Windows 2000 Advanced Setup Options

Windows 2000 Professional

Advanced Setup Options

Microsoft® Windows® 2000 Professional can be set up without using any of the advanced Setup options, however the following should help you decide if you want to modify the way setup makes the installation. This In addition to other important considerations, the following will also help you with dual-boot configurations, managing disk partitions, installing Windows 2000 on multiple computers, and even the use of alternate file systems.

Table of Contents

Understanding the Advanced Setup Options Available in Windows 2000

File System Considerations NTFS FAT/FAT 32 Hard Disk Partitions Considerations Configuring Partitions Disk Partition Size Considerations Converting as opposed to Reformatting Existing Partitions Should You Convert to the NTFS File System Dual-Boot Considerations Dual Booting with Windows 95/98 – Cautions Dual Booting with Windows NT Customizing Windows 2000 Advanced Setup Using Command Line Parameters and Switches (General) Using Command Line Parameters and Switches (Upgrading MS-DOS, Windows 3.1, Windows for Workgroups) Using Command Line Parameters and Switches (Upgrading Windows 95/98/NT) Running Setup in Unattended Setup Mode Creating a set of Setup Startup Disks

Advanced Setup Options

File System Considerations: [Top]

If you haven’t partitioned and formatted your hard drive just yet, don’t! At least not before reading through this information. Before partitioning and formatting your drive and starting the installation of Windows 2000, you should first consider which file system you should use. Hopefully you have already made this decision before arriving here, but if you haven’t, we’ll try and help you with your decision.

The file system is the method you will use, or how you have formatted the hard drive, in order to store information on a hard disk. Windows 2000 supports the NTFS file system, which is proprietary to NT, as well the file allocation table FAT type file systems, FAT or FAT32. You can learn more about the file allocation table systems by visiting this link: How fat is FAT. The following information will provide you with all you need to make an informed decision as to which file system best suits your installation needs.

The NTFS file system: [Top]

The NTFS file system is the recommended file system for use with Windows 2000 as it has all of the basic capabilities of FAT as well as having the following advantages:

  • Better file security.
  • Better disk compression.
  • Support for large hard disks, up to 2 terabytes (TB). Obviously, this makes the maximum drive size for NTFS much greater than that for FAT, and as drive size increases, performance with NTFS doesn’t degrade as it does with FAT.

The only pitfall in using NTFS is if you intend upon installing a dual-boot configuration, as an example Windows 2000 and Windows 98, as you will not be able to gain access to files on NTFS partitions from the other operating system. For this reason, you should probably use FAT or FAT32 if you want a dual-boot configuration. We discuss the issue of Dual-Booting a little more below.

Fat and Fat 32 File Systems: [Top]

The FAT32 file system is an enhanced version of the original FAT (or FAT 16) file system that can be used on drives from 512 megabytes (MB) to 2 TB in size, and offers compatibility with operating systems other than Windows 2000. If you’re setting up a dual-boot configuration, you should use FAT or FAT32.

If you’re dual booting Windows 2000 and another operating system, you may want to choose the file system based on the “other operating system”, and use the following criteria to choose which to use:

  • Format the partition as FAT if the installation partition is smaller than 2 gigabytes (GB), or if you’re dual booting Windows 2000 with MS-DOS®, Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows NT.

  • Format the partition as FAT32 is you intend upon using partitions that are 2 GB or larger. If you choose to format using FAT during Windows 2000 Setup and your partition is greater than 2 GB, setup will automatically format it as FAT32.

  • While it is recommended that you use NTFS rather than FAT32 for partitions larger than 32 GB.

Hard Drive Partition Choices: [Top]

Partitioning is a method by which you divide your hard disk so that each section or division functions as a separate section unit. You can create partitions to organize information, to back up data for example, or to dual boot with another operating system. When you create partitions on a hard disk, you are dividing the disk into one or more areas that can be formatted for use by a file system, such as FAT or NTFS.

For more information regarding Partitioning and Formatting, follow these links and then return here: Partitioning for Windows 2000 and Formatting for Windows 2000.

Caution: If you are performing a new installation, Windows 2000 Setup will automatically select an appropriate disk partition for you unless you click select Advanced Options during the setup process and specify otherwise. A hard disk can contain up to four partitions.

Configuring your Disk Partitions: [Top]

Your existing hard disk configuration will determine, in most cases, the options available to you during setup:

  • If the hard disk is not partitioned, you will be able to create and size the Windows 2000 partition.

  • If the existing partition is large enough, (650 MB minimum and more if networking is intended) you can install Windows 2000 on that partition.

  • If the existing partition is too small, but you do have other space on the drive that hasn’t yet been partitioned, you can create a new Windows 2000 partition in that space. (Note: We recommend that you partition the drive early on to have it conform to your needs from the start)

  • If the hard disk has an existing partition, setup will walk you through deleting it and then create a larger partitioned space for the Windows 2000 partition. Keep in mind though that deleting an existing partition also erases any data on that partition.

NOTE: If you’re setting up a dual-boot configuration of Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 must be on its own partition. Installing Windows 2000 on the same partition along with another operating system will result in the setup procedure overwriting files installed by the other operating system.

Disk Partition Size Considerations: [Top]

Although Windows 2000 requires a minimum of 500 MB of free disk space for installation (650 MB for the actual installation process), using a large installation partition provides flexibility for adding future updates, operating system tools, or other software packages and files.

During setup, you should create and size only the partition on which you want to install Windows 2000. After Windows 2000 is installed, you can use Disk Management to manipulate, change or create new partitions on your hard disk.

Converting as opposed to Reformatting Existing Partitions: [Top]

Before you running setup you should decide whether you want to keep, convert, or reformat an existing partition. The default option during setup for an existing partition is to keep the existing file system intact, thus preserving all files on that partition. If you decide to convert or reformat, you need to select an appropriate file system (NTFS, FAT, or FAT32). The following guidelines should help you decide.

Reminder: Before you change file systems on a partition, you should back up the information on the partition because reformatting the partition will delete all of the existing data.

Should I convert to NTFS? [Top]

You can convert an existing partition to NTFS during the setup process in order to make use of Windows 2000 security, and you can also convert file systems from FAT to NTFS at any time after Setup by using Convert.exe from the command prompt. While this option preserves your existing files, this only occurs if Windows 2000 has access to files on that partition.

Use this option if:

  • You want to take advantage of NTFS features such as security, disk compression, and so on.

  • You aren’t dual booting with another operating system—other than Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 4 (SP4) or later, which can use a Windows 2000 NTFS partition.

  • See also “Dual-Booting” below.

Should you always use NTFS file system? [Top]

While NTFS is the recommended file system for Windows 2000, there are specific reasons that you might want to use another file system. If you format partition with NTFS, only Windows 2000 can access those files that are subsequently created on that partition. If you will need to access files from any other operating systems (including MS-DOS), you should choose to install a FAT file system.

What happens when you reformat your existing partition: [Top]

Reformatting a partition will erase all existing files on that partition, therefore make certain that you back up your files before you reformat any partition!

The Procedure:

To convert an NTFS partition to FAT, you must:

  • First back up all of your files.
  • Reformat the partition as FAT, which erases all the files.
  • Then restore the files from backup.

You can’t restore an NTFS partition created in Windows NT after you convert it to the version of NTFS used in Windows 2000!

To convert a FAT partition to FAT32, you must:

  • First back up all your files.
  • Reformat the partition as FAT32, which will erase all the files.
  • Then restore the files from backup.

Dual-Boot Considerations [Top]

You can set up a multiple boot configurations using Windows 2000 with more than two other operating systems on one computer. If you use a dual-boot configuration on your computer, you can choose between operating systems or between versions of the same operating system each time you start your computer.

Windows 2000 supports Dual and Multi-booting with the following operating systems:

  • Windows NT 3.51, Windows NT 4.0
  • Windows 95, Windows 98
  • Windows 3.1, Windows for Workgroups 3.11
  • MS-DOS
  • OS/2

To set up a dual-boot configuration, you must use a separate partition for each operating system. During the Windows 2000 setup process, you can use the Advanced Setup option to select a folder on an unused partition for your files.

We strongly recommend that if you are seriously considering dual-booting your computer with Windows 2000 and other operating systems, that you obtain a copy of the Windows 2000 Professional Resource Kit from Microsoft.

We also recommend that you create your Emergency Repair Disks before you install another operating system on your computer. To learn more about potential problems that you may have with either the installation of Windows 2000 Professional and Dual-Booting that you follow this link: Troubleshooting Windows 2000 Professional or review our Dual and Multi-boot Guidelines.

If you want to set up a dual-boot configuration, you may want to review these precautions. [Top]

If you want to dual-boot Windows 2000 Professional and another operating system, such as MS-DOS or Windows 98, first review the following precautions:

  • Each operating system must be installed on a separate drive or disk partition.

  • Since you are performing a new installation of Windows 2000, you will need to reinstall your programs such as word processing, e-mail and other software after Setup has completed.

  • You should use a FAT file system for dual-boot configurations if there is any possibility of accessing partitions between operating systems. Although using NTFS in a dual boot is supported, such a configuration introduces complexities into the choice of file systems. Again, we recommend that you obtain and review a copy of the Windows 2000 Professional Resource Kit.

  • To set up dual-boot configurations between MS-DOS or Windows 95 and Windows 2000, you should install Windows 2000 last. Otherwise, important files needed to start Windows 2000 could be overwritten.

    For a dual boot between Windows 98 and Windows 2000, it isn’t necessary to install the operating systems in a particular order.

  • For a dual boot of Windows 2000 with Windows 95 or MS-DOS, the primary partition must be formatted as FAT. For a dual boot with Windows 95 OSR2 or Windows 98, the primary partition must be formatted as either FAT or FAT32, not NTFS.

  • If you’re upgrading a dual-boot computer, you will not be able to gain access to NTFS partitions from any operating system other than Windows NT 4.0 with SP4.

  • If you install Windows 2000 on a computer that dual boots OS/2 and MS-DOS, Windows 2000 Setup configures your system so you can dual boot between Windows 2000 Professional and the operating system (MS-DOS or OS/2) you most recently used before running Windows 2000 setup.

  • Don’t install Windows 2000 on a compressed drive unless the drive was compressed with the NTFS file system compression utility.

    It will not be necessary to uncompress DriveSpace® or DoubleSpace® volumes if you plan to dual boot with Windows 95 or Windows 98; however, the compressed volume won’t be available while you’re running Windows 2000.

  • Windows 95 or Windows 98 may reconfigure your hardware settings the first time you use them, which can and does cause problems if you’re dual booting with Windows 2000.

  • If you want your programs to run on both operating systems on a dual-boot computer, you need to install them from within each operating system. You can’t share programs across operating systems.

If you plan on Dual-Booting with Windows NT 4.0: [Top]

If you are planning to install a dual-boot configuration with Windows NT and Windows 2000, you may want to review the following:

  • If the dual-boot computer is part of a Windows NT or Windows 2000 domain, each installation of Windows NT Workstation or Windows 2000 Professional must have a different computer name.

  • If your hard disk is formatted with only NTFS partitions, it’s not recommended that you dual boot Windows 2000 with Windows NT.

  • If you’re using NTFS and dual booting with Windows NT, you must upgrade to Windows NT 4.0 SP4 or later before continuing with the Windows 2000 installation.

As mentioned earlier, in order to set up a dual-boot configuration, you must use a separate partition for each operating system. During Windows 2000 Setup, you can use the Advanced Setup option to select a folder on an unused partition.

Customizing Advanced Setup [Top]

You can customize all or most of your installation of Windows 2000. You can also use the unattended Setup mode and supply answers to Setup prompts so you don’t have to manually enter information during the setup process. We also recommend, as we have above, that you obtain a copy of the Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Resource Kit for more detailed information about customizing Setup.

Using Command Line Parameters and Switches

You can modify a Windows 2000 installation by changing how Winnt.exe and Winnt32.exe run the setup procedure. The following information describes the parameters and switches that you can use to customize your use of setup.

The Winnt.exe Command Syntax [Top]

“MS-DOS, Windows 3.1, or Windows for Workgroups 3.11”

By running Winnt.exe it will install Windows 2000. You can run the Winnt command at the command prompt for MS-DOS, Windows 3.1, or Windows for Workgroups 3.11.

The syntax of the Winnt command is as follows:

winnt [/s:sourcepath] [/t:tempdrive] [/u:answer file][/udf:id [,UDF_file]] [/r:folder][/rx:folder][/e:command][/a]

where:

  • /s:sourcepath

    Specifies the source location of the Windows 2000 files. The location must be a full path of the form x:\[path] or \\server\share[\path].

  • /t:tempdrive

    Directs Setup to place temporary files on the specified drive and to install Windows 2000 on that drive. If you don’t specify a location, Setup attempts to locate a drive for you.

  • /u:answer file

    Performs an unattended Setup using an answer file. The answer file provides answers to some or all of the prompts that the end user normally responds to during Setup. You must also use /s.

  • /udf:id [,UDF_file]

    Indicates an identifier (id) that Setup uses to specify how a Uniqueness Database File (UDF) modifies an answer file (see /u). The /udf parameter overrides values in the answer file, and the identifier determines which values in the UDF are used. If no UDF_file is specified, Setup prompts you to insert a disk that contains the $Unique$.udb file.

  • /r:folder

    Specifies an optional folder to be installed. The folder remains after Setup finishes.

  • /rx:folder

    Specifies an optional folder to be copied. The folder is deleted after Setup finishes.

  • /e:command

    Specifies a command to be executed at the end of GUI-mode Setup.

  • /a

    Enables accessibility options.

The Winnt32.exe Command Syntax [Top]

“Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows NT”

By running Winnt32.exe installs or upgrades Windows 2000. You can run the Winnt32 command at a Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows NT command prompt.

The syntax of the Winnt32 command is as follows:

winnt32 [/s:sourcepath] [/tempdrive:drive_letter] [/unattend[num]:[answer_file]] [/copydir:folder_name] [/copysource:folder_name] [/cmd:command_line] [/debug[level]:[filename]] [/udf:id[,UDF_file]] [/syspart:drive_letter] [/checkupgradeonly] [/cmdcons] [/m:folder_name] [makelocalsource] [/noreboot]

where:

  • /s:sourcepath

    Specifies the source location of the Windows 2000 files. To simultaneously copy files from multiple servers, specify multiple /s sources. If you use multiple /s switches, the first specified server must be available or Setup fails.

  • /tempdrive:drive_letter

    Directs Setup to place temporary files on the specified partition and to install Windows 2000 on that partition.

  • /unattend

    Upgrades your previous version of Windows 2000, Windows NT 4.0, Windows NT 3.51, Windows 95, or Windows 98 in unattended Setup mode. All user settings are taken from the previous installation, so no user intervention is required during Setup. Using the /unattend switch to automate Setup affirms that you have read and accepted the Microsoft License Agreement for Windows 2000. Before using this switch to install Windows 2000 on behalf of an organization other than your own, you must confirm that the end user (whether an individual, or a single entity) has received, read and accepted the terms of the Windows 2000 Microsoft License Agreement. OEMs may not specify this key on machines being sold to end users.

  • /unattend[num]:[answer_file]

    Performs a fresh installation in unattended Setup mode. The answer file provides Setup with your custom specifications. Num is the number of seconds between the time that Setup finishes copying the files and when it restarts your computer. You can use num on any computer running Windows NT or Windows 2000. Answer_file is the name of the answer file.

  • /copydir:folder_name

    Creates an additional folder within the folder in which the Windows 2000 files are installed. For example, if the source folder contains a folder called Private_drivers that has modifications just for your site, you can type /copydir:Private_drivers to instruct Setup to copy that folder to your installed Windows 2000 folder. So then the new folder location would be C:\Winnt\Private_drivers. You can use /copydir to create as many additional folders as you want.

  • /copysource:folder_name

    Creates a temporary additional folder within the folder in which the Windows 2000 files are installed. For example, if the source folder contains a folder called Private_drivers that has modifications just for your site, you can type /copysource:Private_drivers to have Setup copy that folder to your installed Windows 2000 folder and use its files during Setup. So then the temporary folder location would be C:\Winnt\Private_drivers. Unlike the folders /copydir creates, /copysource folders are deleted after Setup completes.

  • /cmd:command_line

    Instructs Setup to carry out a specific command before the final phase of Setup. This occurs after your computer has restarted twice and after Setup has collected the necessary configuration information, but before Setup is complete.

  • /debug[level]:[filename]

    Creates a debug log at the level specified, for example, /debug4:C:\Win2000.log. The default log file is C:\%windir%\Winnt32.log, with the debug level set to 2. The log levels are as follows: 0-severe errors, 1-errors, 2-warnings, 3-information, and 4-detailed information for debugging. Each level includes the levels below it.

  • /udf:id[,UDF_file]

    Indicates an identifier (id) that Setup uses to specify how a Uniqueness Database File (UDF) modifies an answer file (see the /unattend entry). The UDF overrides values in the answer file, and the identifier determines which values in the UDF are used.

    For example, /udf:RAS_user,Our_company.udb overrides settings specified for the RAS_user identifier in the Our_company.udb file. If no UDF_file is specified, Setup prompts the user to insert a disk that contains the $Unique$.udb file.

  • /syspart:drive_letter

    Specifies that you can copy Setup startup files to a hard disk, mark the disk as active, and then install the disk into another computer. When you start that computer, it automatically starts with the next phase of the Setup. You must always use the /tempdrive parameter with the /syspart parameter.

  • /checkupgradeonly

    Checks your computer for upgrade compatibility with Windows 2000. For Windows 95 or Windows 98 upgrades, Setup creates a report named Upgrade.txt in the Windows installation folder. For Windows NT 3.51 or 4.0 upgrades, it saves the report to the Winnt32.log in the installation folder.

  • /cmdcons

    Adds to the operating system selection screen a Recovery Console option for repairing a failed installation. It is only used post-Setup.

  • /m:folder_name

    Specifies that Setup copies replacement files from an alternate location. Instructs Setup to look in the alternate location first and if files are present, use them instead of the files from the default location.

  • /makelocalsource

    Instructs Setup to copy all installation source files to your local hard disk. Use /makelocalsource when installing from a CD to provide installation files when the CD is not available later in the installation.

  • /noreboot

    Instructs Setup to not restart the computer after the file copy phase of Winnt32 is completed so that you can execute another command.

Running Setup in Unattended Setup Mode

By using an answer file, network administrators and experienced users can perform a new installation in an unattended Setup mode. In an unattended Setup mode, no user intervention is required during setup as the answer file contains all of the information that setup requires, including acceptance of the license agreement, computer name, and network adapter. Answer files can also help you quickly install Windows 2000 on multiple computers when doing larger operating system roll-outs.

Microsoft includes a sample answer file, Unattend.txt, in the I386 folder on the Windows 2000 Professional CD. Using that file as a template, you can create your own answer file to customize Setup.

To run unattended Setup in Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows NT 3.51, or Windows NT 4.0, start Winnt32.exe by using either the:

/unattend[num]:[answer_file] option or the

/unattend option.

Creating Setup Startup Disks

If you don’t have the Setup startup disks, you can create them. The startup disks are used to start Setup if you can’t start Setup from your hard drive. Note: The setup startup disks contain different information than the Emergency Repair Disk, so be careful!

To create Setup startup disks

  1. Insert a blank, formatted disk into the floppy disk drive, and insert the Windows 2000 Professional CD into the CD-ROM drive.

    You will need four blank, 1.44 MB formatted 3.5-inch disks. Label them “Setup Disk 1,” “Setup Disk 2,” and so on.

  2. Click Start, and then click Run.
  3. At the prompt, type the following command, replacing d with the letter of your CD-ROM drive and a with the letter of your floppy disk drive.

    d:\bootdisk\Makeboot.exe a:

  4. Follow each of the instructions that appear.

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