step (2) - you remembered to save it, right? I'll let someone else comment on the specifics of what you can and cannot remove safely. I tend to keep everything. You never know what you might need later.

4) Now, as the final step, is when you add your driver packs. While this can be very handy, it will also increase the size of your build, the tiume it takes to make it, and the time it takes to install your OS. As an alternative, consider only integrating the basic drivers and adding the rest automatically after first boot using the Stand Alone Driverpack utility. http://forum.driverpacks.net/viewtopic.php?id=5336 But it's your choice.

As to adding apps, some prefer to use addons and have them integrated so that they are ready to go at first boot and can even be used by other apps as they are being installed etc. This can be handy and can speed up OS install time. Others prefer to use switchless installers which are not installed until after first boot. This makes OS install take longer, but offers other advantages. Switchless installers can almost always be applied anytime after first boot, including on a live system which makes testing much easier. They can also be moved off the OS install disc onto their own app disc and bundled with an automated install program such as WPI. Keeping the apps installs separate from the OS install disc makes it easier to adjust one without messing with the other as you are getting the hang of building your install material. But again, it's your choice.

So bottom line, get a clean XP install disc with SP3 as your first step, add what you want with RVMi, remove what you want with nLite, add driver packs, create iso, burn, install. Using a VM to do install tests might save you some headaches if you know how to do that.

Hopefully I've given you enough information to ask more specific questions. Good luck!

Cheers and Regards

Ma Pe
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ref: removing unwanted components, e.g. MSN Explorer, etc?

Post by Ma Pe » Sat Feb 04, 2012 1:25 pm

Thank you, bphlpt, for your detailed answers.

Yes, I started with punched tape, drum memory (IBM 650) instead of RAM, later punched card (millions of them -- more than 50 sorters and collators), IBM 1401 and NCR 315 with random access cartridge memory, which my father ordered; it was the first in Europe and broke the IBM monopoly. It was a scandal at the time.

I tested the removal of components with nLite on the XP+SP1 just to see what it would allow me to take out. I could remove IE, keyboards and most languages, ATM, etc. It reduced it from 531 to 350 MB by 181 MB. nLite could not remove the other components in my list.

Now I can estimate how much can be removed: 181 MB plus an unknown quantity of code for the listed packages: 60 MB perhaps. Total 240 MB on the XP+SP1 module.

The XP+SP1+SP3 module is 629 MB which is 118% of XP+SP1; Assuming that all components are affected by upgrades evenly, I might save 240 MB *118% = 283 MB.

I don't know how much code the add-on and security updates, etc. add. I guess, another 400 MB. Therefore XP+SP1+SP3+etc = 1029 MB. Adding the drivers, at least, the common ones, as you suggest, might be another 300 MB (I'm just throwing numbers around, LOL). The final product will be 1400 MB, and with the above components removed, 1100 MB. In any case, it will not fit on one CD without supercompression which will take hours to decompress, for example on a Toshiba netbook NB505 (W7 takes a long time to install).

The upshot of this "mental experiment" (Gedankenexperiment, as we learned in school to avoid costly mistakes) is that there will be no obvious space benefit. A DVD has to be burnt anyways.

In order to make progress, I will not try to take out these components unless I find a tool which does it for me on the base line module (XP+SP1+SP3 clean). Furthermore, I can relate to your reminder that one never knows when one needs it, because on my current XP without many languages I often see the "letter boxes" instead of letters (I believe they are the unicode numbers of some foreign letter). The other drawback is, as you advised me, that I would have to create a new build because it can't be installed later.

Actually, this Windows is a bad design from the start and this has had serious consequences for society. The components are not orthogonal. And while I'm critical, the other fundamental mistake is not to separate constant from variable space, where code is stored in constant space (ROM or CD, possibly rewritable) which helps security and facilitates live updating of modules. But we live with what they gave us. This gave a purpose to millions of programmers, like you and all the others in this group and in all the other groups, to make something better which is bad from the beginning.

Just imagine, if you all could have worked on something new instead, and as a group you would have come up with a great invention! Those millions of hours which were spent to improve the installation process; this saves one hundreds of hours yearly.

Enough of that diatribe! About the drivers in question 4, I appreciate greatly your suggestion to add them after the first boot. I cannot imagine how big this really is, and already the count is up to 1400 MB.

The reason why I do this is that I want to have a build which contains all (or say 95% of) the security updates and which installs rapidly on an older machine with 1 MB RAM, as well as on netbooks. I installed W7 on the Toshiba NB505 and it took a long time (its the decompression, the same is true for Office 10); on the Compaq the install was reasonably fast; however, W7 takes up to 50% more time to get the same thing done and it takes up more RAM and disk. Since a DVD holds about 4500 MB, maybe I can figure out how to store some installation files uncompressed or simply zipped which decompresses rapidly. That would reduce installation time noticeably.

Thank you for your suggestion about the two addon packs. I'm quite sure that both are excellent and express distinct philosophies of their authors.

Besides the above mentioned removal test I have created a XP+SP1+SP3 base the MS way using the ..SP3..exe with the /integrate switch. It's quick. Here I noticed the following:

The XP+SP1 contains a folder DOTNETFX; also the SP2 has such a folder with different files. SP3 was slipstreamed twice: first with DOTNETFX included, and second without. All output files have the same, respective MD5 sums. I interprete this to mean that the DOTNETFX was something temporary for SP1 and SP2, and in SP3 it is handled withing the i386 folder. Do you agree?

Well, thank you for having answered quickly and with useful suggestions which should not be too difficult to do. To start learning the RVM integrator, I start building a base. It should have the same MD5 sums.

I hope to be able to write soon. I'll be travelling next week. :D
Greetings from the far end of the world.
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

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bphlpt
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Post by bphlpt » Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:05 pm

You might be surprised how much you are able to include on your disc. As I'm sure you noticed, by integrating SP3 your disc should not have grown much bigger than the XP+SP1 since the SP3 files replaced the ones that were being updated. Using the update packs I suggested will bring your XP+SP3 disc completely up to date, which will take care of the etc you mentioned. user_hidden's pack is the basic one and is focused on mainly updating the MS components along with adding some runtimes and a few conveniences. Integrating it using RVMi will also replace outdated files so again your disc should not grow in size as much as you might think. Onepiece's pack includes everything that user_hidden's includes and much, much more, including things like Dot NET, etc. It has been a long, long time since I have built an XP install disc, but I believe that a XP+SP3+Onepiece's pack will still fit on a CD, but I could be wrong. To gain space, You can delete most of the "Extra" folders found at the root of the disc since they are either outdated tools from 10 years ago that are no longer used, trial and ads for software that no longer exists, or are files that are used for upgrading an existing install. The install disc you will be creating will be used for doing "clean" installs only, not upgrades, so most of that stuff can be deleted. It doesn't hurt to leave them there, besides taking up space, but they will likely never be used. If you use DriverPacks to add your drivers, they will be in compressed form so they also won't take up as much space as you think. Anyway, start out assuming you will need to use a DVD and when you get to the end of your efforts if the size is close, then you can probably trim enough to get it to fit one way or another.

Good luck and keep us informed of your progress. Travel safe!

Cheers and Regards
Last edited by bphlpt on Sat Feb 04, 2012 10:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Ma Pe
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Post by Ma Pe » Sat Feb 04, 2012 10:09 pm

Hi bphlpt, Thanks for your encouraging explanation.

I just tried to download the following:

XPSP3_QFE_UpdatePack_20120110.7z which links to http://www.mediafire.com/?ihz8qcyzt3zz4g0

and I receive a 7z file of about 139 KB which does not open as archive.

How do I notify user_hidden? Clicking on his name (top left under "Author") does not work.

Thank you for helping out.

Greetings
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

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Post by bphlpt » Sat Feb 04, 2012 11:12 pm

Try your download again. I just tried it using the link in your post and it worked fine and expanded correctly. So the error is on your end not the file service.

If you do need to contact user_hidden, and in this case you don't, unless you just wanted to thank him for his great work, use the "pm" link on the bottom of any of his posts. But you could also do that publicly in the thread of the app you are downloading. All app creators like to be appreciated, and it doesn't happen often enough.

For any of the apps or files posted here on the forum, unless it is a very old post, or one hosted by a service that has gone out of business, unless problems have been reported, most likely any error in downloading is on your end. There is always a possibility that a brand new post that has not been downloaded yet could have an error, but that is also unlikely. Of course any posted file could always have a problem, but those are usually temporary.

If you have a problem downloading, assume it is your fault and try several times checking everything you can think of to make sure it is nothing on your end, try different browsers, etc. If you still have a problem, check the recent posts in that thread and see if an issue has been reported. If not, wait 30 min to an hour and try again. If there is still an issue, make a post about the problem in the release thread explaining what you have tried and your results, or lack of. Either the author or one of the other members will either confirm the problem, fix it, reupload it, provide an alternate link, or at least tell you what's going on. We don't usually report download problems via PM.

Cheers and Regards

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Post by shiner » Sat Feb 04, 2012 11:26 pm

Ma Pe wrote:Hi bphlpt, Thanks for your encouraging explanation.

I just tried to download the following:

XPSP3_QFE_UpdatePack_20120110.7z which links to http://www.mediafire.com/?ihz8qcyzt3zz4g0

and I receive a 7z file of about 139 KB which does not open as archive.

How do I notify user_hidden? Clicking on his name (top left under "Author") does not work.

Thank you for helping out.

Greetings
Sorry, to jump in here, but I just checked the link above for the 20120110 update pack and it is working fine for me.
"You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink."

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Post by Kelsenellenelvian » Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:28 am

OK I have gotten alot of testing done on this basic matter:

The IDEAL way to get a good "Slim" base for your xp is as follows:

XP Vanilla --> SP3 (No SP1 is only required on a Live installation)

Remove all of the following by hand:

From the ROOT of your XP folder
VALUEADD
AUTORUN.INF
README.HTM
SETUP.EXE
SETUPXP.HTM
DOCS
DOTNETFX
SUPPORT

Then from inside the I386 folder
WINNTBBA.DLL
LANG
WIN9XMIG
WIN9XUPG
WINNTUPG
WINNT32A.DLL

See NONE of these files are used during a "Standard" XP cd, boot initialized install...

This takes my source from 583 to 383 megs.. 200 megs of wasted space.

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Post by bphlpt » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:01 am

Kelsenellenelvian wrote:XP Vanilla --> SP3 (No SP1 is only required on a Live installation)
And just to clarify, Kel is absolutely correct that SP1 is not needed. But if you do not have and cannot get a copy of XP Vanilla, using your copy XP+SP1 will be fine in its place.

Cheers and Regards

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Post by tomasz86 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:48 am

LANG is not a wasted space :o

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Post by cezarica » Sun Feb 05, 2012 5:33 am

And why should he remove setup.exe? How is he going to start the installation without it? :)

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Download of XPSP3_QFE_UpdatePack_20120110.7z works!

Post by Ma Pe » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:18 am

Good morning, bphlpt and shiner,

Thank you for checking it. This morning it worked, MD5 is correct.

Last night I tried it several times and received files as small as 8 KB and as large as 159 KB. It must have been the Internet infrastructure or the server because the oncepiece software downloaded correctly.

Greetings from the far end of the world, where the volcano spews, the earth shakes and southerly winds keep us cool in the summer.

I wish you a nice Sunday.
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

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boot initialized install and absent setup.exe; also two OSes and partitions

Post by Ma Pe » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:34 am

Hi Kelsenellenelvia and cezarica,

Thank you Kelsenellenelvian for your detailed list of what to remove and how. This saves me a lot of time experimenting. You wrote "boot initialized install" which means to me that there is a trick to get around the absent setup.exe. That is a niece feature.

And I believe that it is the answer to cezarica's question. Thank you, cezarica, for asking it. Your question nevertheless makes me think:

An install at boot time is slick. And if it is automatic and unattended, it's even slicker! Just go away and do something more enjoyable.

But I can also think of a different scenario: On a computer with a running OS one wants to install a second OS in another partition. For example, the Toshiba netbook NB505 comes with W7 starter and does not have an optical drive. In that case I would store the code on the W7 partition and click on setup.exe, directing it to install on a different partition, say F.

While we are on this topic, let me tell you how I have organized my Windows computers with security and reliability in mind. I always had two OSes, for example a "normal" (and bloated) XP on drive C and a slim XP on drive F for an emergency. Why?

Should the normal XP become disabled, infected, unresponsive, etc. I boot into F and continue with the work of the day. I would have to install on F the application, say Word, unless it's already there. I don't panic and get my work done. When I have time, I reinstall on C. I

Since I'm always behind on the technology curve and my equipment is slow compared to the demands of the latest service packs or new OSes (Vista, W7), I have partitioned the disk further:

Drive D contains the page file for 2GB and the TEMP file. (I wish I knew how to get the hibernation file to store on D as well.) The system temp and user temp variables point to D:\TEMP. TEMP is shared and that has worked for a few years. CCleaner cleans it out regularly. The page file is a fixed 3 GB (probably is too big) and never defragments.

The installation CD asks for a user name and password. This shall be the principal administrator, let's call it "Boss". After Boss is running, I install all the important packages, such as skype, MS Office, PDF reader and writer, Firefox, Thunderbird, etc. to either C or F drive.

Then I change a registry key for D&S to point to the E drive. New accounts are now created on E. I create a user account, say "Worker". For example, when I run Word under Worker, all relevant Application Data are stored on E, not on C. The same for Thunderbird (almost 2GB of mail) which is accessible also from F. Automatically My Documents are stored on E (In W7, this corresponds to Worker\AppData\Roaming)

This is my way of dividing constant from variable space, code from data, which is an "ancient" principle of computer science. The C and F drives hardly ever need defragmenting, except after major updates of Windows or new releases of an application.

I can boot to C or F (whichever works) and sign on as Worker and get the same data on E. Worker has only user privileges. That's a bit more security. To install, I log on under Boss (either on C or F) and then log off and log on as Worker to use it.

The most vulnerable point is E with all my data and settings of programs; for example, Skype keeps its messages under D&S. I use Synctoy, which requires .NET, to a Hitachi "Turomobile" disk of about 350 GB. My data are portable inside the breast pocket of my jacket, I don't worry that somebody will steal my laptop on the way to the Uni. Changes I make there are synched back at home.

Since XP will be supported until sometime in 2014, my goal now is to prepare an XP installation disk for this type of architecture; (and another disk for applications and drivers) Later, I want it also to be installed on the Hitachi disk so that it can be booted from USB port, pointing to the copy of the E drive on the Hitachi. It means that I carry my "computer" in the pocket of my jacket, not just the data and Worker's settings.

I hope that I have not overstepped the bounds and purposes of this Forum. It seems to be relevant since the overall theme is improving a Windows to make our lives easier.

I wish you a good day.
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

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Kelsenellenelvian
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Post by Kelsenellenelvian » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:51 am

tomasz86 wrote:LANG is not a wasted space :o
I really hate to disagree but LANG is a 100 megs of space that is NOT used on a "Standard" install.

Setup never uses it (If your OS is based on your native language.)

I.E. A English XP never uses this folder during setup.

I have done literally thousands of XP installations (English) and have manually deleted the LANG folder from everyone of them pre-installation.

Some reference:

http://unattended.msfn.org/unattended.xp/view/web/57/
This guide is widely known and has been up for nearly a decade.

My scenarion was only for a boot initialized install. You can easily keep setup.exe and still save a TON of space.

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Post by OnePiece Alb » Sun Feb 05, 2012 1:54 pm

about MSN Explorer, I personally, do not ever tested this addon (so I can not say with certainty if they are 100% Ok, addon fates 6 years ago), but you can try to use them http://integrator.professorcpu.net/inde ... ons&id=109

http://integrator.professorcpu.net/inde ... 4#addon_24

http://www.ryanvm.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=46030#46030

http://www.ryanvm.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=30166#30166

http://www.ryanvm.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=20343#20343

Ciao.

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XP "vanilla" versus XP with SP1 -- a 55 MB difference

Post by Ma Pe » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:31 pm

Hi Kelsenellenelvian,

Thank you for your suggestion to delete. XP+SP1 was reduced from 628 to 437 MB by 191. That is nearly the same as you found. However, the folder is 54 MB larger than yours. I attribute this to the integration of SP1 on my CD.

How can I get an XP without SP1? I looked on the MS website and did not find anything.

The Official RVM Integrator website lists removal packages (http://integrator.siginetsoftware.com/index.php?addons). Should these run after the integration of the XPSP3_QFE_UpdatePack ?

Thank you.
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

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Post by tomasz86 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:44 pm

Kel, but you may need these files if you want to install additional languages later on. I don't think removing them is really worth it.

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Post by Kelsenellenelvian » Mon Feb 06, 2012 12:13 am

The KEY point is LATER on and you can download updated language packs in JUST your key language later on.... (Or you could say just put in your ORGINAL xp cd when you want to add a language...)

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Re: XP "vanilla" versus XP with SP1 -- a 55 MB difference

Post by bphlpt » Mon Feb 06, 2012 10:07 am

Ma Pe wrote:How can I get an XP without SP1? I looked on the MS website and did not find anything.
Unlike Windows 7, I'm not aware of anywhere you can download a legal copy of XP Vanilla. Maybe someone else knows of a place? I would think you can always buy a copy on eBay?

Cheers and Regards

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Post by Kelsenellenelvian » Mon Feb 06, 2012 10:14 am

Technet or MSDNN Would be the IDEAL place...

Yeah Ebay would work too but buying one off of ebay I would be SUPER carefull.

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Post by ChiefZeke » Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:08 pm

Just did a Google search on XP Pro - found a couple of places selling versions that included SP2 and SP3 - none had plain XP Pro.

Legitimate seller may be better option than unknown on eBay.

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Post by bphlpt » Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:33 pm

If you're going to buy one, I guess buying one with SP3 already integrated makes the most sense.

Cheers and Regards

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Post by newsposter » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:17 pm

And..... when looking to buy a legit hologram-ed XP disk, you need to be careful about what kind of license the disk is set up to run on.

There are ways to swizzle a distro to work with different licenses. But you're probably violating the EULA and may 'break/ the distro so that the slimming tools won't work reliably.

There are at least 6 different classes of XP licenses and the discs themselves are setup to work with only one of those classes of licenses.

Volume (VL), per-seat, per-instance, end-user, etc.

Most people will have access to an end-user license. But be sure you're not buying a corporate VL disc that someone 'harvested' out of the dumpster at work.

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XP without SP1

Post by Ma Pe » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:05 pm

Thank you, newsposter, bphlpt, ChiefZeke and Kel (I hope it's ok to abbreviate your name, other people do it), for your suggestions and warnings. I have an original end-user XP+1 service pack integrated which WPI gave me when I taught there.

I can work with it and it does not stop the project. I only raised the question because Kel's XPvanilla+3 shrunk to 383 MB whereas my XP+1+3 shrunk only to 437. The difference of 54 MB is mostly due to the fact that SP1 was already integrated on my source. I'm not going to lose sleep over 54 MB.

As far as Ebay, etc., I wouldn't even touch it because it could easily be "doctored".

So, thanks to you all for your suggestions.
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The LANG folder

Post by Ma Pe » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:39 pm

Hello Kel and Tomasz86, thanks for your opinions.

I live in southern Chile, also known as "Neusüddeutschland" (New South Germany) where the official language is a variation of Spanish, many people speak German, we have a "Deutsche Schule" and a "Feuerwehr Wagen" (fire department trucks), and I need en-us, especially with NH accent (LOL). In addition, there are several native languages in the South, and in my region it is mainly Mapudungun. I was told that it is structurally similar to German, that the indigenous people learn German easily but have trouble with English (don't know if it's true, though)

My thought is to slim the language folder with nLite, but when?

Immediately after XP+1+3slip? Or at the very end? I read that sometimes there are conflicts where one method makes subsequent integration more difficult or even impossible. With that in mind, my thought is to do all integration and removal of packages with RVMi, and at the very end use nLite.

However, I also observed that the XP+1+3slip (the MS way) has the same MD5s as an integration of XP+1+3 with nLite. Therefore, theoretically, using nLIte to reduce the LANG folder early should be also ok. If someone ever tested it, please let me know.

Thanks! :D
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

newsposter
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Post by newsposter » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:19 pm

I hope I've got this sequence right, it's been a while since I refreshed my XP distro.

a) Take a fresh, unmangled XP distro, preferably a legit MSFT-hologrammed CD.

b) Dump the contents of that CD to a directory on your PC. Copy everything, don't manually delete or change anything.

c) From a command line box and using the service pack itself, integrate the SINGLE service pack of your choice to the XP distro directories. XP SP3a is the most recent. Call this new distro your 'master'. You may want to create a bootable ISO of this for future reference (and to save future time). This ISO will be XP SP3a and can be used as the source for future modifications.

d) Use ONE and ONLY ONE slimming/customization tool. The use of multiple tools is suspected to have random, fatal effects on your customized distro. Might work one day with one set of parameters, might fail the next day with a different set.

e) Run the tool of your choice to slim, make customizations, integrate a SINGLE post-SP3 update pack (yes, you need to choose ONE), integrate/pre-install apps. This is the step where you tell your tool of choice to pull the language directories. Do all of this work in ONE PASS, don't run a slim/integrate, stop, make other 'adjustments' and then go back for more playtime. Do your slim/customization work in one uninterrupted pass of the tool.

f) Use driverpacks.net tools to add back new/updated hardware drivers.

g) MAKE NO MORE CUSTOMIZATIONS AT THIS POINT. You're done. If you believe that you've made a mistake or that the tool blew up/failed, you need to cycle back to a) or c).

h) Use your tool to create a bootable ISO image from the freshly-modified XP distro on your PC.

i) Test the ISO in a virtual machine such as virtualbox.

j) Burn the ISO to a 'real' CD or DVD.

If you want/need to refresh your personalized XP distro, you really should start fresh at step a) (or c) if you saved an ISO at that point). You never want to try to mod an already modded XP distro. It generally won't work and the time necessary to troubleshoot the resulting mess is a lot longer than starting from a fresh, unmodified source.

When I was doing a lot of work with XP I could run steps a-h in less than 30 minutes. Testing the resulting ISO in a VM takes as much time as you want to dedicate to the task. Burning an ISO to physical media takes no time at all.

It is NOT necessary to integrate multiple service packs, the most recent pack (XP SP3a) will have all previous fixes.

Yes, there is a lot of room here to modify the process, try and use multiple tools, etc. I'd rather you got comfortable with how the modification runs work, have some successes, and then push your knowledge with other tools, methods and so on.

Here is the command line I've used to integrate SP3a in step c) above. I do this as a sanity check before I getting into the use of a customization tool. This command line actually lives in a one-line batch file to avoid any fumble-fingering. The actual directories will change depending on the choices you've made for your machine:

C:\xp_image_work\XP_Service_Pack_3_installer\WindowsXP-KB936929-SP3-x86-ENU.exe /integrate:C:\xp_image_work\XP_working_directory /log:C:\xp_image_work\XP_Service_Pack_3_installer

Ma Pe
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Joined: Sun Mar 08, 2009 5:10 pm
Location: Chile

Post by Ma Pe » Thu Mar 22, 2012 8:39 pm

Hello you all, I'm back. Today I tried to download XPSP3_QFE_UpdatePack_20120313.7z which sends me to mediafire. Mediafire downloaded the first time just a few megs and the second time a few kilos, using MZ FF 11.0 with NoScript allowing mediafire. I suspect a problem with my setup. Therefore I copied the Link location http://www.mediafire.com/download.php?v50wshdo1qkrw7c into iexplore.exe and mediafire comes up with "Invalid or Deleted File" What's happening?

Updates: In January, if I remember correctly, it seems such a long time ago, I successfully integrated the January pack and installed it. It ran. Then I returned from my trip, and since I needed to make more changes on top of it, I downloaded the February update pack and started from scratch. That one had errors on the install. Unfortunately, I had already erased the January update pack and its integration. Too bad, next time I'll store it in another folder! Therefore I decided to wait until March, and hurray! there is another update -- :D THANK YOU, user_hidden, I just don't know how you can keep up with all these changes, I sure couldn't.
Working with computers since 1960 and still haven't caught up. Sigh!

adric
Posts: 581
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Post by adric » Fri Mar 23, 2012 4:34 am

No problems with the link in IE8 and FF11 here.

Al

drixoman
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Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:37 am

Post by drixoman » Sun Apr 01, 2012 12:02 am

I don't know if this is relevant buy I am too looking for a component removal addon for MSN Explorer only.

The one provide at the integrator's download site is dated 2007, older than when SP3 was released. I kind looked at the file difference and I suspect that the pack won't work (same with the ones provided by OnePiece up there I believe, though I haven't test them...they're older than 2007!)

I'm wary of using nLite (as 1.4.9.1 is released after SP3 it seems). Intuition tell me to use it should be done before any pack integration. But of course it is much "safe" if it can be done it RVMI (which I use as nLite has given me some problem and RVMI have not).

Can some of you experts here make an updated removal pack for MSN? It shouldn't be too challenging for you here, should it? I looked at the older one and it was just a ini file that for the most part delete the associating files.

Thanks.

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mooms
Posts: 790
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2008 1:29 pm
Location: France

Post by mooms » Sun Apr 01, 2012 1:00 pm

You can try this one, not tested personaly but it should works just fine:

Hellpell_Removal_MSNExplorer_DeleteAddon.rar
MD5: 2aeddbf2cd40c921c362bc422167e166


I always use nLite to remove unwanted stuff after using RVMi and I never had any problems.
Even if not updated since a while, nLite is safe to use (as long as you don't remove too much).

In fact, i only use RVMi to integrate the main update pack, and then i use nLite to integrate all my addons ( a lot!), remove unwanted stuff, apply tweaks, configure services, etc.... all in one pass.

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